Solo play/players?


#1

Hey friends!

So I just ordered the book (loving everything I’ve seen), but I’m wondering if any solo players lurk here. I’m just getting back into TTRPG’s after 20 years, and just found Mythic (a way to play solo) and it’s been a monumental game changer for me. Anyways, to the solo players, how has/have your experiences been?

Thanks!


#2

I like solo but haven’t done a lot with solo ICRPG yet. If you haven’t seen the posts yet, a fellow forum member did a short series here:
@MattSlaton


#3

You might also check out Trials for One - a solo guide for ICRPG. I haven’t bough this one yet, so I’m very interested in any feedback anyone has about it.


#4

Hey there! Yes, I’ve been a solo (and recently also duo GMless) player since I started in the hobby pretty much. I do play more often than not with other people as a GM but I always enjoy a good solo session.
This is an early setup we had with my gf, we used ICRPG for core system, Scarlet Heroes for random generation (it is super awesome as a GM toolkit too!!) and some of Ironsworn.



Also check out the Perilous WIlds, which we’ve been using lately for more world generation! It’s an awesome supplement for Dungeon World

ICRPG plays really well solo because it is very well structured and incorporates “gamey” mechanics like chests for loot that allows you to keep an easy GMless advancement while you focus on your narrative development using your oracles. My biggest advice is to have a good resource for fun baddies that you can easily snap into your game, which its ultimate form for me is Dungeon World since the monsters there have simple stats (damage and hp, I make them roll UNDER the target for attempts and such) and narrative tags that really shine for rp inspiration in a gmless environment.

Adventure on, solitaire hero!


#5

I play a lot of solo games, some with ICRPG, and they’ve turned out fine. Some better than others, of course.


#6

I’ve done some solo games over the years. Always a lot of fun, especially in a venue where people just post back and forth when they have time rather than having to do a more structured thing where a big group all have to show up at a certain place and time. You tend to be able to dive a lot more deeply into the world of the particular character too, since it’s pretty much just following THEIR specific adventure rather than some largely unrelated thing that needs to appeal to a group. So, what’s Mythic? I haven’t heard of that (or rather I have–but the Mythic I’ve heard of is a whole other thing, an indy game designed by some guys out of Salt Lake City–which is great and totally worth checking out, but not at all what you’re talking about).


#7

Mythic is a GM emulator system that provides oracles and stuff for solo play!


#8

That sounds cool. I’ll have to check it out.


#9

I should have asked and thanked you for this reply, but I never got it. My fault, thank you so much for this!

How have you handled loot? It’s the one point of pain for me and I can’t understand how to incorporate it into my games. Thanks!!!


#10

Hey, Im new to the game myself. Im an avid solo gamer though. I recently found a nice solo gaming app that I plan to use with ICRPG. It’s made for 5e, but could be used for any fantasy genre ttrpg. The developer is working on expanding it’s customizability too. Search Drakkon World builder on Steam or on the google play store for android. The app is only a few bucks, very cheap and good at what it is intended for.


#11

There always seems to be a post about solo play every now and then. I think that needs to be a dedicated optional tag of “solo” we start using so we can filter solo-focus posts easier haha. This is a great discussion.

How has Mythic helped?

Here are some pics of some of the things i use for Solo RPGing. Ultimately I think it comes down to what type of player you are, what type of GM you are and finding a balance between the two.

Type of Players (Prioritization In Decision Making)

  1. Social Interactions
  2. Exploration Focused
  3. Solving Mysteries/Puzzles
  4. Learning the Lore thru play
  5. Stat/Game Mechanic Optimization
  6. Combat

Types of GMs (Preparation Efforts and Resources)

  1. Plan every single detail (encounter) no surprises
  2. Everything is a surprise, use tables and RNG
  3. Plan by Session, session-goal centric
  4. Play like a board game with tables, maps, grids, cards etc.

These are just some ideas.

Personally I like using the physical stuff as much as possible. Even solo I enjoy using a grid (using dice for random placement helps too) with physical dice and any props I can.

I have steered away from using a Character Sheet and jnstead just use a bunch of blank poker cards to keep track of items and base stats, abilities, etc. It’s much easier to flip a card over if it’s broken/disabled or hand someone a card when they get an item. When I’m solo it’s fun to see my collection physically grow in front of me. Of course you have to have some way to keep track so I use a journal like most and just write some bullet notes. The carda keep track of the big stuff but I might want to remember something specific about a particular NPC or a clue or something that I wouldn’t have in card form.

Breaking down how most Solo RPGs work:

  1. Method of Progression (Character Sheet)
  2. Method of Keeping Track of Physical Space (Maps)
  3. Method of Randomness (Oracles, Deck of Cards, Dice)
  4. Method of Control (Monsters, Weather - Tables)

One of my favorite ways to construct character motivation is thru the Belief, Instinct, Goal concept from Mouse Guard. It helps keep your character consistent and even acknowledges that these must be often challenged. Almost ALL stories include a character with something they want but something is getting in the way. How the character deals with that issue is what makes a story interesting or intriguing.

Oh and before I forget for Loot are you asking how often to include it and which Loot tables to use? I include at least one Loot per game, sometimes more. Gotta have some type of reward but it has to be possible to not get or else it doesn’t feel earned.

All games are voluntarily attempts to overcome unnecessary obstacles! -Bernard Suits


#12

Roll UNDER the target? Why has this idea never been shared on here? I’ve always been annoyed at the major flaw in the rules where the room TN is 15 because you’re fighting a dragon, but the dragon is required to roll against the TN. While a TN 12 goblin encounter means the goblins have an easier time than the dragon in accomplishing tasks. Having it roll under makes so much more sense. So do the monsters stat bonuses subtract from the roll or do you add them to the TN?


#13

What are those playing card/encounter cards from? The ones with the scenarios on them?


#14

In your example I’d have the Dragon roll against the adventurers Armor so somewhere between 10-14 is pretty normal. Then I’d give the Dragon something like +8 on all rolls and +6 to Energy/Magic Effort depending on how strong you want to make your bad guy. There are a few posts on here dedicated to TN and how to handle Armor. Not sure what the subtopics are labeled as but I remember reading about them a while back.

In the end I personally decided to just use Armor as the TN for bad guys although some people like having their players roll even when the bad guys attack them. So lots of ways to do it but yeah flexibility is most definitely an ICRPG strong suit.


#15

Ah those are from the Twilight 2000 RPG from Free League. I’m actually working on some type of a hack/conversion for ICRPG but it’s taking some time.

The cards are the Encounter Cards that come with the Box Set. It’s leans towards the Simulation end of RPGs but I think it has some of the best Solo Rules I’ve played. I use the Encounter Cards and just reskin it for whatever setting I’m playing in.

Twilight - 2000 Core Box Set https://a.co/d/dWpulby


#16

I profoundly hate stats on monsters haha It’s a vice I got from Dungeon World, where thr GM doesn’t roll dice so the monsters don’t have any core stats, just hp, damage and armor. The rest is moves the monster can do.

So I just roll with that, and adjust the TN accordingly, just like what you said about the goblins and the dragon. If you really want to keep stats, just have them reduce the monster’s roll like what you said.

If you go my way, to differenciate different monsters, I find it more convenient to use easy/hard (which I do as advantage/disadvantage rather than +/- roll), attached to tags. So if a goblin has the “sneaky” tag, they’ll roll with adv equal or under the TN to get their sneaky stuff done, etc. You can also use tags against the players, giving them hard to rolls against such creature because of the tags involved.

As an extra, I have been running A LOT of The Black Hack lately and came to find out that using HitDie/Levels for monsters is pretty handy, because you can just say i.e. a Wyrm is HD 5 so it has like 5❤️ and the default TN against him is 15, etc.

An example monster I would run:
Wyrm :heart::heart::heart::heart::heart:
Tags: Flying, Huge, Fearsome.
+5 Armor
Damage: 3d8 Fire Breath. 2d6 Claws.
Moves:

  • Devour an opponent’s magic.
  • Level the ground, break the land.
  • Become fire and death from above.

#17

That’s a great example. 5 hearts is one heck of a dragon!! Would need some way to wreck entire hearts or a full party kitted out with good gear.

I think the main idea here is that when running a Solo RPG you pretty much have to have some type of move/attack priority AI type of thing. I think having Chunks that are associated with a special move or attack ate also cool.

Examples:
Tail = :heart: once destroyed can no long do a tail swipe attack (Hits all in NEAR range) etc.
Wings = :heart: once destroyed can no long fly

This is pretty old but the info is great for Solo Gaming.

Runehammer Monster AI