This game rules. I've never really played a tabletop game that felt so strongly like a narrative rogue-like, and I absolutely loved the legacy mechanic, which again, is something I haven't seen in other TTRPGs. I talked about playing it on a podcast, since I have one of those now, but this is a really interesting piece of design and a fun game.
A downloadable game
Wandering Dreams is an adventure RPG zine about exploring a Soulsborne and Lovecraft inspired world full of strange and unique locations, beings, and things that are waiting for discovery by the player. It is designed for solo play and uses custom rules for combat and encounters. Using a deck of standard playing cards and a 6 sided die (d6) the player sets off on a story telling experience into the world of the dream.
During your adventure you can observe, approach, fight, and run from the denizens of this world by your choice. Explore the world using the card pulls and dice for prompts as well as information on what you are dealing with. A journal is highly recommended to track where you have been, what you have seen, and how your character is doing.
The player explores the world using the zine, a deck of standard cards (jokers removed), their favourite d6 (6-sided die), a journal (or paper), plus a writing instrument (pen, pencil, quill and ink, etc.). The deck is separated into suits to represent different elements in the story that will be drawn as you progress.
♠ SPADES ♠: Locations (here, there, anywhere)
♥ HEARTS ♥: Events (happens location to location or in a location)
♦ DIAMONDS ♦: Things (weapons, attire, tools, antiquities, etc.)
♣ CLUBS ♣: Beings (bad, neutral, people, beasts, the unknown)
After drawing a card the player will roll their D6 and find the card suit, value, and rolled result in the tables provided inside the zine. The zine provides alternative play styles for players who want to challenge themselves further with story writing and character development.
Character creation has been streamlined to a die roll before starting the adventure. Each character will have predetermined stats, starting equipment, and a small backstory prompt for the player to work with.
A total of 6 character archetypes will be included in the zine to start with templates for additional custom characters as the player sees fit.
Characters can be built in the game and transferred over to other game engines. Wandering Dreams can provide you a template for backstory creation and character development.
Combat is designed to use as few cards as possible and your trusty D6. The player always attacks first and can vanquish many small Beings of the world in one round to keep the story moving forward and remove the need for constant die rolls to get through an encounter.
Alternatively the Player can choose to Escape and avoid the fight all together if looking for more of a exploration style to play or if you encounter a Being that is far beyond your abilities or causes too much fear.
Encounters can be lucrative to find new Things of interest inside the world of Wandering Dreams but can also be deadly and ultimately lead to...
The game ends when the player chooses to awaken from the dream world by death, achieving their end purpose, or choosing to awaken from the dream.
Finding a suitable end point can be difficult and so the zine will include a small list of ideas to get you started with objectives that reflect the world being explored. These can be expanded on with your own ideas and empty templates will be included for listing your concepts.
As you explore the dream more and learn about what is possible the options will continue to expand until perhaps the Beings and Things encountered become too much to handle. The game can be packed away and picked up again at another time as the player chooses.
A large part of zines is the ease of access for everyone. Perhaps you want a new 'uber' table of items to pick from... modify the provided Things tables in the provided blank templates to create something new or just move around what is provided!
Instructions for hacking the zine will be included at the back of it for all designers looking to explore their favourite worlds or original creations using the deck of cards and d6 system. The hacking process is something I believe in greatly for everyone interested in game design and I wouldn't have started this project without doing it myself. Some of my favourites include; Tunnel Goons, Alone Among The Stars, and Take Root.
In order to download this game you must purchase it at or above the minimum price of $8 USD. You will get access to the following files:
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Thank you for the kind words. I am very happy to hear that you enjoyed the game so much!
Thank you for taking the time to play and review it! I don't know any Spanish, sorry, but I appreciate it nonetheless.
Hi there! Just wanted to let you know that the "Ending the Game" section of the PDF has the same contents as the "Setup" section! I don't know if this is a mistake or not
Thanks for letting me know, that was a big error on my part. I will remove the "Setup" section one and republish the PDF today. You can just ignore it on your current version! :)
Hey there! Is there a preview available? I really like solo games, and I love Soulsborne stuff, but I'd like to know if this would be good for Campaign-style play (multiple sessions using the same character) or is more of a one-shot thing before investing on it.
Anyway, congrats for making such a cool sounding game, and for being able to materialize ideas into a product, that's a talent in and of itself :)
I have been meaning to upload a few preview images for people to see what's inside. Give me a day to get that done! The game is designed to encourage multiple playthroughs with character customization and legacy rules that are easy to expand on.
Thank you for reaching out. If you want to grab a community copy (free) as well there will be a few going up today!
No problem, I was like "ehhh I can do this!", went ahead and grabbed it. I really like it, but I would appreciate the previews anyways, for future consumers.
Again, good job and thanks for giving us this game! :D
If Bleak Spirit is Dark Souls, this is Bloodborne.
The layout is clean, the illustrations are nice, and it packs a lot of flavor into its 18 pages, so if you like storytelling games, and you like the lovecraftian gothic macabre of Bloodborne, this may be your jam. It *is* a solo game, and it works well as a writing prompt, but it could probably also be played with a team, with everyone making decisions for the central character.
There's combat (although it's optional,) and there's a lot of potential interactions with your encounters, so the game should be both exciting and stay pretty fresh throughout. That said, it does use a d6 random roll to determine a lot of narrative results, so whether things go well or ill for your character may depend a lot on luck.
There are typos in the current version, and I've documented the ones I found below in case it's helpful, but they're not super disruptive and don't mess with the meaning of any game content.
There's also a lot of things that are said in the rules, and then immediately re-stated, sometimes in the same sentence. This can be a little disruptive, but it's only really an issue when you're reading the encounter guidelines. Also, the game does have a quick reference for the rules on page 3 (and then repeated on page 17,) and it's very useful, so flip back to it if you ever get turned around.
On the very plus side, Wandering Spirit includes a legacy mode where you permanently change the game book each time you complete a character, and this is extremely cool. Honestly, the system is worth it for that alone.
Overall, I think I'd recommend this first and foremost to folks who like to write and who like gothic macabre in general or Bloodborne in specific. For folks who are not comfortable with their own writing, this game is a great way to tell a story without any pressure and with a cool atmosphere and maybe get past that block.
Wandering Spirit is also pretty well-suited for the solo ttrpg crowd. It's got just enough crunch via its dice rolls and mechanics to avoid being a purely just-tell-a-story game, but it's much more about flavor and atmosphere than it is about rolling. If you like branching path gamebooks, you'll probably also like this for similar reasons.
-Page 2, para 1, "adven ture" adventure
-Page 2, para 2 "anything make you uncomfortable" makes
-Page 2, para 3 "characters story" character's
-Page 2, para 3 "and even location to" locations
-Page 2, para 2 "pull our the full length" pull out
-Page 2, The Cards, para 1 "looking u p" up
-Page 4, para 1, "reach you inevitable awaken" reach your inevitable awakening
-Page 4, para 2 "find answers the answers they seek" find the answers they seek
-Page 4, Huntsman of Beasts, "torn an bloodied attire" torn and bloodied attire
-Page 6, para 1, "use the cards value" card's
-Page 6, para 1, "page #" page number is missing
-Page 7, para 1, "rolls the d6 again" roll
-Page 7, last para, "I was the meal. ." extra .
-Page 9, para 2, "to use an Thing" a Thing
-Page 10, para 1, "choose an option from the below" from below
Thank you for the review and feedback! The issues you mentioned are on my list to be checked again and will be fixed in the next digital version release if they haven't already been found (I had an editor look it over). I do have an issue with run-on sentences and repetition in my writing and appreciate you catching it and listing the issues.
I got this as part of the racial equality bundle, and I just wanted to say that this looks AMAZING. I have always wanted to get into TTRPGs and a single-player experience like this might just be what I needed. Thanks and Godspeed to you
As someone who greatly struggles lately with inspiration and creative spark, this has been amazing! I def recommend this to anyone who is just wanting to sit back and see how a story plays out through rolls and draws!
Happy you found some creative juice from the game. That was a huge push for me to complete the project and it's great hearing others can get the same from the game.
I received this with the racial equality bundle and just wanted to say that I loved this experience. It's structured enough so that someone new to single player ttrpgs like me can figure it out, but it leaves lots up to the player, allowing you to change the experience to your liking. I greatly enjoyed this game and wanted to say thank you for it. :)