Dashing Hero by Jacob Randolph

We’ve had problems getting campaigns going. We’ll have about 2 sessions and then they falter – most often due to scheduling.

Last week, we started up another campaign and one of my veteran players was looking longingly at the Dashing Hero playbook by Jacob Randolph.He was hesitant to pick it. When asked about the hesitation he responded “I’m saving it.”

The Dashing Hero gives the player so many tools to dive into the adventure, with a focus on getting the Dashing Hero into the action. The other players, each of whom had characters with flight, were wondering how the Dashing Hero would quickly get from the ground up to the third floor.

And while they were wondering, our Dashing Hero simply laughed with confidence as he laid out a Plan of Action – a large desk had been installed in the nearby third-floor dormer, and the rigging was still there. With the flip of his rapier, the Dashing Hero was on the rooftop and ready to deal with the kidnappers.

While some may find these abilities to make such sweeping declarations overly powerful, I welcomed it. The session became richer as I got to thinking “Now why would the lord install a desk today…” This was a detail that never would’ve surfaced without handing more narrative control to the players.

Dungeon World Playbooks

Before I go on, there are a lot of playbooks available for Dungeon World. It is such a lovely and hackable game. And while your campaign may not have room for all of these playbooks, it is always interesting to see what is out there.

They most certainly would have a place in a Dark Heart of the Dreamer campaign, a Dungeon World love letter to Planescape.

Dungeon World by Adam Koebel and Sage LaTorra

The core classes, except for the Barbarian are presently available at dungeon-world.com/character-sheets. Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.

  • Barbarian
  • Bard
  • Cleric
  • Druid
  • Fighter
  • Paladin
  • Ranger
  • Thief
  • Wizard

Adventures on Dungeon Planet by Johnstone Metzger

Included in this retro-sci-fi sourcebook are four playbooks. Available at RPGNow and Lulu. Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license.

  • Earthling – an adventurer out of time and space
  • Engine of Destruction – a robotic destroyer wreaking havoc upon its enemies and tearing cities down around it.
  • Mutant – a physically unstable shapeshifter
  • Technician – influencer of both man and machine through the power of science

Lair of the Unknown by Johnstone Metzger

An adventure with the goal of helping the GM run their first Dungeon World adventure and possibly campaign. Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license. It includes the Dungeoneer, the “pre-eminent explorer of dangerous underground areas.”

Available at RPGNow and Lulu.

Inverse World by Jacob Randolph

Presently fully only available via the Inverse World kickstarter. Though there is a partially redacted PDF preview available.

  • Captain – a high-flying airship owner
  • Lantern – a warrior-diplomat of the sun
  • Mechanic – an inventive sort with a technological wonder; Think Tony Stark/Ironman
  • Sky Dancer – able to swim through the sky
  • Survivor – scarred from the aftermath of their cataclysm
  • Walker – a master of parkour and acrobatics
  • Golem – built for battle and made to take orders

Alternate Dungeon World Playbooks by Jacob Randolph

Available at RPGNow as a bundle of four classes. The Mage, Priest, and Templar are inspired by the Wizard, Cleric, and Paladin but remove the last vestiges of D&D magic.

  • Artificer – a tinkerer, inspired by the Eberron Artificer class.
  • Mage – power derived from spell foci
  • Priest – power from the gods; you are a leader of your flock
  • Templar – smite the heretics and drive your allies to push even harder for your cause

Individual Playbooks at RPGNow

I believe all of these playbooks are under some Creative Commons License, which means they are yours to tweak and modified and even redistribute. Though some may come with RPGNow watermarks.

You’ll also want to checkout what bundles are available.

Compiled Freely Available Playbooks by James Myers

Compiled by James Myers, these are various available playbooks. The attribution is a work in progress, and some are possibly earlier versions of those that are available at RPGNow.com.

  • Artificer
  • Assistant
  • Barbarian
  • Charlatan
  • Drider
  • Gladiator
  • Grave Knight
  • Fortune Teller
  • Leader
  • Initiate
  • Namer
  • Noble
  • Psion
  • Shaman
  • True Friend
  • True Knight

  • Warlock

And last but not least, nerdwerd’s Dungeon World resources.