Maze Rat – Solo

Today I put Maze Rat, my solo rules for Maze Rats up on DTRPG. I am curious as to which one will prove more popular. I mentioned this week that half of all RPG books will never sell more than 50 copies. A Lonely Knave sold 50 in 25hrs.

There is more OSR fun in the pipeline, Read down about what is coming up and about getting discounts.

Of those that do sell more than fifty, half of them will never sell more than 100 copies, A lonely Knave sold 101 in four days. In seven days it is halfway to Electrum best selling which represents the top 10% of books.

Maze Rats is a similar game to Knave, but it is more solo-friendly of the two systems. Maze Rats has a wonderful random magic spell generator, it has random world creation and even random ‘what did I get up to last night’ creation.

The cool thing about Maze Rats is its six by six lists. Every area comes with six lists and each list has six items. You can either roll one d6 twice, once for the list and then once for the entry on the list, but what I did was just use a single roll.

The first time I needed to use each table, I rolled a d6, then picked the first available item from the list. This meant that I never used the same thing twice. It also made the game fractionally faster at the table. For a role player I am not particularly keen on dice rolling. I don’t know why.

So, I am a big Maze Rats fan. The solo rules have followed the same format as closely as I could.

If you are familiar with the game, I hope you agree that this page could have fallen out of the PDF. That is the enture solo system!

Let’s take a look at the six by six lists on the second page.

The open question oracle is giving you 36 x 36 possible combinations of prompt. That is nearly 1,300 options. Not the most expansive oracle admittedly but it is more than adequate for the kind of one-shot adventures that Maze Rats cries out for.

Having worked and played both systems for two weeks, which do I prefer?

I like the random magic and world generation in Maze Rats. I have said that I am not overly keen on dice rolling, but it was easy to halve the number of required rolls and just cycling through the lists from start to finish.


I am also getting quite into writing one-page adventures. The are really quick to write, a day or so is about par. They are chance to revisit old monsters and some of the tools available today to help with dungeon creation just did not exist when I was running full campaigns. A one page dungeon is a perfect partner for an OSR solo game. They take less prep than a full blown TSR or WotC module, they can often be done is a session and there is a good chance you are going to either survive, or go so far off course that it becomes the root of a totally unexpected greater adventure. Either way you’re a winner.

So far the only one of these I have released is Grave Error, but these are going to be my Thursday projects, so I have something to play over the weekends.

Don’t read too much into the word dungeon. I want to explore lots of settings in these little outings.


Knave, I think has the greater longevity as a standalone game. Not necessarily as a solo system. If you are in the UK you are probably more than familiar with Red Dwarf. It is my understanding that Red Dwarf did not do so well in the States. I am working on a Red Dwarf inspired OSR game. It is Knave that is going to sit at the heart of the system.

Don’t hold your breath waiting for that, it is a back burner project and something I am dabbling with just for fun, for now at least.

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