Tiny Tome proves big game ideas can come in small runs

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It should come as no surprise to anyone that I love a TTRPG anthology, and as soon as I got my hands on it Tiny Tome I knew I was holding something special. Collected from an open call via itch.io, Long Tail Games has curated a selection that touches on all genres and styles of play. Like many games selected from an open call, some of them don’t are not perfect. But all are playable, as long as you’re willing to fill in the blanks yourself.

There are hex exploration games, solo journaling games, word games, and classic adventure modules, all crammed into this one book. I’ve selected a few of my favorites to feature. The Kickstarter has fully funded, and you can support this project by click here “I can promise it’s worth it.

Mammoth

Mammoth by Exeunt Press (Image: Tiny Tome)

I promised a hexcrawl, didn’t I? Mammothby Get out of the press, is about a group of prehistoric humans trying to get to the hunting grounds in the far north of the hex map. Every day they have to decide how best to survive in the wild, facing starvation, mammoths and how history will remember them.

Demonbreakers

Demonbreakers by Brian Hazzard (Image: Tiny Tome)Demonbreakers by Brian Hazzard (Image: Tiny Tome)

Demonbreakersby Brian HazardEast ghost hunters-meets-Monty Python and the Saint GrayIinspired by Avery Alder Membership Outside Membership game system. Fast-paced and with clear hooks to guide players without a GM (Game Master), the game follows you and your motley crew of Demonbreakers as they must close the gates of hell before your city is destroyed. sucked into the abyss.

Ossuary

Alfred Valley Ossuary (Image: Alfred Valley)Alfred Valley Ossuary (Image: Alfred Valley)

Inspired by classic dungeon crawling tabletop games, Ossuary is a fast-paced, combat-focused game by Alfred Valley. It’s lightweight but battle-ready, creating a framework for the Bone Collector (aka the GM) to create a dangerous treasure trove where they would have to “reward the cool, dump the loot, and drop clues” to continue the game.

Freedom or toaster

Liberty or Toaster by Giles Pritchard (Image: Tiny Tome)Liberty or Toaster by Giles Pritchard (Image: Tiny Tome)

Just the premise of Gilles Prichardit’s Freedom or toaster is delicious – You play as escaped androids on the loose who find themselves dumped in a very typical, very human mall. You have to get out before the robot police find out who you are. One of my favorites in this book, the mechanics are tight and the premise is immediately playable.

Short term apocalypse

Short Order Apocalypse by Benjamin C. Bailey (Image: Tiny Tome)Short Order Apocalypse by Benjamin C. Bailey (Image: Tiny Tome)

You and your buddies decided you were fed up. In Short term apocalypse by Benjamin C. Bailey, you have made a deal with the devil for unlimited power and wealth, but first you must bring about the apocalypse. As you hack, hack, and summon your way to damnation, the GM is tasked with inventing the hordes of humans, angels, and zombies that would stand in your way. But as soon as you roll the devil sign, it’s over… and maybe for you too.

Symbiosis

Symbiosis by angela quidam (Image: Tiny Tome)Symbiosis by angela quidam (Image: Tiny Tome)

A two-player game using a tower of stackable blocks (like, say, a mark Jenga turn) author angela quidam was directly inspired by Venom, where one player is the host and the other is the pest. When you dictate danger, you remove blocks from the tower, which represent your failing body. When it falls apart, it’s time to reveal how it all ended up falling apart.

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