Dungeonslayers is a free RPG in the feel of old-school D&D-style dungeoneering games, but with a modern, light rules set. Definitely a great game for someone looking for something like the retro-clones without actually playing using a retro rules set.
You can download the game (and a GM screen, character sheet, and a sample dungeon) from the dungeonslayers website.
The game handles all the major tropes of the old-school gaming phenomenon, with clean rules set and a very nice layout and design.
Even though this is a classic dungeon-crawling game, I want to make a quirky character to see how the game handles it. The White Knife is an intellectual young man with photographic memory and a sword obsession, enough of an obsession that it has lead him into adventure seeking more swords for his collection.
The first step in character creation in Dungeonslayers is to pick a race, in this case I’m going for a human (giving him a bonus talent point) scout. “The White Knife” gets 18 points to spread between three ability scores – Body, Agility and Mind. While the standard mix for a scout would emphasize Agility, Stephen’s character concept is one of intellectual curiosity and photographic memory, so he puts an 8 in Mind, and 4 and 6 in Body and Agility. Each attribute then has two abilities under it, and I get 1 point to spread between them for every 2 points spent on the attribute.
He then gets 10 gp to spend on equipment – selecting a long sword (7gp) and since that puts all armour out of reach, a dagger (2gp).
From these stats we determine a variety of combat values. We also choose a talent (because he’s human), and since no weapon talents are available to a level 1 scout to account for his sword obsession, I grab a level of Perception which gives him a +1 on all Perception checks (which are Mind + Reason – so he’s already really good at them).
Stephen Bretall, The White Knife
Experience Points: 0
Learning Points: 0
Hit Points: 15
Melee Attack: 7
Ranged Attack: 9
Targetted Spells: 11
Perception I (+1 on all Perception checks)
Flint and tinder
Long Sword (WB+2)
Dagger (WB+0, +1 initiative)