Now more than ever people are looking for alternatives to Dungeons & Dragons. But, with thousands of choices of tabletop roleplaying games, where to start?

Fantasy RPGs

  • If you want to play 5e without playing a Wizards of the Coast product, you probably want to play Pathfinder 2e, arguably the second most widely played fantasy RPG.
  • If you want to play 5e a bit longer but don’t want to buy from WotC anymore, check out Fifth Edition Fantasy modules.
  • If you want to play a fantasy RPG with extensive community support, or you want to try your first game with a ruleset Powered by the Apocalypse, you can play Dungeon World for free (and its Creative Commons license supports a lot of open customizations). (Here’s why I switched to Dungeon World after GMing 100 games of 5e.)
  • If you’ve played a PbtA game before, check out this collection of PbtA and OSR alternatives.
  • If you’re excited by the idea of hacking together your own rule set, check out Uncommon World (for PbtA) or the GLOGosphere.
  • If you want just two pages of rules, check out World of Dungeons.
  • If you want to play a recent system with an active community, try Cairn (also free as in free beer and free as in free software).

Other Types of RPGs

With so much to choose from, consider running a few one-shot games to find a system that resonates with you!

Photo by Marie Bellando Mitjans on Unsplash.