Den of Thieves is a game I wrote (a draft of)

Den of Thieves is the revised version of a game I wrote in 2009, that has more or less been on a back burner since 2010. I haven't seen anything similar to it since then, though, so I thought I should maybe polish it up to let other people take a look at it.

It's a game about fantasy thieves in a fantasy city, with magic and whatnot and a sort-of Victorian underworld vibe. The rules are probably closest to Otherkind Dice (i.e. Ghost/Echo) but a little more rigid. You need a deck of cards to play. Each card represents a specific person, place, thing, or event. You make a map of cards laid out on the table, and you also draw cards to resolve actions, instead of rolling dice. The game is structured in scenes, and you can play with or without a GM (that role is split in two).

The intention is that each time you play, you choose a custom decks of cards, instead of an adventure scenario. Each deck would have a different set of people, places, things, and events, each with their own special rules. Production-wise, this is actually a lot easier to do now than it was in 2010, so possibly I should be thinking about working on this game again.

You can play it if you like. Let me know how it goes. What's missing is a section telling you how to play the roles (protagonist, dealer, antagonist). If you're familiar with games like Apocalypse World, Fiasco, and Ghost/Echo, it shouldn't be too hard to figure out, though.



  • Something to consider is to throw in a table of content. Not only so it would be easier to navigate while playing but also so I can get a hang of how much I need to read before starting to play the game.
  • I'll give it a whirl Johnstone :)
  • You probably don't need to read all the card descriptions in order to play. Probably read pages 1-25, I think.

    Also, I recommend using post-it notes for cards in the map. Write the name of the card on the post-it, put it on the card, so you can see at a glance what is actually on the map. I used to do this also for the Smoke Dream when I had cards out on the table.
  • Very cool; looking forward to checking it out!

    Is this the Otherkind thing you were going to post about, or is that still to come?
  • Yeah, this is the thing. I was just doing the layout and finishing the card descriptions (which were not complete) when you posted the other thread.
  • This looks hot, Johnstone!

    Added to my pile of "read urgently!".
  • Oh, y'know, I think there's a few other things I forgot to put in this draft. Like:
    - in order to "win" or at least end the adventure alive, you need to move your marker off the 5x5 grid.
    - you can move all the protagonist markers on a space, along with your own. So you can actually play the PC party sticks together game if you want to.
  • This might be the right system for a scenario idea I had. I will give it a read.
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