Episode 81 – The Good Friends tremble in the Dead of Night

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Episode081

We’re back, and after a few episodes about Call of Cthulhu, we’re talking about Dead of Night, a horror RPG that is largely tentacle-free. That’s not to say that you that you can’t do Lovecraftian horror with Dead of Night, which is a set of mechanics for emulating horror films, but the tentacles are purely optional. If you can think of a monster, murderer or supernatural menace that would render the protagonists of a horror film into red, meaty paste, Dead of Night can bring it to life.

Dead of Night Cover

This little chap’s so hungry he’s chewed up the logo.

Described as “the roleplaying game of campfire tales, slasher movies and b-movie horror”, Dead of Night is a light, simple system designed for one-shots, and can easily be explained to new players on the fly. You can create a player character in a couple of minutes, which is a good thing, given that they’re known in the game text as “victims”. We’ve found that it works well for anything from manic comedy-horror to dark, serious games that drip with atmosphere and blood.

Dead of Night 1

And possibly some other, less identifiable fluids.

Dead of Night is the brainchild of good friend of the Good Friends Andrew Kenrick, and came out of the burst of British RPG self-publishing known as the Collective Endeavour, that gave us such games as Hot War3:16 Carnage Amongst the StarsContendersDuty & Honour and Umläut: Game of Metal. I was recently asked in an interview whether I thought self-publishing was a worthwhile pursuit for RPG designers, and these games were the reason I answered with an enthusiastic yes.

Dead of Night 2

Enthusiasm pictured for reference.

All the pictures in these notes come from the second edition of Dead of Night, which was laid-out and illustrated by the incredibly talented Paul Bourne. This edition features some of Paul’s best work, especially in the form of the many fake horror film posters he spread throughout the book like the viscera of so many victims. We’ve raved about Paul’s work before, back when we discussed Hot War, and this is the perfect opportunity to do so again. Paul now works full-time for Cubicle 7, and you will notice his distinctive handiwork in the layout of many of their books.

Dead of Night 3

I’m sure they’ll let him out to work on more film posters one day.

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10 Responses to Episode 81 – The Good Friends tremble in the Dead of Night

  1. James Mullen says:

    Argh! Dead of Night scenarios; yes, I have them and yes, they are available on-line… now. There are five of them if you follow these links, including The Mist and Ghost Hunt: DVD Extras as mentioned in the podcast. You’ll also find Doorstop (a weird, claustrophobic horror story), Closure (a meta-fictional horror) and Nothing in the Woodshed (a game with a setting… don’t even think about opening that folder unless you’re going to GM it though or can at least keep a secret.)

    https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B1iTjRUomaBXbmM5UjJHNEtMTm8&usp=sharing

    https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B1iTjRUomaBXRi1iWS1RZFpZajQ&usp=sharing

    https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B1iTjRUomaBXNW4xeXlHVExUS1E&usp=sharing

  2. Suboptimal says:

    I found out about Dead Of Night through this podcast & went on Drive Thru RPG after the game was mentioned the first time, don´t remember which episode that was. And this year i was finally able to get my hands on two print copies as well. It is a fun read and i hope to be able to run a DoN game one day. Thanks to every one involved with Dead Of Night & this podcast.

  3. Mawdrigen says:

    Let’s try that again, I got shifted to the wrong post!

    I now own a copy of Dead of Night and once I have worked out how the tension mechanic is supposed to work I hope to run some one shots over on the cult of tea and dice podcast! Thank you for the great reccomendation

  4. Hi guys,

    Based on your recommendations, I’ve nabbed a print copy of Dead of Night 2nd Ed. It’s in the post now, and I’m looking forward to getting my grubby mitts on it.

    I had a quick question. Scott mentioned that he used a character sheet with most of the rules printed on the back. I was wondering, is there a copy of that floating around online that I could download? It sounds like it would be really useful for players!

    Cheers,

    Joe

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