Thursday 18 February 2021

Goblins of Zarth 5e Module Buy this Book!

Buy It Here

Recently I saw my friend Herbie was involved in this book which is a fascinating thing. I'm hoping it gets more distro but Im glad to see a local indy game retailer in Oz too. 

So I weaselled for a looksie and to show off here. Herbie ran a club I lived above for a few years and did lots of art carny shenanigans. Money from this probably helps him operate city art warehouses full of freaks who have all had a bad year for income being in arts and entertainment. Herbie will do art quickly and reasonably and DMs online. While talking about this he encouraged me to dnd5 more and I had the longest effort to read it than I have before.

There are lots of fascinating features to this a long term game collector will like. While it states is for 5th ed it offers a super streamlined dnd5 with features id seen proposed by a few oldschool gamers. like just "have only attribute bonus" on the character sheet as the stat number does nothing" school. There are some elements here that are very old-school and the simplified dnd approach is done well. Lots you could recycle or use or steal from. Some f the art and style remind me of 80s Warhammer too, So while its sorta 5th ed any streamlined dnd skeleton game would work.

The art varies from sketchy to tonal and the portrayals of characters and creatures are a delight. Im reminded of films Legend or Labyrinth or Brian Fraud art in tone rather than style. Some look almost, Hieronymous Bosh inspired. 

In this you play goblins, part of a demented civilisation. You have to navigate goblin culture and there are lots of interesting encounters, situations and events for Bizzaro goblin roll playing. Lots of NPC illustrations and interesting location illustrations. I think you could get a lot of humour out of this. There are numerous episodes in the early section. The later part of the book details factions, culture, detail on locations, rules simplified notes and lots of stats. Goblin battledress descriptions are amazing. The main operator is usually visible on top with the dress like a 17th c metal plate ball gown with holes for weapons for the goblins in the lower half who also provide motion. 

The goblin culture here has its own dimwitted strangeness that goblin fans will enjoy. Certainly, you could avoid fighting and enjoy roleplay goblins. If you already have you own goblin thing happening you can always have these as belonging to a region but it is certainly inspiring. Some of the setups like getting bad goblin propaganda is wonderous.

One of the best things about this book is it is not like anything else dnd5 or retro-clone. For this alone it deserves a look. Its nothing like what I would do but I like it. I look forward to more. It includes assets like tokens that an old meatspace gamer doesn't get but friends do and pregen sheets and other stuff. The layout is a bit basic but gives you lots of space and is functional. Id like to see in print. There is one column. on other hand as a made-to-print at home a sheet of a4 per page you can pull apart and bundle as you like into sections ita good. That way you can hop from the adventure section to the locations section and stats section and have loose handouts for players. As I used to print lots of pdfs like this to run in a game and this seems deliberate here to do that.

I don't know if you could rin in a con session possibly 2
If your player goblins roleplay hard this could last three months

Lots of bits to adlib from and steal for a game even interesting goblins on call. One thought I did have was GURPS goblin book might help you adlib more stuff. What is in the book with goblin civilization, court, factions, and startling NPCs you could play a while ad-libbing from the content here? Lots of good retro DND gamers into goblin markets tables and of course that goblin poem about goblin drug pushers tainting children with goblin fruit. Possibly i would play with jethro tull and hawkwind to this cos i get a bit of 70s weird tock album art fanyasy.

Price here might be in Australian dolleroos before you frak out, Drivethrough RPG and LuLu options night happen. Im sure will benefit Herbie and lots of cool freakers.


  1. On a lark, have you ever read GURPS Goblins? Sounds very similar, but I'll still check out the Zarth book as well.


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