A Toast to Those Who Hack!

Posted by Labyrinthian in , ,

We have a lot of love for Hackmaster here at the Labyrinth.  Hackmaster Basic, a simplified version of the new system is a great game and can be had for under $20.  Despite being both a great game and an affordable one Hackmaster hasn't spread like it should.  When I talk with Gamers I am discouraged to find that many don't even know what the game is.  That's why I love to see people spreading the word about the game and especially running a game for others to show them what Hackmaster is all about. 

So Cheers to Troll and Flame who's proprietor recently ran what looks to be an awesome game of Hackmaster for a large group of people.  A number of pictures are provided and show the DM using Heroscape terrain to great effect.  Despite his concerns it looks like the game was a lot of fun.  I know I wish I could have played! 

This entry was posted on Sunday, June 26, 2011 at Sunday, June 26, 2011 and is filed under , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .



I've been delving back into old school systems and Hackmaster recently has caught my attention. Could you give me a low-down, if you don't mind on what you like about it? Pros and Cons? I just read a review on RPG net that really makes it seem awesome! :)


June 26, 2011 at 3:35 PM

@WrathofZombie - Sorry for the delay in replying! I'd be happy to do a quick breakdown of a couple of things that are great and not so great about the new edition of Hackmaster, but keep in mind that this is only for the Core Basic book (and the supplements both from Hackjournals and Knights of the Dinner Table)


Initiative System: HMB tracks combat in "Real Time" that is to say by seconds not by rounds. This allows you to react to the battlefield as combat unfolds and prevents you having to wait for your turn to act. It makes things exciting and constantly keeps you involved in the action.

Realistic Approach: The game takes a more realistic approach to combat with many of its features including a fatigue system, rules for knock back on blows that deal heavy damage, and rules for possibly taking damage when blocking blows with your shield.

The Skill System: Hackmaster uses a percentage based skill system very similar to that of Aces & Eights. Different skills advance at different rates and have varying costs depending on difficulty.

Flexibility & Customization: Characters in Hackmaster are made using Building Points which let's you tailor your character any way you see fit. Some options are more expensive than others (A Dwarf Wizard has fewer BP left to mess around with than does a Dwarf Fighter) but there is almost no end to how many different characters you can make. This is just one example of the system's flexibility, but it can been seen in almost every part of the game. From the various combat maneuvers warriors can choose from to the magic system which allows Magic Users to use their powers to cast multiple spells or to throw all of their power into one massive blast, the player is always given a number of options.


Master Classes: Much the same as prestige classes in feel and execution, Hackmaster has superior classes that one must work their character up to. The Knight and Paladin have both been previewed to date. It is impossible under the present rules to start at either class but rather one fulfill a number of prerequisites first.

Rules Heavy: This isn't necessarily a bad thing, but certainly there are a large number of people these days who prefer rules light games. One thing I wouldn't describe Hackmaster as is rules light. Basic has plenty of rules to handle a large number of situations and Advanced promises to have many more.

June 28, 2011 at 1:34 AM

I forgot to include this link...


That is a preview of the combat system as told through the characters of the popular comic, Knights of the Dinner Table (also published by Kenzerco).

June 28, 2011 at 1:37 AM

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