Supriya Ghosh

Dungeon World

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Genre(s)  Fantasy
Dungeon World
Designer(s)  Sage LaTorra and Adam Koebel
Publisher(s)  Sage Kobold Productions, RNDM Games
Publication date  November 2012 (1st, PDF), 2013 (1st, print)
System(s)  Powered by the Apocalypse

Dungeon World is a fantasy tabletop roleplaying game. Created by Sage LaTorra and Adam Koebel, the game uses the Powered by the Apocalypse engine originally designed for Apocalypse World and used in Monsterhearts and other games. The game was advertised as having old school style with modern rules. The text of the game was released under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.


Dungeon World raised just over $80,000 from 2400 backers on Kickstarter before it was released, and was the 2012 Golden Geek RPG of the Year, the 2012 Indie RPG Game of the Year (as well as winning the awards for Best Support and Best Production) and was the Best Rules Gold Winner in the 2013 Ennie Awards.


The setting for Dungeon World is Dungeons & Dragons-esque fantasy. Rather than present a pre-written setting, the game master is instructed to "Draw maps and leave blanks", meaning to not put too much detail in the setting but allow it to emerge in play.


Dungeon World uses the Powered by the Apocalypse engine. The game uses the same six ability scores used by D&D (Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom, Charisma). Dungeon World also uses D&D character classes: the Bard, Cleric, Druid, Fighter, Paladin, Ranger, Thief, and Wizard. The fan community has also created and shared many third-party classes online.

Like other Powered by the Apocalypse games, actions in Dungeon World are called moves. When a player character makes a move, the player rolls two six sided dice and adds the appropriate ability modifier. On a result of 10+ the move succeeds without complication. On a result of 7-9 the move partially succeeds or succeeds with a problem, allowing the GM to make a move of their own. On a result of 6 or less there is trouble (which may or may not mean failure). The character gains an XP and the GM makes a move. Characters share general moves and gain unique moves from their class.

To represent character relationships and facilitate quick setup, each class lists bonds that show, before the game starts, how the characters see each other, filling one name of one other player character in the blank space of each bond. Example bonds are:

  • _______________ owes me their life, whether they admit it or not.
  • I have sworn to protect _______________.
  • I worry about the ability of _______________ to survive in the dungeon.
  • _______________ is soft, but I will make them hard like me.
  • The full rules for Dungeon World can be found in the Dungeon World SRD.


    Dungeon World was developed starting in 2010 and an introductory edition was brought to Gencon 2011. Fund raising for the game itself was begun via Kickstarter in mid 2012 and more than a year after being launched was still the eighth fastest current seller at Drivethru RPG.


    Dungeon World Wikipedia

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