Wanderhome is a pastoral fantasy role-playing game about traveling animal-folk, the world they inhabit, and the way the seasons change. It is a game filled with grassy fields, mossy shrines, herds of chubby bumblebees, opossums in sundresses, salamanders with suspenders, starry night skies, and the most beautiful sunsets you can imagine.
You might be a tamarin who dances with small and forgotten gods, a leporine mail carrier who relies on moths to get packages where they belong, a little lizard with a big heart and a mysterious past, or a near-endless number of other thrilling possibilities. No matter what, we’re always travelers—animal-folk who go from village to village and get to see the length and breadth of all the world of Hæth. The seasons will change as we play, and we will change with them.
Wanderhome, First Edition - Rules SummaryCollapse
Character Creation [ edit ]
Although Wanderhome is not a PbtA game, it does use the concept of "playbooks" from that system. For those not familiar with the concept, a playbook is a set of pages that essentially combine a class description and a character sheet, giving the player everything they need to play.
Playbooks in Wanderhome tend to be generic archetypes, such as Ragamuffin or Guardian, but some are slightly more specific "jobs", such as Poet, Dancer, or the more unique Moth Tender. Once a player selects a playbook, they then have to make a series of further choices, for instance about their character's personality, their appearance, or which animal form they have.
Once a player has filled out their playbook (a relatively short process), they are ready to begin, and now have everything they need to play available in front of them.
Core Mechanics [ edit ]
Wanderhome uses the “No Dice, No Masters” system, which was first used in the acclaimed games Dream Askew and Dream Apart (and also in another Jay Dragon game, Sleepaway).
In this system, instead of rolling dice to determine whether your character succeeds at an (immediate) action, the player must spend a token ... and then they succeed automatically. Tokens can also be spent to provide other benefits, such as forcing an NPC to connect with your character on a personal level.
To acquire these tokens the character can do something outside their comfort zone, add a setback for their character to the story, or they can describe a moment of beauty that their character witnesses. Since tokens form the "grease" that keep adventures moving along, players are strongly encouraged to take token-generating actions, and this in turn helps integrate the players into the setting.
After all, when you literally have to describe the beauty of a firefly on a midsummer night's eve to get a token, you spend more time appreciating such minor details ... details that might not even get mentioned in a more traditional RPG.
Since this system doesn't require any sort of GM intervention, Wanderhome can be played entirely "GM-less", with the party essentially telling a shared story as they play. The game can even be played solo, although a huge part of it revolves around connections between the characters, and so solo play isn't recommended as strongly as GM-less play is.