Knocked up in 45 minutes after I got home from class in my third year of uni, Drunken Bear Fighter was a response to a challenge – could you write a one-page tabletop RPG in under an hour? – that sort of challenge, the one that makes me roll up my sleeves and really start procrastinating until I forget to do it entirely. But this time, I did it.

And – weirdly – it went well. For a stupid game about fighting drunken bears as part of the Russian Drunken Bear Fighting Organisation (or RDBFO, pronounced “Rudbeefo”, for short) it’s gathered a weird amount of support; people played it on 4chan’s /tg/ without me knowing about it (and on other forums), rules variants were written, a man cited it as part of his RPG experience, and it was (briefly!) floated as the basis for a BBW-fetish forum game (incredibly NSFW, obviously).

It’s been passed around the basement of the internet like a bong whenever someone says “Does anyone have a rules-lite RPG that I can play?” I’m kind of proud. It rolls a lot of my philosophy about tabletop games – that they should be fun, that the rules should barely exist, that no-one should ever take themselves seriously – into one poorly-thought-out package.

If you’d like to play DBF, I really can’t recommend it. But I also can’t stop you. “Full” rules are below; click on them for the A4 size. You can also download them as a PDF from the awesome

The full text of Drunken Bear Fighter, minus my name, because they always remove the name

Categorised in: RPG, Stuff I Made, Tabletop

9 thoughts on “Drunken Bear Fighter: An RPG I wrote

  • Julius Deane says:

    I just ran my first ever game as a GM, and I used DBF.
    We had a grand time, lots of dumb Russian accents, laughing, ludicrous situations and good old-fashioned absurdism.
    Thanks for making this silly-ass game, will play again, and thanks for helping both new players and fledgling GMs get into pen and paper games.

  • Wee says:

    SO THAT WAS YOU. Found that game on /tg/ one thousand years ago (when superstition and the sword ruled BUT I DIGRESS). I tip my hat to you, sir. It’s brilliant to be able to congratulate the author in person. (i’m growing hateful against the rampant anonymity on the interwebz… occurences like this are very rare)

  • Shawn says:

    DM’d my first game ever of (dnd 5e). We finished early because I didn’t have enough shit planned apparently. everyone wasn’t done drinking/ready to go home so I was like “well fuck it. I know a game I have been wanting to play”. We plated Drunken Bear Fighter and it was so good. I am not sure if we will continue on with dnd or if they will want to switch over to a planned out DBF campaign. The only thing that I am worried about is it seems easy to die. but I guess thats half the fun.

    • grant says:

      I remain astounded by the ability of people to enjoy this game. I’m glad you had fun, and if you run a DBF Campaign, I will literally give you ten pounds

  • Austin says:

    I’m putting together the second issue of a tiny photocopied comic zine called” Hafsheet.” The first issue was an unmitigated disaster,but I have high hopes for issue two! Anyway,I miscalculated the number of pages I had and now I find myself with two open 5×8 inch pages. I would really LOVE to fill up those pages with DBF.Please please pleasepleaseplease please!

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