DCC RPG Recommendations for New Player

Okay, in spirit of hitting my goal for “Top 5 RPGs you want to play in 2021!” I have picked up the new 8th printing of the DCC RPG and I have my dice. From the experienced DCC RPG players, is there anything else you consider essential I should pick up before I play DCC?


For me a liked a PDF of the rules so that I could pull out the various charts I needed and print them. I know there’s also a product that is just the charts - @Sean knows what product that is (I can never remember it).

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This is a great booklet that boils down all the charts into one little booklet.



Awesome, I’ll have to pick that one up.

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That’s what I came here for.

Jeremy Deram’s reference sheets are pivotal. Especially for a new gm.

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Whole bunch of great online tools here: https://purplesorcerer.com/


That thing is awesome. Back in the before times I would bring 5 of those to the table and pass them around for the players.

I would seriously consider getting Sailors on the Starless Sea. It is by far the most epic and well rounded funnel for the game.

It is also easily ramped up for use with 1st level characters.

For most of my intro games I will do a two parter.

1st is Portal Under the Stars from the back of the book, and then I will run them through Sailors as 1st level characters for the second session.

They work well together, the portal and the old fort can both be near their village.


The great thing about DCC is that you don’t really need anything besides the main book and some funky dice. All the player and GM facing rules are in there, all the spells, monsters, and even a fun funnel adventure.

The already mentioned reference booklet is very handy. You can also get the PDF for free here.

There are a ton of awesome modules out there. “Sailors on the Starless Sea” was already mentioned, and I’ll second that - it’s probably the most iconic funnel adventure out there. After that, it really depends on what you’re after. There are a lot of fun dungeon crawls, but also adventures that involve planar travel and engagement with chaos lords (- and all of that at level 1! One of my favorites is “Frozen in Time”. Daniel Bishop has a great list of recommendations on his blog (part 1, part 2, part 3).

I should also point out that Spawn of Cyclops Con is coming up next month, so this might be a great opportunity to either play or run some DCC. The previous cons that Goodman Games organized were all super fun.

I also highly recommend their very active Discord server. Great for general discussions, rules questions, game scheduling, etc.

Have fun with DCC!


digitalhobbit is too right, there really is no wrong way to go. The core rulebook is full of adventure hooks and ideas.

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All the other recommendations were great. You don’t need much with DCC other than the core rulebook.

I would recommend Tomb of the Savage Kings after that initial funnel. It’s a well rounded adventure with lots of roleplay, investigation, just enough dungeon delving and an epic monster. It’s also a great starting village for a group.

The last thing that is needed to play DCC is the Judge “mentality”. You have to get into a really gonzo mode for playing this game. And it’s rulings over rules. Finally, reading Appendix N books is a good inspiration for any game.

I’m currently playing a small vacation campaign with two kids that never played any RPGs before and it’s lots of fun! I started with the classics: Sailors on the Starless Sea and TPK’d them in Doom of the Savage Kings.

Then I started something really funky since I had two willing guinea pigs. :shushing_face: We just finished playing B9 - Castle Caldwell (BECMI D&D adventure) and it worked out well. I used DCC rules for characters and Old School Essentials for monster stats. They started with 8 level 0 characters and leveled up to 4 level 1 characters. Since the characters were a little OP it balanced out well for kids.

Basically what I’m saying is have fun with it! :smiley:


Still reading and learning. So it’s common for players to play more than one character, even after the funnel adventure?

Say a character dies, does the player just roll up a new level 0 to replace them for the next adventure? Adding the new character to their stable of characters so to speak.

That’s a judgement call and completely up to you, IMO. There is no rule on whether you go this route or that with how to handle dying characters or players playing multiple toons. I don’t know a ton of people that run DCC as a campaign. I know they’re out there, but I always seem to run into those that run it as one shots.

What I would do is…

  • Run the funnel, each player running 4 characters, assuming you have 4-6 players.
  • Whoever survives becomes a PC, even if a player has more than one survivor. I might limit this to two.
  • Play a level 1 scenario.
    – If a PC dies, they have a back up
    – Allow them to use zero level toons as henchmen
    – Establish a rule that henchmen level up, but limit it. Maybe at half the speed until they’re a primary PC, then have them get full xp. This way if their main PC’s get the axe, they can grab a henchmen to play but the henchman is no longer zero level when everyone else is level 2 or 3. As the henchman is ‘promoted’, have them have a zero or level 1 toon, rinse repeat.

But hey, it’s your game. Handle it any way you want. :slight_smile:


I have no idea why you wouldn’t want to run Halfmen of Hirsute Hollow.

For reels

Fair point, I am so accustomed to running campaigns, I focused on that aspect without meaning to necessarily. In truth, I’ll probably be sticking to one-shots as well. Or maybe just a couple of adventures in a row but nothing like a campaign.

At the moment, I’ve let my players know I plan to run DCC but I want to do so in person. I feel like the gonzo approach to this game would work well for my group, so that means I will be waiting until it is safer to play in person in my area. In the meantime, I’ll be looking for opportunities to play a bit online to get hands-on experience with the system.

On a surprisingly pleasant note, I was redeeming my coupon in the DCC book for a PDF on DTRPG when I discovered I already had the PDF. I forgot I had backed the DCC Humble Bundle back in October, so I already have PDFs of the core book and many of the adventures recommended above. I still want to pick up prints so I am not strapped to a computer while gaming. Now I don’t need to wait to start reading them though. :slight_smile:

Speaking of PDFs: Goodman Games has been really great about pivoting quickly to only play last year. In addition to organizing several fun online conventions, they started offering free PDFs for all print orders (though, to be honest, that should have always been the case - but better late than never), started selling VTT maps and tokens for some modules, doubled down on VTT support (currently mostly in Fantasy Grounds, but there’s a an actively community-developed Foundry system), reorganized their roadcrew program to only count online games, etc. It’s my favorite publisher, and an amazing community.


@Akodoken, just a quick note regarding campaigns…

I haven’t had a chance to run a really long campaign but I still managed to do one for a whole summer. You just have to string a bunch of one-shots with a similar tone together. I played Sailors on the Starless Sea, followed by Doom of the Savage Kings and had to stop after Elzemon and the Blood-Drinking Box. With the DCC style it was super fun and had good variety. It’s also easy for players to drop in and out for a week or two if life gets in the way.

There’s also a couple of ready-made campaigns that you can run. Journey into Aereth and Chained Coffin come to mind (just start them at the right level). Unfortunately, they’re out of stock for the Peril on the Purple Planet books but you can get the pdf and they should be re-printing eventually (maybe next year).

Also, don’t forget they have lots of adventures in the Lankhmar setting.

And finally, you can also try the Empire of the East Kickstarter which should be mailed out to backers within the coming month so it will be available on their website soon enough. The amounts of adventures are limited but if you’re up for some homebrew with inspiration it should be really interesting!


This is basically what I did. Ran a funnel (Portal Under the Stars) for two old friends of mine. They took their surviving PCs and one of them chose to run one… the other chose to run two.

And my, there were a lot of deaths. I’ve only run that one DCC adventure, but I had someone with 1hp die at the front door when they crit-failed a listen roll. They had 1hp! My hands were tied!



Purple Sorcerer has some adventures that may lend themselves better to campaign play. Sunken City, perhaps?


I think this is a fun way to handle it: The players choose one surviving character to go to level 1. They can continue to play the other characters and those characters can continue to gain XP. They just don’t level up unless the player’s main PC dies.

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