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Initial public playtest released in January 2022. The current playtest iteration, #3, released in January 2023.

Hexingtide is a minimalist TTRPG love letter to monster heroes - from modern comics, the pulps, and old tales of folklore and myth. Inspired by:

  • Hellboy & the wider Mignolaverse
  • Dan Brereton’s Nocturnals
  • Eric Powell’s The Goon & Hillbilly
  • Alan Moore & Kevin O’Neill’s The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen
  • Kevin Grevioux's Underworld films
  • and the various incarnations of The World of Darkness…

About these rules:

Hexingtide is a rules-light tabletop RPG in a  8.5" x 5.5" zine format.

  • Rules are hyper-focused on the most monster-y parts of the PCs: their powers (Powers), their inhuman vulnerabilities and threats (Portents), and how they remain tied to the mundane, mortal world of humanity (Pacts).
  • Characters are built with a point buy using open-ended descriptors, allowing for maximum narrative flexibility by the players and the GM. Think Fate Aspects.
  • Streamlined, but not boring mechanics that are rooted in the narrative: roll over to attack, roll under to defend, make hard choices to risk your monstrous nature taking over to empower your actions, recognize your bond with humanity - or sacrifice it entirely for moments of power.
  • Simple enemy and encounter stats means your focus is on the story and not tracking numbers and mechanics.
  • Minimal built-in worldbuilding allows for many settings of time and place: 1920s pulp romps, modern urban fantasy, and even sword & sorcery. 
  • Chymoi, a pseudo-elemental system based off the traditional Greek humours (Blood, Phlegm, Ichor, Black Bile, Excreta, and Rot) provides a basis for further worldbuilding.

Hexingtide is in active playtesting.

CategoryPhysical game
Rated 5.0 out of 5 stars
(12 total ratings)
AuthorWill Phillips
GenreRole Playing
TagsTabletop role-playing game, zimo, zinequest


Download NowName your own price

Click download now to get access to the following files:

Hexingtide_0.33.pdf 6 MB
Hexingtide_CharacterSheet_v03.2_JPGs.zip 715 kB
Hexingtide_CharacterSheet_v03.2_PDFs.zip 57 MB
Hexingtide_Pregens_Playtest_3.zip 10 MB

Development log

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Hexingtide is a gothic supernatural action drama ttrpg in which you play as occult creatures in the modern day.

The PDF is 12 pages, and they're all clean and easy to read, with excellent layout.

Lore and mechanics-wise, you could think of this as a super slimmed down World Of Darkness.

The fluff and crunch are tightly interwoven. Your character is built from advantages, disadvantages, and relationships. Your unique supernatural type defines your play experience. And a d10 is involved.

Because Hexingtide is lighter weight than WoD, there isn't a skill list or predefined stat page. Instead, you define the parts of your character you care about. You could have Strong 2, or Cat Knowledge 1, or The Tommygun Of My Ancestors 4.

Oddly, your disadvantages (called Banes) serve as your HP, and your relationships (called Bonds) can be used to refill them. So a character made of all downsides and messy entanglements has serious staying power---which is genre appropriate as heck. I like it a lot.

There's other cool flourishes in the system too---including a rocks-paper-scissors elemental system that uses the medieval bodily humors. And an option to risk your HP to boost skill checks. And meaningful, non-death consequences for HP 0. And a rest system that's personally meaningful---you recover through spending time with things you care about, not simply through sleeping.

As far as GM tools, there really aren't many. There's guidance on how to use the rules, but there isn't a bestiary or a sample adventure or any roll tables. The system is easy to use, but you'll have to do the heavy lifting to set up your session.

Overall, if you like World Of Darkness, BPRD, Dresden Files, Underworld, or other high drama modern supernatural settings, this is a great way to play them. Every mechanic is tight and meaningful, and with a little work on the GM's part you can have an excellent several session game. Absolutely check this out if you can.


Instead of "Bonuses" use "Boons". Like this:

  • Rules are hyper-focused on the most monster-y parts of the PCs: their powers (Boons), their inhuman vulnerabilities and threats (Banes), and how they remain tied to the mundane, mortal world of humanity (Bonds).