Holiday Drama (The Good Kind)

HillfolkInstead of fighting with your family over unmet emotional needs, try roleplaying them!

While you’re celebrating the holidays with non-gaming friends and family, at some point the group will start looking for something fun everyone can do together. This is a perfect opportunity to introduce them to tabletop roleplaying games. They’re like board games, but you act things out like in Charades!

Hillfolk, with its DramaSystem rules engine, is perfrect for this because it’s designed so a group of people can tell the kinds of dramatic stories they already know and like. Instead of sgiving your relations a crash course on D&D tropes, the Cthulhu Mythos, or the singularity, you can say, “Oh, you like Succession? Let’s do that then!”

DramaSystem mechanics are fairly simple, with no dice-rolling. Dramatic scenes are resolved entirely through roleplaying. The few “procedural” scenes—things like battling a monster, winning a bar fight, sneaking onto a military base—are handled in the rules using playing cards. I recommend that in this case you make the procedural rules even simpler by using one of the alternate ways of resolving procedural scenes.

The Hillfolk core book (HF), Blood on the Snow supplement (BotS), and the Series Pitch of the Month PDFs offer a wide variety of easy-to-digest settings that players can explore—many of which can be customized to be more like the TV series or historical era that gets your friends and family excited. Here are just a few ideas:

IF THEY LIKE: Succession, The Righteous Gemstones, or The Fall of the House of Usher

  • USE: Darke and Stormy Nights (BotS)


  • USE: Shanghai 1930 (BotS)

IF THEY LIKE: The Magicians

  • RUN: Alma Mater Magica (BotS)


  • USE: Mad Scientist’s Anonymous (HF)

IF THEY LIKE: Breaking Bad or Better Call Saul


  • USE: Blood on the Snow (BotS)

IF THEY LIKE: The Last of Us

  • USE: a mashup of Horns in the Hill ( (BotS) and The Bunker (HF)

Happy drama-filled holidays, and may your petitions be granted!

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