Thursday, 23 June 2016

Iron Heroes meets Conan?

I've recently taken to reading the Iron Heroes rules again. I played in a short campaign using these many years ago (2006 IIRC). Anyway, it was before 4e Dungeons and Dragons came out, namely 2008. Reading through it again, it strikes you quickly how so many of the novel concepts in Iron Heroes have since been picked up by not only 4e, but also 5e and 13th Age. As a system, it does not seem as revolutionary as it once was.

However, what I still like about it is the fact that a party of adventurers is not composed of any spell casters, there are NO clerics, no healing potions and you can graft a magic system onto it from another d20 / OGL gaming system.

As regular readers of this blog will know, I have been on a quest for a good system of rules for typical swords and sorcery gaming. I am currently looking again at Barbarians of Lemuria, which is a very nice game. But I'd also like to make use of the extensive library of Conan RPG books I acquired from Mongoose Publishing, back when they had the license. The valuable aspect of the Mongoose Conan line is that they were written for d20 / OGL.

You can see where I'm going with this, can't you? It looks to me like it should be relatively simply to run Iron Heroes in Hyboria. Most of the NPC stats and equipment in the Conan books seem like they can be migrated readily into Iron Heroes, as can the magic system. Since such a scheme would involve PCs only playing non-spell casters, the Conan d20 Scholar and Priest classes can still be employed in an NPC role. In addition, the lack of PC spell casters means that you don't experience the power creep towards arcane and divine spell casters that tends to kick in with Pathfinder about 10th level.

I need to ruminate some more on this and possibly look at converting a Conan adventure to Iron Heroes, but given the similarity of Iron Heroes to other d20 games, this doesn't look like it will involve an enormous amount of work. More on this if I get the time to develop it further.


  1. I have always wanted to play Iron Heroes -- even if D&D3 makes my head hurt a bit -- so count this as a vote towards you running it!

  2. I could run a game of it too. But I also want to give the 2d20 Conan a go coming from Modiphius. I'll have some of it September ish!

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  4. Ack!There is go again double posting!