Introduction 1

posted by Alien Rope Burn Original SA post


What the Fuck is Low Life?
Part the First

Say, what the hell is Low Life ?

Let's look at the cover.

Okay, what the hell is that?

Well, let's look at the back cover.

Sword & Sorcery?! Another heartbreaker? Fuck it.

Wait, the text says some things about... werms... and... Suggested for Immature Readers? Maybe there is something here.

I suppose I might as far as the inside. I got the author to sign this, what did he-

Fuck this game. Seriously.

But. It's time for some full disclosure.

This game is written by Andy Hopp, who I am at least passingly familiar with. He's currently having a Kickstarter for Low Life Miniatures , so I thought it could be a good time to cover this game, since it deserves a writeup anyway. I've been wanting to cover his game here for a bit, and since covering the madness that is Rifts World Book Two was the end goal of covering Kevin Siembieda's ancient scribblings at the moment, it's a good stopping point for me to switch gears.

Andy also requested that this book be described as "artsy but fartsy", so bam, that's out of the way.

Part of why I'm covering this game is to give it a little extra exposure. Though I'm going to try and steer clear of shameless plug territory, nor am I going to pick the nits on this one quite as hard as I did for Rifts . Rifts deserves it. This does not. It has plenty of nits and they are obvious and disgusting.

So. What the hell is Low Life ?

I'm glad I asked.

Low Life is a post-apocalypse ("After the Wipe") fantasy game for Savage Worlds in which humanity ("the Hoomanrace") was wiped out. Now, the Earth ("Oith") has been inherited by a variety of evolved / devolved races, from Cremefillians (sentient snack cakes) to Oofos (failed alien invaders). There's magic like Hokus Pokery or Smellcasting, locales like The Festering Crapholes of Ewg or The Moonular Cheese Fields, and monsters like the Dweebs and Hair Bares.

In short, it's perfect for FATAL and Friends.

If you like your fantasy to get away from gnomes and dragons, if you like puns, and especially if you like jokes about butts, this is for you. And if you don't, well, that sounds like a personal problem.

Next: We crack this game wide open, like a butt over a toilet.

Introduction 2

posted by Alien Rope Burn Original SA post

I just thought I'd ask,

What the Hell is Low Life?
Part the Second

We're still not quite sure.

The book opens up with the Face Merchant, a historian, who tells the tale of how humanity lived in harmony (he's wrong)until a nuclear "Nukular" war blew it all up. Then aliens invaded. Then comets came too close and reversed the Earth's direction and generally wrecked the moon, stranding the aliens there and triggering all sorts of cataclysms. "Egglantis" rose again... and fell again, giving the world magic back (somehow). Humanity became extinct or mutated into barely-recognizable Boduls. Roaches, worms, and snack cakes evolved into sentient forms. And now it's... some kind of... savage... world.

The Face Merchant with his merch.

Then we get history again, this time more specific and less narrative, which breaks down into:

"The lowliest werm becomes a king by his own sword."

There's some definitions of time-telling, with months like Treeuary and Elevenune, and days like Spoonday and Fried Egg. The moon is no longer reliable for time-telling and is generally just erratic. Oh, and there are some terms:
There's some more fine details as well. It tells us the tale of how the Yort was accepted as the system of measurement, which boils down to:
Man, I'm just using all the bullet points here, none of you are going to have any left for your posts. Anyway, it notes all reckoning on Oith is done relative to the Keister of Gawd, which is a large island said to be the keister of Gawd. Most reckoning is done relative to ther locations. It also notes that sometimes the size of things is distorted, sometimes there can be ancient shoes the size of houses, or pants suddenly no longer fit, or a giant bird hatches from a tiny egg, whatever. And that's all we get on the world for now.

This is all a drastic simplification, there's lots of and footnotes and side comments by the art. It's interesting that with all the weirdness there's actual world-building being done here.

Next: It's time for character creation already, you pile of shit. (No, seriously, that could be your character.)

Character Creation

posted by Alien Rope Burn Original SA post

You're probably not really asking...

What the Shit is Low Life?
Part the Third

First we start with character creation. For those that have a copy of Savage Worlds , it's straight up just character creation from Savage Worlds . For those without a copy of Savage Worlds , get a copy of Savage Worlds . It defines what skills are available (basically only Piloting is missing) and some languages, like Pewk, Ebonics, Jive, Scat, Guttermouth, and Esperonto.

Since the whole step-by-step process is located here, I'll go through character creation. I'm not going to go into details on how Savage Worlds character creation works, that'd be another writeup entirely, and who has the time, honestly? Besides, it's $10. $10 . I think I've used enough italics to make my point .

I'll cover all the Low Life -specific jazz later, though. Since I've been asked to, let's go through the character creation steps!

"A couple of bad ass cremefillians doing their thang."

First, I decide on a concept. Let's go with... a gangster that is also a mutant canolli. First, I choose a race. Let's choose cremefillian. I get five points for my attributes (cremefillian doesn't give me any stat boosts) - Agility, Smarts, Spirit, Strength, and Vigor. Each starts at a d4. I spend my points to have the following attributes: Agility d6, Smarts d4, Spirit d6, Strength d6, and Vigor d8. He's one tuff cream puff.

I get 15 points for skills. I figure a gangsta needs the following skills: Fighting, Gambling, Intimidation, Notice, Shooting, Streetwise, and Taunt. I also know I want Contamination magic, so I take that as a skill, too, and he'll probably be well-off knowing the Gangsta tongue. I distribute my points thusly. I don't worry about Lockpicking or Stealth, I figure he's more about busting down doors and punching guards than sneakin' around like some kind of wuss. He is a canolli of action.

Fighting d6, Gambling d4, Intimidation d8, Notice d4, Shooting d6, Streetwise d6, Taunt d4, Gangsta d4, and Contamination d8. I get the Ordinary tongue for free at d6.

I know I want him to do Contamination magic, so that'll require an edge to do it. Basically, he pushes on either side of his head, distorting his face to push out his foul, cheesy filling to do horrible things to people. I'll need some drawbacks to get what I want. So I decide he's Greedy (major); he always gets his cut, and will cut people for his cut. He's Loyal (minor), which is a good trait for a gangsta, and has the Habit (minor) of throwing in old-timey, confused gangster speak all the time, "let's grease this capiche!" That lets me purchase Arcane Background (contaminator) and I get either one edge, one attribute bump, or two skill bumps. I decide to take the Brawny edge from Savage Worlds, as well. He's large and filled with creamy madness.

He gets three powers on account of his monstrous filling. I take Contamination, to let him create "made men" out of muck. He likes to give them tiny sunglasses to disguise their nature, and is blissfully unaware that this only makes them stand out. I'm going to take Boost/Lower Trait, which allows him to give people "his blessing", and I take Smite to give people "the business".

He has 500 clams to start, and he has to have Snazzy Clothing (100 clams). I then turn to the weapon workshop to make some weapons; I'll cover the actual system later. He uses a dead werm as his main melee weapon, doing Strength +4 damage (nonlethal, two handed, reach +1, 125 clams), and he has a mutant freak named Tommy who spits its own teeth, and he uses Tommy as a gun. Tommy does 2d8 damage (range 6/12/24, armor piercing 2), and costs 268 clams. With only 9 clams left in his pocket, our cremefillian has good reason to be greedy.

Lastly, he gets the racial edges of Foul Taste, Tweenking, and Spongy Flesh. Tweenking is important for him to meet the strength requirements of his weapons (which both require Strength d8) since it lets him ignore them.

I name him Bigg Cheesovanni, the Canolli Kingpin, and he's ready for action!

"Beings of dubious lineage." aka Boduls.

So we get a list of possible professions. These are just descriptions, they don't affect your stats or anything:

"Various croaches also doing their thang."

Then with no further ado, we get PC races:

Some of the comments on the amount of art in here is right; I want to point out I posted less than half the illustrations from this section.

Next: A sufficiently advanced religion is indistinguishable from magic, but is generally a lot more obnoxious and smug.


posted by Alien Rope Burn Original SA post

Yeah, we're still wondering...

What On Oith is Low Life?
Part the Fourth

Seriously, what the hell?

I lied, we have some material to go over before we get into the magic mumbo.

It's time to cover the new advantages merits feats edges. I'm going to be brief here because there's a lot of it, but if you want specifics on anything, just ask. Most of these speak for themselves pretty well.

The new Professional Edges require a little more explaining.

Who called for some anime bullshit?

And there are still more edges:

Visual aids help.

Whew! That's a lot of new stuff for Savage Worlds .

Next: Holy Rolling, or fucked-up religion for a fucked-up world. Also, caster degeneracy.


posted by Alien Rope Burn Original SA post

We're still on about...

What the Heck is Low Life?
Part the Fifth

Here we get into the faiths of Mutha Oith. That means it's time for our friend, the bullet point! It does my nerd heart good to stick things into little dot-shaped slots.

Then, we get into the magics of Mutha Oith. Bullet points, you're my only friend.
And then we get new powers:
There's a new rule that lets you cast a power at multiple targets at a penalty, a listing of what powers each magic type gets from Savage Worlds , and a description of SFX suggestions for a lot of common powers.

And that's it for arcane and divine powers in Low Life .

Next: Equipment, or more properly, stuff you buy to stab people with.


posted by Alien Rope Burn Original SA post

It's a cheap schtick, but...

What in Tarnation is Low Life?
Part the Sixth

It's time to talk about stuff, how to get it and what to do with it.

It turns out most of the economy is still Bartertown, there have been attempts to make currencies but they've been comedic failures. However, people tend to trade in clams, which is a miscellaneous catchall for beads, baubles, buttons, etc. Haggling is thusly important, and there are rules for it using the Persuasion skill.

We move on to the actual equipment, some of which are adventurer standby (lockpicking tools, backpack, torch), and less useful stuff (croach moltings, shiny rock). THere's also armor and shields, which is kept pretty simple, along with clothing, which is mostly just flava. There's some details on servants and services, including slaves (apparently cremefillians make very bad slaves). There's food, like ciruspi nuts (taste horrible, but filling) and moonular cheese (a delicacy. And then there's crazy stuff, like Hoomanrace artifacts (looks fancy, non-functional), Reeks in a bottle, weird devices (made by weirdoes), etc. There's vehicles like pit bloaters (balloons attached to your armpits), rolly skates, and a onescycle. Anyway, a bunch of handy stuff.

Then we get to the weapons workshop, which is a system to craft weapons and assign them a cost based on their effectiveness, and you make up whatever SFX, maybe a huge garlic masher or a nailapult or whatever. Generally, the deadlier the weapon, the higher its strength requirement (but cremefillians can ignore it and exploit the hell out of this section). Or, it suggests, you can just use the medieval weapons section from the core book. This does present the usual issue of games that make you buy your stuff with money (that is, weapon power level - which can be a big deal - is completely tied to your story-variable wealth).

And that basically completes all the character creation and advancement material. Next, we move on to oinformation on Oith.

Shit, I think I've been oinfected with something.

Next: The Gazetter of Oith, it's time to show off the butt on this dung ball.


posted by Alien Rope Burn Original SA post

You definitely haven't asked...

What in the Name of the Rose is Low Life?
Part the Seventh

Well, now we get into... setting information. But first, it gives us some mechanics for using random encounter tables. We don't get the tables yet, but we just draw from a deck of cards each day (a usual accompaniment for Savage Worlds) and if it's a face card, you roll on the table.

Note "Someplace Awful" on the right.

It goes on to point out Oith is fucked up, if you hadn't worked that out. It's basically a big heap of ash and rot plus litter. But there's still amazing and beautiful stuff here and there. And, well, what's ugly to us may be grand, luxurious squalor to a croach.

So we get into actual locales, next.

The Empirical Tyranium of Agog

Basically, this is a land of criminals, bandits, gangstas, and thugs. It's ruled by a horc named Fistpounder Gavelbanger, who just encourages this lack of civility. It has Agog City, which is pretty much a den of scum and more scum. Also, there are pirates and the sea monsters that eat them.

The Festering Crapholes of Ewg

This is a wasted land of craters, ash, swaps and ruined forests. It's mostly inhabited by savages, miners, and crazy hermits. It's ruled by the Gubernator, who controls what resources the land does have.

It has a number of regions - there's Clorb's Wang, a peninsula which is named after a local hero, and is a important source of urinium. It has Glowhio, which mostly has monsters, glowy radiation, and the important glowy rock known as smolderstone. The Phesterence is a stinky, moldy swamp, mainly known for being stinky and terrible. And then there's the Teats of Boorglezar, which varies between ice-covered mountains and burping volcanoes. The Teats have local, hostile tribes, and also cute duckies. Upon the Teats is the Booglezarium, a monastery dedicated to Booglezar, natch. Finally, it has Yewnork, which was a city destroyed by the mudslide, and now the mud has washed away and you can go in to take crap.

The Incredibly Huge Monster

This is a corpse of a incredibly huge monster. It's said it was killed by a legendary hero. Also the monster has monsters in it.

Once again, we have more specific locates. There's the Monstrous Headland, with the Follicular Maze. It's known for its great mineral wealth within in terms of wax, ivory, and mucosite. There's the Auricular Wax Mines, where they mine monsterwax, which is handy for many things. There's a boomtown called Doop, and it's also said there is a magical oracle deep within the mines. There's the Quarry of the Danged, where the mine the rare stone of Mucosite, which is soft at first but is tougher than steel once hardened. There's the Tail that juts into the sky, and it is home to the groothoo boids. Torsovania is full of monsters, desert, and nasty seas. The Crack of Doom is the monster's ass. And there's the The Roving Town of Scab, which is a nomadic town that travels Torsovania, trying to find valuable... scabs.

Had enough scatalogical humor? Oh. We're not done yet.

The Mysterious Realm of Keister Island

This is said to be the center of the world. It's also a little wet and stinky, for it has the Keister of Gawd, a hole in the ground that constantly bleches nasty vapors. There's also mysterious statues and ruins that are mysterious.

Here you'll find the Bitchin' City of Floom, which is one of the largest and most cosmpolitan (big word) cities in the world. It's a pretty fancy place and we get a lot of individual locations like The Reekbottle Theater or the Froth. There's the Keister of Gawd, which is really impressive (waterfalls are pretty) and gassy.

The Dingdom of the Dong, a Land of Sunshine and Lollipops
and evil tyrannical oppression, murder, thuggery, and barbarism.

This is the cremefillian homeland - maybe - ruled over by Horus Morus, the Ding of the Dong. They're xenophobic here, which means they don't like you, and are obbsessed with honor, tradition, and crime. It's actually pretty healthy here because most of the pollution is soaked up by those nasty-ass cremefillians.

It has Mount Funky, a dormant volcano. There's Toast, the capital city with all sorts of fancy delicate architecture and colorful stuff, also casinos, brothels, and shrines. It has a number of locations like the Pox Romanum and the Ding of Dong's palace. There's also Borkle Bleek, a field of flowers and tumbled boulders where the sage Borkle Snode lives.

The Moonular Cheese Fields

This where cheese fell from the moon after it was strucky by a comet. Many come here seeking a city of pure cheese and generally go missing. But who knows what the truth is?

It has Maankass, made of stale cheese run by the Cheesemonger's Guild. There's Snord Fjord, which is a chasm of cheeseflesh and molten cheese. It's said it has the tomb of Snord, the last king of Maankaas.

The Independent Bossdoms of Ordure

This is your catch-all multi-kingdom city-state sort of land. They fight a lot, sometimes with words and sometimes with s-words.

It has Gargle Twice, a land of refuse and mold, and the city itself has grand walls and defenses, as well as a wonderful bars and brothels. New Oorlquar is the biggest city in the world, even more cosmopolitaner than Floom and with a fancy market for buying things. It has some locations detailed like the Sin-o-gogue of Stan or the Mother of All Markets. And there's the ruins of Old Oorlquar, wrecked by war and now a dangerous place despite all the nice stuff in it.

The One Place With All the Sand

It's basically the world's biggest litter box, and most people here are nomadic, sometimes on the backs of large critters called stomps. The Sultan Pepper rules here, a croach with a hundred wives and a thousand offspring. Boorglezarianism is a big deal here and heresy is a terrible crime. Honor's big here too, but most people here have the sense to regard outsiders as ignorant savages and not get too bothered about it.

Anyway! It has Babajuana, which is a fancy, wealthy place of culture, trade, and strictly enforced laws. It has places like Poopoos and Beer (a local taco chain) and Achoo Goonzalez's Funtime Grooming Emporium and Exectutionarium.

Random Encounters

This section ends with some random encounter tables for each locale, reminding us not every encounter has to be fighty time. So.

Next: The Bestiary of Oith, a manual of monsters, a folio of fiends, and generally weird-ass shit to stick sharp things into, or not, I won't judge.


posted by Alien Rope Burn Original SA post

The question is pretty much answered, but somebody's still asking...

What the Hey is Low Life?
Part the Eighth

Apparently there are more things than are listed here, of course. But here are some mmmonsters:

There, you got your monsters, kill some, gain some XP, then stop bothering me, kid.

Now, important note . The rest of the book is dedicated to Savage Tales, a full campaign dealing with the Primordial Soup Kitchen (in case you were wondering where the hell that was covered). . There are 21 short adventures in all. I've now covered the bulk of the game itself - do people want to see these covered as well, and if so, in detail or in brief? Let me know!

Next: Savage Tales? Spoiler alert: this next part will contain spoiler alerts, because there are spoilers. Not like contaminators, either.

Savage Tales

posted by Alien Rope Burn Original SA post

We're back after a short break for...

What in the Mother of Fuck is Low Life?
Part the Ninth

Now, it's time for the Savage Tales section. This is basically a full-out campaign. It's split into "Plot Points", which in some cases are short encounters and other cases are closer to full-on adventures. There are twenty-one parts to this is total, which is part of what's taken me so long so get back on the horse, so to speak, and get this wrapped up.

We get some guidelines on things like getting from place to place, and a random adventure generator. Then, we get a very brief overview of the big plot.


There, now. I'm going to cover the first five adventures in the book. Some are essential to the core plot it puts forward, some are not.

The quick overview of the plot is a group of villains, led by Uuulon Creplos (a power-hungry contaminator), is searching for the mysterious Primordial Soup Kitchen. However, Fozzle (a Hoomanitarian minister) overheard their plans, and he began to search for it himself. With all that in mind, I'm going to go over the adventures in brief. Adventures marked with a * are core to the central plot. Names without a * are optional and can be skipped if you're just running the main plot.


Well, my thoughts on the adventures? The first one is a little touch and go- it depends on a few clues the PCs could easily miss or misinterpret their first time through. Once it gets going, it works pretty well, though the adventures suffer from having their outcomes predetermined in some cases, but that goes along with having an adventure path as long as this book contains. (Also, having the chestnut of "don't kill this character!" is usually distasteful, but most such characters are generally kept out of combat scenes anyway so far).

Even if you don't run the adventures, they give a pretty good idea of how the game is intended to be run, which is something often missing from games as strange as Low Life. I'm not sure we needed fifty pages of adventures, but that's part of the Savage Worlds setup to focus on premade adventures more than most other games do. It certainly provides a readymade answer to the question of "what the hell do I do with this book?", at least.

Next: More goosin' adventures!... whatever that means. We've just scratched the surface here!

More Adventures

posted by Alien Rope Burn Original SA post

"I'm not back on it, I'm still on it."

What in the What is Low Life?
Part the Tenth

It's time for part two of the Savage Tales section. This time it starts out with some non-plot essential plots before gearing into the main campaign thread. As before, * denotes an adventure that ties into the main plot.




Whew! That's about half of the adventures so far. It should be noted that though Low Life is full of poop and butt gags, it's not really necessarily kid-oriented, it has massacres, gore (such as it is with twinkie-people), brothels, etc. Really, not much different than something like AD&D, but it bears mentioning.

A lot of the adventures follow the "trouble > promise of reward > PCs solve trouble" quest structure, especially for the non-plot adventures. This is tried and true, but you probably want to make sure you have a group of PCs well-motivated by greed (but not too motivated, lest they just rob quest-givers) and general adventure benevolence.

Another thing from a earlier section I forgot to cover: the slang in Low Life isn't really codified. There's a lot of it in these adventures, but it's really recommended you make it up as you go. Still, these adventures give a good idea of how to do it, though getting into the spirit of the slang will probably be tough for some folks, it requires a lot of spontaneity and wordplay on the fly.

Next: More adventures, duh.

Five More Adventures

posted by Alien Rope Burn Original SA post

Rats! Thousands and thousands of rats! Warn them! Warrrn-

What the ?! is Low Life?
Part the Eleventh

We now get back to reading about the series of adventures in Low Life, aka Savage Tales. This is the next five adventures. Once again, * means the adventure is core to the campaign plot.



One thing that feels a bit unusual with these adventures is the love of riddles and puzzles, they're inserted sometimes quite randomly. None of them are particularly taxing to those versed in riddles, but it's an interesting note. It's almost like Oith culture has riddles has a big part of its culture - as passcodes, tests, and just as something to pass the time. Being able to solve riddles seems to be seen as a valuable skill.

Next: The big climax to all of this running around and adventuring. We're almost through!

Still More Adventures

posted by Alien Rope Burn Original SA post

Pretty sure I've answered...

What in Sam Hill is Low Life?
Part the Twelfth

These are almost the last of the adventures; there's only one final one after these wrap up. Once again, * means the adventure is core to the campaign plot. Kind of a formality at this point, it's the conclusion of the campaign from here on out.



Whew! This part might require some prompting on the part of the GM, it seems like it might be possible for the PCs to go way off track if they're not careful. The puzzles aren't too obtuse, but it's definitely possible to get distracted.

Next: The Ever-Lovin' End.

The Big Finale

posted by Alien Rope Burn Original SA post


What is Low Life?
Part the Thirteenth

This covers the final part of the campaign, the NPCs, a bit of backstory, about the author.

Oh, and the end of the book.



First we get some generic writeups for each race type, which are a bit weaker than starting PCs. Then we get "Wild Cards", Savage Worlds' fancy name for NPCs who is important, and their stats.
Then we get some miscellany for the adventure, including the Disenlargificator, which is Norq's shrinking device. It requires successful Smarts rolls to use properly, with crazy possible malfunctions including permanent death (ooops).

And then there's the Primordial Soup Kitchen. It can be used to create life, but all the recipes have been lost. It can create tizn'ts, either randomly or by combining traits from known creatures. It has giggities constantly travelling to and from collecting traits, and has primordial goons available to be used as muscle. The PCs get to be in charge of it, presumably, and it's a pretty big deal.

Also secretly it used to be a spaceship.

Andy Hopp.


So, that's it! That's the whole book. That final adventure has a bit more GM fiat than I'd like, but it at least acknowledges that the adventure may have gone off the rails earlier and is a little more flexible than it is.

This was a tough one to do as it is, as the book loses some of its charm as an F&F writeup, I feel, without the distinct jargon and overall snazzy tone of the book. Also, though I included a crazy amount of art in these writeups, it's less than half the art in the book. (And generally at reduced quality from what the PDF has.)

I'll be doing the first supplement, The Whole Hole, whenever Andy gets around to getting me the PDF he owes me, and I have time, and the stars align, and even death may die, etc. There's also the card game and miniatures coming out in a while, and I'll have access to both on release.

And that's all. Ya'll can go back on home.

Next: Nothin'. Low Life's done- wait, what is that on the horizon? Oh, fuck me. Oh, no, fuck me.