“Krampus says Punching Nazis is a free action” is a Name Your Own Price RPG by WuDeRPG from Itch.io.
I paid $2 for it, which was the recommended amount, and my first Name Your Own Price purchase on Itch.io after a string of disappointing Name Your Own Price downloads wherein I paid the suggested amount only to receive a one-page ashcan. None of those purchases has been updated by the creators yet, either.
Itch.io needs a better preview system so purchasers can make realistic assessments of what they want to pay for such purchases.
“Krampus says Punching Nazis is a free action” is a one-page solo RPG. Fortunately, it’s not an ash-can.
The potentially mixed news is that it’s Illuminated by Lumen. That’s to say, it uses the Lumen RPG system from Spencer Campbell and Gila RPGs but isn’t affiliated with them.
That’s mixed news because you need a copy of Lumen to know the system. That’s also a Name Your Own Price download. You also need to have read it. It’s tough luck if you’ve done all those things and don’t like it.
I have Nova, Campbell’s own Lumen game, as I backed it on Kickstarter, but it only arrived this week and I’ve not read it yet.
So, I had to quickly re-skim the core mechanics of Lumen before trying my one-shot one-player run through Krampus says Punching Nazis is a free action.
The goal of “Krampus says Punching Nazis is a free action”
There are two goals in “Krampus says Punching Nazis is a free action”.
The first, I suggest, is to remind us that it’s okay to punch Nazis. The mass-murdering ideology once rose to power through populist whispers, blaming suffering on others, growing in support until the world was split into the most horrific war ever seen.
Attempts to avoid the disaster through diplomacy failed.
For years, there was no doubt, no question, no debate and no concern as opposing Nazis was the expected thing.
One such example is the classic computer game, the first first-person shooter, Wolfenstein. In Wolfenstein, you move through a castle and punch or shoot Nazis.
The second goal of the Krampus RPG is to clear a level map of Castle Wolfenstein. WuDeRPG has recreated it in a colourful drawing, marketing doors and Nazis on it, for this RPG.
As a result, WuDeRPG’s “Krampus says Punching Nazis is a free action” is more of a board game played in the theatre of the mind than any attempt to recreate the improvisation, storytelling and encounters of traditional RPGs that solo-RPGs sometimes attempt.
Lumen is a good choice of system for this. I’ve noted my lack of experience with the system, so make what you wish when I say I got it quickly and found it easy and effective to use.
Lumen, after all, is inspired by high-octane games like Destiny which are from the Wolfenstein family tree and blend in RPG-like elements. It is designed to run powerful characters through armies of minions and with the occasional boss battle to slow you down.
What do you get from “Krampus says Punching Nazis is a free action”?
Krampus is a season myth from parts of Europe. If Saint Nick brings gifts to friendly ones, Krampus the demon comes to punish those who have been evil.
One panel is the level map of Wolfenstein – and, frankly, that’s a fun thing to have. I’m not sure it’s worth $2, but it’s worth some of that.
Another panel is a collection of stats; your stats as Krampus and the rules for your Nazi punching ability, and the stats for the Nazi mooks.
If a Nazi gets close to you, you punch them as a free action + deal 1 Harm.
The last panel is all the explanation, it’s written in a scribble of font, and a quarter of that is the Lumen disclosure. There are three three-row tables for Approaches, Rolling Dice and Nazi Drops. A note tells us that opening doors can cause damage and that the game’s objective is to kill all the Nazis.
A timely reminder and a pleasant distraction. “Krampus says Punching Nazis is a free action” isn’t much to write home about but is an exciting demo into what the Lumen system could be used for.
I don’t regret the $2; after all, I got to punch some Nazis.
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