Since 2014 Geek Native has been tracking the number of free RPGs available at DriveThruRPG. This is the world’s largest collection of downloadable tabletop RPGs.
Surprisingly, despite the tabletop RPG boom, the number of free RPGs this year has fallen.
Of course, quantity and quality are not strongly linked. Despite the fall in free products, the hobby is still enjoying a resurgence and perhaps creator’s spare time flows into Twitch, YouTube and Kickstarters in 2018.
Most popular free RPGs
If there’s no link between the number of free RPGs and how good they are perhaps one way to sort through the thousands is to see what’s most popular. Here’s the current top ten of free RPGs on DrivethruRPG.
- Trudvang Chronicles: Taken by Trolls by Riot Minds. Pay What You Want.
- Die Screaming Character Sheet by Bryan Rantala. Pay What You Want.
- High Fantasy Magic: A Simple Magic System for Fate Core & Accelerated by Nathan Hare. Pay What You Want.
- Monster extractor IV – Aliens & Manufactured Beings, for Dungeon Crawl Classics by Inner Ham. Pay What You Want.
- Pride Festival 5e Supplement by PbPlaysInside. Pay What Your Want.
- Monkey The RPG Quickstart Rules by D101 Games. Free.
- Elemental Evil Player’s Companion (5e) by Wizards of the Cost. Free.
- The Void Core PDF by WildFire. Pay What You Want.
- Tian Shang: Lone Wolf Fists (Eyebleed playtest version) by Five Emperors Games. Pay What You Want.
- Delta Green: Need to Know by Arc Dream Publishing. Pay What You Want.
Most popular free D&D downloads
There are over 1,000 free D&D downloads at the DM’s Guild. The same analysis can be used. Here’s a list of the ten most popular free titles there.
- Player’s Quick Combat Guide by Dungeon Masters Guild. Free.
- The Secrets of Skyhorn Lighthouse by Dungeon Masters Guild. Free.
- The Wild Sheep Chase – A Single-Session Adventure by Dungeon Masters Guild. Free.
- A Boy and his Modron by Dungeon Masters Guild. Free.
- The Alchemist (5e Classes with 4 Archetypes by Dungeon Masters Guild. Free.
- Bulette Storm – Free Adventure by Dungeon Masters Guild. Free.
- So, a Cleric and a Vampire Walk into a Tavern by Dungeon Masters Guild. Free.
- DMs Guild Creator Resource – Barovia Map by Dungeon Masters Guild. Free.
- DMs Guild Creator Resource – Adventures Art by Dungeon Masters Guild. Free.
- DMs Guild Resource – Dragons Art by Dungeon Masters Guild. Free.
Free RPG Day Sponsors
There’s a host of companies to thank for providing free goodies to local stores to handout.
Free RPG Day Platinum Sponsors
- Atlas Games for providing 15 copies of Unknown Armies 3 per box
- Paizo for providing 3 copies of Pathfinder adventure Card Game Pack, 15 copies of a Pathfinder Adventure and 15 copies of a Starfinder Adventure per box
- Q-Workshop for providing 15 Unique Viking Dice per box
- Steve Jackson Games for providing 30 copies of Unique Munchkin CCG Hero Card per box
Free RPG Day Gold Sponsors
- Flying Buffalo for providing 10 copies of Tunnels & Trolls QSR Japan Adventure per box
- Goodman Games for providing 10 copies of a 5th edition Fantasy Adventure per box and 10 copies of DCC RPG Adventure and Quickstart per box
- Monte Cook Games for providing 10 Numenera Adventures per box
- Renegade Game Studios for providing 10 copies of Kids of Bikes RPG per box
Free RPG Day Silver Sponsors
- Lamentation of the Flame Princess
- Ulisses Spiele
Free RPG Day Bronze Sponsors
- Pelgrane Press
- Troll Lord Games
- Wyrd Miniatures
Free RPG Day Sample Sponsors
- Off World Designs
- Studio9 Publishing
Are you looking for a local gaming store that’s taking part? The official website has a store locator to help out.
Creative Commons art credit: Dragon by Felipe Escobar Bravo.