OSR: The World of Rust - Unofficial Bestiary

People on Artstation and other portfolio sites create these personal projects full of astonishing worldbuilding, but they've got no framework for implementing their worldbuilding. Even if they know RPGs exist, they might not have the skills, contacts, experience, or time to adapt their work.
People in the DIY RPG community have plenty of experience producing, publishing, distributing, and writing books, but (often), not enough cash for lavish art. Sometimes they also lack artistic inspiration.

Two groups of two people. Two eminent compatible passions.

The only project I can think of that started as art and became an RPG is Tales from the Loop, which started as Simon Stålenhag's disconnected art pieces, became narrative art books, and eventually had an RPG adaptation.

So if you see someone build a world with superb art, and you think you've got the skills to execute a project successfully, see if they're interested in creating an RPG, setting guide, or bestiary from their work. I'd suggest including non-exclusive rights (so the art and ideas can be reused elsewhere if a better offer comes along) and fair method of revenue sharing. Maybe the artist says no. Maybe they ignore you. But it's worth a shot.

Full RPG systems are ambitious and difficult projects. Writing a complete system requires a very specific skill set and a lot of playtesting. Setting-neutral material is tricky to create but can be much more rewarding.

Right now, Nicolas Folliot (twitter) is potentially working on some sort of RPG adaptation of Lucas Roussel's Le Monde de Rouille setting. I don't have all the details but it seems very exciting.

The original setting is in French. If you can read French, great! If not, OCR + translation software is so advanced these days that it's a matter of minutes run the images through a few programs to get the gist of the text.



With Lucas' permission, I've created an unofficial free 29-page bestiary and random encounter table for the "L'Exante" / "Era of Ruins" period. It's a great sci-fantasy / sword-and-planet / Ultraviolet Grasslands resource.

Translations are my own. My French is good enough that waiters in Paris look at me like I've spit in their coffee, then speak very slowly to me in English, waiters in Belgium laugh and call their friends over, and waiters in Quebec call the OQLF to arrest me. You've been warned.

Images have also been lightly edited and whitepointed for easy printing.

The bestiary is just a list of monsters, plus a massive d120 table of Omens and Encounters. To roll a d120, use a d12 for the 10s place and a d10 for the 1s place. No stats are provided.

There's also a GLOG-style d20 table of races.



  1. Excellent! I finally have the party heading under Deep Carbon Observatory and am using your Veinscrawl. But there is a back and forth between the underland and Arduin's Shadowland: "Beyond the newly discovered Ebon Gate of Lost Shamballah lies a world/dimension of perpetual darkness and shadow. Totally unknown to man, demon, or god."
    • Visibility in the Lands of Shadow is always 13 feet, regardless of light sources used or not used.
    • Everything from plains to mountains to dismal swamps may be encountered. However, most often are deserted and/or ruined cities obviously not constructed by/for humanoids. The strange features all point to a totally unknown race, the whereabouts being a mystery.
    • Something stalks the Lands of Shadow that leave only headless bodies behind. The bodies still live but the mind and soul are missing.

    I didn't know I needed some Lovecraftian beasties until I saw your post. Ha, I love things that happen like that! Thanks again for the time you spend on this hobby, very much appreciated. :~)

  2. There is another RPG project that came about from a comic book series: Die.

    Great compilation of monsters. The art just speaks. Thank you!

  3. oh that looks nice so far. will have to look into this this weekend

  4. They can't really sic the OQLF on an individual, can they?

    1. My French is bad enough they can probably sic the ICC on me. :D

  5. I'm getting some strong Moebius vibes from this art. Gorgeous creature design!

    1. Absolutely. The text has a very Moebius cycle-of-ages feel to it too. It's a great project.

  6. Vinemaple, they won't actually go after Skerples :)

    They can be fanatical sometimes over a store that doesn't have store front signs which follow the laws, for example English writing may not be larger than 1/4 the size of the French writing. They joke here is that you can order an English muffin for breakfast so long as three other people at your table order French toast.