Mork Borg Monday: A Wizard’s Dying Wish by Phillip Reed

“The Wizard Leonhard Braur is dying. Of this there can be no doubt”

So, a while back Reed put out a bunch of pamphlets, trifold brochures of small adventures, perfect for a one-shot, or introducing people to Mork Borg. As these were part of a Kickstarter and not easily obtainable outside of the country, Reed recently released several of these brochures in a hardback edition on DriveThruRPG. So you can get there here.

Since the book edition is easier to get, I’ll be reviewing that instead of the brochures. But I will also say that the brochures are a PERFECT way to get your one-shot on.

Physical Product: 6

This book is a print-on-demand product from DTRPG, it’s pretty thin, and no one is going to go crazy for it as a product. that said, Reed did this specifically to make content more easily available, so I appreciate it. The layout is great though.

Art: 8

The art is thick in this one. As this was originally 5 pamphlets, there’s almost as much art as there is text. Maps and fun stuff. I really like the look of the cover especially, and I think that Reed did a great job putting these projects together.

Writing/Editing: 9

What do you want me to say? That Phillip Reed, a man who has consistently put out great RPG products for decades put out another great product? Shocking I know, the editing and writing is, as always, on point.

World/Fiction: 8

  • Design: First, again, while I’m reviewing the book, since these were designed as pamphlets I think that has to come into consideration. Picture if you will, your DM didn’t show up, or is sick, or maybe just sick of your shit. What do you do? Not run a game? Nonsense! That’s when one player whips out a trifold sheet and says, “no worries, I can cover tonight.” There are plenty of one-shot adventures out there, but having them in pamphlet form really encourages using them as intended.
  • Originality: Kaiju, curses, and shops filled with goo! Since there are 4 adventures and 5 encounter hooks, this collection has a little bit of everything. My favorite adventure in the collection is “The Living Statue of Alk Baum”. In which… well, spoilers.
  • Fleshed out: I always really like how Reed’s settings and adventures play with the larger world of the dying lands, they never feel out of place. Since these are quick little adventures, there are more open ends than I am used to in a Reed production, but that said, all of those little loose ends can tie on to other adventures.
  • Engaging: I’ve enjoyed reading them, no slogging here.
  • Mechanics: Mechanics in this book are pretty straightforward, though there is some pretty fun mechanical madness in “Anzhela and the Caged Skulls”. The purpose of these games is to be able to quickly pick them up and get started.

Overall: 8.05

Final Thoughts: I keep stressing how these are perfect for a one-shot, and I want to be incredibly clear. They are, and I really think that each adventure has its own place in the experience of a party or player. For instance, the two I mentioned above have mechanics that a party need to figure out, it might be better for players who have some understanding of playing with the mechanics of a setting.

On the other hand I ran “The Broken Sword of Vile Souls” for Max Booth III on his podcast Ghoulish, as not only a one-shot, but as the first TTRPG game he had ever played. Ever. I used it as an introduction to the hobby, and we had a fantastic time until he died horribly.

Some books are a joy to read, some are beautiful art artifacts, and some are necessities for your gaming toolbag. This is fun to read and pretty, but above any of that, it is a crucial and fantastic tool to have at your disposal.

Hey! Do you think “Who is this John guy and what makes him such an expert?” Do you say “Does he think he can do better?”

NO! I don’t. But I do think I can do it! This August (2022) I’ll be launching my first Kickstarter as part of ZineQuest, Morkkabeans 1:1. So if you’re into weird metaphysics and Mork Borg, please check it out! (Click the picture to go to the project!)

Have a physical game or supplement you want John to review? Contact him below!

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