I am proud to introduce WATERHACK, a game I’ve been working on in the background for a while and decided to just get it over the finish line.
WATERHACK is a post-apocalyptic roleplaying game set in a quasi-future where water and liquids are really scarce, and everyone is thirsty. It uses some inspiration from David Black’s Black Hack, which is a great take on OSR fantasy roleplaying, with six stats and a roll under on a D20. Add in some Jack Vance style humor, gonzo journalism, irreverence, and recognition of the struggle for water. Oh, and fun!
It will drop on DriveThruRPG on Friday, March 19.
Here’s a preview:
The greatest environmental collapse of Earth didn’t happen overnight – the disaster unfolded in slow motion. The rain stopped coming, for all kinds of reasons. The scientists admitted it was probably humanity’s fault, but it wasn’t permanent so no one should get worked up about it. Water sources were drained rapidly over the next hundred years or so. Lush forests turned brown and crackled under the heat of the blistering sun. Rain faded to a distant memory. Only the rich could waste their precious drops on a shower. The lack of hydration became the new normal.
Add in an unhealthy dash of war, violence, and nationalism. Once wells and lakes dried up, the people packed up and moved to where they could get a drop or two of refreshment. Limited supplies meant harsh measures. Harsh measures meant anger, desperation, and chaos. Bombs, tanks, guns, spears, hockey sticks, dirty socks – whatever people had at hand became a tool to secure nourishment for their families. Some supposedly decent types even resorted to unthinkable and disgusting means to slate their parched bodies.
Whether nuclear bombs actually dropped at some point is a matter of debate. Some travelers have claimed to witness giant craters where cities used to be, tingling waves of energy melting your hair off in less than ten seconds the closer you got. Others think they’re just seeing things and need a drink.
Typically, whenever someone does find water, word gets around. People in armored cars roar in, claiming they got there first and if you don’t like it say hello to a sawed off shotgun. Religious cults descend in droves with bombs made out of old potted plants, smiling to win you over and dropping edicts that label you a heretic by morning. Cousins and aunts you didn’t know you had show up for hugs and handouts and a long sip.
Of course, this is where the heroes of this story come in – Accountants. Accountants are unlikely heroes who waltz in and out of danger to keep everything fair and negotiate some kind of peace. When wasteland warlords or drought- plagued mayors need help, they call in the nearest wandering Accountants to make life… a little easier. After all, water is life.
You get to play an Accountant, and if you’ve got the guts and ingenuity, you’ll leave the world a little less thirsty and a little safer for everyone else.
Welcome to the Waterless Wastes.
As with all of my products, I’ll be looking to respond to feedback and make adjustments for balance, gameplay, and fun.