DoubleZero is a percentile based, skill-driven modern action thriller tabletop roleplaying game. You can be anything from a secret agent to a world-weary cop, a hard-boiled private eye to a petty criminal, a trained assassins to a victim on the run. Keep players on the edge of their seats with dramatic gunfights, thrilling chases, and nefarious death traps. Adversaries range from corporate sociopaths to organized crime rings, political terrorists to serial killers. Possible adventures span forensic investigations, solving cozy whodunits, foiling acts of international espionage, and uncovering vast conspiracies. Protect deadly secrets, handle ransom demands, or plan clever heists and cunning revenge plots. All manner of suspense and intrigue are possible with the DoubleZero Core Book.
For a brief, shining moment in the 1980s there was an officially licensed roleplaying game based on Britain’s most famous secret agent. While other people spent their youth playing Dungeons & Dragons, I was playing that. It had a quirky percentile-based core mechanic, eschewed heavy rules for a flexible minimalism, and was groundbreaking in its use of Hero Points to mitigate random die rolls and give players some control over their characters’ success or failure. My friends and I used it to run everything from 1930s pulp heroes to gritty police procedurals, action movie pastiches to sweeping historical epics. It remains one of my go-to game systems for any setting that doesn’t have magic or superpowers,
With the original being out of print for decades, it’s become increasingly difficult to share it with new players. I’ve tried to fill the niche with other games over the years, but none of have scratched the itch in quite the same way. Lacking a definitive alternative, I finally gave up and set out to write one. DoubleZero is less of a straight-up retro-clone than an homage and spiritual successor. It is similar in tone, but not identical in execution to that game.
While the DoubleZero system is built upon the Open Game Content and Open Game License provided by Daniel Proctor’s GORE™, it is not intended to be an emulation of Basic Role-Playing or BRP-compatible. As a percentile-based system, GORE™ provided a strong foundation to work from. To pay it forward, all content outside of this introduction chapter and Dancing Lights Press trade dress is designated as open content.