The Skeletons

The Skeletons is meditative structured freeform game for 1-6 players. You’ll need a few hours a private space.

The Pitch

Years fly by like dead leaves. Everything is darkness. Everything is silence. You stand vigilant before the sarcophagus without thought or breath-such is your compulsion. You do not remember your name and still you watch. The flesh has fallen off your bones and still you watch.

And then one day there is light and motion and you weigh your bearded axe and raise your shield, lusting for the fray, eager to measure your skill against these tomb-robbing children so full of blood. You’ll never be alive again, but in this moment-in the chaos between violation and destruction-you truly live, and you remember what you once were, and you taste the sun.

The Skeletons flips the script on the classic dungeon crawl— here you play not the intruders, but the guardians, cursed to spend all of eternity defending a tomb. As time passes, both the tomb and its guardians will change. Ferocious battles are fought and won, and the skeletons slowly remember who and what they once were. Melancholy, introspective and spanning epochs, The Skeletons is unlike anything you’ve ever played.

What’s Included?

This game includes an 11 page PDF that includes the rules for the basic game as well as a variant setting by Sara Williamson. An additional seven page PDF includes the character sheets, each loaded with unique, interconnecting questions whose answers will be revealed in play.

Live-Action Game
by Jason Morningstar
18 page PDF
Published March 2016


“Played this game tonight with my regular group instead of our regular game. I hadn’t done my prep this week so it seemed like a good excuse to pull this one off the shelf. I was skeptical if this game was going to work as intended, but was pleasantly surprised at how quickly my players picked it up. We made a great story about honor, loss, and what meaning a human life can have after it is long forgotten. I would recommend this game to GMs needing a one shot to fill a week when you don’t have time to prep or to any story gamer types to be part of your regular rotation of games.” – Scott A, DrivethruRPG

Art of Story Through Gaming: The Skeletons – June 2016