Questers of the Middle Realms

Questers coverNow in second edition! See notes below.

Would you like your traditional fantasy gaming served with fast, simple rules and perhaps a side order of silliness?

Questers uses the PDQ system to present a self-contained high fantasy RPG. Here’s what’s inside.

  • The PDQ System, a simple, fast and flexible set of rules emphasising story more than tactics.
  • The world of Median, an outline setting taking a fond sideways look at fantasy gaming standards.
  • A “build your own” approach – use the framework and add the gods, organisations and character types your gaming group wants in your stories.

The included setting material is based on, well, taking the mickey out of Important Games of Yore which have sometimes been – let’s face it – a teensy bit silly and over the top. (It’s in a British style too: your mileage may vary.) But actually the underlying system will serve perfectly well for a “straight” high fantasy game.

Questers second edition is in Trade format, 184 pages, currently available in PDF from DriveThru and RPGNow with a print edition coming soon.

Notes on second edition

Questers originally came out back in 2006, using Chad Underkoffler’s super-simple PDQ system. This is a revision, repackage and freshen up really, but ‘2e’ seemed more fitting as a nod to those classic fantasy games.

  • The rules are pretty much unchanged. (I removed Virtue and Vice, and may have clarified a couple of things.)
  • The main change is the layout, changed from Letter to Trade. There’s been a print edition available on the quiet through Lulu (now removed), but the format didn’t work very well and I’ve long wanted a nicer one available on the DriveThru store.
  • It’s had another editing pass, and the sections have been reorganised to match ‘Jaws’ (which benefitted from the lessons learned with Questers!).
  • It’s pulled in the mini-supplements ‘Character Assistant’ and ‘Ten Magical Thingies’.
  • The art has kept some pieces, lost some and gained some new ones.

What they said about first edition

Kenneth Hite’s Out of the Box Awards: Honourable Mention, Best New RPG of 2006 category

“Bravo for creating a game world that’s likable, amusing, and open for expansion. But here’s the dirty little secret: you don’t have to play for laughs. It works at that level, of course, but if you just need a fantasy game system that plays easily, encourages broad characterization, and doesn’t bog down in details, pick up Questers of the Middle Realms. It’s a fun game, a fun read, and a bargain too.”
Bob Portnell, Pyramid magazine

“…uses the PDQ system very well to model the type of game that it’s going for. … I think that it’s a great design to capture that old-school fantasy gaming feel without capturing the frustration that a lot of the old-school fantasy systems brought in.”
Paul Tevis, Have Games Will Travel #75

“Questers of the Middle Realms is a well-designed game, with a simple and elegant rules system. The design the world as you go approach built into the game is a neat innovation, and it fits the style and tone of the setting perfectly. The setting itself is intentionally and cleverly cliched, with a bare bones level of detail reminiscent of the original D&D campaign settings.”
Andrew Branstad, RPGNow staff reviewer

“In terms of the rules, QMR offers a lot of innovations on the basic PDQ engine, most of which I think are pretty cool. … If you’re into humorous fantasy that tends towards the wry, modified PDQ rules, or general beer ‘n pretzel RPGs, I recommend looking into this game.”
Chad Underkoffler, PDQ creator

The PDQ system

PDQ is a very simple, flexible system created by Chad Underkoffler of Atomic Sock Monkey Press, licensed for this product line. Important facets of characters (and everything else) are described as Qualities made of a freeform description and a Rank, like Good [+2] Quick reflexes. When the situation makes it relevant you can add the Quality in to a 2d6 roll. You can give your character whatever Qualities are most dramatically important. The system provides a simple framework for resolving any type of conflict. It’s popular for convention games and home games where the group wants to get on with a story with minimal preparation.


Sample pages (0.9MB pdf) from the QMR mainbook (first edition) to get some basics of the rules and setting.

Setting map in a large colour version (0.4MB png) (made with my basement-level mapping software skills).

Character sheet – Letter size, from the first edition book and usable with second (though paper or an index card will do).

Roll of the Heavens – a Letter-size sheet for tracking deities and Favour.


PDQ System Design by Chad Underkoffler, Atomic Sock Monkey Press.
The PDQ System is used under license from Chad Underkoffler; the materials are not necessarily endorsed in any way by Chad Underkoffler, nor is he in any way responsible for the content of these materials unless specifically credited. (c)2008 Chad Underkoffler. All Rights Reserved.