A downloadable game

Buy Now$5.00 USD or more

GLAIVE is a toolkit for running old-school fantasy RPGs.

Other OSR games, old-school bestiaries, adventures, magic sourcebooks, and modules you already own require little or no conversion to use with GLAIVE.

Life is cheap in GLAIVE, so character creation is fast and easy. Intuitive and simple, these rules allow players new to OSR games to create characters and understand the rules in minutes! 

Every PC in GLAIVE is a tomb-raiding, adventure-seeking ne’er-do-well who wields a spellbook as easily as a sword. Talents - a hybrid of class descriptors and skills - allow players to build classic fantasy archetypes or construct their own unique character concepts.

Updated 26 days ago
CategoryPhysical game
Rated 4.9 out of 5 stars
(16 total ratings)
GenreAdventure, Role Playing
TagsDungeons & Dragons, Fantasy, glaive


Buy Now$5.00 USD or more

In order to download this game you must purchase it at or above the minimum price of $5 USD. You will get access to the following files:

GLAIVE_Character_Sheet.pdf 2 MB
GLAIVE_v2.pdf 7 MB

Community Copies

Support this game at or above a special price point to receive something exclusive.

Community Copies

Free copies for those who need them. Feel free to grab one!

Every purchase will add an additional copy to the Community Copies bank

Development log


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(2 edits)

How many talents can players choose at the start? I don't see it mentioned anywhere apart from that they have 6 total.

Edit: Sorry, I'm so blind... it's detailed in ANCESTRIES.

Hello! I've put together an alternate character sheet that works a bit better for my group - I figured I'd share it here. Love running this with HOME!


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I really love the simplicity of this system along with the layout and the illustrations. It's really very nice.

I like Relic too, but I'm glad that Glaive is shorter. It's a bit of a shame things like the Monster Menu didn't make the cut, but I just added the page back in during printing.

I'm wondering if the monsters from The Black Hack Classic Monsters would work for Glaive?

Example: Zombie HD 1 - 1d8 HP and does HD1+1 Damage (2 in this case, or you can also role a 1d4 if you don't want to use an average)

I also have the Monster Overhaul but it's not a light weight book. I'm guessing those don't need any conversion though?


The Black Hack is kind of its own thing. The general principles of how monsters work are probably directly compatible with Glaive, though PCs tend to be hardier, so i might bump the damage a bit. 3 points, or 1d6 in the example you give

Monster Overhaul is a great book! And yes, directly compatible 

I tend to use  monsters out of Old School Essentials. There is a big tome, but you can also buy separate digest sized books. The Monster Book is very portable.

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I will check it out when I have some more money and when they have more stock of the OSE books - I have been thinking about getting the advanced tomes.

I only recently discovered OSR and it has been a bit rough on the wallet. I think Glaive would have been the perfect starting point because it has a bit of everything.

I should grab Yaloon and Home too, they look perfect for my players/kids.

Listen, I'm not advocating for Doing Crimes. <wink-wink>

But I ahve it on good authority that PDFs of the original D&D Monster Manual are all over the Internet.


Heya! Very interested in this game. Any chance for more community copies? I'm from Argentina where our cost of living is relatively low so 5.00 USD take an important chunk of my salary :(


Adding more now!

I love this game. 

Are there any future plans for another update or has anyone created additional content?


I’m so glad you like it!

Eventually I would like to do a small addition - more Talents and such

I’m finally about to fulfill on this year’s Zinquest project, and once that is done I will be uploading HOME (a system for setting up a small sandbox) and YALOON (and example of said sandbox applications). Both are more or less system-agnostic, but the monster etc. in YALOON are statted for GLAIVE. Should be out soon.

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So cool

Is ose still the easiest way to convert monsters?

I think so. But really any old-school monster stats will work. I also think the monsters from Shadowdark would work nicely. 

I think you're right. I've been comparing them to OSE and it's pretty similar. 

I'd also pay good money for a full glaive monster manual 

I have a very rough one for my personal use. But only add monsters that I use in my games 😂 

A zine of tactically interesting monsters would be fun to do though. 

Hrm, it's now saying I need to buy this, despite owning it from the Kickstarter code.  Bug in the update?

No, not a glitch. Just us being confusing. Skipping the boring details: I had to generate the keys from my personal itch.io page, rather than this (my work page).

Go here and try again: https://lonely-adventurer.itch.io/

Still no joy.  And when I go to my copy of Glaive in my own Itch.io library, clicking on it tells me I have to buy it.  Itch says I own it, but that I don't own it.

your logged in with the same email? Logic says its an issue on your end - as far as i know, no one else has been having any trouble  but we’ll figure it out!

If that’s not the issue i can try generating a new key.

Deleted 203 days ago

That worked, now it's properly re=linked.

Nice! I’m going to delete that link from the conversation then hehe

I noticed that there is a Roll20 implementation of Glaive v1.  Any chance to convince the authors to upgrade it to v2? :)

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You’d have to ask @brocktopus :)

I don’t know them, but I think I remember seeing this (or something like it) in the comments on the GLAIVE kickstarter. Maybe scrub through those if you can’t find this person on Roll 20?

Right on, thanks.

Hello! How do you build or convert creatures?


There are a couple of ways.
The easiest is just using stats right out of the Old School Essentials Monster Book (also available online as a free SRD) or the original Monster Manual.

I tend to use those exclusively for most monsters, though I often cross-reference the 5e MM to simplify some of the goofier old-school monster-specific rules.

If I want a cool boss fight, I start pulling special abilities from the 4e Monster Manual, and give them “Villain Actions” (see matt Colville’s “Action Oriented Monsters” on YouTube). 


Is there any chance your game will have more community copies available? I'm Brazilian and the dollar price makes your game more than 5 times more expensive in my country. I really like the first version of it and would like access to the second one. Thank you very much.


No problem! COmmunity Copies have been replenished. :)


Thank you very much!!!


Looks like the new file with the updates is layout only, do you mind uploading the single pages file as well?

PS. I live in Richmond VA and have been running glaive for a while. It's awesome. Perfect for our group.

Hey, awesome! So glad to hear that from a fellow Richmonder :D

Always cool to see other Richmond people. Love Glaive. Need to update to v2 soon.


I second this!




Hi! I’m interested in running Glaive (I got the rules from backing Home) with some tweens/teens at the local library. Could I have permission to print & give away copies of the rules to players? Thanks! 


Of course. :)


Hooray! Thanks. I live in a small town and when I heard there was a D&D club at my daughter’s school I jumped at the chance to help out. Now I’m doing an introductory workshop to RPGs at the library this summer and working with the kids in the fall. I plan on using Home, too! I think it’s a great tool for new DMs. 

That is so cool! 


Need your help w/ a clarification. Magic & Cursed Items (p32). № 3 is Ring (holds 1 MD). Should this be something else (+1 WIL, +1 [L/HL], etc)?


Whoops. Another victim of my RELIC copy-paste on parts of GLAIVE :P

I would either have it contain a single spell (new or pre-existing if the PC wants to free up an Item Slot), or I would give them a small buff to WIL. 

once I upload the next round of fixes I will just have it contain a random spell. 


A friend pointed me into this beauty. Any chance of community copies? -


Sure! :)


Thx a lot! This is such a treat! I look forward to try it out, maybe I will solo it later <3


Is there a maximum level for XP advancement & HP gain?


Not specifically. It's up to the GM. My personal preference is powerful but not superhuman PCs at high levels. However, since it's not an issue that I am currently facing I don't have a specific HP or level cap in mind.

I've also never had a game go beyond 7th or 8th level. ONce there are no more talent slots left, I start handing out in-world stuff that feels like getting a new talent (castles, minions, magic items etc.)

I see that you have changed the number of slots for armor compared to relic. Light is 1, medium 3 and heavy 5. Whats the thought behind this?

Mostly just fine-tuning.

The Fighter in RELIC gets the "campaigner" ability that lets armor occupy 2-fewer slots, at the same time they get "notches". Notches is from several other GLoGs so I didn't want to lift it for GLAIVE. "Campaigner" seemed like a not fantastic talent all by itself (or one that would rarely be taken). 

It was important that a Fighter not be as encumbered by armor as other classes. However, since GLAIVE is classless I didn't feel the need to discourage anyone from suiting up in full-plate and trying to lug spellbooks around if they wanted to.

All of that combined to inform the change.

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thank you, makes sense :)

Four more questions :)

The magic arrow spells, how do you gain them and use them?

Some spells, like multi armed does not have any duration. Is it for an entire fight? Or are they permanent?

The banish talent says that it banishes creatures, but has alot of lines on undead. Does it only banish undead?

Im having a hard time knowing how alot of the combat maneuvers work with zonemapping and no grid.
how does flanking work with zonemapping? With shield bash what consequence does the 5' pushback effect have?

I don't know how I forgot to reword the maneuvers! Uploading that edit now.

Being hustled out the door by my wife, so I will address the other questions when I get home LOL!!!

Magic Arrows: however you want. 

I treat them like spellbooks or scrolls. A one-time use item, or something that can be used at least once per day depending on the Talents you take.

If a player wanted to create a "Fey Hunter" sort of character I would have them take "Scholar of the Unseen University" and start them out with 3 enchantments they could place on the arrows in their quiver. If they wanted more utility out of them the "Manifold Cerebrum" would also be a good choice.

I might say that when they chose to use a magic arrow it was like they created a psychic bolt, rather than using a mundane arrow that round. Stuff like that. 

Missing Spell Durations: Whoops. I always default to [L] or [HL] rounds/Turns depending on what makes the most sense. The duration of the encounter also works perfectly well.

Banish: This is specifically an undead thing for people who like that aspect of D&D clerics. Though you don't need to be a cleric to take the Talent.

Excitedly looking over v2, loving the expanded classes and the stat streamlining! Sad to see the Pre-Built Packs for classes go, was that intentional? Additionally, I noted "Barbarian" in the Table of Contents - that might be a typo.

Woah! Yes. That is a typo. I used the wrong header in the Talents and it auto-populated the TOC.


I never used the prebuilds in my own game. That was something my friend Zac - who laid out the original GLAIVE - suggested we add (as well as several of the tables). It was fine, but it just wasn't mine -if that makes sense.

Obviously, you can still use them with v2


Makes total sense! Huge fan of the new Combat Manuevers, I am excited to run this!

I wish more of my players would actually use them! 

I might eventually rework some more Talents to give little boosts to certain maneuvers.

Just found out about GLAIVE b/c of the HOME KS. So, I'm waaayyyy late to the party. Any chance of you making the older versions available?

(prebuilds sound like something that would be useful for some of my players)

No, but here's a picture of that page. :)



I love Glaive!  What's changed in v2?


And would love to get a print run this time!


What's changed? Lots of little things. Tweaks to some Talents, lots more Talents added. 4 Ability Bonuses instead of 6. A system for carousing. A much more detailed magic system. I've completely dropped counting squares on a grid and use zones now (though I don't think converting things to a grid would require much imagination).

I doubt we will ever print this, but feel free to print it out in booklet form (most printers and/or PDF readers have that option).  - Scott

I see you've dropped the OGL but this version is notably missing a page saying who made it. 

Did I forget to sign my own work?!?

I'll fix that shortly - Scott


Is this PDF up to date? The Itch.io download was last updated on 9 September 2020, but there's a "Small Update To Glaive PDF" post on Kickstarter, dated a month later, on 7 November 2020.


Im wondering this aswell. Really like the system

Is this the one made with GLOG or is that not out yet?

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That version of Glaive is now called RELIC.

(7 edits) (+2)

I have the question for the Trick Shot: there's no cover bonus in the rulebook. Can you explain it more?

Also, one more: I was translating this for my session, but also I want to introduce your rule to Korean RPG communities. Can I translate it to Korean, and send this translation to people who purchased your game?


I'm sorry this is 2 years late!

I usually assume +2AC, +4AC, or you can't see the target when thinking about cover and concealment.

Feel free to translate! :)  -Scott


I enjoy the rules and art, but would love access to a word doc or similar. Would be great to slim down and make a more pocketable version or just modify some of the layout


published some impressions of Glaive over at https://perplexingruins.blogspot.com/


I wanted to thank you for taking the time to make this. The amount of polish in the PDF art and layout really makes it a user friendly experience for onboarding players and the Talents give just enough of that character advancement fix that Knave skips. 


Hello! I've been running some old TSR modules and newer OSR stuff with my group using my own hack of Knave. 

What's your main difference to Knave in this version?

Stat bonuses are less likely to be wildly disparate and Talents bring something similar to class features to a classless game.