Chris Miller

Savage Dresden

Though I gamed through most of the pandemic, it was all online. Through Zoom, like everything was. It was fine, we had fun, but I really missed playing in-person.

When things looked like they were lightening up (just before Omicron), I brought up playing in person to my regular D&D group and was met with silence. I get why: we lived all over the Cleveland suburbs, and frankly, not having to commute to a communal table made scheduling a hell of a lot easier. Additionally, anyone with kids too young to be vaccinated were unable to join. All good reasons, and reasonable ones, for not meeting in person.


I really wanted to run an in-person game. I reached out to some friends that live within three miles of one another, have nearly grown children, and were willing to try something new.

I’ve wanted to get back to running a Savage Worlds since the new revision was released a few years back. Originally, I proposed a weird west style game, and folks were into it. The longer we talked, to more we realized that we had another setting in common that we would have fun with: the Dresden Files.

We started planning last October. While there is a Dresden Files RPG, I don’t know that system well, so I began building Savage Dresden. I also used the winter to embrace my love of Cleveland history to plan out a game we could all enjoy.

Once of the great things about Cleveland is that is is very similar to Chicago, where the Dresden Files books are based. Cleveland history is rife with mob stories, corrupt politicians, local legends, and even curses on sports franchises; fertile ground for some fun.

We based the game in July 2001. Our characters are:

  • Vince: a mob enforce with some magical talent and a enchanted gun

  • Ashlynn: an Irish-American burglar with Fae blood that can shapeshift

  • Jared: a shy, awkward but gifted mechanic who is on the path to become a rogue wizard

  • Tillie: a librarian and SCAdian who has a sneaking suspicion she is something more than human: a Valkyrie. Maybe.

Our first game (which I’ll write about in another post) went off very well. I’m really proud of the world we’ve constructed out of history and fantasy. I’m very much looking forward to the players exploring it.

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