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Pen & Paper Football
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Pen & Paper Football

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Pen & Paper Football is football without the commercials, endless merchandizing and prison sentences. A few dice and some paper is all you need to simulate an American football game. Just find some friends (or play solo), roll up some teams and pit them against each other in League Play, which requires eight simple dice rolls to play a game, or in Head-to-Head play, which simulates a game play-by-play.

P&PF has all the rules you need to play a whole season of football, with rules for passing, running, kicking, penalties, injuries and even off-season rules for team development. There are dozens of sample teams you can use and handy record sheets for teams, leagues and games.

51 pages

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Reviews (2)
Discussions (8)
Customer avatar
David B October 21, 2018 10:50 pm UTC
There's no mention in the Head to Head Play section anywhere about 2 point conversions (you'd think there'd be some mention of it), so how does anybody else handle it? I know from personal experience that I could've used a 2 point conversion rule because I just recently finished a playoff game in which at one point during the game one team was down by 8 and needed a touchdown and a 2 point conversion in hopes of tying the game and sending it into overtime for the first time in my league's playoff history. (In my league, I use League Play during the regular season and then switch to Head to Head Play for all playoff and championship games.) Unfortunately for that team, they weren't able to make it to the end zone before regulation time had expired. Also, since I'm talking about PATs, I kind of have an issue with the author of the game adding 7 yards to PAT attempts due to the kicker being 7 yards behind from where the ball is kicked on the 10-yard line. I think that it should just be a straight 20-yard attempt...See more
Customer avatar
Bobby C October 13, 2018 11:02 pm UTC
Note to Author: In the game record sheets at the end, the 1st Quarter sheet is missing, and you have used the Overtime sheet instead (in other words, there are two Overtime sheets and no 1st Quarter sheet). It's not a dealbreaker, and I'll bet I can fix this by opening the PDF in OpenOffice, but you might wish to correct it in subsequent editions.
Customer avatar
Bobby C October 16, 2018 3:22 pm UTC
I'm also unclear on which dice to use for Mishap Checks. Page 11 says to roll 1d10, while Page 15 (as well as the example on page 18) says to roll 1d6. Which do other players reading here use? I suppose one could make a case for either, since penalties and injuries are so prevalent in football today. I think the only difference is a 10% chance as opposed to a 16ish% chance, but I'd appreciate a clarification.
Customer avatar
Bobby C October 21, 2018 4:13 pm UTC
Also, I've discovered that Head-to-Head teams are at somewhat of a disadvantage to League Play teams for one big reason; injuries. After 6 games, my team has already suffered 3 season-ending injuries, and my opponents have had some injuries as well. However, injuries are not accounted for during League Play with all the other teams in a league. So I've started rolling 1d10 along with the 1d20 rolls in League Play. On a roll of 10, a season-ending injury has occurred during that quarter, and I roll 1d6 and consult the table on p. 16 to determine which stats are affected. That simulates how banged up teams can get by the postseason, and it adds a little depth to League play.
Customer avatar
Wes H October 22, 2018 11:50 am UTC
I didn't even catch that. I will start using that as well.
Customer avatar
Wes H October 12, 2018 6:55 pm UTC
Awesome game! I would love an extended rules for off season development.
Customer avatar
David B August 02, 2018 7:18 pm UTC
In reference to the Team Record Sheet and the League Record Sheet, does anybody know what the "PF" and "PA" columns refer to?
Customer avatar
matt D August 02, 2018 9:14 pm UTC
PF - Points For
PA - Points Against

That's my edumacated guess.
Customer avatar
Bobby C October 16, 2018 4:01 pm UTC
Right, PF = total points scored, PA = total points scored against the team by other teams. I THINK PF might be used to determine divisional playoff seeding in the case of ties, but I'm unclear how PA is used in this gaming system.

Also unclear on "Quirks," which is found on the Team Record Sheet. Maybe it's the benefits awarded for having star players?

The only other thing I found to be confusing was the use of "DR" in the example of gameplay. I'm guessing it stands for "Defensive Rating," but everywhere else the author uses "DC" instead.
Customer avatar
christopher M February 22, 2018 5:34 am UTC
I love the idea of this, had to purchase it!! I would love to see this publisher use this “system” to make more sports Roleplaying games!
Customer avatar
Dan G January 03, 2018 2:04 am UTC
is there a professionally printed version available anywhere or just the PDF book?
Customer avatar
James L March 05, 2018 4:31 pm UTC
John has his games in print on Lulu.
Customer avatar
Beau C November 11, 2017 7:15 pm UTC
John! Great game!

Referring to the Income section of the rules: I noticed that in the example you wrote for the Off-Season on page 25 you reference a die roll to multiply the base income amount... but I didn't see that under the Income rules.

Am I missing something?

Thanks for the fun!

Customer avatar
Bobby C October 16, 2018 4:53 pm UTC
I think maybe the bottom of page 22 should read "Roll 1d6, and multiply total revenue by that number." I'm only guessing it's 1d6, since p. 25 simply says roll the die, so I'm not at all sure, because the Cleveland Browns' total revenue in 2017 was 375 million dollars, and they were the worst team in the league. Per these rules, their total revenue would have only been 1 million dollars per major market, so even with a stake in 50 major markets, a 6 on a 1d6 roll would only yield 300 million. We would probably have to use 1d10 in order to generate NFL-level revenue, but that might also lead to teams "leveling up" too quickly.
Customer avatar
Jeffrey B June 05, 2017 12:16 pm UTC
Really enjoying this game. While the "eight die rolls" to determine the outcome of a game may sound simplistic, it is surprisingly addictive, particularly when you combine it with the off-season rules. The market rules are simple to follow but I find them to be extremely elegant. The one question I had about the game are the aging rolls. Rolling a D6 each year seems excessive for againg, considering that most teams at best only get one to two improvement rolls per year. I've only played a couple of years so far so I haven't seen if this is really an issue or not. Maybe finding star players makes up for the aging losses.
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This title was added to our catalog on May 31, 2017.