Xanoth was a single character hand-moderated fantasy rôle playing game, originally playtested by members of Newcastle University's Science Fiction and Fantasy Socienty, and run by Manifestation Games from 1987 to around 1990. The action, such as it was, centred around the city of Plut, a chaotic city ruled over by the democratically elected Wise Old King Otto.
The rule system was extremely loose, with adventurers able to play any kind of character, any race, any background, with no defined character classes, and no long pages of Gods and other Deities.
Infamously once described as a "pub crawl by post", characters would leave the Guildhouse of the Guild of Adventurers with just a few coins in their pocket to make their way in the world.
Originally handwritten (and later laser printed) turns detailed a world heavy on taverns, jokes and puns (a novice adventurer's first stop was often the infamous second hand weapons stall in the market, run by a fearsome lady by the name of Joan - who would also buy used gear. The sign above the stall read "Joan's Armour Trading"), and variable quality artwork, combined with silver keys, secret societies, subtle diplomacy and extreme violence. Transactions were conducted in Gold, Electrum or Copper coins, with silver being an extremely rare and valuable commodity. The in-game reasons for this were long and varied, but the truth is that when designing the section of the original version of the turnsheet which recorded a character's wealth, the GM had run out of letter "S" on the Letraset sheet.
Third place: Best New Game (1988) - British PBMA Awards Second place: Best GM of a hand moderated game (1988) - British PBMA Awards