independent games & design by Nathan D. Paoletta

Trouble For Hire


Thank you to our 213 backers on Kickstarter for making this game happen!

More About The Game


Print-For-Play Materials

Other Downloads

  • Trouble for Hire Quickstart/Preview Edition: Hollywood Brad Freeman's Special Delivery - This 15-page PDF contains the basic rules for the game, the 8 Roles and an included Adventure. Last updated April 2017. Role have not been updated in this file, go ahead and use the Roles available from the links above.

About Kevin Allen Jr.

Kevin Allen Jr. is an art director, game designer, and photographer living in Montclair NJ with his wife and comic book collection. Since graduating from School of Visual Arts in 2004 he has served a number of diverse clients, consulted on a variety of projects and crafted award winning games that are sold on 4 continents and translated in numerous languages. His hobbies include mountain biking, book binding, tree identification, playing a lot of Dungeons & Dragons, and attempting to cook meals vastly beyond his skill level.

Kevin's boundary-pushing 2-player game Sweet Agatha was nominated for the 2009 Diana Jones award for excellence in gaming. Find out more about Kevin and his games at his website.


The New Storytelling Adventure Game from Kevin Allen Jr.

Rally your amigos, let’s tell a story.

A table of players, everyone working together, one story. No competition, no winners or losers, just the shared desire to create something as a group; to entertain each other and be entertained in kind.

The story you are telling sounds just like a movie; an action packed, full-throttle road adventure. The hero of our story is Ruben Carlos Ruiz, a smuggler/courier/wheelman operating in the American southwest. He’s a mold-broken loner in over his head and wholly unafraid. Ruben races intrepidly through a world gone mad with modernity – a world where he mavericks his way out of tight situations with bare wits, stunt driver bravado, and the judicious application of violence.

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Direct from ndpdesign


Your book order will ship with a set of laminated color Role Cards and Lights (while supplies last). You can also order the heavy-duty chipboard Roles separately, see below for the link.

Due to EU VAT remittance laws, I cannot fulfill PDF ONLY orders directly to EU residents. If you live in the EU, you must purchase the PDF through one of the outlets below. I apologize for the inconvenience.

Other Outlets

The Role Boards play supplement is now available for direct order from TheGameCrafter.com! You can print all of these things out, but this set of laminated heavy boards and playing-card-stock Lights are a slick addition to your games.

About Trouble for Hire

In Trouble For Hire, the players take on a variety of different Roles in order to tell a high-octane adventure story centering on the smuggler anti-hero Ruben Carlos Ruiz. Each game is a separate adventure that embroils Ruben in a new sticky situation. Can he make the delivery before The Cossack catches up to him? Who does he turn to when he breaks down in the middle of Death Valley? Can he even drive across the churning rapids of the Rio Grande? While being shot at? During a blizzard? With an enraged mountain lion in the back seat?

During an adventure, the players take on and then pass around the different roles involved with the story. You don't just play an individual character; you could become The Editor, pulling the story together like a DJ scratches a record, or Los Espectadores, looking (and cheering!) on as Ruiz overcharges his trusty Corvette to make his escape. Prefer setting the scene? The Road Through The World does just that, and puts environmental challenges in the way of our hero. Like weird stuff? La Extraño is the role for putting the supernatural into the story.

The game uses a token-based system to measure the RPM you burn through as you take action, pacing the story to match the players creativity and interest in using all of the little tricks their role gives them. Each adventure also provides a set of themes to guide the story and keep your rubber on the road. This structure gives enough for everyone to decide what they want to see and do right now, without demanding certain outcomes or abandoning you in a trackless waste.

Trouble For Hire:

  • Includes 8 Roles for play, 6 ready-to-play Adventures, and 20 ready-to-use characters to drop into any story as Ruben’s allies and enemies!

  • Runs on a fast-moving, easy-to-learn rules engine for collaborative storytelling!

  • Doesn’t care if you play a single game, or chain games together into a serial drama!

  • Give you guidelines for hacking and creating your own Roles, Adventures and other elements to make your games of Trouble For Hire unique!

  • Is stuffed full of more juicy inspirational material to get you on the road to adventure than you can shake a stick at!

Game Features:

  • A no-prep, GMless game for 4-6 Players

  • 2-3 hours per adventure, a single-session movie-like scenario

  • Uses 2d6 and tokens (~30-40) to track RPM, the fuel of play.

  • High replayability - roles can change during the game, and the same adventure can be played multiple times with different sets of roles.

  • Easy to learn and suited to enabling players with different levels of familiarity with tabletop games to play together.

  • WARNING: Contains Violence, Swears and Action Smells (seriously, this game does include descriptions of graphic violence, though how much ends up in your games is up to you!)