Have you ever played Barbarian Prince or its PnP derivative, Barbarian Vince? If you have, and have enjoyed this type of overland crawling games, then 6x6 Tales is something you should try. And if you are not familiar with either, but fancy creating a small adventure on a map for your hero, please stay with me and read further.
6x6 Tales is a Jack Darwid design (you may know him from Adventure of D), and this tripartite booklet game of his allows you to name a hero, draw terrain on a grid, and keep a journal of their quests and encounters. We are talking about three tiny leaflets: one rulebook, one event chart, and one for character creation and recording your progress. You will need to print the rules and events only once. The third booklet will have to be printed again every time you start a new tale. You will also need two D6, a pencil and an eraser.
The tale I played, I named 'Vegetarian Prince' in honour of my protagonist, JW. To amuse myself, I made my website partner the lead game character. JW started with 4 Health, 2 Attack, 2 Damage, 2 Speed, and 1 Gold. His first quest was to exit the castle and try to find two scrolls. So I rolled two dice to define his starting square on the grid, noted that it was Week one, Day one, and sent JW out on his journey. He crossed plains and swamps, and fought skeletons, a giant rat, a zombie and a pink slime. He pocketed Gold from every monster he killed, and bought scrolls when he visited a village.
Along the way, he suddenly came across a Pyramid. But JW couldn't be bothered to descend and risk his life in the dungeon. He immediately made a U-turn, and pressed his way through more swamps to finally reach his destination and deliver the scrolls. His adventure earned him Gold and one scroll to keep. And I kid you not, the treasure this Vegetarian Prince earned was a 'tomato scroll' that granted him 2 extra health points.
If I want, I can give JW a new quest and continue with him, or I can start anew with a different character (I may pick my friend Arvid, the Librarian Prince). In all honesty, I'm not a big fan of rolling dice and having random adventures. I enjoy it at first, then quickly lose interest. 6x6 Tales, however, is small and free. You can take it almost anywhere, and it is guaranteed to keep you immersed for a while. Some flipping through the booklets should be expected at first, until you get accustomed to the system, but it is generally very easy to follow. I think it is worth trying at least once, even just for the experience, and for the joy of sending a familiar to you 'prince' to slay some monsters.