Steampunk Friday – Kickstart the Comic – Boston Metaphysical – The Scourge of the Mechanical Men

Inventors, investigators, intellectuals…

Madmen (and women)…

And a virus which threatens to turn people into machines…

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Boston Metaphysical – The Scourge of the Mechanical Men

Creator/Writer – Madeleine Holly-Rosing

Artist/Colorist – Gwynn Tavares

Letters – Troy Peteri

Kickstarter Campaign ends on Friday, March 2, 2018 at 3:01 PM EST.

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The Pitch:

Granville Woods and Tesla are in a race for time to save Boston from a mysterious disease that turns human beings into machines.

The Story:

Granville returns home to Liberty Row only to find an almost insane Tesla hiding there. But his efforts to get rid of Tesla hit a snag when they discover that a virus is turning humans into soulless mechanical men. Realizing that Emily and Travis Morgan of Morgan Medicinals are behind the outbreak, they fear that the twins are after more than just control of Boston – They want to take over the Great States of America.

John’s Thoughts:

I interviewed Madeleine Holly-Rosing last year (which you can read here) where she mentioned that one of the next stories would focus on Granville and Tesla… and here you go! From her section on the page “The Story behind the Story”, it sounds like this started with a premise of getting two characters in the same place for an extended time and see how that worked out (and what might the writer learn about both characters in the process). It’s an amazing moment when that happens as a writer. When a character speaks to you and lets you know exactly where they would prefer you to go and how they would prefer to act. It makes writing them all the easier because it really does feel like they write themselves (and maybe they do).

It has been and always will be important to me to write characters who, though they come from diverse backgrounds and have different points of view, are able to work together for the common good.

The Rewards:

As this is a standalone story, you can pick it up on its own ($6 for the PDF and $10 for the print), but given the nature of Kickstarter you have that opportunity to play catch-up ($22 for the digital and $35 for print). At the higher levels, you have the opportunity to get drawn into the Granville and Tesla pinup in full period garb ($145). And if you are considering running a Kickstarter of your own you could opt for one of the Consultation packages which include reviews of your Kickstarter Homepage, phone conversation (plus all the goodies from the Kickstarter) ($225 for Economy Consultation and #350 for Premium Consultation).

 

The Verdict:

Obviously, if you have been there for a while, this becomes a no-brainer, but if you are just thinking about dipping your toes into the Boston Metaphysical Universe, this might be a good place to jump in and check it out.

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To find out more about Boston Metaphysical Society, check them out here.

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John McGuire is the creator/author of the steampunk comic The Gilded Age. Want to read the first issue for free? Click here! Already read it and eager for more?

Click here to join John’s mailing list.

His prose appears in The Dark That FollowsTheft & TherapyThere’s Something About MacHollow EmpireBeyond the Gate, and Machina Obscurum – A Collection of Small Shadows.

He can also be found at www.johnrmcguire.com

3 RPG Kickstarters You Should Back – The Hidden Halls of Hazakor, Redshirt, Vol. 2, and On the Shoulders of Heroes

This week is a callback to RPG Kickstarters that I’ve done articles for elsewhere, for sequels to products I’ve already covered, and for relaunches.

 

On the Shoulders of Heroes – Reborn by Windmill Slam Games
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“A ‘Vikingesque’ campaign setting designed for use with the 5th edition and version 3.5 of the world’s most popular RPG.

Greetings explorer, welcome to our domain! The On the Shoulder of Heroes campaign setting is designed for use with world’s most popular roleplaying game. It is inspired by old school roleplaying games, traditional fantasy, Germanic and Japanese mythology. It is based on the idea that the world was built by the deeds of great people – both good and evil.

Most of the artwork (including the cover) is done by the talented Eoghan Kerrigan
Most of the artwork (including the cover) is done by the talented Eoghan Kerrigan

Content

The book is close to 230 pages divided in 9 chapters. It is beautifully illustrated in grey-scale by 4 talented artists and is bound in a sturdy hard cover.  We’ve uploaded some previews for you here.”

 

Introduction, Races and Classes
Introduction, Races and Classes

 

Egg’s Thoughts: 

 

I covered the first version of it here and those thoughts still apply. This one’s major addition is that it will also be for 5e as well as 3.5e which answers my question in the first article.

 

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

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The Hidden Halls of Hazakor by Insane Angel Studios
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“An RPG adventure for beginning Dungeon Masters and 1st-level characters — Written for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons

Every Young Hero Needs Somewhere to Start

The Hidden Halls of Hazakor is a fully illustrated, 64+ page starter adventure for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons — and written with a special focus on young, beginning Dungeon Masters.

Hidden Halls of Hazakor

Created by designer and editor Scott Fitzgerald Gray, The Hidden Halls of Hazakor is a perfect introduction to classic dungeon-crawl adventuring for young DMs of ages 12 and up. In a friendly and straightforward fashion, it demonstrates some of the ways a good fantasy RPG adventure can be put together, and talks about some of the tricks and knowledge that all good DMs learn through the experience of running games — but which aren’t always instinctive for a young player sitting in the DM’s chair for the first time.

(Character concept art)

This adventure builds on the rules and information presented in the D&D core rulebooks and the D&D Starter Set, and on the first-time DM’s experience of having previously been a player in the game. A beginning DM running the adventure will learn to think about the ways in which the story can go in different directions based on what the characters do — and how to not be scared when it does. They’ll practice bringing NPCs to life by way of interesting quirks, to help the players engage with and remember them. They’ll get tips on running fun combat sessions, building from an initial slate of simple, single-foe encounters to more complex fights. And they’ll learn to use humor as a tool to make the game interesting and memorable, especially for other younger players.

The adventure’s approach to humor fits perfectly with the work of artist and comic creator Jackie Musto, whose full-color illustrations will bring The Hidden Halls of Hazakor to life. (And if you’d like the young gamer in your life immortalized as their very own RPG hero, Jackie will be doing a limited number of original illustrations as part of the Kickstarter campaign’s “Eternal Hero!” reward tier.)

 

In the vein of many classic starter scenarios, the adventure features a fully detailed local keep, where the characters meet and learn of the legendary lost ruins in the nearby wilderness. Those ruins then present a classic dungeon crawl in nine parts, featuring fifty different areas to explore, fun physical puzzles and daunting traps, a host of classic monstrous foes — including not one but two dragons — and other challenges that will bring the characters to 5th level… assuming they survive the threats of Hazakor’s lost halls.

 

This isn’t a stripped down or simplified adventure scenario, and there’s no reason why experienced players and veteran DMs won’t also have a good time running it. But The Hidden Halls of Hazakor has been designed and written with young DMs firmly in mind — helping them break down the processes of running an effective RPG session, creating a fun and dynamic world in the dungeon, and sharing that world and its stories as only roleplaying games can.”

Egg’s Thoughts: 

 

It’s an all-ages 5e DM’s toolkit and adventure. For more details on it, I interviewed the creator, Scott Fitzgerald Gray, on Open Gaming Network here.

 

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

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Redshirts, Vol. 2: A Starfinder Comedy A.P. for levels 4-6 by Happy Gnome Publishing
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“Redshirts: Adventures in Absurdity Vol. 2 is a Starfinder adventure path guaranteed to make you laugh so hard you’ll pee your spacesuit

REDSHIRTS: ADVENTURES IN ABSURDITY, VOLUME 2!

What is Redshirts: Adventures in Absurdity?

 Glad you asked! It is a Sci-fi/Comedy Adventure Path that is 100% Starfinder compatible. We launched the first volume on Kickstarter in August, and opened the PDF to the public in December. Within 6 days it was the number 1  hottest Starfinder product on DrivethruRPG, and earned their “Best-Seller” status. The entire Adventure Path, which revolves around surviving a deep space exploration mission with a dysfunctional command crew, will be 4 books and take Players from Level 1-12.

How do critics describe it?

It’s been called “The Office Meets Survivor…in space.”

What is the tone of the game?

Absurdist humor mixed with low-brow puns. It’s great for fans of Hitchiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Futurama, or The Orville.

What Can we expect in Volume 2?

  • Chapter 4: When a ship of undead creatures kidnaps a Confederation Ambassador, the Redshirts must find a way to rescue her and destroy the vessal, before joining them in undeath, forever.
  • Chapter 5: When a routine visit to Plushy Prime, the happiest place in the Universe, goes wrong the Redshirts must unravel a mystery hidden away for thousands of years.
  • Chapter 6: When the Captain accidentally gets married again (to the Slurmolian Emperor) only the Redshirts can be trusted to find the one creature in the Universe that can perform the annulment before anyone finds out.
  • 20+ new monsters
  • New Equipment to kill your enemies with
  • 5+ new playable races:
Slurmolians: A race of underground dwelling slimy creatures. While normally friendly, their appearance and backwards cultural beliefs can be a turn off.
Slurmolians: A race of underground dwelling slimy creatures. While normally friendly, their appearance and backwards cultural beliefs can be a turn off.

 

Soulcage: Robots who go against there programming to do something so selfless and heroic, that they gain a soul from the universe itself.
Soulcage: Robots who go against there programming to do something so selfless and heroic, that they gain a soul from the universe itself.
  •  
Za’Rootyn: These tentacle-clad people worship their Sun, and follow the rule of the individual that the Sun chooses. They are powerful warriors, loyal friends, and vengeful enemies.
Za’Rootyn: These tentacle-clad people worship their Sun, and follow the rule of the individual that the Sun chooses. They are powerful warriors, loyal friends, and vengeful enemies.
  • Fungoids: The Fungus based people see the world in a unique way with a paranoia unbeknownst anywhere else in the universe. 
  • Val’hooligans: Ancient undead Viking warriors who were worshippers of Loki. Their incessant, never ending pranks and parties got them sent back to the world of the living, stuck between life and death, but still ready to party!

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

I covered the first volume here. This Starfinder project is expanding on the ideas and jokes of the first volume and, if that’s perfect for your gaming table, it’s worth checking out.

 

You can see examples of Happy Gnome Publishing work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or onFacebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Kickstart the Comic: 5 Seconds Volume 2

When is a power a gift and when is it a curse?

And could it be both?

What happens when the person you save has an extraordinary ability of her own.

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5 Seconds – Volume 2

Writer – Stephen Kok

Artist – P.R. Dedelis

Colors – Peyton Freeman

 

Kickstarter Campaign ends on Friday, March 2, 2018 at 6:02 AM EST.

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The Pitch:

What would you do if you could see 5 seconds into the future? How will Jake use this gift when meets a girl who can hear your thoughts?

The Story:

5 Seconds Volume 2 is a YOUNG ADULT – 70 page – PERFECT BOUND – Graphic Novel which picks up directly after the first 5 Seconds finishes. Jake finds himself dealing with a new situation, a girl who can read minds. What deep dark secret is the girl hiding and can Jake (with his best friend Ellie) find out before the past catches up with them?

John’s Thoughts:

I’m in that boat, having not read the first volume, but I’m willing to take their word for it with this self-contained story.

I sometimes (all the time) wonder about how it would feel to be able to see into the future. How could you not these days when every new discovery, every new piece of handheld technology, and every advancement in knowledge makes you feel as if the old school science fiction writers had been left to guide us into the future. Going back to HG Wells, we all want to know what might lurk for us around the next corner. What happens if we choose this path over another path.

Where are we going?

Add to that the idea of peering into other people’s heads… all at once it is both enticing and utterly frightening. I think that if we knew what was going on in our friend’s heads at any time we all would seal ourselves away from the rest of the world (and it wouldn’t even be close).

Put those two things together…

The Rewards:

On the higher end, you can get the original cover artwork ($235) or get drawn into the comic ($102). If you are looking to play a bit of catch-up you have the PDFs available ($6) or print copies of both volumes ($39). One thing I really like is that you can also get pdfs of his non-5 Seconds comics (Tabby, Blue, and Word Smith) and really play catch-up on everything Stephen Kok has put out into the world thus far ($12).

The Verdict:

While I haven’t read Volume 1, I have checked out Word Smith by Stephen and really enjoyed it. If you like fun comics with a cool gimick at the core (whether that is words are magic or a glimpse into the future), you may want to check out the Kickstarter.

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To find out more about 5 Seconds or other works by Stephen Kok, check them out here.

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John McGuire is the creator/author of the steampunk comic The Gilded Age. Want to read the first issue for free? Click here! Already read it and eager for more?

Click here to join John’s mailing list.

His prose appears in The Dark That FollowsTheft & TherapyThere’s Something About MacHollow EmpireBeyond the Gate, and Machina Obscurum – A Collection of Small Shadows.

He can also be found at www.johnrmcguire.com

 

 

 

Steampunk Fridays – Kickstart the Comic – Make/100: Pneumatic Cases #2: Sleuthing Steampunk Spouses

The modern day Holmes and Watson are man and woman (or at least one version of them is)… but why not have that dynamic against the backdrop of a Steampunk world? And instead of the will they/won’t they – let’s just have them say I Do before the story even begins!

A love story, a murder mystery, and the happy couple who is at the center of it all.

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Pneumatic Cases #2: Sleuthing Steampunk Spouses

Published by Last Ember Press

Creator/Writer – John Wilson

Artist/Cover – Rowel Roque

Colors – Lisa Moore

Letters/Book & Logo Design – Brant Fowler

Edits – Lisa Moore & Brant Fowler

Kickstarter Campaign ends on Saturday, March 3, 2018 at 12:59 AM EST.

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The Pitch:

Lord and Lady Ravenscroft are two brilliant scientists and inventors whose Bohemian lifestyle and inventive ways are in direct contrast to the staid and proper ways of Victorian Era London.

Served faithfully by their steam-driven metallic Majordomo, Pneuman, and armed with a variety of elaborate self-created inventions, the Ravenscrofts pursue the one vocation that brings excitement into their world… solving murders!

The Story:

Brought in to consult on a mysterious murder, the Ravenscrofts began hunting down clues that might lead them to the devious culprit. Making waves and alerting the wrong people to their efforts nearly cost them their lives.

Now, the case takes them to Austria to seek out the next piece to this chaotic puzzle of murder and mayhem they’ve found themselves wrapped up in.

Issue 2, Page 1 Art – Rowel Roque Colors – Lisa Moore

John’s Thoughts:

I think I must have missed the first issue of this comic at some point, because I recognize the title, but obviously have not read it. Lucky for me, there are options to go ahead and catch up on the series. Regardless, this takes its nod from the mystery style stories of the time with a married couple at the center of it. I dig the idea of both of them being inventors as that way they both will have a chance to show off as the story progresses.

The sample pages/ opening to the story makes this feel like it might almost be a stand alone adventure for the two of them, and makes me very curious about whether the first issue was done in the same fashion. Given that my own Gilded Age comic is told in “done in ones”, it is a format that is near and dear to my heart.

Plus, kudos for the alliteration of their title…

The Rewards:

As part of Kickstarter’s “Make 100 campaign”, it’s a interesting idea to piggyback the Acrylic Charm ($39 level) with the comic campaign itself. I’ve seen many people do the small pin designs throughout the month, but couldn’t figure out a way to tie it into a potential comic campaign. Leave it to the Last Ember Press guys and gals to figure that piece out. In addition, at the $17 level they have basically a preorder for issues #3 and #4 as well which again is not only thinking towards the future, but really making it so that this project will get to its issue 3 and 4. At the highest level ($250) you can get Drawn In to issue #3… always a cool option.

The Verdict:

If you’re reading this blog, I’m guessing that you have at least a passing interest in all things Steampunk. This is definitely that… so what are you waiting for? Go to the Kickstarter page here!

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To find out more about Last Ember Press and their other comics, check them out here.

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John McGuire is the creator/author of the steampunk comic The Gilded Age. Want to read the first issue for free? Click here! Already read it and eager for more?

Click here to join John’s mailing list.

His prose appears in The Dark That FollowsTheft & TherapyThere’s Something About MacHollow EmpireBeyond the Gate, and Machina Obscurum – A Collection of Small Shadows.

He can also be found at www.johnrmcguire.com

3 RPG Kickstarters You Should Back – Ultimate NPCs, Vital Hearts, and Tower of the Black Sorcerers

This week, I look at an AD&D adventure, a 5e book of NPCs, and a trapped-in-a-RPG role-playing game. All of these offer something fun for the gaming table.

 

Dungeon Delve #1: Tower of the Black Sorcerers by Dungeoneers Guild Games
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“Fantasy role-playing module for 1st or 2nd Ed AD&D, BECMI D&D, OSRIC, DCC, Pathfinder, Labyrinth Lord, Swords & Wizardry, or other OSR.

THE PROJECT :

Tower of the Black Sorcerers” is the first project of Dungeoneers Guild Games’ DUNGEON DELVES adventure modules. This game adventure is designed specifically for the first edition of the original and everyone’s favorite fantasy role-playing game. It can easily be adapted to most fantasy role-playing games including the advanced 2nd edition game, the original game, the BECMI (“Basic”) game, and most old-school renaissance (OSR) role-playing systems or other game systems.

The module consists of 24 pages of high adventure, sorcery, and mystery with minimal plot that allows it to fit easily into any campaign world. It is designed to have the look and feel of the classic Dungeons & Dragons modules of the early and mid-1980s. The module’s origins come from an adventure I wrote for my current AD&D campaign that has been running for the last 15 years. The evil wizards and their minions proved to be quite a challenge for my players.

Tower of the Black Sorcerers” will be available in print and PDF versions. The print version has a classic module format with stapled booklet and cardstock cover. Maps are printed in dungeon blue on the inside the cover for that genuine old school gaming feel. Creating a module that consists of quality production, artwork, and printing that is also great to play is the ultimate goal of this project. If the first proof from the printer is any indication, that goal has been achieved.

As of this moment, all editing, layout, and artwork for the “Tower of the Black Sorcerers” are fully completed. All that is left is to have the physical copies printed. I have a professional, quality printer selected and ready to go.

"Tower of the Black Sorcerers" front cover with art by Bradley K. McDevitt. The sorcerer, Basharn, defends his tower from invading adventurers.
“Tower of the Black Sorcerers” front cover with art by Bradley K. McDevitt. The sorcerer, Basharn, defends his tower from invading adventurers.

THE MODULE:

The black sorcerers have dwelled within their baleful tower for hundreds of years. Now something evil stirs in the town of Bal-Curz — strange happenings of malefic magics and persons disappearing in the night. The fearful townsfolk whisper that its source stems from the Black Tower. Possibly a few bold heroes could Investigate the tower to uncover its secrets and put an end to this unseen terror? 

Tower of the Black Sorcerers” is an adventure for 5 to 7 characters of intermediate levels 5 to 8. In this module, the adventurers will explore a tower inhabited by a cabal of sorcerers. Set in a town, the DM can easily place this tower in an urban location in any fantasy role-playing game world they prefer.”

Russ Nicholson's depiction of the adventurers discovering the shrine of the loathsome god, Morraith.
Russ Nicholson’s depiction of the adventurers discovering the shrine of the loathsome god, Morraith.

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

Old school adventure for, really, AD&D, though it can be used for other systems, but based on the write-up, it’s calibrated for 1e. There are a number of OSR adventures that come out and the demand is always there for them. In a way, I’m always amazed that the system I cut my teeth on still has this level of demand. Then I think back to how fun the quirks of 1e are and I see the appeal. This one is well worth checking out.

 

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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Ultimate NPCs: Warfare for 5th Edition by Nord Games
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“200+ pages of excellent NPCs and pre-built characters at level 1, 4, 8, 12, 16, and 20. Statblocks, roleplaying cues, stories and more!

Following on from 2016’s Ultimate NPCs: Skulduggery, Ultimate NPCs: Warfare presents a collection of 30 fully fleshed-out characters to populate your game world. From high command to the cook’s tent, you’ll find a variety of soldiers, auxiliaries, and noncombatants within, each with the backstory and statistics necessary to run as an NPC or player character.

How many times have you been put on the spot in the middle of a game and needed to generate one or more highly detailed and well thought-out NPCs? How many times have you spent valuable time pre-game building a fantastic NPC from scratch, only to have the players pass by the tavern they were located in? How many times have you been a player wanting to join a party but didn’t have any good ideas for a character build? How many times have you been running a game and had a player want to join but just didn’t know how to create a character and level them up to be comparable with the rest of the party?!

Ultimate NPCs solves all of these issues as well as a great deal more! The book is packed with exciting, versatile and dynamic character builds that can be used in a myriad of different ways in 5th Edition format.

The book has 30 uniquely designed characters at levels 1, 4, 8, 12, 16, and 20. This gives maximum versatility for minimal cost and shelf space. Some of the characters are ones that we, the designers, have run in our campaigns for years, some are NPCs we’ve used to challenge or aid our players, and others are brand new builds.

Why did we choose levels 1, 4, 8, 12, 16, and 20? Well, it seemed to us that these specific levels allow for the most options for the Game Master or player, with the least amount of pages. This allows for maximum value and versatility at a minimum price! w00t!”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

This isn’t Nord Games first Ultimate NPCs book as they’ve also done Ultimate NPCs: Skulduggery for 5e, Pathfinder and S&W!. However, this one has a narrower focus in terms of gaming systems. I like the utility of having a variety of NPCs at various stages of their existence (levels 1, 4, 8, 12, 16, and 20) on tap. This allows on-the-fly NPCs that can grow with the campaign and show up when needed. These types of books – collections of realized background characters – are a great DM resource.

 

You can see examples of their work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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VITAL HEARTS: Tabletop Role-Play of Isekai+Reality by Sanguine Productions LLC
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“From the makers of FARFLUNG and MYRIAD SONG comes a game of mixed emotions, virtual mystery, and danger that is all too real.

Embrace the isekai spirit of Sword Art Online, Persona, Accel World, Log Horizon, Ready Player One, Dream Park, and other stories where there’s one world that offers far too little .. and another that’s all too much.

Vital Hearts is a tabletop game where you have not one but two characters: your personal user in a modern-day Japan… and an avatar in the next generation in multiplayer gaming. It’s fun at first, as you balance your work-a-day life with your hack-and-slash gaming. And sure, you might dismiss those fake screenshots and Internet hoaxes at first… but there’s definitely something mixed up around here.

A Tale of Mixed Realities…

You’ll be playing not one, but two characters: your persona in Real Life, who has to go to work, to school, and to do other chores… with your avatar in Virtual Reality, who uses fantastic techs of sword and spell to defeat monsters and win the day.  For the game of Vital Hearts, you must strike a balance between RL and VR. If your character spends too much time in the game, they’ll fall behind on their daily life. But if you can’t keep up the pace in the game, you may miss out on great rewards.

 

As you make your own stories, the line between the two gets thinner. Logic, math, and academic skills will help you solve puzzles in the game. Reflexes, wits, and bravery earned in the game can give you new confidence to deal with the ordinary. Whatever path you choose, let your past glories build your future success… because you’ll need to be ready for what’s to come.

… But It’s Only a Game, Isn’t it?

The Internet is full of viral hoaxes. And all kinds of people play these games, so it’s not that weird when one or two make the news. And you just want to play games, not get caught up in politics of anti-gaming organizations, patent disputes, and other things. But the longer you play the Vital Hearts game, the more things happen that are just … odd. Are you and your friends the targets of identity thieves trying to hack your accounts? What kind of publicity stunt goes so badly that the police get involved? Did those accounts go dark because those people just quit… or because of something else? Just what is going on?

You’ll have to work together with your friends, using both your VR champion and your RL self, if you don’t want to be just another victim. And it might not just be you and your friends who are in danger. WIth Vital Hearts getting ready to launch in all regions, the fate of the entire world could be at stake!

Vital Hearts planning committee is a joint effort between three veterans of tabletop gaming, Sanguine Productions, Gunship Revolution, and DriveThruRPG.

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

As they note, this is shades of “Sword Art Online, Persona, Accel World, Log Horizon, Ready Player One, Dream Park” or, further afield, the Dungeons & Dragons cartoon brought to the tabletop. In Vital Hearts, you’re playing a player in the “real” world AND their character inside the game. You make two characters so it’s the opportunity to indulge in a different set of skills – you playing the player playing the character. This offers the rare opportunity to really delve into your acting and lampoon your table habits like a good actor playing a bad actor trying to play a dice-driven character. Add to this, the creators of the game are clearly going for a meta experience where you could work in moments of real life and you have something worth checking out.

 

You can see examples of their work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

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Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or onFacebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Steampunk Friday – Kickstart the Comic – Grimwood Crossing Vol. 1 & 2 – A Stylish Supernatural Western

The stranger comes to town…

The Sheriff must defend everyone against bandits…

The corrupt cattle owners do their best to hunt down the ragtag band…

Zombies…

Werewolves…

Vampires…

Just another western? I think not.

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Grimwood Crossing Vol. 1 & 2

Writer/Letterer – Conner Bartel

Illustrator – Atagun Ilhan

Logo & Book Designer – Marc Bartel

Cover Art & Design – James Liswed

Editor – James Davenport

Kickstarter Campaign ends on Wednesday, February 14, 2018 at 7:59 AM EST.

***

The Pitch:

Read the complete story of the supernatural western comic series about a monster hunter and his young apprentice.

The Story:

Grimwood Crossing is the biggest town in the grim old west. Vampires, Werewolves, and Zombies are part of the everyday struggle for the townsfolk. That’s why Grimwood’s Sheriff also has the added job title of monster hunter. It’s a dangerous job so a replacement must always be arranged. With the help of his young, scat-talking apprentice, the Sheriff must fend off a vengeful outlaw with demonic powers.

In Vol. 2 the demonic outlaw confronts the duo face to face. The entire town must come together to keep the outlaw from destroying everything. Alliances are made, differences are put aside, and the community is put to the test.

John’s Thoughts:

Weird West stories hold a special place in my heart. One of the first real scripts I ever wrote was for a 8 page western comic with a werewolf appeared in it. So when you mention all the things which go bump in the night against the desperation and opportunity of the wild west… I’m going to at least take a look and see what it is all about.

From what I can tell of the characters, I like the idea of a former bandit suddenly helping a town against the monsters. And maybe they’re not entirely sure they can even begin to trust him. But they know that someone has got to protect them…

The Rewards:

At the $30 level there is an opportunity to have the book with a signed bookplate featuring the signatures of the writer and artist. Considering they live on two different continents, this would be pretty much the only way to get such an item.

For those of us who missed the Volume 1 Kickstarter, there is an opportunity to play catch-up at $20 for the print or $8 for the digital, both which are a great bang for the buck.

The Verdict:

Color me interested. The artwork gives the right feel for such a book and having it in black and white should only help that.  Around 200 pages of comics potentially… seems like a good deal to me.

***

To find out more about Grimwood Crossing, check them out here.

***

John McGuire is the creator/author of the steampunk comic The Gilded Age. Want to read the first issue for free? Click here! Already read it and eager for more?

Click here to join John’s mailing list.

His prose appears in The Dark That FollowsTheft & TherapyThere’s Something About MacHollow EmpireBeyond the Gate, and Machina Obscurum – A Collection of Small Shadows.

He can also be found at www.johnrmcguire.com

 

 

 

 

4 Gaming Kickstarters You Should Back – John Carter of Mars, Elven Lords Revisited, Destiny Quest IV, and Comet over Echo Rock

Two RPGs and two gamebooks to look at this week. One a Tunnels & Trolls solo adventure, one for 5e, one using Modiphius’ 2d20 system, Momentum, and an original choose your own adventure gaming system gamebook.

 

Comet over Echo Rock, a 5th edition adventure level 2-4 by Sinopa Publishing
Ends on .

“A gritty adventure, old school dungeon crawl, published under OGL/SRD 5.1. Original art, print, pdf, and more! DnD 5e rpg OGL Fun!

Tarot Adventures, Book Two: Comet over Echo Rock

What is this about?

Comet over Echo Rock is a gritty adventure and also contains setting information for Glenfallow, as it stands after the liberation of Glenfallow Keep by Pieron and his friends. This book details new non-player characters, changes to the area, and adds information of use for extended game play. With this book you get a piece of setting you can drop into any world for your use, along with a tough adventure.

Art by Alexia Veldhuisen - A real ogre is nothing to sneeze at
Art by Alexia Veldhuisen – A real ogre is nothing to sneeze at
Art by Christian Martinez
Art by Christian Martinez

This adventure is setting neutral, meaning it doesn’t rely upon setting specific information and is suitable for use in most fantasy settings.

This book includes art created specifically for the adventure. The art done for this project consists of black and white, as well as some color images, and consists of an array of styles with each illustration done specifically for the scenes they enhance.

Art by Christian Martinez
Art by Christian Martinez

Available in PDF and print formats (soft cover premium color, and hard cover premium color collector’s edition).  All backers receiving a copy of this adventure will also receive copy of the Encounter Scale System ™ map pack created for Comet over Echo Rock.  The ESS map pack, is a black and white printable PDF file that allows you to print and assemble maps that are scaled for miniature use.

Art by Kelsy Cowan
Art by Kelsy Cowan

Designed to be a difficult to deadly challenge for characters of second through fourth level of ability, this adventure requires courage, cunning, and strength to overcome.  This is a gritty adventure, designed to challenge your group.

Written as a follow up story to The Draw of Glenfallow, this adventure builds upon the relationship characters develop with Pieron, the newly installed lord of Glenfallow Keep. Characters who have not played through The Draw of Glenfallow have an opportunity to build a relationship with this newly minted lord. Characters who survived and helped elevate Pieron to his new station can further enhance their standing in his eyes and may firmly establish themselves as trusted heroes.

Art by Alexia Veldhuisen
Art by Alexia Veldhuisen

What is it about?

In this book, the characters are once again asked by Pieron to come to his aid.  While Pieron is busy rebuilding Glenfallow Keep and overseeing the settlement of his lands, dark forces are making themselves known in the mountains to the north. Dwarves seeking to reopen the Echo Rock silver mine have been killed, and their fellows are calling for the blood of the monsters who struck them down. Pieron wants the monsters in the mine destroyed and the player characters are just the people for the job.

There is treasure to be had, innocents to avenge, and political clout to be earned.  All that need be done is to triumph where all others have failed. Climb the mountains to face deadly peril. Wield steel and magic to put down the monsters of the north.

What secrets will you uncover in the stygian depths of the mine?

Victory over the monstrous creatures in the mountains brings glory and wealth for those characters brave enough to undertake the challenge, and skilled enough to survive.”

Art by: Kelsy Cowan
Art by: Kelsy Cowan

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

W.S. Quinton is a nice guy, and I’ve offered him feedback on this Kickstarter. As such, I’ll hit the highpoints and let the rest speak for itself:

  • 5e
  • A gritty adventure
  • This Kickstarter is for book two, so you can get both of them and have a longer run

 

You can see examples of their work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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DestinyQuest IV: The Raiders of Dune Sea by Megara Entertainment SARL
Ends on .

“A new DestinyQuest gamebook by Michael Ward, published by Megara Entertainment.

What is DestinyQuest?

DestinyQuest is a new style of gamebook that draws on modern fantasy action games such as World of Warcraft and Diablo, and fuses them with the old-style ‘choose your own adventure’ books of the 80s.

In DestinyQuest, readers use an innovative map system to experience exciting quests, battle fearsome monsters and discover valuable rewards.

Map system (example from a previous DestinyQuest book)
Map system (example from a previous DestinyQuest book)

 

Throughout their adventure, the reader can customize their hero from hundreds of collectable items and special abilities, allowing them to take on ever-greater challenges as they seek to build their hero from a starting newbie to a legendary champion.

More information about DestinyQuest on the official website
http://www.destiny-quest.com/

January 2018 interview with Stuart Lloyd:
http://www.lloydofgamebooks.com/2018/01/destiny-quest-iv-raiders-of-dune-sea.html

YouTube review of the series:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jy0I9ioLfZU&t=31s

DestinyQuest author and designer Michael Ward (here at Dragonmeet convention)
DestinyQuest author and designer Michael Ward (here at Dragonmeet convention)

 

The previous Destiny Quest titles (1,2,3)
The previous Destiny Quest titles (1,2,3)

How do I play?

All you need to play DestinyQuest is a copy of the book, a handful of six-sided dice, a pencil and some paper – then you are ready to embark on an epic narrative adventure where you are the hero. You get to make the decisions for your hero, deciding where they will go, what they will do, and how they will react to the myriad of challenging dilemmas that will be set before them. Book Four of DestinyQuest pushes these choices even further, ensuring that no two adventures will ever be the same.

Do I need to have read the other books?

No. Every DestinyQuest book is written as a standalone adventure, but together they create an ongoing narrative that tells a larger story. While readers will always benefit from having experienced the other adventures in the series, it is not essential that you have any prior knowledge of the characters and game world. If you want to take your first plunge into DestinyQuest with Book Four, then there’s nothing to hold you back. Grab your sword and backpack, and get ready for an exciting ride!”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

This is the first of two gamebooks/choose your own adventures/solo adventures on this list. This is the fourth novel in the series and if you’re looking for an expanded series where you make all of the choices, DestinyQuest is a great option.

 

You can see examples of their work at Amazon here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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Elven Lords Revisited: a Make 100 Solo Adventure by Flying Buffalo Inc
Ends on .

“Decades ago, Danforth and Stackpole created a unique solitaire adventure for Tunnels & Trolls. We’re back to make a great new version.

Return to GULL, the CITY OF TERRORS

Back in 1990, writer Michael Stackpole and artist Liz Danforth put together a solo adventure book for the Tunnels & Trolls™ fantasy role-playing game, published by Flying Buffalo Inc. Called Elven Lords, the book brought players back to the city of Gull, popularly known as “the City of Terrors.” Facing cutthroat thieves, barbarians, smugglers and pirates, or the horrors infesting the elven tombs to the north, the solitary hero found all the adventure they could handle!

The solitaire game booklet came out as a signed limited edition of 1000 copies, never to be republished. That version of Elven Lords has been out of print for many years now, a prized and difficult-to-obtain item sought by collectors.

It is time we revisit this adventure.

Why? How? And why now?

We could not reprint the old edition, even though fans asked repeatedly. We said we wouldn’t, and we won’t. But Kickstarter’s Make/100 project made for a real opportunity: we could create a new, enlarged prestige edition. Players would get the old content—everything they had missed out on before—with fresh new writing and art in a first-class edition.

As the original writer, Mike has agreed to write more adventures in the setting, looping them into the existing storyline. Liz brings fresh art to the project, with brand new images, little-known paintings, and her famous line work drawings colorized by collaborator-artist Steve Crompton and others. By making this book part of Kickstarter’s Make/100 projects, an expanded Elven Lords solitaire adventure with full-color interior art becomes possible.

A sample spread in the color edition (Pledge: Paragraph E)
A sample spread in the color edition (Pledge: Paragraph E)

This exceptional version of Elven Lords will be offered in a signed, limited edition of just 100 copies, never to be republished. In years to come, it too will become a prized and difficult-to-obtain collectors item.

No One Gets Left Out

Having a fun game to play is the core reason for wanting an adventure like this. A quality game is our top priority, and we intend to deliver that. (We hope to exceed your expectations, in fact.) So we understand that not everyone wants a collectors edition of “something for fun” just to put on a shelf.

Choose a format that suits your wallet and the way you want to play. In addition to the color edition, we will produce a matching print edition with no color, showcasing Danforth’s iconic black and white art. The paintings will be redrawn into line art, as necessary, and every image in the color version will have its counterpart in the black and white edition. This unlimited version will not be signed or numbered, and it will be in print as long as demand exists.

A sample page of B&W edition (Pledge: Paragraph D)
A sample page of B&W edition (Pledge: Paragraph D)

For those who want the color illustrations but not as a physical, collectible book, we will make the full color edition available as a downloadable PDF for your computer, phone, tablet, or other electronic device. Playing electronically is seamless, with each Go To choice taking you straight to the paragraph that you should read next.

And when we say “no one gets left out?” We really mean it, even if you have never played Tunnels & Trolls before. You get everything you need to play right inside the book.

Tunnels & Trolls uses simple rules and mechanics, but we pared that down to the essential “mini-rules” so you can play immediately. Take yourself into the City of Terrors with the main T&T rulebook if you have it! But if you are new to the game, get your feet wet with this adventure and the mini-rules before you jump into the deep end. We even offer a couple of pre-created characters, so nothing slows you down.

Just add dice. (Regular six-siders are all you need.)”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

This is the second of two gamebooks/choose your own adventures/solo adventures on this list. This is a reprint of a classic Tunnels & Trolls solo adventure. Revised and expanded, this is a chance to recapture the original feel of crawling through the City of Terrors.

 

You can see examples of their work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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John Carter of Mars – The Roleplaying Game by Modiphius
Ends on .

“Adventures on The Dying World of Barsoom. A planetary romance tabletop roleplaying game from the mind of Edgar Rice Burroughs

With scarcely a parting glance I turned my eyes again toward Mars, lifted my hands toward his lurid rays, and waited…” – John Carter, Gods of Mars

John Carter of Mars – Adventures on The Dying World of Barsoom is a planetary romance tabletop role-playing game. We’ve created it under license and with the cooperation of the estate of Edgar Rice Burroughs, author of the original Barsoom novels. We’ve also had guidance of Scott Tracy Griffin one of the leading scholars of his works to ensure utmost authenticity. Using a pulp-action inspired narrative variant of Modiphius’ 2d20 system,Momentum, John Carter of Mars allows players to take the role of various adventurers and heroes as they travel, battle, and romance their way across the wondrous and dangerous world known to its natives as Barsoom. Play as John Carter, the princess Dejah Thoris or the fearsome Thark warrior Tars Tarkas – or create your own new heroes from a wide variety of options.

You can download our free Quickstart from DriveThruRPG or Modiphius.net

 

We’ve spent the last two years working on the John Carter of Mars roleplaying game as a labor of love, everything you see in the project is of utmost quality, from the beautiful landscape book to the stunning resin 32mm multi-part miniatures. We hope to unlock additional art budget to fill our core book with stunning works, to unleash the Swords of Mars campaign book which will include the battle rules for miniatures but also a full RPG campaign. We also want to bring you dozens of gorgeous miniatures to let you see our beloved heroes in action and lots of great geomorphic adventure locations such as airships and ruins.

The core book is being laid out in stunning US Letter size landscape format which allows us to create extra long landscape artworks bringing Barsoom to life in vivid detail. Produced in our European print house which is renowned for its excellent hardback binding quality we can assure you of a truly beautiful book to last the ages. The Collectors slipcase is designed in portrait format so you can store your book upright if desired and will also house the Swords of Mars Campaign book once unlocked.

This will be just the beginning of an all encompassing John Carter of Mars tabletop games line with a planned boardgame coming next.

The core book is fully written, and now in layout, depending on what other books are unlocked in the line, we will be aiming for one shipment in the summer prior to a retail release in the fall. As soon as the Kickstarter closes and payments have been processed you will be given access to the complete documents for the core book as well as the full PDF before we go to print, to provide last minute proofreading.  

“As I gazed upon it I felt a spell of overpowering fascination – it was Mars, the god of war, and for me, the fighting man, it had always held the power of irresistible enchantment.” – John Carter, Princess of Mars

Included in the core book are:

  • An overview of Burroughs’ Barsoom and its peoples, perfect to introduce new players to the wondrous world of John Carter of Mars.
  • Detailed chapters on technology, creatures, and various cultures.
  • A new skill-less Talent focused narrative variation of the 2d20 system called Momentum, including a step-by-step character generation system designed to create heroes from a variety of backgrounds and concepts.
  • Choose a wide variety of characters such as a dashing Red Martian duelist, a brilliant First Born scientist, a savage Beastmaster, a courageous airship officer, a disciplined assassin, or even Earthborn characters, so players can follow in the bounding footsteps of John Carter himself!
  • A detailed Narrator’s section with information on how to run genre-and-setting appropriate games and campaigns, including information about the great secrets of Barsoom.
  • Three eras of play based on the adventures of John Carter himself. Play during the early days of Dotar Sojat, adventure during the time when Carter was a Prince of Helium and in the years after when he was believed dead, or fight alongside Carter and his allies during the later Jeddak of Jeddaks era.
  • An introductory adventure, the Mind Merchants of Mars, to get players and Narrators started on their adventures.
  • Click below to read our sample chapter of the Red Kingdoms”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

We’re in a pulp era. Flash Gordon just hit for Savage Worlds. Onyx Path Kickstarted Cavaliers of Mars. Now, Modiphius brings us John Carter of Mars using their 2d20 system. If you have any love for pulp sci-fi, the options are waiting for you.

 

You can see examples of their work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or onFacebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

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Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or onFacebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Kickstart the Comic – The Espresso Detective Comic No. 1 Print Campaign

Sometimes you need something with a little kick.

Sometimes you need someone who will go the distance for you.

And sometimes you just need… a Dick.

***

The Espresso Detective Comic No. 1 Print Campaign

Creator/Writer/Artist/Colorist/Letterer – Eric Erdek

Kickstarter campaign ends on Wednesday, February 14, 2018 at 6:29 AM EST.

***

The Pitch:

Slavers in your town. Your neighbors are their clients. Restaurants. Massage – stolen people. Only one man gives damn, and he’s a Dick.

The Story:

His name is Caetano Sanchez, he’s named after Saint Cajetan, co-founder of the Theatines.

Famous for not owning property or asking for alms. Caetano mirrors his namesake since he seems to own nothing and yet is always seen in the coolest cars and pads. All borrowed… mostly from fallen enemies.

That’s where his saintliness ends. Soul-wrenching loss and heartbreak have made him a man that goes through women and friendships like a Saudi goes through bullets at a wedding (it’s called happy fire. Really, look it up).

Caetano seems to stumble victorious and unscathed from case to case saving the day like a trench-coated Jar Jar Binks. No skills or strategy other than planning how to get his next gorgeous client into bed. However, tearing at the edges of his happy-go-lucky facade is a much darker source to his powers.

Sanchez is addicted to Espresso mainly for self-medicating his MDD (Major Depression Disorder). He has also refined it to an art and a culture. His Nagula (Shaman Teacher) has made it so Sanchez has what appear as superpowers when he is buzzed on Espresso.

He’s a ladies man, a P.I., a Shaman’s apprentice and a savior of the weak and lost.

Literature has a new great Latin lover… and he’s a dick.

John’s Thoughts:

The whole Noir detective story is one that is either in your wheelhouse or not. The solo (mostly) guy who has to use his wits and maybe a bit of luck to not only arrive at the answer to whatever his current mystery might be but also juggle that with living the lifestyle of a P.I.

It’s both glamorous and utterly miserable at the same time… and in that juxtaposition is where you can get a great story. Whether it is about redemption or burying the past or whatever… we come for the tropes and trappings, but we stay for the stories.

The Rewards:

$5 is all it takes to get yourself a print version of the book (26 pages). At the higher ends you can get various wall art ($75) or drawn into the book ($600), but one thing that really caught my eye was the $45 level with a very cool T-shirt.

 

The Verdict:

Normally the answer might be found at the bottom of a bottle of some darkish liquid. Something that will really knock you down and make you wonder who is in control of who. For this guy, it just happens to be Espresso that does the job…

And who are we to judge. So pick up the book and have a morning read with your coffee!

***

To find out more about The Espresso Detective, go to the website here.

***

John McGuire is the creator/author of the steampunk comic The Gilded Age. Want to read the first issue for free? Click here! Already read it and eager for more?

Click here to join John’s mailing list.

His prose appears in The Dark That FollowsTheft & TherapyThere’s Something About MacHollow EmpireBeyond the Gate, and Machina Obscurum – A Collection of Small Shadows.

He can also be found at www.johnrmcguire.com

4 RPG Kickstarters You Should Back – Children of the Apocalypse, D13 RPG, A Night in Seyvoth Manor, and Faerie Fire

Savage Worlds. Two for 5e. D13. Horror, the end of the world, monsters, and stunning art. It’s another week and there are four RPGs that need your support. Go!

 

Children of the Apocalypse for Savage Worlds RPG by Happy Monster Press
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“Children of the Apocalypse is a post-apocalyptic epic fantasy setting for Savage Worlds, including a full Plot Point campaign.

Children of the Apocalypse is a post-apocalyptic epic fantasy setting for Savage Worlds. In Children of the Apocalypse, bold adventurers explore the ruins of our world, seeking lost technologies to empower the creations of Tinker Mages.

“…a very well thought out setting. There is enough of the history and world information to whet your appetite!” Patrick “Shadowdad” Greenlaw, Role Player’s Imaginarium

 The Setting

In the world of Children of the Apocalypse, the Nine Gods exert a daily influence on societies, scheming for the advantage of their followers and the downfall of their enemies. The setting book includes a complete Plot Point campaign in which the players contend with the Gods themselves to determine the future of all humanity.

Children of the Apocalypse requires the Savage Worlds core book and the Fantasy Companion.

Players take on the roles of newly-minted adventurers of the city-state of Peterborough, in the service of the Lord Protector. Some might follow the path of the psion, learning the arts of mental power; others might master musketry or fencing; still others could study alchemy or wizardry.

 

 

The Children of the Apocalypse setting book contains:

  • Descriptions of the Nine Gods, their followers, and their motives
  • Eight new races created by the Nine Gods
  • A complete description of post-apocalyptic Boston and the surrounding communities
  • Setting rules to represent a high-magic, high-theology world
  • A complete Plot Point campaign leading to a confrontation with the Gods themselves
  • Guidelines for converting your own hometown into a campaign setting

Sneak Peek: Taps

Taps bills itself as an “Adventurer’s Town” – in reality it is at least as much a safe harbor for brigands as a base of operations for adventurers seeking treasure in Boston. Taps is a fort consisting of a large inn, stables, tavern, and general store, all run by a pair of retired sherzi wizards. The town welcomes anyone solvent and doesn’t ask many questions about how they got that way- the wizards ruthlessly enforce their rule of no bloodshed within the walls. Travelers taking the Greatroad south from Haverhill will see placards advertising Taps’ services, including the implied eponymous beer. Just about any sort of adventurer may be found in Taps, and it is a common meeting place for parties of adventurers braving either nearby Salem or more distant Boston in search of artifacts.

Curious about the setting? See more in the free Children of the Apocalypse demo kit on DriveThruRPG.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

The [savage] world ended. New gods and new races sprang up. Not sure if it’s for you? Sample it here for free Children of the Apocalypse demo kit on DriveThruRPG.

 

You can see examples of their work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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D13 RPG – Personalized Premium Ltd Ed by Popcorn Press
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“True Horror Campaign RPG

What is the D13 RPG?

Conceptually it’s a game for running truly horrific adventures in campaigns across time and space. Characters face the real threat of death or madness in individual adventures—unaware that they are also threads of existence for supernatural beings battling a greater darkness.

Mechanically it’s an easy attribute-and-skill based system—4 attributes, any sort of skill. Actions use 1d4+1d10 (read 0-9) for a number range of 1-13, with beneficial doubles at the low end. For adventures involving psychic abilities, a tarot deck (or a poker deck) depicts the uncertainty and danger of those powers. For combat actions and turn sequence, a Ouija* board can be used.

Why a D13 RPG?

When I designed the Dark Conspiracy RPG in 1991, I envisioned a world into which any sort of horror tale could be adapted. But that setting’s framework also constrained the time, place, and even themes of those adventures. I’ve long wanted to do something more far-reaching.

Also, most horror RPGs either dial back the danger to let PCs survive from one adventure to the next, or make them part of a secret society, or abandon altogether the idea of campaigning so as to convey true horror.

The D13 RPG is a solution to all those problems. It lets GMs run truly horrific adventures that may maim, madden, or kill PCs—without killing the campaign.

 

Who Am I?

I’m an Origins-award-winning game designer with 30+ years of publishing history, best known for the Dark Conspiracy RPG, the Dragon Dice game, Mechwarrior 2nd Ed., the Planes of Chaos boxed set (with Wolfgang Baur), and the core mechanics for the Sovereign Stone and Serenity RPGs. I’ve been on staff at GDW and TSR, worked with Gary Gygax, and freelanced for many other game publishers. Nowadays I’m retired in rural Nebraska where I self-publish games for the joy of it. You can learn more about me at www.lestersmith.com, or search for “Popcorn Press” on DriveThruRPG.com and DriveThruCards.com.

Who Is the Artist?

Lenka Šimečková is an amazing young illustrator of the dark and bizarre, from the Czech Republic. I first became aware of her work while designing the D6xD6 RPG in 2014. She provided two character illos for that book, and I’ve wanted her illustrations for the D13 RPG ever since. I’ve already purchased rights for several pieces (the game cover and illos on this page); this Kickstarter will help to fund more.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

This is the first of two art RPGs on this week’s list. “Lenka Šimečková is an amazing young illustrator of the dark and bizarre, from the Czech Republic. I first became aware of her work while designing the D6xD6 RPG in 2014. She provided two character illos for that book, and I’ve wanted her illustrations for the D13 RPG ever since. I’ve already purchased rights for several pieces (the game cover and illos on this page); this Kickstarter will help to fund more.”

Lenka Šimečková‘s work is going to drive this RPG’s success. Just the few glimpses of art we have are enough to make me believe that D13 RPG is going to be worth checking out.

Oh, and Lester “Dark Conspiracy RPG, Dragon Dice game, Mechwarrior 2nd Ed., Planes of Chaos, Sovereign Stone, Serenity RPGs” Smith is a contributing factor. [Big wink @ “contributing factor” since, you know, Lester’s driving this ship with decades of experience and a proven track record.]

 

You can see examples of their work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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“A Night in Seyvoth Manor” for D&D 5th Edition by Darklight Interactive
Ends on .

“A conversion of the 2013 ENnie-nominated adventure “A Night in Seyvoth Manor” for D&D 5th Edition, published under the 5E OGL

A conversion of the 2013 ENnie-nominated adventure "A Night in Seyvoth Manor" for D&D 5th Edition, published under the 5E OGL

A Night in Seyvoth Manor is a Halloween-themed “challenge” adventure that was originally designed for Dungeons and Dragons 4th Edition (published under the 4th Edition Game System License) and published for free in 2013. It was subsequently nominated for a 2013 ENnie award in the “Best Free Product” category.

This project is to do a complete conversion of A Night in Seyvoth Manor to the Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition system and publish it through the 5th Edition Open Gaming License(OGL for short), while giving it the attention it deserves in terms of a proper editing pass and additional artwork.

Few people in the village of Ravenshire spoke of the manor atop the hill to the north, and even fewer dared approach it. After the horrific events that happened there so many years ago many believe the mansion and the estate grounds to be cursed, haunted by the restless dead, and some of the village residents could swear they have seen movement and lights coming from the seemingly abandoned mansion.  

Throughout the years the village has had its share of disappearances; most of them had been blamed on the harsh environment of the surrounding forest and the natural dangers of the world we live in, but recent evidence leads to the doorstep of the Seyvoth estate. And when two young women – Jessi and Lyssa Hawthorne, daughters of a village elder – go missing, the village immediately sent out search parties in to the surrounding area. Two separate groups of scouts passed through the iron gate at the entrance to the estate… and have never returned.  

Now a local mystic warns of the danger looming in Seyvoth manor, how the daughters will soon be led towards the darkness and turn against the village they once called home. Are you brave enough to step through the gates and seek out the missing scouts and rescue the two women in distress? Are you willing to unravel the mysteries of the Seyvoth estate, even if it means risking your own life?

The adventure is a “challenge” adventure in that it is not intended to be part of a larger campaign; it is designed as a one shot adventure, using throwaway characters that are highly optimized, and for that reason the adventure is designed to be pretty brutal. Expect characters to die, possibly more than once, but if they do they can simply walk right back in to the adventure and try again… there are only two limiting factors: time (it’s designed to be between 4 and 6 hours… we’ll get to that shortly) and an optional scoring system at the end of the adventure. It is also designed to be replayable: players can take what they have learned in one run through and carry it over to the next one.

I do have to point out something… when I say it is “desgined to be between 4 and 6 hours”, that’s really depends on the party and how you go about it. But it *can* be done… technically… and was almost done by the guys at The Incomparable Podcast who have done a single run through of Seyvoth Manor, continuing it every Halloween, that has run for the last four years. Granted, they were doing it for fun and not for the challenge, but you get the idea.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

It was a 4e ENnie Award nominated product. To be nominated for an ENnie means they made 4e work. Again, they made 4e work. That means they can’t fail in 5e!

 

You can see examples of their work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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Faerie Fire, a 5e supplemental by Astrolago Press
Ends on .

“A stylish, glamorous fey bestiary and setting inspired by the 80s and 90s, for use with 5e tabletop campaigns.

Faerie Fire is a bestiary and supplemental expansion intended for the fifth edition of the world’s most popular tabletop RPG. We wanted to explore the world of the fairy wilds in more depth–so we’ve made a court full of 10 wild, dangerous, and chaotic fey, and 20 new and unique monsters to add to your campaign bestiary–and an additional 20 magical items to fill your players with wonder (and avarice).

The base edition of Faerie Fire will be full-colour, hardcover, and feature approximately 104 pages of content; it will match the same dimensions as your other 5e books, so that they all line up nicely on your bookshelf.

The Creatures

Bosca, Lord of Wildfire by Nina Matsumoto
Bosca, Lord of Wildfire by Nina Matsumoto

 

The book is divided into two sections: the Fey Court, and the Wilds. In the Fey Court you’ll meet a cast of ten strange and complicated beings: from the childlike Monarch to the mischievous Pox & Pilfer–and the mysterious, isolated Sepal, warden of the fairy prisons.

Members of the court are just as likely to turn on one another as they are to uphold any kind of order, and a player who finds themselves in the court’s capricious graces could make a lot of trouble–or wind up dead.

Conglomodog, by Kory Bing
Conglomodog, by Kory Bing

In the Wilds, you’ll encounter an even stranger collection of beings–some sentient, some not–who all operate by the fairy realm’s arbitrary and downright chaotic rules. While not every creature in the book is immediately deadly (some would simply like to ask you a fewquestions), not one of them should be underestimated. An adventurer navigating the wilds may find themselves ensnared by the deadly Chondrofeyr–only to be rescued by their new, strange fairy familiar.

All 30 entries will come complete with beautiful, bold illustrations provided by an incredible line-up of talented artists–not to mention balanced stats, inventive mechanics, and vibrant lore for ideas on how to insert them into your own campaign.

The Items

Item design by Jesse Turner
Item design by Jesse Turner

 

We’ll also be including a library of magical items in the book, perfect for any explorer with sticky fingers and time to sort out a curse or two. Five new weapons, five new armours, and ten new magical items–including a potions table filled with various tricks, grenades, and concoctions. In our own tabletop campaigns, we like to encourage players to think outside the box and use their magic items for roleplay as much as combat, so we’ve created items that we hope will give you lots of opportunities to be inventive.

Previews of some of our creature and item stats will be revealed throughout the campaign on our Tumblr or you can follow us in Twitter for details about upcoming playtesting livestreams

Cover art by Yuko Ota (design not final)
Cover art by Yuko Ota (design not final)

Aesthetic

Faerie Fire is inspired by the neon noir aesthetic of the late 80s, with a touch of Trapper Keeper, and a spot of 90s Lisa Frank thrown in for good measure–we’re calling it fairypunk. Adventurers making their way to the fairy wilds will meet creatures strange and new: some beautiful, some curious–but all of them dangerous in their own way. We also introduce the Plane of Living Light, a mysterious realm that can be skillfully manipulated by warlocks imbued with the Living Light. With magic reminiscent of neon lights and holograms, and a fey court full of glamour, the fairy wilds are filled with creatures dazzling and deadly in equal measure.

Keighton, the Haunt of Auldermere by Dylan Meconis
Keighton, the Haunt of Auldermere by Dylan Meconis

 

Part artbook, part bestiary, Faerie Fire is guaranteed to be a stunning addition to your bookshelf. But stay tuned: when the campaign funds, stretch goals will unlock even more monsters, new player races and subclasses, more illustrations and aesthetic upgrades, and even a module.

Faerie Fire is designed by Shannon Campbell, Dillon MacPherson, and Malcolm Wilson–professional game designers and passionate GMs from Vancouver, BC. Shannon previously served as an editor on The Underground RPG and Bones of the Coast.

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

Not that this needs pointing out, but this is the other art RPG this week. Fey and other D&D monsters in an 80s/90s art style that they’re calling fairypunk. The artwork is everything with this project and will decide most customer’s interest. If you are looking for a campaign of unique flair, this is going to be your calling.

 

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

* * * * * *

 

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or onFacebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Steampunk Friday – Kickstart the Book – Make 100: SteamBear Books

I’m always on the lookout for gateway items to get the next generation into the stuff that I’m into. Wondering if anything might make a nephew or neice interested in something comic or fantasy or science fiction related. So a children’s book is definitely right in that wheelhouse.

***

Make 100: SteamBear Books

Creator/Writer/Colorist – Andres Salazar

Chief Financial Officer – Nicole Salazar

Chairman of the Board – Santiago Salazar

Kickstarter campaign ends on Monday, January 29, 2018 at 11:51 PM EST.

***

The Pitch:

SteamBear is an interactive children’s picture book and comic. It’s book two of  THE ADVENTURE BEAR SQUAD.  A Sci-Fi adventure story designed for the geek-parent and their children. It is built to stimulate creativity and learning. It is a team of bears across genres like the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen meets the Care Bears.

The Story:

The exciting second installment of the Adventure Bear Squad book series is upon us!  Faced with the disappearance of dreams by every man, woman and child the world is thrown in turmoil and it’s up to SteamBear and his compatriots to save the world from curmudgeonry.  They travel through time and space in SteamBear’s Travel-train and find out why the dreams have gone missing and how to bring them back!

John’s Thoughts:

Bears fighting pirates.

Bears in hot air balloons.

Bears wearing top hats and hopefully monocles.

This seems like one of those fun books where you can read with the kid in your life and discover new little pieces while also learning about different points and places in history (judging from the images on the Kickstarter page). I can definitely imagine laughing at the site of a bear flying past Big Ben over in London.

The Rewards:

Given that this is a limited edition of the book, as part of the Make 100 campaigns Kickstarter is encouraging for the month of January, the overall product is limited to… 100 copies. So each category has a limited number next to it for the hard copies (this has digital versions as well). At $25 you get the Hardcover along with an original drawing inside. The intriguing one is the $99 level where you not only get the book and the original drawing, but you also will get an original 11×15 watercolor painting. I could see that as being something to hang up in the kid’s room for a long time.

The Verdict:

Let’s see – Steampunk, kid’s book, bears, and various spots in time… educational and something you and the kids will enjoy as part of your reading rituals… yeah, this seems like a nice additon to your library!

***

To learn more about SteamBear, check out DecadeBrothers here.

***

John McGuire is the creator/author of the steampunk comic The Gilded Age. Want to read the first issue for free? Click here! Already read it and eager for more?

Click here to join John’s mailing list.

His prose appears in The Dark That FollowsTheft & TherapyThere’s Something About MacHollow EmpireBeyond the Gate, and Machina Obscurum – A Collection of Small Shadows.

He can also be found at www.johnrmcguire.com

[UPDATEDx2] 3 Sci-fi RPG Kickstarters You Should Back – Widow’s Tear, Battle Star Trilogy, and FROM BEYOND: DISTRESS CALL

2017 felt like the Year of the Sci-fi RPG with Starfinder sold out at Gen Con 50, Star Trek Adventures debuted, Alternity returnedTraveller’s expansion did well on KickstarterThe Stars Without Number: Revised Edition Kickstarter blew away my expectations, and more. To see 2018 lead off with several smaller sci-fi offerings makes me wonder if 2018 can exceed the Year of Sci-fi? Starting out the year we have two Starfinder RPGs and an O5[STA]R offering (See what I did there? Venger’s stuff is “O5R” and I did “O5-staR”! … Genius, right?… anyone?… Oy, I’ll be here all week…).

[UPDATED – Added Redshirts, Vol. 2: A Starfinder Comedy A.P. for levels 4-6]

[UPDATED x2 – Added Infinite Galaxies Core Rules]

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The Widow’s Tear: Cosmic Horror For Starfinder (Revised) by Gun Metal Games
Ends on .

“The Widow’s Tear is a “Plug and Play” setting for the Starfinder RPG inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft.

The galaxy in which the Starfinder game is set is a vast, largely unexplored region of space, just waiting for intrepid adventurers to discover it’s secrets.

Gun Metal Games brings Starfinder fans new, exotic locations for their characters to visit during a campaign in a new line of Starfinder-compatible products: Descent Engine: The Spacefarers Guide to the Cosmos!

Each product in this game line will reveal new regions filled with a multitude of star systems, strange phenomena, new creatures and much more! The flagship book in this line is The Widow’s Tear!

A 160 page, full color, hard cover book, The Widow’s Tear will explore some of the inhabited star systems in the nebula and introduce you to the beings who live there. You’ll learn about their unique histories, their goals for the future and the challenges they face. You’ll read about new technologies, including special weapons and armor, new psionic abilities, magic items, spacecraft, and more!

Many of the creatures you’ll find in The Widow’s Tear are inspired by the works of H.P Lovecraft, whose Great Old Ones and their spawn are  found not only in this book, but are also in the Starfinder pantheon. This book will also provide new, horrific grafts you can easily apply to any creature or race, new hazards for planets and space travel, and rules for insanity. We also have a limited pledge that allows some of you to create your own creatures and hazards!

We’ll introduce new races available for play, including Angarri, the Defiled, Jendova, the Tieflings of the Hellfire Syndicate, and more! Each star system will come with its own map. We even have a limited pledge that will allow some of you to create your own unique star system for inclusion in the nebula! Here’s a sample map of the Urus Star System, which will be written by Hal Maclean!”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

“H.P. Starfindercraft.” Not diminishing Gun Metal Games work, what they have looks great, no, what I’m saying is “H.P. Starfindercraft” is all the pitch needed to shake out most fan’s interest. Do you want H.P. in your Starfinder or not? If so, Gun Metal Games has got you covered.

 

You can see examples of their work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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Battle Star Trilogy: Trek Wars by Kort’thalis Publishing
Ends on .

NOTE – LINKS ARE NOT SAFE FOR WORK. NSFW. 

“Three sleazy scenarios for the Alpha Blue RPG. Plus, a huge, color map of the Ta’andor Galaxy with die-drop event/encounter tables.

I love all my RPGs, but Alpha Blue is closest to my heart.  There’s really nothing quite like it.  It’s part 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s sci-fi ripoff and part space opera porn parody.  Alpha Blueborrows from everything, and yet it’s probably the most “VS” of all my writing.

So, what am I proposing?  Three separate scenarios for the Alpha Blue roleplaying game!  Here are the titles… I Wear My Heart on My Sleaze (you’re attending a space party and looking to score), Emergency Escape Sequence Delta Cream (your ship runs into trouble and you’ve got to get the fuck out of there), and Outer Rim Jobs of Ta’andor (your crew of spacers are looking for employment and crazy shit happens along the way).

I know these synopses are vague, but it’s how I work.  I come up with the bare bones just to get the ball rolling; as I write, new and surprising things organically evolve.  So, I don’t have a lot of details right now.  Everything is in a primordial state.  That’s my own personal creative process, and it’s treated me well all these years.

Battle Star Trilogy – Trek Wars

Each scenario will be between 7 – 10 pages (I usually always go over) and the print version will combine all three.  This trilogy of awesome adventures (complete with various random tables, tech, NPCs, monsters, etc.) will contain fantastic artwork by various artists and shall be laid out by none other than Glynn Seal of MonkeyBlood Design.

He’s also going to create a gigantic galaxy hex-map for Ta’andor, accompanied by random tables of things going on in each sector.  Simply roll dice on top of the map and consult the encounter sheet to see what’s happening.  So, it’s basically a die-drop table and galactic map all in one.  It’ll be made for printing out and will be the centerpiece of your gaming table when you’re playing Alpha Blue.

The image directly below is the 44″ x 34″ printed-out and laminated hex-map of the Ta’andor galaxy.  It’s huge, awesome, and created by Glynn Seal of MonkeyBlood Design… so you know it’s good.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts: 

 

I like Venger. He’s published my work, he’s given me advice, he’s pissed folks off in such a way that I think, “I’m never doing that!” (other’s life lessons are good to learn from). The short version is I dig el Venger. And this Kickstarter, his 14th, is a return to his biggest game – Alpha Blue. You can get the new scenarios and the original system and space maps and the undying sacrifice of Venger Satanis and keep his brood children in diapers (cause Venger has a strike force worth of young’uns) all through this Kickstarter. Save the universe… or sleaze it up more than it already is, your choice!

 

NOTE the Sequel – LINKS ARE NOT SAFE FOR WORK. NSFW. 

You can see examples of their work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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FROM BEYOND: DISTRESS CALL Sci-fi RPG Adventure by Davide Tramma
Ends on .

“A Starfinder Roleplaying game compatible sci-fi adventure set in a newly discovered star system. The first of a six episode saga.

Imagine you are on an outpost two months far from the closest civilized area in a newly discovered star system. Far from supplies, far from home, relying only on your mates and skills to solve the many problems an isolated outpost has to face. Four alien planets are orbiting around a dim dwarf brown star.

Everything was going fine, and all you had to do was waiting the next shipment with the fresh provisions, until one day you receive an automatic distress call coming from the Sawshark, a hi-tech mining vessel operating in the star system asteroid belt that is supposed to be under your protection.

After the call the ship goes silent and any attempt to hail back the Sawshark fails.

You jump on your rescue shuttle to save the crew with a clear goal in mind fix the problem and be back as soon as possible with the ship and its crewmembers.

What could possibly go wrong ?

————————————————————————————————-

(The pdf contains 33 pages and something like 10,600 words.)

The adventure is ready to be delivered in pdf, so you will receive it the same day the backing time is over.

Publishing and having this adventure backed will allow me to better make the following five episodes and planning subsequently the setting which will describe in detail the star system where this adventure and the following ones will take place.

The adventure includes:

  • – 3 new creatures
  • – 2 new ships
  • – 3 new trade goods
  • – 7 new equipments
  • – the B&W printable maps”

 

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

It’s a mystery in space with a spaceship/dungeon crawl! Davide sent me an advance PDF of the module. The writing, art, and layouts are completed save for minor edits. I’ve seen the finished product so I believe Davide can meet his February delivery commitment so you can get next month’s Starfinder session in the queue.

 

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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[UPDATED – 2018-01-16] 

Redshirts, Vol. 2: A Starfinder Comedy A.P. for levels 4-6 by Happy Gnome Publishing
Ends on .

“Redshirts: Adventures in Absurdity Vol. 2 is a Starfinder adventure path guaranteed to make you laugh so hard you’ll pee your spacesuit

Hey everyone and welcome back for:

REDSHIRTS: ADVENTURES IN ABSURDITY, VOLUME 2!

What is Redshirts: Adventures in Absurdity?

 Glad you asked! It is a Sci-fi/Comedy Adventure Path that is 100% Starfinder compatible. We launched the first volume on Kickstarter in August, and opened the PDF to the public in December. Within 6 days it was the number 1  hottest Starfinder product on DrivethruRPG, and earned their “Best-Seller” status. The entire Adventure Path, which revolves around surviving a deep space exploration mission with a dysfunctional command crew, will be 4 books and take Players from Level 1-12.

How do critics describe it?

It’s been called “The Office Meets Survivor…in space.”

What is the tone of the game?

Absurdist humor mixed with low-brow puns. It’s great for fans of Hitchiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Futurama, or The Orville.

What Can we expect in Volume 2?

  • Chapter 4: When a ship of undead creatures kidnaps a Confederation Ambassador, the Redshirts must find a way to rescue her and destroy the vessal, before joining them in undeath, forever.
  • Chapter 5: When a routine visit to Plushy Prime, the happiest place in the Universe, goes wrong the Redshirts must unravel a mystery hidden away for thousands of years.
  • Chapter 6: When the Captain accidentally gets married again (to the Slurmolian Emperor) only the Redshirts can be trusted to find the one creature in the Universe that can perform the annulment before anyone finds out.
  • 20+ new monsters
  • 5+ new playable races (including an undead race)
  • New Equipment to kill your enemies with

If I back at the designer level do I really get credit?

Yes, for the rest of your life you can describe yourself as a designer for a best selling RPG. It’s the second easiest way to become a best seller, the easiest being selling three books in Canada.”

 

Hardcover Proof of Volume 1, ready to ship out
Hardcover Proof of Volume 1, ready to ship out

 

New Crewmates: Ambassador Groundwalker
New Crewmates: Ambassador Groundwalker

 

New Allies: Mayor Bimbleberry, Plushian Mayor
New Allies: Mayor Bimbleberry, Plushian Mayor

 

New Enemies: Monkey Monk and the Fangy Bunch
New Enemies: Monkey Monk and the Fangy Bunch

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

Three Starfinder adventures are running right now. I’m curious how they’ll raise awareness of each other. This one leans towards comedy and it’s a sequel so it’s got an established base to build from.

 

You can see examples of Happy Gnome Publishing work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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[UPDATED – 2018-01-16] 

Infinite Galaxies Core Rules by Grendel’s Vault Productions
Ends on .

“Sci-Fi Action, Powered by the Apocalypse!

Infinite Galaxies is a science-fiction role playing game of epic adventure for 3-6 players. The game is based on the Apocalypse engine with some cool tweaks to better model stuff like star ship combat, robots, aliens and other hallmarks of Sci-Fi!

You can view the current quick play packet at InfiniteGalaxies.net under the downloads section!

Have you ever wanted to see a robot with a jet pack and rocket launcher arms? Ever wanted to fly your ship to the furthest reaches of the galaxy to explore alien ruins? Ever wanted to use your psionic powers to free the people of Arachnis 9 from the evil lord Zor? Well, with Infinite Galaxies, you can! You can do all of this with as much or as little prep as you want. If you want to run a zero-prep one shot, it’s easy. If you would rather create a complex society and hundreds of planets, you can do that too! It all works seamlessly with Infinite Galaxies rules.

 

There are eight separate playbooks – or character classes – representing a lot of sci-fi character tropes. Each playbook includes three separate starting packages allowing for a great deal of flexibility in character creation. This flexibility allows for some interesting party combinations – a squadron of Aces all with their own ships, a party of robots making their way in a meatbags world or a squadron of soldiers ridding a planet of bugs!

The Ace

You are the consummate pilot of all things that move. You start the game with your own starship and you can upgrade this ship as the game continues.

The Explorer

You excel at finding people and places no one else can. You start with the ability to lead a group into unknown or hostile territory.

The Jack

You are connected and you know how to get the things you need to get the job done. You start with the ability to use your network of contacts to get important information.

The Leader

Your skills and talents reside in providing guidance and instructions to others, in planning, and in strategy. You start with the ability to provide bonuses to your allies’ rolled moves.

The Psi

You are an enigmatic master of mental powers. Depending on what package you select, you have access to many different psionic abilities, including telepathy, telekinesis, and the ability to manifest a weapon from your psionic energy.

The Robot

You are a robot, an artificial creation of first-rate metal alloys, high-grade plastics, and gadgets beyond the imaginations of most. You may be designed for combat, to defend those under your protection. You may be designed to serve as a translator or guide. You may even be specialized in navigation.

The Scientist

Your talents lie in studying the natural world, repairing broken things, and creating devices of your own design. You start play with an innate ability to know things – a lot of things.

The Soldier

You are a trained warrior, skilled in the arts of combat and defense. Primarily, you excel in fight scenes. You may wield a laser rifle or perhaps heavy weapons. You might be trained in tactics and leading small teams of military units. You might even be skilled at healing others.

The Ship

The Ace’s starship gets its own playbook and acts in many ways like a character. The Ship has its own ability scores, its own damage system, and can advance much like a character does.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

Powered by the Apocalypse. Starship. Annddd… GO!

 

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

* * * * * *

 

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or onFacebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or onFacebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

3 RPG Kickstarters You Should Back – Anthro-Adventures Setting, Frankenstein Faktoria, and On the Shoulders of Heroes Setting

A Pathfinder to 5e conversion, a Polish to English translation, and an original 3.5e product are all featured in this week’s review of RPG Kickstarters.

 

Anthro-Adventures RPG Setting, Now for 5E & Pathfinder by Happy Gnome Publishing
Ends on Sun, January 14 2018 10:58 PM EST.

“Anthro-Adventures is a 5E compatible world setting featuring realms ruled by animal-human hybrid races.

Book Cover, now for 5e
Book Cover, now for 5e

Anthro-Adventures, a popular RPG setting in which the Seven Realms of Layna are ruled by animal-human hybrid races, is now available for your 5E campaigns!

A unique setting, Anthro-Adventures is two designed to fill two goals:

1. To create a setting that a child can seamlessly play in, while having a natural understanding of the nuances of their character’s race.

2. To provide an Anthro-Fantasy setting where the conflicts of the animal-human hybrids are the central focus. This allows players to recreate the tone of popular stories such as Redwall, Mistmantle, and others.

Anthro-Adventures accomplishes these goals by creating a setting where each race is created as a sociological experiment in a modern day human genetics lab. As part of the hybrid’s development their education is focused around a single piece of Children’s Lit chosen to instill desired traits in their newfound species. When a horrid accident sends the hybrids hurtling through time and space the only thing they have to rely on as they continue to develop on their own is those ancient stories once read to them.

Fast forward a thousand years and those hybrid races have flourished, using the tales they were once read as a basis for society. For example the Dog-kin have a powerful medieval theocracy based around dedication to the teachings of the Big Red God (they were read Clifford), Lion-kin prowl the land looking to exterminate evil in the name of the Great Mane (Aslan), and Rat-kin take science to dangerous levels in their Steam-powered cities (They were read Mrs. Frisby and The Rats of Nihm).

Brightskin Shaman of Death
Brightskin Shaman of Death

The Anthro-Adventures World Guide is 142 pages long and consists of the following:

  • Detailed background on the creation of the Seven Realms, including maps.
  • Background on each of the Seven Realms, including information on their Geography, Economy, Military, and Society.
  • Background and information on 22 playable hybrid races, including stats, racial feats, spells, and equipment.
  • 75 pieces of original artwork showing the visual nuances of each hybrid culture.
  • A simple, easy to use layout for family friendly gaming.

The 5e version of Anthro-Adventures is about 90% converted and will be available for download within two weeks of the end of this campaign. Physical copies will be delivered after a proofing process, which generally takes 3-4 weeks. Delivery will be direct from DrivethruRPG.com.

Just seeing Anthro-Adventures for the first time and hoping you can still get the Pathfinder edition? Feel free to head on over to DrivethruRPG and pick it up!”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

I covered another Happy Gnome Publishing game, Redshirts: A Starfinder Comedy Adventure Path (Levels 1-3)here.

Ah, in terms of art, Burning Man Chameleon for the win!

What Happy Gnome Publishing is offering is a varied setting that has the range to be family-friendly or stone serious or Burning Man Chameleon making it a good option for so many tables. Add to it, they’ve already rolled out the Pathfinder version so the heavy lifting on this is done, and you have a guide to figure out where they’re going with this one. In addition, this project speaks to me because my first stab at doing a RPG Kickstarter [coming in March] will feature anthromorphic NPCs in a mixed human/anthromorphic world, so I’m interested in this one.

 

You can see examples of Happy Gnome Publishing work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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Frankenstein Faktoria Role Playing Game by Chronicle City
Ends on Tue, January 16 2018 10:33 AM EST.

“Frankenstein Faktoria is a rules-lite tabletop roleplaying game where YOU play one of the Doctors tragic creations…

Frankenstein Faktoria is a tabletop horror roleplaying game unlike any you have seen before. It might well contain the usual dead bodies, corpses, and demonical villainy, but in this case you are the corpse, or at least an amalgam thereof.

In Frankenstein Faktoria you and your friends play a Frankensteiner. One of the tortured creations of Doctor Victor Frankenstein, created out of a composite of body parts from cadavers and reanimated through science and electricity.

(Fun Fact: Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein” novel was first published 200 years ago on 1st January 1818! Happy Anniversary Frankenstein!)

Frankenstein Faktoria Cover by David Allsop
Frankenstein Faktoria Cover by David Allsop

THE PLAYERS

The Doctor, Doctor Victor Von Frankenstein, has constructed a small Factory in the town of Shalleymouth. Here in his infernal facility, unnatural Creatures, denying nature’s laws, Frankenstein’s children, are produced on an assembly line, endlessly, day-by-day.

Why does he do it? Nobody knows. The Doctor appears to have gone completely insane. He has severed his ties with the world outside and has shut himself up inside his crumbling castle alone with his experiments. He does not give his “children” much attention, instead he spends his time endlessly experimenting, synthesising chemical solutions, scribbling labyrinthine formulae on blackboards, and tinkering with mysterious devices. He is manifestly uninterested in the operation of the production line. Instead a hunchbacked servant, Igor, adopted by Frankenstein many years ago, oversees the day-to-day operation of the Factory.

During a Frankenstein Faktoria game, the players take on the role of the tortured monsters created by the Doctor. His hideous Frankensteiners…”

Igor and Frankenstein by David Allsop
Igor and Frankenstein by David Allsop

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

[Full Disclosure: Angus Abranson rocks. I work with him on the Facebook RPG Kickstarter News page and EN World. He is metal.]

Bernie Wrightson-style Frankenstein art and a Polish RPG translated into The English by Angus Abranson. There’s also some wanna-lancer* options here. AND this is available on the 200th anniversary of the publishing of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein? Yeah, just check it out for all of that and because Angus is metal.

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

*Wanna-lancer™ – A gamer that’s pursuing freelance RPG work. Some back RPG Kickstarters that offer rewards to create NPCs, spells, items, adventures, etc. in order to build up their resume, make contact with publishers, and learn what’s expected on assignments.

 

Malicious Stare by David Allsop

 

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On the Shoulders of Heroes Campaign Setting by Windmill Slam Games
Ends on Fri, January 19 2018 10:50 AM EST.

“A fantasy campaign setting designed for the d20 System. Explore the world of Bellög, new and redesigned races, monsters and much more.

Greetings explorer, welcome to our domain!

We are Windmill Slam Games, a tiny Dutch company dedicated to writing and producing content to enrich your roleplaying experience. You have found our very first project on Kickstarter: The On the Shoulder of Heroes campaign setting. On The Shoulders of Heroes is intended for use with the 3.5 edition of the world’s most popular roleplaying game and systems based on it, but due to its informative nature it could easily be used with any fantasy RPG-system. It is inspired by old school roleplaying games, traditional fantasy, Germanic and Japanese mythology. It is based on the idea that the world was built by the great deeds of great people – both good and evil.

Most art (including the cover) by the talented Eoghan Kerrigan
Most art (including the cover) by the talented Eoghan Kerrigan

The complete book is close to 230 pages. It features 12 new and redesigned races, class descriptions, new feats and language rules, a whole continent with 8 countries in great detail, 19 new and redesigned deities, trade rules, new items and weapons, 23 new magic items and artifacts, new and redesigned monsters, 9 specially crafted NPC heroes and suggestions on how they might fit into your campaign. It is beautifully illustrated in gray-scale by 4 talented artists and is bound in a sturdy hard cover. We’ve uploaded some previews for you here: http://bit.ly/2Bd4b78

The book is designed to teach you everything you need to know to about the continent of Bellög and its inhabitants, its history and state of affairs. Everything is designed to be intuitive, to make you feel right at home, but with small twists and redesigns that keep you wondering. It pays homage to the rich history of fantasy and D&D.

Your support will help us to cover printing and production costs and to get started on future projects (that will further expand on the setting). We want to publish materials on a regular basis and for multiple gaming systems. If worlds are being explored we want ours to be among them! By supporting us you are making an investment in a company for gamers by gamers.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

This product is for D&D 3.5e, which is an interesting choice. Obviously, they could have suggested the project is for Pathfinder and, maybe, found a simpler path to victory [no pun intended], but they’re on a mission for 3.5e. Because of that, I want to see if they can reach their nearly $6k goal and see if there is still life in the 3.5 market. If there is still interest in 3.5, does it suggest there is a market for the earlier D&D systems (beyond Basic and 1e)?

 

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

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Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

10 QUESTIONS ABOUT Sherwood: The Legend of Robin Hood 2e for Savage Worlds WITH Jonathan M. Thompson (Battlefield Press International)

Battlefield Press International‘s Jonathan M. Thompson and I met face-to-face at Gen Con 50 and since then we’ve talked a fair amount about RPGs. I’ve blogged and interviewed him about projects from Gaslight Victorian Fantasy 3e for Savage WorldsRobert Asprin’s The Cold Cash War, and The Awakened III Anthology to Dragon Kings Player’s Rulebook for 5E. For his latest Kickstarter campaign, Sherwood: The Legend of Robin Hood 2e (Savage Worlds), we sat down to discuss what this project is and where he’s taking it.

  

EGG EMBRY – Jonathan, we’ve talked before, and I want to thank you for returning. You’ve got a Kickstarter campaign running through the holidays, don’t you. What’s it for?

JONATHAN M. THOMPSON – We are running a KS until Jan 4, 2018 for a new Savage Worlds edition of our setting Sherwood: The Adventures of Robin Hood. It needed to be cleaned up and revamped a little. Sherwood was our very first Savage Worlds product, and it needed to have a little work done. Now this work does not mean that those that worked on it before did a bad job, in fact it was just the opposite. We are really trying to bring it in line with the way our other Savage Worlds products look.

EGG – This is a Savage Worlds’ setting. Why is Savage Worlds ideal for Robin Hood?

JONATHAN M. THOMPSON Savage Worlds is designed with “pulp adventure” in mind. I believe that the swashbuckling aspect of the Robin Hood genre just screams Fast, Furious, Fun, which is the motto of the Savage Worlds game system.

  

EGG – Why a 2e? What improvements are you planning?

JONATHAN M. THOMPSON – Mostly like it says on the KS page. We updated some edges, added some preconstructed archetypes and edited things so that they made more sense in this version of the book. We had some people helping out during the process too, telling me what they wanted to see in the book, and when it was possible we incorporated their feedback. Those people have requested to remain anonymous.

  

EGG – This isn’t your first Robin Hood game, is it? What other Robin Hood-centric projects have you done?

JONATHAN M. THOMPSON – We have done versions of this book for Pathfinder, D&D5e, and Swords & Wizardry. I have also recently worked on a new adventure book from Fearlight Games for their Hood: Swashbuckling Adventures in Sherwood RPG.

 

EGG – In your opinion, what makes Robin Hood and his world worth exploring?

JONATHAN M. THOMPSON – The world of Robin Hood is essentially our world in the late 12th century. There was a lot going on during the period. Turmoil in England, things happening in Europe and the Third Crusade was happening in the Middle East. These things can we weaved into the story you are trying to tell.

  

EGG – What do you feel is the quintessential Robin Hood book/comic/movie/game/whatever?

JONATHAN M. THOMPSON – Of course as everyone knows that would have to be Errol Flynn’s Adventures of Robin Hood from 1938. I truly believe that this is the first thing people think about when they think about Robin Hood.

EGG – Last time we talked, it was about Robert Asprin’s The Cold Cash War RPG. What happened with that game and what are your future plans for it?

JONATHAN M. THOMPSON – We didn’t quite make the goal on that one, we are going to relaunch the KS in June. We are going to be releasing a one sheet adventure in advance of the KS with some pregenerated characters from the novel included to play. This will give you a little bit of an idea of what will be going on in the setting in the future.

  

EGG – What other projects are you currently developing?

JONATHAN M. THOMPSON – I am working on a few things for different companies, but as far as Battlefield Press is concerned we are currently developing a new project called The Dinosaur Protocol.

Generations ago, in the late 21st century, the Earth was dying, and some thought it was the fault of man. In the end it did not matter, mankind could not survive on the surface any longer, and so a way was developed to save the human race. Top engineers and scientists, built arks deep underground to save mankind from its own folly.

Generations passed, and the descendants of the survivors thought it was finally time to finally emerge and return to the surface of their world. They exited the tunnels dug by their ancestors and arrived on the surface of the Earth. It was not the Earth described by their ancestors, this was a new place, lush forests, plenty of food, and something no one expected, flora and fauna that had not existed in millions of years. Even more surprising were the prehistoric animals running around, and yes, even dinosaurs.

It was clear that this was a new Earth, and one more dangerous than the one their ancestors left. Armed with the skills and technology left by the ancestors, mankind now must survive in a new world.

 

EGG – Any parting thoughts? Where can we find out more about Battlefield Press International and this Kickstarter?

JONATHAN M. THOMPSON –  Go to Kickstarter and search for Sherwood: The Legend of Robin Hood 2e (Savage Worlds) or you can get there by following the link:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/battlefieldpress/sherwood-the-legend-of-robin-hood-2e-savage-worlds

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

* * * * * *

 

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

3 RPG Kickstarters You Should Back – Creature Codex 5e, Dice Tower of Power, and Sherwood: The Legend of Robin Hood

Let’s start out 2018 right by finishing up a few 2017 RPG Kickstarter campaigns! One setting, one monster manual, and a reasonably priced dice tower, and all of them are worth checking out!

 

Sherwood: The Legend of Robin Hood 2e (Savage Worlds) by Battlefield Press International
Ends on .

“Welcome to Sherwood Forest, home of heroes and outlaws

Cover for Shewood for Swords & Wizardry
Cover for Shewood for Swords & Wizardry

Welcome to Sherwood Forest, a place of mystery and excitement. Band together to oppose the forces of the Sheriff and Prince John in England during the Third Crusade. Create your characters to do what is best for England and King Richard by protecting his interests at home.

This setting book allows you to play in the Medieval England of the period of the Third Crusades. The book is designed to not only emulate the historical period, but also the mythical one as well. Play in any level you would like from historical to mythical, emulating various novels, stories and tv shows about Robin Hood.

This setting can be played in either historic or mythical mode. Historic is more realistic, leaving out magic, but in mythical mode, magic has been added to the setting allowing you to play in the fantastic.

This book is the second edition and is written by Jonathan M. Thompson and Wil Upchurch and will be available for the Savage Worlds Role Playing Game. The manuscript is complete, and an alpha draft will be made available to all confirmed backers at least one month after the Kickstarter has been funded.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

I did an interview with my friend, Jonathan M. Thompson, about Sherwood: The Legend of Robin Hood 2e (Savage Worlds) here that gives more details. It’s worth checking out.

 

Is this game going to be a winner? Like Jonathan says in our interview, he’s “done versions of this book for Pathfinder, D&D5e, and Swords & Wizardry.” I think this is going to be a solid offering.

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

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Dice Tower of Power – Simple Cardboard Dice Rolling Solution by Eric Chan & Luke Hammons
Ends on .

“Why pay $30-$200 per dice tower when you can get THREE Dice Towers for $25? A simple cardboard dice tower solution for a simple problem

Dice Towers for a price in line with its function (rolling dice)

Like you, we play a lot of board games. Anyone who plays board games knows that rolling dice is a pain in the ass. You lose them under furniture. You ruin your board games by knocking over all your pieces.

A common solution is to get a dice tower but dice towers aren’t cheap. They can range from $30 to $200. But… if all its meant to do is roll dice why is it so expensive?

That’s why we created the Dice Tower of Power. It’s a simple solution to a very simple problem.

Why spend $200 for something that can be replaced by a piece of cardboard?
Why spend $200 for something that can be replaced by a piece of cardboard?

Why the Dice Tower of Power?

  • It’s made of recycled cardboard so its good for the environment.
  • It takes about a minute to assemble.
  • It can be disassembled for easy transport and storage.
  • It’s durable and can take a lot of punishment.
  • If you spill a drink on it or somehow destroy it – no big deal its cheap to replace.
3 Dice Towers are perfect for 4-6 players!
3 Dice Towers are perfect for 4-6 players!

3 Dice Towers for $25 (or less)

One other benefit of the Dice Tower of Power is that we sell them in packages of 3. Most games are played with 4-6 people. So with 3 dice towers you don’t have to pass the dice towers around. Just pass the dice. This saves time and is a lot more convenient. Lastly, the price. We’re selling 3 dice towers for $25. So for less than the price of one dice tower available today you get 3.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

I really want a dice tower, but every time I look at other dice towers the prices make blood run out of my nose. The idea of THREE dice towers for $25 is the deal I’ve been waiting for! They come in three-packs so it’s a purchase and a gift! Buy a pack and keep one for yourself, give one to your GM and give one to the player that always shoots a die into your drink cause his aim is… owe!

 

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

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Creature Codex: 5th Edition Monsters Including Commissions by Kobold Press
Ends on .

“Demons, dragons, kobolds, & undead galore, from the creators of the Tome of Beasts–plus commissions and monsters designed by backers!

From the creators of the titanic Tome of Beasts! Kobold Press is at it again, with a lethal and highly entertaining horde of 5e-compatible monsters to challenge new players and veterans alike.

The Creature Codex will bring over 300 new monsters to 5th edition, including lotus golems, wasteland dragons, shadow goblins, and so much more. All Creature Codex Kickstarter backers can submit an original monster design for possible publication, while high level backers can commission Kobold Press to design and illustrate their monster idea. In addition to the Creature Codex, this Kickstarter will fund the creation of monster pawns, encounter maps, and more!

We Kobolds love to make bestiaries and monster books! However, it costs quite a bit to create a high-quality, art-heavy, playtest-honed, rules-crunchy volume of 5th edition monsters—and printing a product of this size calls for some financial clout. We’re Kickstarting it to make sure we have the funding necessary for a small, medium, large, huge, or even gargantuan print run, as required.

With your support, we expect to deliver a big book, a juicy and useful PDF, and plenty of extras! Thanks to our prior outing with the Tome of Beasts, we have a seasoned team of skilled 5e monster designers, so you can expect even more innovation and fresh ideas to challenge your players, no matter what level of play they are at.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

Did you back the Tomb of Beasts for 5e? This is more of that, and that project was gold! Those were amazing 5e monsters and this promises to add to it. Best of all, even if you back it at $1, you get a chance to submit a monster for Kobold Press to review and *possibly* publish. As of this writing they’re going to take 30 backer submitted monsters, and they’re likely to unlock 35. That’s 35 chances that a monster you submit will be picked to appear in the book. I’d buy that for a dollar!

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

* * * * * *

 

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Five 5e RPG Kickstarters You Should Back – Hunters Mark, Masters and Minions, Sylvanhome, The Blood Plague, and 31 NPC’s Inktober 2017

With Christmas 2017 in the rearview, let’s look at what could be under the tree in 2018 (or well before then) – five 5e RPG Kickstarters that are worth shaking the box to see what’s inside!

 

Hunters Mark 5E Adventure Book: Hunt for Monstrous Dinosaurs by Game Natural
Ends on Fri, December 29 2017 12:00 PM EST.

“Hunters Mark Adventure immerses you into the world of monster hunters. New 5E options, now in Hardcover.

Hunters Mark Adventure immerses you into the world of monster hunters. New 5E options, now in Hardcover.

Beneath the waves of the Conquering Sea, a primordial island rises and with it a new threat from an old enemy. Known as Primalrites, this monstrous race of dinosaurs were long forgotten by the monster hunters of today, but ancient fossils remain. And now, the island shudders once more as they return, seeking revenge against those that drove them to an early extinction.

You are about to embark on a rousing adventure that pits mighty hunters against monstrous dinosaurs on an island not big enough for both. These wildly fantastical hunts are recreated whenever you play the Hunters Mark adventure.

THE RULES

In order to play, you must first be acquainted with the 5e rules. The first major adventure in the Hunters World, Hunters Mark is a 5e adventure for characters of level 1-10. You can start the adventure with 1st level characters of your own creation, or, pick one or more from the cast of non-player characters. Either way, the characters should reach at least 10th level by the adventure’s conclusion.”

Egg’s Thoughts:

Let’s do the checklist to decide if Hunters Mark is the one you should fund:

  • 28 Boss Monsters for 5e
  • 30 Epic Weapons and Armor for 5e
  • 10 NPC Hunters for 5e

If all of those plus epic art appeal to you, this is the project that you’ve been waiting for.

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

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Masters and Minions: A 5th Edition Supplement by JetPack7
Ends on Fri, December 29 2017 11:00 PM EST.

“An all new 5e supplement featuring detailed NPCs and a focus on how to use their minions, with convenient, time-saving tips.

As game masters, we love 5E, but sometimes we run out of time preparing for a game. If only there was a supplement that had what we needed that would let us drag-and-drop into any campaign, potentially saving hours of game prep time. If only there were some new and exciting content we could offer, and for the proper XP level of the players. Well, fellow GMs, now there is!

What is Masters and Minions?
One thing we’ve noticed as game masters ourselves, is the challenge that most GMs face: prep time. With busy lives like ours in mind, we wanted to create a book that has NEW content to help with that!  The idea with Masters and Minions was to develop some Bosses and their followers, but with a focus on how they use their minions – and provide some tips and strategies that any GM can “drag and drop” into a new or existing game. This new content will span levels 1 – 20, so the book will continue to provide you with new content as your players level up!”

 

Illustration by Conceptopolis featuring the Ringleader and her Minions!
Illustration by Conceptopolis featuring the Ringleader and her Minions!

 

Illustration by Conceptopolis featuring the Orc Queen and her Minions!
Illustration by Conceptopolis featuring the Orc Queen and her Minions!

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

This is a 5e NPC-focused product. Do you need major NPCs and their henchmen for all levels? If so, this is a book with art to set the mood, a solid focus, an amazing creative team including Dan Dillion and Jim Pinto, and a mission – to make game prep easier. It’s well worth checking out (just see the pages below).

 

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

Sample Interior Page 01 (not final layout)
Sample Interior Page 01 (not final layout)

 

Sample Interior Page 02 (not final layout)
Sample Interior Page 02 (not final layout)

 

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Dungeons & Dragons 5E Location Module: Sylvanhome by Ramen Sandwich Press
Ends on Sat, December 30 2017 1:39 AM EST.

“Places by the Way #4: Sylvanhome is a short location module for D&D 5E written by Douglas Sun and published by Ramen Sandwich Press.

Welcome to Ramen Sandwich Press’ fourth Kickstarter campaign in support of Places by the Way. This campaign offers you your only chance to copies of the Limited (Kickstarter Only) Edition of Places by the Way #4: Sylvanhome.

Places by the Way

For those of you who missed our earlier campaigns, Places by the Way is a series of short modules that I’m creating for use with Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition. They work fine as short stand-alone adventures, but each Places by the Way module is meant to be a kit for creating a memorable interlude in a larger campaign. Each entry in the series consists of two versions sold separately but similar in content. One version is set in the Forgotten Realms, so Ramen Sandwich Press sells it exclusively through Dungeon Masters Guild. The other version assumes a generic setting and complies with WotC’s Open Game License. It’s available through DriveThru RPG, RPGNow and Dungeon Masters Guild, and a print version is available through Amazon and other online outlets.

For purchase links and product information, check out the Ramen Sandwich website. We also post news, announcements and random musings to our Facebook page, and I have posted some designer’s notes to my personal blog, “I Think We’ve Been Playing It Wrong.”

Places by the Way has two inspirations. One is the line of mini-adventures that AEG published as part of the D&D 3rd Edition open license boom. I recall that the word count for those modules was only 5,000 words. I wrote a few of them, and they suggested to me that the short form could be made to work in adventure modules as it does in fiction. That is to say, if the typical folio-sized module is the novel, and the hardcover campaign books that WotC is publishing for 5th Edition are epics, there should be also be a place for the module equivalent of short stories.

The other inspiration is the strangely important role that side quests play in what we now recognize as standard CRPG structure. Side quests are those little tasks that you can find throughout the game world, and while they have no direct bearing on the main story, they allow you to accumulate XP, money and items, and meet memorable NPCs. If they’re done well they can add real flavor to the game experience. Fallout remains one of my very favorite CRPGs. One of the first things that jumps back into my mind is Tandi, the Shady Sands girl voiced so perfectly by Cree Summer. Her wistful musing about what lies beyond her little village convey the fallen melancholy of that world so beautifully that it made me forget all about finding that water filter. My goal for Places by the Way is that somewhere in the series, I will create an NPC encounter that has an effect like that. My disadvantage is that I won’t have a talented voice artist to help. But I’m going to try to create a moment in a campaign that you will find memorable out of proportion to its role as a diversion.

Places by the Way modules average about 15 numbered locations, each of which offers an encounter, noteworthy items, noteworthy NPCs or an opening into which you can hook your existing campaign.

We’re on to Places by the Way #4: Sylvanhome, which describes a small community of wood elves. In D&D’s conception of elves (which draws heavily on Tolkien), sylvan elves embody a particular tension between their good alignment and beneficent attitude toward other beings on the one hand and their isolation and deep suspicion of outsiders on the other. Sylvanhome works on that tension, depicting an elven settlement uncertain of how to respond to the presence of humans in a forest they are used to having for themselves. It will be up to your players how deeply they want to involve themselves in Sylvahnhome’s affairs, but entertaining situations will unveil themselves if they do.

Sylvahnhome is still being written, but we expect that it will be in layout by the end of November and the Limited Edition will be ready to ship in mid-January, as soon as Kickstarter clears payments from this campaign. Ramen Sandwich Press could use a little extra funding to make sure we can pay for stuff like layout, art and maps in a timely manner. So we’re turning to the Kickstarter community once again in the hope that you’ll help us keep this series going.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

Moving away from the NPCs and monsters above, this offering is an adventure. Either a standalone or, with the prior three parts, a campaign interlude. For this 5e offering, it’s 15 locations centered around wood elves. As a DM, you can judge if this is something you could use for your world.

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

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31 NPC’s Inktober 2017: A Book of Fantasy Characters by Chris Nichols
Ends on Sat, December 30 2017 1:26 PM EST.

“Fill out your fantasy RPG campaign with these 31 original non-player characters! All contained in this full color 6×9” softcover book!

HI! My name is Chris Nichols, and I am an artist/illustrator based in the Twin Cities area. Recently I have been focused on writing, illustrating, and self publishing children’s books and comics filled with influences taken from skateboarding, my daughter, fantasy fiction, sci-fi, and heavy metal music.

This project started as an idea to create a new, fantasy tabletop RPG character every day for the month of October. At the end of the month I had 31 original characters. I decided to put them all together into a book, so I could share them with friends.

31 NPC’s Inktober 2017 is a 6×9 inch, 64 page, full color, soft cover book. I made it to assist Dungeon Masters, to help fill out their campaign with characters. My goal was to give each one a name, a look, some stats, and a quick description for how they would fit into the campaign.

Now I know Dungeon Masters are super creative, so I kept the information about these characters vague. On each NPC (non player character) page there is a large space for you to add in notes. Give them a backstory, a motive, how they’re connected to the PC’s or other NPC’s in the campaign. That is all for you to decide!

The last page has character tokens for you to cut out and use in your tabletop games.”

Egg’s Thoughts:

Ok, this book is not precisely 5e, more any-edition-of-D&D/PF/OSR. That said, it’s 31 NPCs with simple stats, simple plot hooks, art, and tokens. If you need a variety of encounters that are broad enough for you to make up the details, this may be for you.

 

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

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The Blood Plague: D&D5E Dark Fantasy Adventure for 3rd Level by Encounter Roleplay
Ends on Sun, December 31 2017 7:02 AM EST.

“The Blood Plague is a Dark Fantasy Adventure Module for Dungeons & Dragons: 5th Edition. Gritty & unforgiving. Brutal and realistic.

The Blood Plague is a Dark Fantasy Adventure Module for Dungeons & Dragons: 5th Edition for Levels 3-5 which focuses on a deadly plague. The Blood Plague has struck the world of Penumbra and left it’s people reeling in horror at it’s ferocity.

The Cathedral of Arckenbury. Players will be tasked with reaching this ancient fortress and entreating for asylum with the dread Murder of Crows. Art by Jovina Chagas.
The Cathedral of Arckenbury. Players will be tasked with reaching this ancient fortress and entreating for asylum with the dread Murder of Crows. Art by Jovina Chagas.

What is it?

  • A dark fantasy adventure fraught with perils – The Blood Plague, warring knights & far worse…
  • The story revolves around finding a safe refuge in the Blood Plague at Arckenbury Cathedral, but getting there won’t be easy.
  • A medieval Realm known as Penumbra with a distinctly dark and unique flavour. This includes brutal history & warring factions of Penumbra.
  • Gorgeous artwork of the Characters & World of Penumbra, as featured on the Podcast, Turncloaks.

Artwork 

Check out some of the early & finished artwork we’ve had made! Jovina Chagas & Jessica Bellamy are the lead artists on this project, and really do justice to the gritty feel of the world.”

The Emperor's Knights approach Ostwald. Roaming bands of merciless knights are just one of the dangers in Penumbra. Art by Jovina Chagas.
The Emperor’s Knights approach Ostwald. Roaming bands of merciless knights are just one of the dangers in Penumbra. Art by Jovina Chagas.

 

The Forests of Arckenbury hide unnatural dangers. On the road to Arckenbury, a place of refuge may not be as safe as it seems. Art by Jovina Chagas.
The Forests of Arckenbury hide unnatural dangers. On the road to Arckenbury, a place of refuge may not be as safe as it seems. Art by Jovina Chagas.

 

Victims of the Blood Plague. None know exactly how it started, but quarantining victims has become a necessity. Art by Jovina Chagas.
Victims of the Blood Plague. None know exactly how it started, but quarantining victims has become a necessity. Art by Jovina Chagas.

 

The Castles of Barons & Baronesses scatter the land of Penumbra, their spires looming above the peasants they rule over. Art by Jovina Chagas.
The Castles of Barons & Baronesses scatter the land of Penumbra, their spires looming above the peasants they rule over. Art by Jovina Chagas.

 

The Gothic Architecture of Penumbra. Art by Jovina Chagas.
The Gothic Architecture of Penumbra. Art by Jovina Chagas.

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

Another 5e product, this one an adventure, and, like so many of these books this week, the art is first rate. Jovina Chagas’ understanding of landscapes and ink is inspiring. The world looks foreboding and ready to consume weak player characters. Utilizing art this strong projects darkness for the DM to build upon. Check out the campaign to see more.

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

Auri, Human Rogue. While Magic is rare in Penumbra and it’s practices taboo, some still dare. Art by Gyo.

 

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Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

[UPDATED] What RPG and Comic Kickstarter Christmas Gifts Did You Get?

Happy holidays! It’s gift time 2017 and Egg found several Kickstarter rewards under his Christmas tree. I thought I’d shout out and thank a few projects that went the extra mile and got their work out before the egg nog carried them away!

 

Egg Embry, RPG KS Ph.D.
(Charles Schulz would have done this better!)

 

UPDATED – 2017-12-26 AT 12:19AM EST – This one rolled in during Christmas day.

REVOLUTIONARIES — American War of Independence RPG by Make-Believe Games sent the first installment of their RPG on Christmas day. The game is about a version of the American Revolution and the timing of this piece has a light connection to Washington’s crossing of the Delaware River in that both occurred on Christmas.

“… for your enjoyment is the first installment of the Revolutionaries game, Fires of Liberty. This exclusive PDF sampler is loaded with bonus game content. It includes the Newport, RI setting and your first taste of the secrets behind the Culper Ring.”

 

With that, I’m at four Kickstarter gifts for Christmas 2017. I also heard that the rest of the Mindjammer KS came in as well as the v0.9 Unity RPG. It’s been a good Christmas!

 

* * * * * *

 

UPDATED – 2017-12-26 AT 08:00AM EST – This one came in not two weeks before Christmas day (12/14), it still deserves a mention.

Tiny Dungeon 2e gave its backers the Player’s Guide.

  • This is a bonus product, but it’s comprise of stuff you’re gonna get in the final product. It’s basically the first half of the final book, all the rules.
  • It does look exactly like the rules section in the final product (in content and layout.)
  • This will never contain micro-settings. You’ll get a separate corebook for that (which will have rules + micro-settings.)
  • This will be going on sale soon-ish (likely after the New Year), so we wanted to give it to you first.
The cover of the book! Design by Robert Denton, Art by Michael Leavenworth
The cover of the book! Design by Robert Denton, Art by Michael Leavenworth

 

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Let’s start with the white elephant gift – Free League’s Forbidden Lands – Retro Open-World Survival Fantasy RPG and what they sent for Christmas.

[NOTE – I removed all of the backer-only links.]

  • … download the full 186-page Swedish Alpha PDF of Forbidden Lands, under the Swedish title Rov & Ruiner.
  • … the PDF of the combat cards used for the hidden combo system in close combat, and you can download initiative cards…
  • The current (Swedish) draft of the character sheet can be downloaded…, and the big map of the game is to be found… (Swedish, same version as has been shared before, English version…).

What makes this a white elephant gift? It’s all (mostly) in Swedish.

For the international audience – we will complete the English Alpha in the weeks ahead, and we will try to share each chapter as they are completed to get the material to you as soon as humanly possible.”

Seriously, this is by no means a bad gift because it means that we’re well on our way to getting the finished (i.e., English) product. It gives me something to look forward to in 2018!

 

* * * * * *

Up next is one that I have a short contribution in, Sensational: A Superpowered RPG where Empathy Matters.

“Twas the night before the night before Christmas…
…and just after 3am, I sent you all the rulebook!”

This is a superhero RPG where superpowers are derived from emotions. I’m still reading it but so far it’s a good product and I’m looking forward to slinging some dice using it. For my part, I created one of the criminal NPCs, N. T. Edison, aka Unsequence. If the game sounds interesting to you, I’d suggest contacting Thomas Constantine Moore on Twitter about picking up a copy.

 

* * * * * *

The only physical Kickstarter product I got for under the tree was a comic I’d been eager to check out, GROND Book Three, Oublar’s Revenge. My buddy, Michael Phillips, spread the holiday cheer with two copies of the comic, three prints, three post cards, and three metal cards. His Kickstarter update with the shipping notice had an amusing holiday moment to share:

“I am glad to let you all know that your rewards, including the international orders have been shipped on time. It was interesting standing in line at the post office for 10 mins with only 6 people ahead of me before I got to the counter to start mailing all 55 packages. Minutes later, I looked backed to see that the line had grown to more than 25 people staring angrily at me while the clerk was checking each package one at a time. My wife was with me but soon left to go sit in the car and wait, fearing for her life that someone would go “POSTAL” on me for having so many packages at once. I was determined to get your rewards mailed before Christmas like I promised, so you can get them before the holidays.”

Want to give Grond a try? Ping Mike here.

OUBLAR PRINT
OUBLAR PRINT

 

* * * * * *

This is not an exhaustive list of what Kickstarters (and RPGs/comics) dropped for Christmas, it’s just what I got. Did you get any Kickstarter products under the tree (or in your inbox)? If so, feel free to comment them below.

I hope your holiday was as full of little pieces of happiness! For my part, I want to thank everyone in my life and all of the warm wishes I received.

 

* * * * * *

 

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

3 RPG Kickstarters You Should Back – Changeling, Capharnaum, and Warsong

This week, I’m looking at Kickstarters for the second editions of RPGs including one set in the World of Darkness, one using the FATE Core system, and one crossing over from French to English. Let’s check’em out.

 

Changeling: The Lost 2nd Edition by Onyx Path Publishing
Ends on .

“Contribute to help create, publish, and distribute the 2nd Edition of the CHANGELING: THE LOST tabletop roleplaying game.

There will be dragons and there will be sirens and there will be all the armies of the otherworld sent to bring you back. But you will slay them and you will shun them and you will stand on the battlements of your fortress as they break against your walls of thorn and iron.

You will be free.

You know the stories. The hero leaves his village on a terrifying journey, or the waif finds her way through the cold, dark woods. In the end, they kill the giant or shove the witch in an oven.

But what happens next?

In Changeling: The Lost, you take on the role of an ordinary person who has seen the extraordinary. Lured or abducted by the alien Gentry, you have passed the gates and Hedges between our world and the vast fantastic.

In Arcadia, the Gentry changed you. They forged your flesh and sewed your bones, and they gave you a role to play. You were a lover or a servant or a monster. But it was never your story.

Having run from your Keeper and climbed your way back through the Hedge (and didn’t the thorns bite more than they did going in?), you’re back in the world of pizza and Facebook and nuclear anxiety.

Your eyes are open now. You can see that magic is not the sole province of Faerie. The world is alive with wonders most people never see…and rife with horrors that count on that unwariness. It’s all part of your life now. You take the good with the bad, the magic with the monstrosity, the beauty with the madness.

It’s not always an easy story, not always a happy story. But now it’s your story.

Changeling: The Lost began in 2007, and amassed some of the most passionate fans the Chronicles of Darkness has ever known. Now, it’s reborn in its second edition, which tells new tales and builds on lessons learned in the past ten years. We’re jumping back into the brambles, and letting the scar tissue from last time protect us.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts: 

This campaign is for the second edition of the Changeling, a part of Onyx Path’s World of Darkness. A decade into its lifecycle, everyone can gauge their interest in the setting. For my part, I’m interested in it for it’s basis in historic folklore that some feel was the superstitious explanation for autism and other challenges. I’m curious to see how this influences the project.

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

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Warsong Second Edition for Fate Core by Higher Grounds Publishing
Ends on .

“Every choice has a consequence in this game-changing tabletop RPG where destiny is literally in your hands.

Warsong Second Edition is a game about cataclysmic war. A game that looks into the face of destiny, and decides for itself. It is a game about mythic deeds, and choosing free will over fate.

Destiny is a choice. 

The Viziers guide the flow of our world toward its inexorable doom. The armies of the world amass and gather, intent on destruction and death. Only you can choose the path of your own fate. By your actions, you choose the course of history.

The burden of free will is yours alone. The chains of destiny cannot hold you.

You are free.

Draw your sword.

Make your choice.

Guide your destiny.

In Warsong Second Edition, you play as one of the Viziers, ancient shape-shiftingQuicksilvers, dread undead Neverborn or one of the other primordial inheritors of the world. It is your free will that will shape the course of history and decide whether the world will fall by its own hand, or rise up from its ashes. The ancient powers are but memories, and the people fight for the right to rule.

The skeins of destiny have begun to fray and the Ancient Viziers have disappeared along with the old gods, leaving destiny in the hands of their heirs. You are one of the children of the primordial powers, born the promise of destiny, and bound to its power.

Armed with the power of magic and the ability to shape destiny itself, the Viziers, divine offspring of both god and man, stand as the world’s last defense against the forces of entropy and their own self-destruction. The gods, ancient viziers and primordial powers have disappeared, the nations refuse to stand united for a promised future and bitter rivalries burn as brightly as ever while the world’s life force dwindles down to ember. It won’t be an easy choice, but it will be yours to make.

What will you do with Free Will?

Warsong Second Edition began in 2013 as a play-test sample world built along with Pathfinder guidelines. Over time, it became a game of its own and Kickstarted on June 25 2016. Since then, it’s become a dynamic world that has gathered some of the most passionate fans Higher Grounds has ever seen. Now, a bit over a year after the game’s release, a revised and expanded second edition is nearing completion. Renewed in its second edition, Warsong Second Edition takes a year of reviews, feedback and criticism and puts those lessons to work.

Today, Warsong Second Edition is ready to jump back into the fray as a distilled and refined game using the Fate Core System rules, ready to ride the skeins of fate once more.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts: 

This is Warsong 2e’s second campaign (I looked at the first one here). As I said with the first one, “Need a FATE game? Does the premise sound interesting and you’d like to try the first edition of the game for free? Click here.”

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

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Capharnaum – The Roleplaying Game by Modiphius: Mindjammer Press
Ends on .

“Fantastic Arabian Nights adventure in a world of deserts, dragons, and crusaders!

Welcome to the Capharnaum kickstarter! Help us fund the release of the English version of this fantastic roleplaying game in a beautiful 400-page hardback, and also expand into a complete line of adventures, supplements, and support material into 2018 and beyond!

With your help, our initial goal is to fund the release of the 400-page hardback core book of CAPHARNAUM – TALES OF THE DRAGON-MARKED, a complete standalone fantasy roleplaying game. Our initial release is in beautiful two-colour print, with sixteen gorgeous full colour plates; but rapidly we hope to reach the stretch goal of releasing the entire book with full-colour artwork. We already have the text ready for editing and layout, and anticipate releasing the core book in PDF format in March 2018 and in print in April 2018.

Capharnaum also has a range of supplements and adventures which we would like to produce, including a player’s guide, screen, bestiary, atlas, and epic campaign, plus many standalone adventures. We hope that we’ll exceed our initial funding total and be able to release these additional books to you as Kickstarter stretch goals.

Why not check out Capharnaum today, in THE TEARS OF AMPHAROOL, our free Quickstart Rules and Introductory Adventure!

CAPHARNAUM – THE TALES OF THE DRAGON-MARKED is a fantasy roleplaying game set in an imaginary Arabia-like world. It borrows from the tales of the One Thousand and One Nights, as well as semitic legends and the ancient and mediaeval epics. Capharnaum doesn’t aim to be a historical game, but a heroic one, a flamboyant refraction of historical, cultural, and mythical themes, filled with light and thrilling adventure!

In Capharnaum, you play the Dragon-Marked, heroic individuals with a special destiny, born with a birthmark on their backs in the shape of a dragon’s claw. The Dragon-Mark announces to the world that you are capable of astonishing feats, for good or evil. Chosen by mystical dragons in accordance with an unknown divine will, you are offered a place in the great game of the gods. You’ll be cast into colourful adventures, political, military, and magical intrigues, and much more…

Capharnaum is a simple yet profound game. We all know the tales of Sinbad, of Ali Baba, of Aladdin and Scheherezade – we grew up with them, they form part of our personal culture. The world of Capharnaum is familiar, easy to pick up and play.

And yet – scratch the surface, and a whole world opens up. Meticulously researched,Capharnaum aims to provide fantastic takes on real-world Mediterranean cultures, from ancient Greece and Rome, Egypt and Sumeria, right through to the crusader kingdoms, dark age and mediaeval Europe, the kingdoms of Africa, India, and the distant East. Uniquely,Capharnaum is centred upon a fantastic version of the Middle-East, where all these cultures meet, clash, come into conflict with the profound cultures of the peninsula of Jazirat, and where something new is being born.

As the Dragon-Marked, you transcend cultural differences. You’re united by an unknown, mystical, yet common destiny. Side by side with people who would otherwise be your foes, you adventure in this vibrant, chaotic land, where the fate of the future is at play, and where you are destined to change the world…

The Capharnaum Game System

Capharnaum uses a tried and tested custom game system which is celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, with a second edition of the original French roleplaying game. Our Kickstarter includes all of the updates and rules modifications of the second edition game. It’s a d6-based system, a modified dice pool with a semi-roll-and-keep mechanic. Simple yet flexible, it combines skills and attributes in rolls against difficulties, resolving into levels of success or failure in a highly cinematic style. It’s grounded in traditional concepts of hit points, armour values, wounds, and healing, but also expands into genre-specific rules tweaks such as Dragon Dice and Constellations which let you really feel the power of the Dragon-Marked course through your character.

One of the key components of the Capharnaum system is the concept of paths: mystical associations which you belong to, which represent your view of your role in the world (your “character class”, to some extent), but which also provide you with cool and increasingly awesome abilities as you play.

Advancement is built into the Capharnaum system. As one of the Dragon-Marked, you’re already an individual with great potential – but this is an age which calls for Heroes, and the rules let you rise to the occasion and change the world!

Who is “Al-Rawi”?

In Capharnaum, in the fine tradition of Middle-Eastern story-telling, we call the game master “Al-Rawi”, an Arabic word meaning “the Story Teller”. When you play Capharnaum, you’re not only playing a roleplaying game, but participating in an ancient tradition millennia old!”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

This translation is based on the 2nd edition of the game.

“The Tears of Ampharool are actually the 2nd edition mechanics. […] The English version of Capharnaum will use the 2nd edition mechanics, which features several streamlinings on 1st Ed, particularly with regard to initiative, the calculation of magnitude, and Babouche-Draggers.” – From the comments on the Capharnaum quickstart

[Editor’s Note: Egg’s reaching for this week’s second edition theme.]

In terms of a setting, it brings something under explored (compared to Europe) in RPG, Arabia. That’s what sets this apart, it isn’t another pseudo-Western European setting. If you want to try out how different it is, they have a free quickstart here.

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

* * * * * *

 

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Kickstart the Comic – Penumbra: Fear the Bunny Lord!

There is a term for comic books that became a slightly bad way of referring to them: Funny Books. Meaning they were good for a few laughs, but that was about it. Yet, my friend and I like to take that derisive term and embrace it when we talk about comics. Whether it is Marvel or DC or Image or anything and everything else out there – they are our funny books. They should bring smiles to your face because you are enjoying what you’re reading because that means the people creating the book must have been having “fun” as well.

***

Penumbra: Fear the Bunny Lord!

From Shades of Vengeance Comics

Writer/Letters – Jonathan Lewis

Artist – Sebastian Sala

Colorist – Slamet Mujino

Kickstarter campaign ends on Sunday, December 3, 2017 at 9:34 AM EST.

***

The Pitch:

Penumbra: Fear the Bunny Lord, is the story of the Mistress of Shadows meeting her greatest foe, a lagomorph with great night vision!

The Story:

On a heist to steal a piece of alien technology, rumored to increase the abilities of any Empowered who holds it, she faces off against Wild Hare. He has an aim to test his skills against the slickest of escape artist. Together with the small army of security, Wild Hare will make sure it isn’t Penumbra’s lucky day.

John’s Thoughts:

Like I said in the preamble, this looks like a comic where the creators are just cutting loose and having fun. I mean, a master thief up against a two-legged bunny? And the thing is that comics don’t always have to be these dreary things that we force ourselves through just to have said: “hey, I read that thing – yeah, it depressed the hell out of me, but I read it!”

I gotta think that after you read this issue the response is much more likely to include lots of laughter rather than tears.

The Rewards:

The other thing about this campaign is that the overall amount being asked for is only about $467, so the rewards all lean towards the various digital rewards. However, if you want to spring for something a little different, the $66 level has a “Personal short story by the writer including Penumbra and an Original character of your choice”. If you have that one character you wish you could include in other people’s worlds, here’s your chance.

The Verdict:

Master thieves and the Rabbits that chase them. Nuff said. Go get yourself a funny book.

***

To learn more about Penumbra, check out the Shades of Vengeance website here.

***

John McGuire is the creator/author of the steampunk comic The Gilded Age. Want to read the first issue for free? Click here! Already read it and eager for more?

Click here to join John’s mailing list.

His prose appears in The Dark That FollowsTheft & TherapyThere’s Something About MacHollow EmpireBeyond the Gate, and Machina Obscurum – A Collection of Small Shadows.

He can also be found at www.johnrmcguire.com.

 

4 RPG Kickstarters You Should Back – Flash Gordon, Monster Hunter International, Aventuria Compendium, and Dragon Kings

Two licensed properties are coming to Savage Worlds, an Ennie-winning game is getting an expansion, and a not-quite-Dark-Sun setting by the co-creator of Dark Sun is getting a spiritual successor for the world’s most popular role-playing game. These are all worth checking out.

 

Flash Gordon™ RPG for Savage Worlds by Pinnacle Entertainment Group
Ends on Mon, December 4 2017 10:00 PM EST.

“Pulp action at its finest! Use the Fast! Furious! Fun! Savage Worlds game system in the popular cinematic world of Flash Gordon™!

 

With a deafening roar, Dr. Zarkov’s rocket ship, with Flash and Dale aboard, shrieks into the heavens and heads straight toward the onrushing planet with a madman at the controls!

We announced the Savage World of Flash Gordon™ at Gen Con in 2015, and now it’s here! Drawing inspiration from Alex Raymond’s original strips, the serials, AND the 1980 movie starring Sam J. Jones and Max von Sydow, this is far more than just a game, this is a definitive resource for all Flash Gordon’s adventures!

AND NOW…it includes a foreword by none other than Sam J “Flash Gordon” Jones himself! See the link here for more details!

Foreword by actor, US Marine, and all around great guy Sam J Jones!
Foreword by actor, US Marine, and all around great guy Sam J Jones!

Author Scott Woodard dug deep into the history of this genre-defining series, bringing every corner of the setting to vibrant life. Heroes can foment rebellion in Mingo City, marvel at the tree-cities of Prince Barin’s Arboria, bake in Volcano World’s Land of the Dead, and shiver in Frigia or the cruel Ice Kingdom of Naquk.

Along the way they’ll encounter far more than just Ming’s merciless minions! Bore worms, cave dragons, sharkons, wolvrons, and over FIFTY strange and exotic creatures roam the strange world of Mongo!

Best of all, for fans of Savage Worlds, The Savage World of Flash Gordon™ features all the new powers, Edges, Hindrances, and amazing gear you’ve come to expect…but also an incredible new Setting Rule called…

At the beginning of each session, the players are given the Cliffhanger token. When the group decides to use it, they flip it over to the CLIFFHANGER side! Everyone gets a reward of some kind–such as drawing or refilling their Bennies, or gaining Conviction (more below!). But then the situation goes from the proverbial frying pan into the fire in some way!

We’ll provide a print and play Cliffhanger token online, but those of you backing the Collector’s Edition Box get this amazing, polished brass version, designed by the always amazing, spaceship lovin’, three-time Hugo Award™ winning artist, Cheyenne Wright!

This is the design for the 4" long, polished brass Cliffhanger token that comes *only* in the Collector's Box! We'll have photos as soon as we get our production samples!
This is the design for the 4″ long, polished brass Cliffhanger token that comes *only* in the Collector’s Box! We’ll have photos as soon as we get our production samples!

Once the Cliffhanger is in play, the GM either decides what happens based on the circumstances, or better yet, lets the players choose from a number of options…and we even have cards for them! They’re print and play now, but keep watching the skies and we’ll see what happens, heroes!

Three sample Cliffhanger cards...the symbols on the upper right tell the group what they get for taking on the Cliffhanger!
Three sample Cliffhanger cards…the symbols on the upper right tell the group what they get for taking on the Cliffhanger!

Example: Flash, Dale, Hans, and Thun battle Ming’s soldiers on the streets of Mingo City. Hans is out of Bennies, so another shot from the enemy’s atom pistol will spell his doom! Hans’ player calls for a Cliffhanger. The other players agree and they choose “Out of the Frying Pan!”

The GM tells everyone to take five while she sets up the new scene. She decides one of Ming’s soldiers has thrown a grenade that cracks open the city streets. The heroes plunge into the sewers below, straight into the lair of an angry gocko and the cave men who worship it!

The GM narrates: “Flash and his companions had Ming’s minions on the run! Little did they know a new terror lurked beneath their very feet!”

The group faces a new challenge, but have refilled their Bennies and are ready for action!

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

What does this campaign have going for it?

  • It’s from Pinnacle, the publisher of Savage Worlds, so the setting will fit the game as well as it can because it’s an official Flash Gordon product using a system that feels ready-made for it.
  • They have added pulp mechanics for the game that will offer “cliffhangers”.
  • Sam Jones (movie Flash Gordon) is doing the foreword.
  • The art is pulled from every era of this franchise.
  • They’re offering a scale airscout miniature ship that brings the pulp to life at your table!

There is only good here! The kind of good that’ll save every one of us!

 

To see examples of Pinnacle Entertainment Group on DriveThruRPG, click here.

To support this Kickstarter, click here.

 

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Monster Hunter International RPG: Savage Worlds Edition by Gallant Knight Games
Ends on Thu, December 7 2017 11:08 AM EST.

“The NYT Bestselling action fantasy series Monster Hunter International comes to Savage Worlds in an all new Kickstarter!

Mockup Cover! (Illustration and layout by Jeremy Mohler)Mockup Cover! (Illustration and layout by Jeremy Mohler)

 

Monster Hunter International,  the New York Times Bestselling action series is coming to the Savage Worlds roleplaying system!

Written by Larry Correia, Monster Hunter International is an urban fantasy series about professional monster hunters who battle against the things that go bump in the night!

As the slogan goes…”Cowboy up, and get paid.”

Larry is a big fan of Savage Worlds and when we approached him about doing an updated MHI roleplaying game, he immediately wanted to use one of his favorite rulesets, so that’s what we did!

Gallant Knight Games has experience working in Savage Worlds, and we’ve enlisted the help of the lead writer on the previous MHI roleplaying game Steve S. Long!

Using the rules in the book, you’ll be able to play a variety of teams in the MHI Universe, including the titular team: Monster Hunter International.

The book will also include:

  • Full details on MHI and it’s history, it’s organization, missions and tactics.
  • World information on PUFF, how the various governments handle monsters and more.
  • NPC stats for a variety of characters from the books, including Owen Z. Pitt, Julie Shackleford, Agent Franks, Susan Shackleford and more, written up by the creator himself!
  • Rules for playing over two dozen teams in the MHI Universe!
  • New monsters for your hunters to face down!
  • New MHI details and fictions right from Larry!
  • AND A LOT MORE!

We’re keeping this simple. What you see on the pledge levels is what you get!

Our goal is to fund a 200ish page softcover roleplaying game book for Savage Worlds. Like all Savage Worlds licensees, you’ll need Savage Worlds core rulebook to play the game.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

Flash Gordon and Monster Hunter International are both licensed settings for the Savage Worlds RPG and, while not exactly one-for-one the same (sci-fi pulp versus urban fantasy), they’re still going head-to-head and I’m curious to see the market reacts to them. As with Flash above, the setup for this novel series is ideal for translation to Savage Worlds – You’re a monster hunter… GO! HUNT! MONSTERS!

Add to that, one of the stretch goals is to get the novelist behind Monster Hunter International to create a special adventure for the book and this is a winner.

Sixth Stretch Goal at $80,000 – A special adventure, written by Larry Correia himself will be added to the corebook!”

 

To see examples of Gallant Knight Games on DriveThruRPG, click here.

To support this Kickstarter, click here.

 

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Aventuria Compendium – The Dark Eye RPG by Ulisses Spiele
Ends on Fri, December 8 2017 8:00 PM EST.

“The first rules supplement for the ENnie-Award winning RPG The Dark Eye vastly expands character options for the world of Aventuria.

Experience The Dark Eye and its ENnie-Award winning setting Aventuria in even greater depth with the Aventuria Compendium.

Whether your characters prefer weapons or words, the Compendium gives your heroes exciting new options for interacting with the world of The Dark Eye! As a player, choose the rules that you like best. Options can apply to all characters or even just to one—you decide how you want to play!

Master new fighting styles and wield new weapons on the battlefield, or put more subtle skills to use and outmaneuver your opponents in social interactions. Expand your game with new rules for Fate points, weapon breakage, hit locations, information gathering, item creation, and more!

The Aventuria Compendium and the Aventuria Armory broaden the setting of Aventuria by introducing new character professions and dozens of essential pieces of equipment. Explore new paths to heroism in Aventuria with the first major rules supplements for The Dark Eye!”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

The Dark Eye won a 2017 Silver Ennie Award for best setting (Dark Eye – Aventuria Almanac) and this Kickstarter expands on the game. Want to give this game a sh0t? Click here to get the free preview of the game.

 

To see examples of Ulisses Spiele on DriveThruRPG, click here.

To support this Kickstarter, click here.

 

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Dragon Kings Player’s Rulebook for 5E by Mindscape Publishing and Battlefield Press International
Ends on Sun, December 10 2017 12:26 PM EST.

“A totally new Player Rulebook from one of the co-creators of 5E for the most brutal fantasy RPG out there.

Welcome to the Dragon Kings Player’s Rulebook project.

In 2014, Tim Brown, co-creator of the Dark Sun campaing setting, released Dragon Kings through a very successful Kickstarter campaign and to much acclaim, with rulesets for Pathfinder, Savage Worlds, and 13th Age.

Dragon Kings showed us a ruthless and extremely dangerous world, with exotic races of humanoids and non-humanoids that depart from more traditional roleplaying games paradigms.

Khitus, the setting where Dragon Kings is located, is a world that is slowly dying. Its forest becoming deserts due to dreadful influences on the planet that are draining its natural resources.

With magic that takes a dreadful toll on those who use it, psionics are awakening. Races of long ago mindless insects are evolving and expanding, with a thirst for conquest that threatens the entire planet.  Lizardmen become cleverer by the day.

The world is changing as it dies, and only strong heroes have a chance to slow down or halt its demise.

That would be you.

The Pachyaur
The Pachyaur

Dragon Kings is a departure from more traditional fantasy settings, and has a darker and more exotic edge to it.

Add to this the intensity of the world and the new classes that it presented, and it’s impossible not to appreciate the vast potential and richness of this game.

The gorgeous art, the amazing cartography – Dragon Kings really stood high among the best and most innovative RPGs.

You can download the free gazetteer from here to get a great overview of the world.

And now, Dragon Kings is coming to 5E

With this project, we want to create a Player’s Rulebook to bring the 5E rules to Khitus.

To achieve that, we worked with the talented Chris Sims, one of fifth edition’s developers, and someone with more years of experience in the industry than politeness allows us to mention.

The Player’s Rulebook will contain races, class information, and more. It’s a book for Dragon Kings fans and fifth-edition gamers.

We expect the Player’s Rulebook to contain more than 20,000 words of text when it funds, with more content added as we hit stretch goals.

This Player’s Rulebook will be available both in black-and-white and color, and both soft and hard cover. That way everyone will be able to choose the edition that suits you best.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

Disclosure: I did some *minor* editing on this Kickstarter before it launched.

 

It’s not Dark Sun for 5e… But, it’s like Dim Star for 5e in the best possible sense.

Dark Sun is Dark Sun, and I’m proud of it. If someone would give me the keys and let me drive Dark Sun again I would be happy to do so. I’m creating Dragon Kings to satisfy that creative ‘jones.’ Dragon Kings will share many of the same themes, but will also be its own, unique universe. Honestly, this gives me an opportunity to move in creative directions that just weren’t open to me before, and that’s pretty exciting.

The setting already exists for Pathfinder, Savage Worlds, and 13th Age and, with Tim Brown involved, this offering will go a long way towards filling in for a much loved 5e setting.

 

Also, co-publisher Battlefield Press International has a campaign going for a fantasy prose anthology, The Awakened III Anthology, featuring the likes of Ed Greenwood, Darrin Drader, Darren W. Pearce, and more. Check it out here.

 

To see examples of Mindscape Publishing on DriveThruRPG, click here, and from Battlefield Press International, click here.

To support this Kickstarter, click here.

 

* * * * * *

 

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

4 RPG Kickstarters You Should Back – Xenomorphs, Epic Legacy, Operators, and Warsong

It’s Thanksgiving/Black Friday week in the US and that means we’re headed into the season where RPG Kickstarters will *not* get the attention that they deserve. With this article, I’m hoping to buck that trend and showcase some of the deserving RPGs that are waiting for you to back them.

 

Warsong 2nd Edition for Fate Core by Higher Grounds Publishing
Ends on Fri, November 24 2017 10:53 PM EST.

“A game of warring nations spiraling toward oblivion. Will you pull the world free from self-destruction, or guide it to its doom?

Draw your sword.

Make your choice.

Choose your destiny.

Warsong is a game about cataclysmic war. A game that looks into the face of destiny, and decides for itself. It is a game about mythic deeds, and choosing free will over fate.
Destiny is a choice. The Viziers guide the flow of our world toward its inexorable doom. The armies of the world amass and gather, intent on destruction and death. Only you can choose the path of your own fate. By your actions, you choose the course of history. The burden of free will is yours alone. The chains of destiny cannot hold you.

You are free.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

This KS ends on Black Friday because, if nothing else, Ray Machuga knows no fear! Need a FATE game? Does the premise sound interesting and you’d like to try the first edition of the game for free? Click here. Want to get the full 1e rules for $.97? Click here.

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

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Operators RPG by Samjoko Publishing 
Ends on Thu, November 30 2017 2:00 AM EST.

“Mission Impossible heists and Tom Clancy technothriller meets Bourne-style kinetic fight sequences in this all-new action RPG.

Operators is an RPG designed to tell cinematic action movies at the table. Whether you like challenge-based play in a Tom Clancian technothriller or the futuristic hijinks of Mission Impossible, Operators has you covered.

The core mechanic revolves around rolling four Fate Dice. Players look for pluses in order to succeed and the Game Master looks for minuses that mean the task becomes unexpectedly complicated.

Operators also uses a deck of cards to help narrate fight scenes and chase scenes. The Fight Cards all have unique illustrations and moves taken from various martial arts, but mostly those seen in the Bourne movies. These cards, along with rolling the dice to see which moves land, are turned away, or are countered, make it easy to narrate a kinetic fight scene. Chase cards work similarly, except instead of having fighting moves on them, they have the ways the person in the lead tries to get away.

You can find a free quickstart of the game and all the mechanics in depth right here. along with some additional player aides for the Game Master (called Director in Operators) and some mock-up character sheets with a loose scenario to play through if you and you group want to get it to the table to see how she runs.

Click to download the free Quickstart - still a work in progress
Click to download the free Quickstart – still a work in progress

Click here to download the free Quickstart – still a work in progress. 

The book is going to be graphic novel size, softcover, full colour, and around 200 pages.

The Cards will be a deck of 52 cards in total and will be regular playing card size (2.5 x 3.5″). 19 of them are used for Chase Scenes, 33 are used for Fight Scenes. One of the main goals of the kickstarter is going to be increasing the size of that deck. I’m hoping to add quite a bit more. In the quickstart above you can check out what the cards I already have look like.

Cards Mock-Up (Not Final)
Cards Mock-Up (Not Final)

In addition, these cards can be used with all kinds of other games, like Night’s Black Agents, Delta Green, or any other game where you want to narrate out a brutal martial arts sequence between opponents.

I also want to be able to hire a professional to do photo manipulation and photo realistic art throughout the book. It’s a big challenge since it’s not a style that is commonly seen in RPGs and I’d really like to do it right.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

From the same company that brought the cyberpunk RPG, The Veil, to the world, Operators isn’t quite a FATE RPG as best I can tell, but it uses some elements of it. I am interested in seeing how the photo manipulation artwork works out.

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

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Xenomorphs: The Fall of Somerset Landing Tabletop RPG by EN Publishing
Ends on Fri, December 1 2017 3:00 PM EST.

Disclosure: I freelance for EN World.

“A gritty universe of sci-fi survival horror, including the full core rules and a setting/adventure.

Dare to enter a gritty universe of sci-fi survival horror! A full standalone set containing the core rules for WOIN-powered science-fiction roleplaying games and the Xenomorphs: The Fall of Somerset Landing setting/adventure sourcebook. The books are completed and ready to ship, so you’ll get them right away!

Terror and monsters await in the depths of space…

You get two books shipped as soon as the Kickstarter ends:

  • The 300-page full-colour hardcover N.E.W. The Science Fiction Roleplaying Game core rulebook, fully updated and errataed, with a special, exclusive Xeno Edition cover.
  • The 60-page full-colour softcover Xenomorphs: The Fall of Somerset Landing setting/adventure sourcebook which describes the setting – including known space, the United Marine Corps, equipment, careers, a pair of iconic starships, information about the different varieties of xenomorph, plus a detailed terraforming colony called Somerset Landing, along with a survival horror adventure set in that colony. Both books are detailed below.

Xenomorphs: The Fall of Somerset Landing was written by Darren Pearce (Doctor Who; Lone Wolf), Angus Abranson (Hillfolk; Cubicle 7), and Russ Morrissey (What’s OLD is NEW; To Slay A Dragon).

If you already own the N.E.W. The Science Fiction Roleplaying Game core rulebook, you have the option to simply purchase the Xenomorphs: The Fall of Somerset Landing setting/adventure sourcebook on its own.

Want to see a whole load of previews? Before the Kickstarter launched, we were posting them regularly here on this thread on EN World! Feel free to check them out!

This is the Full Xeno Print Set
This is the Full Xeno Print Set

 

A full-colour 60-page softback setting book which introduces the universe of Xenomorphs, including a 15-page adventure called The Fall of Somerset Landing.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

Disclosure: I freelance for EN World.

 

Want to try out the N.E.W. RPG system? This is your chance to get in on the game via a Kickstarter where the product is in the can, no stretch goals are planned, and delivery starts within a week or two of the close. I participated in their Touch of Class Kickstarter and I think the first PDFs went out the same day that the campaign closed. In this case, it could be a Christmas gift Kickstarter!

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

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Epic Legacy Core Rulebook – 5th Edition Beyond 20th Level by 2CGaming
Ends on Sun, December 3 2017 12:00 AM EST.

“The ultimate guide to Epic Level 5th Edition. Bring your characters and DM arsenal to new heights of power beyond 20th level!

The Epic Legacy Core Rulebook is a 5th Edition supplement which adds a powerful and tested Epic tier to the established levels of play, advancing the Character progression from levels 21 to 30. The Epic Legacy system provides all the tools Players and Dungeon Masters will need to bring your most epic games to life.

At the core of the project’s design is the smooth playability that is the hallmark of 5th Edition. Building upon our work in the Epic Legacy Player’s Guide, this book is a masterwork quality product from veteran designers at 2CGaming. More than that, it is a labor of love consisting of over two years of development, extensive testing and balancing, and a fantastic community that has helped us every step of the way. From cover to cover, this book is packed with epic features that help you take every element of your game to the next level.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

 

Are you taking your 5e characters beyond level 20? Want to play a god? This is the solution. My sweet spot in D&D tends to be levels 5 to 8 so this may be beyond what I’d look at, but that does not mean it’s not going to look amazing and offer some innovative ideas. On the KS page, they have samples of what the epic levels will be like and those are worth checking out to see if this is for you.

 

You can find their work on DriveThruRPG here.

To support their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

 

* * * * * *

 

Signal Boost:

 

Era: The Consortium – A Universe of Expansions 2 by Shades of Vengeance 
The critically acclaimed Sci-Fi RPG returns to Kickstarter: get expansions to the universe, as well as the Definitive Edition Rulebook!
Ends on .

Read my interview with Ed Jowett of Shades of Vengeance here.

Want to know more about the game? You can get the (free) Quickstart pack right here and try it out!

Why signal boost this? Because I’ll be writing one of the stretch goals – Sirona Specials Part 1 (Sessions 1-10)!

 

* * * * * *

 

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Steampunk Fridays – Kickstart the Comic – Stoker and Wells – The Graphic Novel!

Another one made for Steampunk Fridays… I’m not sure how much more I need to say… let’s get to the comic!

***

Stoker and Wells – The Graphic Novel

Writer – Steven Peros

Artist – Barry Orkin

Colors – Chris Summers

Letters – Marshall Dillon

Editor – J.C. Vaughn

Kickstarter campaign ends on Tuesday, November 21, 2017 at 3:39 PM EST.

***

The Pitch:

In 1894 London, a 20-something H.G. Wells and a 40-something Bram Stoker meet and have a very unexpected 48-hour adventure that leads to the creative inspiration for both writer’s first great success – THE TIME MACHINE for Wells and DRACULA for Stoker.  It is not only a thrilling, scary, fun, and beautifully drawn adventure tale, but also a story about putting aside fear and insecurity and stepping into your true identity.  

The Story:

In a nutshell, Stoker and Wells meet in London of 1894 and through extraordinary fictitious circumstances, rooted in historical accuracy (which will remain under wraps until publication!), find themselves forced at gunpoint to travel 4000 years into the future in a time machine, not of their own design.  The machine is pre-programmed to return to 1894 exactly 48 hours later, so Stoker and Wells are dealt a huge blow when… the time machine is stolen!  Now the two men must journey through the weird and dangerous Earth of 5894 to find their machine before it returns without them, aided by “Nina”, an Eloi, and “Wren”, who claims to be a “reformed” Morlock…

John’s Thoughts:

These real-world people living out the strange lives that eventually their characters will encounter is that cool kind of idea that fills my head with all sorts of ideas. Who else could you potentially use? And what crazy adventure(s) could you take them on?

Pencils & Inks: Barry Orkin / Colors: Chris Summers / Letters: Marshall Dillon

Plus, in this particular case… well, I’ve always loved the Time Machine and who doesn’t love Dracula (you’re wrong if you raised your hand!)? Definitely not a pair I would have thought to combine, but I’m interested to see how this might work out.

The Rewards:

One of the cool things is that at the $75 reward level, you can get a Billy Tucci cover (a Kickstarter exclusive). At higher values you can get a Billy Tucci Portfolio review ($300) or a Script Evaluation for your screenplay or tv pilot ($300 and not one you see all that often on the comic side).

 

Pencils: Billy Tucci / Colors: Barry Orkin

The Verdict:

They said Wells and Stoker. They said time travel. They said Morlocks. They said Castle Dracul…

Enough said.

***

To learn more about Stoker and Wells, check out the Facebook Page here.

***

John McGuire

The Gilded Age Kickstarter is still going on. Check it out on Kickstarter here.

John McGuire is the creator/author of the steampunk comic The Gilded Age. Want to read the first issue for free? Click here! Already read it and eager for more?

Click here to join John’s mailing list.

His prose appears in The Dark That FollowsTheft & TherapyThere’s Something About MacHollow EmpireBeyond the Gate, and Machina Obscurum – A Collection of Small Shadows.

He can also be found at www.johnrmcguire.com.

5 Gamebook, Prose, and Comic Kickstarters You Should Read – Malika, Neverland, The Awakened III, Penumbra, and Decision Underground

After reading the Kickstarter for the gamebook, Rider of the Black Sun, its rekindled my love for Choose Your Own Adventure-style projects. Putting my RPG review aside for a day, I look at two gamebooks, two comics, and a fantasy prose anthology as I combine all of my interests – games, comics, and writing – in one article!

 


Check out John McGuire’s The Gilded Age steampunk graphic novel on Kickstarter!

 

Malika – Warrior Queen Part Two by You Neek Studios
Ends on .

“Malika – Warrior Queen is a historical fantasy that takes place in a 15th-century West Africa. Part Two concludes Malika’s epic story!

 

Set in fifteenth-century West Africa, Malika (pronounced “Ma-LIE-ka”): Warrior Queen follows the exploits of queen and military commander Malika, who struggles to keep the peace in her ever-expanding empire. In Part Two of the hit graphic novel series, Malika uncovers a painful betrayal by one of the people closest to her. The treachery unnerves a usually stoic and composed Malika, allowing her enemies both known and unknown, internal as well as external, encircle her, positioning themselves for the destruction of Azzaz, the empire she spent her entire adult life building. Can Malika recompose herself and save her people once again? Or is this betrayal the beginning of the end for Malika and the people of Azzaz? Only time will tell.

Malika prepares to address the crowd at the Hall of Hassan
Malika prepares to address the crowd at the Hall of Hassan

It’s been amazing to see how well Malika has been received since it’s release in May. One of the most rewarding experiences was having chapter one of the graphic novel selected for Diamond Comic’s Free Comic Book Day event in May, where it was one of the most sought-after and best-reviewed books of the bunch!

Producing this series has definitely been the most painstaking for me as a writer. The last two years have been filled with sleepless nights, months of research, moments of self-doubt and more. But I’ve loved every minute of it. Why? Because as much as this is a fictional story, it is both heavily inspired and framed by African history. I drew inspiration for some aspects of Malika’s story from one of West Africa’s most significant female rulers. Queen Amina of Zazzau. In addition to that, Malika’s empire, Azzaz, is surrounded by African kingdoms and empires that existed before colonization. Africa has a wealth of history and mythology that is yet to become mainstream knowledge for everyone to experience and be inspired by. My hope is that the Malika series slowly begins to change that.”

The Olon Jin make their first appearance
The Olon Jin make their first appearance
And its not pretty
And its not pretty

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

I’m a fan of diversity in gaming – Mythic d6, A Far Off Land, AMP: Year Four, Seven Worlds – and comics – Niobe, Route 3, Sorghum & Spear – so I’m excited to see the sequel to the Free Comic Book Day Malika #1 on Kickstarter! This comic offers sword and soul and is something I am eager to read. I’d love to see this go the distance and make it over to be a RPG!

 

The first graphic novel is available through Amazon here.

You can support the Kickstarter here.

 

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NEVERLAND – Here Be Monsters! by Jonathan Green
Ends on Sat, December 2 2017 5:00 PM EST.

“J. M. Barrie’s ‘Peter Pan and Wendy’ meets Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s ‘The Lost World’ in this brand-new, thrilling gamebook adventure!

NEVERLAND is a brand new adventure gamebook – a multi-path book, very much in the style of Choose Your Own Adventure or Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks, in which you choose the course of the story – inspired by both Peter Pan and Wendy, by J. M. Barrie, and The Lost World, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

It’s Treasure Island meets Jurassic Park! It’s Cutthroat Island meets King Kong! It’s Pirates of the Caribbean meets The Land That Time Forgot! It’s Pirates versus Dinosaurs! And you can play as either shipwreck survivor Wendy Darling or automaton avenger Peter Pan. Anybody who has read and played The Wicked Wizard of Oz or Alice’s Nightmare in Wonderland will have a very clear idea of what to expect!

My name is Jonathan Green and I am an author, editor and games designer. I am probably best known for my Fighting Fantasy adventure gamebooks, as well as YOU ARE THE HERO – A History of Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks, and my Pax Britannia steampunk novels.”

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Amazon UK links have been replaced with affiliate Amazon US links.]

Adventure gamebooks written by Jonathan Green
Adventure gamebooks written by Jonathan Green

                                                                           

Pax Britannia steampunk novels by Jonathan Green
Pax Britannia steampunk novels by Jonathan Green

                                                                           

YOU ARE THE HERO - A History of Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks - Parts 1 & 2
YOU ARE THE HERO – A History of Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks – Parts 1 & 2

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

I’m a fan of gamebooks/Choose Your Own Adventures/Tunnels & Trolls’ solo adventures and I’m a fan of Peter Pan so this book is the concept. What would you do as Peter Pan? Jonathan Green lets you decide.

 

More books by Jonathan Green are available through Amazon here:

You can support the Kickstarter here.

 

* * * * * * 

 

Penumbra: Fear the Bunny Lord! by Shades of Vengeance
Ends on Sun, December 3 2017 9:34 AM EST.

“Everyone’s favorite mistress of shadows is back! But can she defeat the bunny lord?

Penumbra: Fear the Bunny Lord, is the story of the Mistress of Shadows meeting her greatest foe, a lagomorph with great night vision!

On a heist to steal a piece of alien technology, rumored to increase the abilities of any Empowered who holds it, she faces off against Wild Hare. He has an aim to test his skills against the slickest of escape artist. Together with the small army of security, Wild Hare will make sure it isn’t Penumbra’s lucky day.

Will she succeed? Will she get paid? Did she think to bring carrots? Back the comic and you’ll find the story in your email before even Penumra could steal it!”

 

UPDATE 2017-11-15 10:15AM – Ed Jowett shared the creative team with me:

  • Written by Johnathan Lewis
  • Art by Sebastian Sala
  • Colours by Slamet Mujiono
  • Penumra created by Ed Jowett

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

[Disclosure: I am working for Shades of Vengeance on their Era: The Consortium RPG.]

 

Ed Jowett of Shades of Vengeance is a nice guy who does gaming and comics and employees lil’ Egg Embry. He has two Kickstarters up right now, this one and the Era: The Consortium – A Universe of Expansions 2. He’s one of the hardest working folks in gaming and this comic is a product of that work-ethic. Zany heroic comedy as a thief faces a bunny-man!

 

To see more comics, and books, from Shades of Vengeance, click here.

You can support the Kickstarter here.

 

* * * * * * 

 

The Awakened III Anthology by Battlefield Press International and Samurai Sheepdog
Ends on Wed, December 6 2017 9:54 PM EST.

“The Awakened III brings together several amazing authors to tell their stories of triumph, failure, fear, and acceptance.

On the world of Grimaton, turning nineteen is more than just a rite of passage into adulthood. When the two moons cross, it can also change your life forever. As awakened, the men and women of Grimaton are possessed of magic in the form of a special bond with an animal or a knack for manipulating the underlying energies of the land. They throw rainbow fire, swim beside alligators, or shape the blood of their enemies into weapons.

Join us for a third time as publishers Battlefield Press International and Samurai Sheepdog work together to bring ten amazing authors together. In our latest anthology you’ll find tales of triumph, failure, fear, and acceptance set once again in the fantasy world of Grimaton. Enjoy new stories with the heroes and villains from Book I. Meet entirely new characters as interesting and dynamic as the rest. Return to the fictional realm of the awakened and watch as its remarkable history continues to grow. When the moons cross, anything can happen.

  • Ed Greenwood
  • Darrin Drader
  • Darren W. Pearce
  • Ty Johnston
  • Doug Herring
  • Ted Fauster
  • Torah Cottrill
  • Rosemary Jones
  • Jonathan M. Thompson
  • Hal Greenberg and Ken Shannon
  • Kevin Glusing
  • Interior art by Ruth Ducko”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

When Jonathan M. Thompson of Battlefield Press International told me about this – that his company was trying out prose publishing – I was excited by the prospect and even more interested after seeing the contributor’s list! It’s sword, it’s sorcery, it’s prose, it’s a series, and it’s a win! They have two prior anthologies to sample (links below).

 

More books from this series are available through DriveThruFiction (here) or Amazon:

You can support the Kickstarter here.

Read an interview with Jonathan M. Thompson about a prior project here.

 

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Decision Underground: A Choice-Based Criminal Adventure by Jimbo Mclaughlin
Ends on Tue, December 12 2017 7:12 PM EST.

What is Decision Underground?

Decision Underground is a choice-based novel in which you must choose your own path through a dangerous and twisted criminal underworld where making the wrong decision could lead to very serious consequences ranging anywhere from getting locked up for the rest of your life to being murdered horribly. Choosing wisely however, could lead to stacks of cash, infamy, and most importantly; your freedom and your life.

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

Like I mentioned with Rider of the Black Sun and NEVERLAND – Here Be Monsters!, I am a fan of solo adventures/CYOA/gamebooks and this one is, to me, unique – a Choose Your Own Crime. Instead of being set in fantasy or sci-fi or superhero worlds, it’s set in our world and you’re a nogoodnik. Grand Theft Auto the book, I like the concept and want to see how it goes… I mean, how many endings are death and how many are jail?

 

You can support the Kickstarter here.

 

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Signal Boost:

 

Era: The Consortium – A Universe of Expansions 2 by Shades of Vengeance 
The critically acclaimed Sci-Fi RPG returns to Kickstarter: get expansions to the universe, as well as the Definitive Edition Rulebook!
Ends on .

Read my interview with Ed Jowett of Shades of Vengeance here.

Want to know more about the game? You can get the (free) Quickstart pack right here and try it out!

Why signal boost this? Because I’ll be writing one of the stretch goals – Sirona Specials Part 1 (Sessions 1-10)!

 

* * * * * *

 

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

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Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Kickstart the Comic – The Last Ember #1: Teenager by Day, Fire Goddess by Night

Sometimes it is a name. Sometimes it is the art. Sometimes it is something else that I can’t always put my finger on. And sometimes it is a bit of all of that. The Last Ember #1 is a little of all those things. And more than enough to capture my attention.

***

The Last Ember #1

By Last Ember Press

Writer/ Letterer – Brant Fowler

Penciller – Giulia Lalli

Inker/ Colorist – Lisa Moore

Editor, PR Director – Jay McCarthy

Kickstarter campaign ends on Saturday, November 18, 2017 at 12:59 AM EST.

***

The Pitch:

Ember Madison was an ordinary teenage girl with ordinary teenage problems. She lived a relatively average life… until that night when the fire started. Everything changed after that.

The Story:

As seen in The Last Ember #0, this is not the first time abilities like this have manifested. In fact, it keeps happening over and over again, as it is destined to be. But something has happened and now Ember is the last of her kind… the last goddess of fire!

The Last Ember is the first and lead title of Last Ember Press’ Emberverse line. The series will delve into the mythology of Ember’s world as she learns about her past and what that means for her present and her future. 

Ember will have to discover why she is the last of her kind, and what consequences that has for her life, her dreams, her aspirations. She hasn’t even figured out what college she wants to go to and now she must determine what she does with this huge responsibility thrust upon her.

John’s Thoughts:

If I’ve learned anything from my own Kickstarter, it’s that the days both fly by and seem to drag on forever. On those where no one seems to want to back your book, they last for eons. And for the ones where you are getting backers from everywhere – they never last long enough.

Coming of age stories. Figuring out who we are. Why we are here? What is our connection to the past? These are universal questions everyone struggles with. How Ember Madison figures out her place will be very interesting.

The Last Ember #1 is closing in on their funding goal with a handful of days to go ($3054/$3500), and feels like a comic that deserves to see the light of day.

The Rewards:

One thing that this Kickstarter has done is add various Milestone Bonuses as they reach different funding levels. Unlike Stretch Goals, these actually happen on the way to funding. So far it has been various additional Pinups and other digital comics, which is definitely a good way to bring some excitement to those intermediate levels (like 60% funded).

Aside from the digital and print copies of both #0 and #1 being available at the early levels, if you really want to delve into the full catalog of Last Ember Press, the $100 gets you a print copy of every comic they have currently published.

And at the top end, there is also an option to get the Last Ember Press team to work on one of your comic book projects ($300). As you can see from their work on the page, you’ll get high quality in return.

The Verdict:

I’ve thrown my money in on this one. The fact that even at the lower reward levels they are ensuring so many milestone bonuses means you’re constantly getting something new to look forward to. So check them out!

***

To learn more about Last Ember Press, check out their website here.

***

John McGuire

The Gilded Age Kickstarter is still going on. Check it out on Kickstarter here.

John McGuire is the creator/author of the steampunk comic The Gilded Age. Want to read the first issue for free? Click here! Already read it and eager for more?

Click here to join John’s mailing list.

His prose appears in The Dark That FollowsTheft & TherapyThere’s Something About MacHollow EmpireBeyond the Gate, and Machina Obscurum – A Collection of Small Shadows.

He can also be found at www.johnrmcguire.com.

4 RPG Kickstarters You Should Back – Kids on Bikes, Tragedies of Middle School, Silence of Hollowind, and A Far Off Land

Recapturing my youth drives my love of RPGs and this week two games have you play the youth of today or yesteryear. One is set in junior high (though, I’m from Georgia and we never called it “junior high”… kindergarten, elementary, middle, high… “junior high” was one of those TV concepts and for years I thought kids in other states went to five levels of school before college… scary…) and the other embraces the kids on bikes subgenre like no other. Combine those with some FATE and Savage Worlds options with good twists and these are worth checking out.

 


Check out John McGuire’s The Gilded Age steampunk graphic novel on Kickstarter!

 

TRAGEDIES OF MIDDLE SCHOOL by 9th Level Games
Ends on .

An anthology of tabletop role-playing games, story games, live action games, and other strangeness inspired by the greatest HORROR of all… junior high.

 

 

THE TRAGED13S OF MIDDLE SCHOOL is an anthology of tabletop role-playing, story games, LARPs, and other strangeness combining classic HORROR TROPES with game mechanics inspired by the greatest horror of all… JUNIOR HIGH!!! Return to middle school without the horror of actually being 13 years old!

Each game in The Tragedies of Middle School centers around a nostalgic junior high activity – spin the bottle, Truth or Dare, passing notes, Bloody Mary, school dances, friendship bracelets, etc. The PG-13 horror vibe running throughout represent the fear, awkwardness, and angst of being a thirteen year old. It’s the worst!

Other strangeness? In addition to the RPGs, story games, and LARPs, The Tragedies of Middle School features a card game, a Choose Your Own Adventure, a solo dungeon crawler, a sport, a dance party, some craftivities*, and more!

*Craftivities are like craft activities – duh!

The Tragedies of Middle School currently* features 20 games and activities with more to come as we hit stretch goals throughout the campaign (fingers crossed!). 20 designers and 3 artists, from a diverse mix of backgrounds, are already involved, ready to share their middle school experiences and game styles. THERE ARE EVEN A FEW CURRENT MIDDLE SCHOOLERS!

*Our expectation is that we will have 20 games, unless we run out of pages, or the Kickstarter totally goes nuts and we get to unlock some stretch goals.

final printing.

We realize that this is a pretty eclectic sounding collection of things – so we thought the best way to show you what kind (and quality) of games we’re pushing here – was with a free sample.So, if you’re not sold yet – try this playable demo of our lead off game – 7 MINUTES IN HELL – designed by Doug Levandowski, featuring amazingly cool art by James Stowe.”  

DOWNLOAD HERE – RIGHT NOW!

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

That movie poster cover looks great! I feel like I saw that movie… Anyways, as with Kids on Bikes below, this RPG anthology touches on my most powerful reason to play RPGs – escaping into our never-was-youth. If you want a variety of games – 20 games – and options, this may be the collection for you. Like every RPG on today’s list, this one includes a free sample to test it out on the Kickstarter page.

 

You can find their games on DriveThruRPG here.

Support their Kickstarter here.

 

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The Silence of Hollowind – Urban Fantasy RPG by The Evil Company and GG Studios
Ends on .

“Hollowind is a metropolis rich with mysteries and contradictions, where magic is outlawed and whoever makes use of it is hunted down.

Hollowind is a vast megalopolis that fifty years ago, thanks to Merlin’s Edict, managed to overthrow the tyranny of arcane families; since that very moment it has been fighting the remaining survivors of the Purge. The Bureaus represent the first line of defense in their daily battle against enemies within and without, observing the motto: order, reveal, and persecute. Anyone attempting to break this new balance, conquered with the blood of thousands, will have to face the Bureaus. The arcanists are always plotting, and people must remain vigilant.

The Silence of Hollowind is a Urban Fantasy role playing game, adaptable to many rules systems with the addition of setting-specific mechanics to enhance gameplay (Savage Worlds conversion is the first system we will design for). It is a complex and detailed setting, aesthetically reminiscent of 1930s United States but populated by Orcs, Elves, Dwarves and countless fantasy creatures living within the oppressive Hollowind, a metropolis rich with mysteries and contradictions where magic is outlawed and whoever makes use of it is hunted down as a criminal.

 

The core book for “The Silence of Hollowind” will amount to about 130 pages, which might increase based on the stretch goals.

Within the book you will find:

  • A deeply structured setting, filled with mysteries.
  • Several play styles, from purely investigative games to action-pulp adventures.
  • Playing the role of lowly Order agents, skilled Revealers or brave Persecutors. If stretch goals allow for it, you will be able to play as Arcanists and see things from a different perspective.
  • Dozens of NPCs and ideas for investigative sessions.
  • A variety of conversions for different rule systems. The initial project includes compatibility with Savage Worlds only, but stretch goals may unlock more. Each system conversion will be released through its own free PDF.
  • Layout and art direction aiming to evoke the setting and resemble dossiers from the very Bureaus.
  • A map of the City of Hollowind!

 

You might be wondering why we didn’t simply choose a single existing system, or why we didn’t custom-make one for Hollowind. I can tell you we spent a lot of time on this decision, but in the end we realized we wanted this game to be approachable by as many people as possible, with as little effort as possible. This means relying on widespread systems, allowing every group to choose the one they are most comfortable with. Each rules conversion will provide everything you need to adapt your system to our setting in a few easy steps, keeping your focus on the game, not the conversion.

At the same time, we will develop special rules for the Savage Worlds conversion (this is the first system we will design for) such as “Interrogation Scenes”, “Arcane Plague”, “Arcane Fogs” and several Edges dedicated to playing Hollowind. All these rules will be released within a free PDF.

*UPDATE: D&D 5th Edition, and FATE, which means conversion documents for both these systems will be unlocked upon reaching the goal of 10,000€!”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

This RPG is set in a dieselpunk anti-magic 1930s America and you’re either a hunted mage or the government hunters. It’s for Savage Worlds, 5e, or FATE and should be interesting. Check out the Kickstarter for a quickstart version of the game.

 

You can find their games on DriveThruRPG here.

Support their Kickstarter here.

 

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A Far Off Land, A Fate RPG in Two Worlds by Bennett-Burks Design
Ends on .

“An RPG where modern meets mythic fantasy in two imperiled worlds, where the intrigues of the Courts & Factions play out.

You, Fated one, are a beautiful lie, and so too is the world around you

A Far Off Land is a multi-world spanning fantasy RPG (roleplaying game) setting by Megan Bennett-Burks and Jacob Possin for the Fate RPG. We will include rules for Apocalypse World / PbtA in a PDF IF we hit the $7000 funding mark.

Take the role of one of the Fated; shapeshifting beings which are creatures of both worlds. The Fated are akin to the demigods of legend.

Note on add-ons: Want to get extra copies of the book, PDF, or other goodies, see the add-ons section further down.

Note on Shipping: Is your Country Not Listed on a Pledge? Contact us, we may still be able to ship to you, but will need to determine an appropriate shipping cost.

Curious About Press on the Game? Want to Learn even More?  See interviews and more as they are listed in our updates!

Switching worlds by Gennifer Bone
Switching worlds by Gennifer Bone

The world around you is not the only one, and even it is not what it seems. Embrace your twinned nature, creature both eldritch and human. You are a child born of one world and adopted by the other, and fated to save them both. Ah, but, alas, you are much like the world you were born to, also, not what you seem!

There are two worlds; one is the world you were born into, the one you’ve taken for granted as mundane and explicable. The other is the Far Off Land; where creatures of myth and magic dwell. This wondrous place was crafted by the gods long ago and has a vast array of Mythic realms which lie within it. You and your companions are Fated, shapeshifting beings who are of both worlds, and the fate of both worlds rests in your hands.

Two Worlds, Rabbit Holes and Many Realms  

One world is that which your character was born into; it is nearly identical to our own present-day earth though it has powerful magic hidden within it. The Fated call this world The Cage because it serves as a prison for slumbering dragons and primordial giants, who would imperil both worlds were they to awaken.

The other world is the realm of myth, magic, and monsters; the Far Off Land and its many realms from ancient Duat, the Mirrored Cities, and Wonderland. Your adventures will span both these worlds, and to the many rabbit holes which act as passageways from one to the next, including The Alley and its great Goblin Market. The rabbit holes were created thanks to the sacrifice of the goddess Tekmor long ago.”

Wonderland Fated by Gennifer Bone
Wonderland Fated by Gennifer Bone

 

Read my interview about A Far Off Land with Megan Bennett-Burks here.

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

I’m interested enough in this project to have done an interview. The idea that you’ll play in two worlds offers a lot of role-playing options and I want to see this make it. I think it has potential as a FATE Core game or as a PbtA option. Need more? You can try the free preview on RPGNow/DriveThruRPG here, A Far Off Land – Preview.

 

You can find their games on DriveThruRPG here.

Support their Kickstarter here.

 

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Kids on Bikes RPG – Strange Adventures in Small Towns by Infectious Play/Hunter Books
Ends on .

“Choose your OWN destiny in this storytelling rules-light tabletop role-playing game where adventure is a bike ride away!

Young Adults, Small Towns…

BIG ADVENTURE!

Kids on Bikes is a Collaborative World Building RPG set in small towns with big mysteries. Written and created by celebrated game designers Jon Gilmour (Dead of Winter, Atari: Centipede/Missile Command/Asteroids) & Doug Levandowski (Gothic Doctor, Seven Minutes in Hell). Kids on Bikes is a rules-light storytelling system that gets players into the action fast.

The Adventures of Kids on Bikes take place in small towns at any point in history before:

  • Everyone had camera phone that could catch video of a Ghost
  • Use GPS to track a Homicidal Maniac roaming around town
  • Research an old creaky house in seconds using Google

Kids on Bikes takes place in a more mysterious time, where anything and everything *could* happen.

Kids on Bikes is a 60 page, rules-light, fast-paced storytelling game in the spirit of games like DREAD, Perseverant, MONSTERHEARTS, and other great indy titles. Kids on Bikes is perfect for game nights in which you want to get a game in RIGHT NOW.

Using stats like GRIT, CHARM, FIGHT, FLIGHT, BRAINS and BRAWN, you’ll jump into the action. Each skill is represented by a polyhedral die based on your character’s competence. More sides = better chance of success.

That being said, even low stats always have a chance of success, as any max result EXPLODES leading to an additional re-roll contributing to the results. Lower sided dice mean bigger chances of explosions!”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

Much like The Monster Hunter’s Club and Tales From the Loop, this game is tapping into the Stephen King’s IT, Stranger Things subgenre for which it took its name and the results are amazing. I read an advance copy of the game and I can fully recommend it. It’ll have an adventure from comic writer Jim Zub (who writes Wayward and a number of Marvel books) which crosses over into my love of comics. Want to try if for yourself? “There is even an early access PDF or ‘ashcan’ version of the rules available now…”

 

You can find their games on DriveThruRPG here.

Support their Kickstarter here.

 

 

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Signal Boost:

 

Era: The Consortium – A Universe of Expansions 2 by Shades of Vengeance 
The critically acclaimed Sci-Fi RPG returns to Kickstarter: get expansions to the universe, as well as the Definitive Edition Rulebook!
Ends on Sun, November 26 2017 4:00 PM EST.

Read my interview with Ed Jowett of Shades of Vengeance here.

Want to know more about the game? You can get the (free) Quickstart pack right here and try it out!

Why signal boost this? Because I’ll be writing one of the stretch goals – Sirona Specials Part 1 (Sessions 1-10)!

 

 

* * * * * *

 

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

12 QUESTIONS ABOUT Era: The Consortium – A Universe of Expansions 2 WITH Ed Jowett (Shades of Vengeance)

I’ve interviewed Ed Jowett of Shades of Vengeance before about his Era: Balam Kickstarter. Well, he’s nearly fulfilled that one and back with a new project. For my part, I’m excited about his latest Kickstarter because I’m freelancing on one of the stretch goals, Sirona Specials Part I (Sessions 1-10). Since the project is up and running, it felt like a good time to speak with Ed again.

 


Check out John McGuire’s The Gilded Age steampunk graphic novel on Kickstarter!

 

EGG EMBRY – I want to thank you for agreeing to another batch of questions, Ed. Let’s start out with the big ones, what is Era: The Consortium? And what is the Era: The Consortium expansion that you’re kickstarting?

ED JOWETT – I am always happy to answer any questions you have, Egg – it’s a pleasure to be back!

Era: The Consortium is an epic Sci-Fi RPG with 500 years of playable history. It follows the story of a group of Humans who have left Earth and travelled for over 1000 years to reach a new region of space. They encounter new alien races, explore this new region of space and continue to expand during the presented history.

This amount of history sounds like a lot to read and understand, but the reason that this amount exists is that the intention of the game is to enable the players to explore any sub-genre of Sci-Fi that they wish. If you’re interested in exploring space and encountering new species, the history allows that fairly early in the timeline, and adapting to live with the species you encounter follows on naturally from that. From facing an alien race which is hell-bent on the destruction of the Consortium to a peaceful society with transhumanist tendencies and from cyberpunk style hi-tech dungeon crawl to standing up to an evil government and dismantling their schemes, every form of Sci-Fi which you can imagine is available within Era: The Consortium‘s timeline.

These options mean that it’s very hard to explain in just a few words what Era: The Consortium is – a significant amount of that answer is up to the player! However, I hope that people who have read this understand what I mean when describe it as an epic Sci-Fi RPG!

Just as there’s not one answer for what Era: The Consortium is about, I’m actually Kickstarting quite a number of expansions (anywhere up to 18!).

I should mention before I leap into those that if you’re new to Era: The Consortium, there is a chance to get your hands on everything that already exists in a handy reward tier as well – both the Definitive Edition Rulebook and all of the expansions exist (8 so far!) in Digital Format at the £25 tier, which will add all of the books which we unlock with the Kickstarter.

The first three new expansions are already unlocked by the Funded Campaign:

  • Free Trader gives rules for trading and piracy through the Consortium, with over 30 Trading Posts across the various planets and the prices for 40 cargo types at each one!
  • New Worlds offers the chance to explore a new solar system at the end of the timeline, 250 years after the last one was discovered and explored, providing all the needed equipment and rules to do so.
  • Predictive Genetic Algorithm allows players to create their own alien race for gameplay, with a huge variety of bonuses and penalties, including those available on the current playable alien races!

Beyond that, we’re unlocking a number more expansions, including:

  • The next part of the Time Travel Campaign (Part 4), which explores what would happen if a group of agents went back in time to the start of the Consortium to reshape it.
  • Home Base, which offers the chance to build (and defend) a base of your own. It also provides the rules for building facilities within the base, which give you various bonuses as a result of their existence!
  • Sirona Specials, which you ask me about in a later question.
  • Creatures Of The Outsystem, which offers 30 encounters with strange and amazing life forms on the edge of Consortium space.
  • And much more…

Every Stretch Goal we meet will unlock a new expansion, and every Reward Tier includes whatever we unlock in Digital Format, meaning no-one will miss out!

 

EGG EMBRY – Tell us about the Era d10 Rule Set that you use for all of the Era games and why it’s so versatile?

ED JOWETT – The Era d10 Rule Set was designed to be a system which could work with any genre from the start, which had a significant impact on its versatility. It’s also designed to be simple to learn but complex to master – I’ve been playing for 4 years with a group of mathematicians, computer scientists and physicists and none of them have cracked it yet!

The difference between games is modular, with the majority of the rules remaining the same. This means that every game has a familiar feel and most of the rules are reasonably intuitive once you’ve played for a while. Beyond that, though, it allows people to take modules from one game and transpose it into others. For example, the rules in the Revival Expansion (one of my absolute favourite books we’ve written!) are actually the rules from Era: Survival, presented in a Sci-Fi context.

This provides the versatility that you’re talking about, in my opinion: if I need to add some new rules, I make sure that they follow the same paradigm and add a new module for the game.

 

EGG EMBRY – You just finished the Era: Balam Kickstarter and have already shipped the rewards, correct? What brings you back to Era: The Consortium at this point?

ED JOWETT – Era: Balam was completed and shipped for all physical and Era d10 rewards. I, personally, have completed everything except layout work on the Fate and Savage Worlds books, so I’m finished on that project until the awesome people – who are much more expert than I in those systems – complete their review of the work I’ve done, and their own writing. As a result, I’ve got a bit of a hole in my schedule, which lets me look at another project.

All of that said, Era: The Consortium is a game that I never really leave, to be honest! Between the end of the Kickstarter almost exactly a year ago and this year, I’ve come up with 8 additional expansion ideas for the existing timeline (not including things I have thought of for the next 500 years!).

I’ll be honest, out of the games I’ve created, this is my personal favourite because of the universe it offers. I’m very proud of the other games as well, but I could happily play this game for the rest of my RPG life, personally. As a result, I never want to stop making things for it, as long as people still want to get them… and it’s clear from some of the feedback I’ve already had that the people backing the Kickstarter definitely want me to continue!

 

EGG – I’ve asked a variation of this question to several interviewees lately – SoV has a free preview of Era: The Consortium, how has it “tracked” so far and have you seen an uptick in interest since the latest Kickstarter launched?

ED JOWETT – That’s an interesting question. I’m not sure if you’re aware, but we actually offer the free preview all the time. I would say there’s been a minor uptick from the Kickstarter traffic, but a lot less than there was a year ago.

 

EGG – I mentioned that I’m assisting on the Sirona Specials Part I (Sessions 1-10) stretch goal and since it’s difficult for me as the freelancer to tease what it’s about in your interview, can you tell the audience what the setup for this campaign expansion is?

ED JOWETT – Sirona Specials is the story of a group of prisoners who are offered their freedom in exchange for using their… talents. It will follow their adventures through the Consortium as they help the company which has offered them this deal improve their standing within society.

If they do enough, they will be given new identities and set free, and as they achieve success they are given more tangible perks, such as good meals and better living quarters!

It’s said no-one escapes Sirona. Of course, if they aren’t prisoners any more, it wouldn’t really be escaping, right?

 

EGG – What inspired the idea that the Consortium would have something between a chain gang and DC’s Suicide Squad in the form of the Sirona Specials?

ED JOWETT – That’s quite simple – companies in the Consortium are all always vying for power. Crone Correction holds some of the true masters of their craft – the people who were good enough to commit crimes to the extent that a sentence on Sirona was the only way to keep them out of circulation.

I find it hard to believe that Crone Correction, even though it is mandated to exist by the Consortium Charter, is satisfied with its position. The leaders of the company want what every CEO in the Consortium wants: more power… and they wouldn’t be afraid to use the assets they have to achieve it!

To me, this was a logical step, and I was glad to run into someone else who agreed it was a fun idea for an RPG campaign!

[Editor’s Note: Egg is the someone else. Egg is proud to be the someone else. Victory = Egg!]

 

EGG – As the publisher, can you highlight one pledge level/backer reward that you think is the standout for Era: The Consortium – A Universe of Expansions 2?

ED JOWETT – I’m going to highlight two, but for a good reason!

If you‘ve never heard of Era: The Consortium before, then you can get hold of everything that exists for Era: The Consortium (currently 11 books, with an additional one unlocked by each Stretch Goal!) with several of the tiers in this Kickstarter.

To those people, I’d recommend the £40 tier, Katana Unit, because I think that nothing beats holding the book in your hands when you’re playing these games. The games are available in Digital only, as well, of course.

If you’re an Era: The Consortium veteran, I’d say you can’t go wrong with the other £40 tier, Scimitar Unit, which offers all newly unlocked expansions in Digital Format, along with your choice of 3 in Paperback! This includes not only the new expansions, but also the older ones as well, so you can get hold of A New Dawn, Revival and Free Trader if you like (for example!).

 

EGG – Recently, Shades of Vengeance attended MCM Comicon, what games did you demonstrate while you were there? How was the response to them? And what upcoming conventions will you attend?

ED JOWETT – We had an absolute blast at MCM Comicon – I don’t think we’ve ever sat down so many people at our gaming tables over a weekend!

We demonstrated all of our games: Era: The Consortium, Era: Lyres, Era: The Empowered, Era: Survival, Era: Silence, Era: Hitman and Era: Balam, as well as both of our card games, Champion of Earth and Evil Overlord’s prototype!

We had an overwhelmingly positive response, which is always inspiring to see, but the best thing is always when we see people who had never heard of roleplaying or didn’t really think they would ever try it sit down and play, and instantly fall in love! I know that my team loves running these conventions as much as the players enjoy attending and trying out whatever we have new – we certainly have a lot of “repeat offenders” these days, who remember us from previous conventions and came searching for us!

We’ve got a couple more this year, AetherCon is this weekend and we will be there inside the virtual environments they are offering! We will be running three games – one of Era: The Consortium, which is full, along with one of Era: Lyres and one of Era: The Empowered.

It’s actually a fantastic time to join us for games, because it’s something that is totally virtual and we play via Google Hangout, so you can join us from the comfort of your own living room!

If you’d like to join us, you can grab a free ticket for the games here:

Era: Lyres (Friday): http://aethercon.com/ACEventMan/Tickets/viewevent.asp?EventID=137

Era: The Empowered (Saturday): http://aethercon.com/ACEventMan/Tickets/viewevent.asp?EventID=136

We’ll also be doing an entire segment on what’s coming in the future for us! If you want to know more about what we have planned for the Era universe, you can join us for here: http://aethercon.com/ACEventMan/Tickets/viewevent.asp?EventID=39

Beyond AetherCon, we have Dragonmeet in London to finish off our year! That’s at the start of December, and we’ll be there demonstrating all the games we have, as usual!

 

EGG – Since I have you here and we talked about Era: Balam last time, how would you rate the outcome of that Kickstarter in terms of fan response and what you delivered?

ED JOWETT – Interestingly, the primary response that I’ve heard to Era: Balam is how interested people are to integrate the rules into Era: The Consortium‘s gameplay!

The Era d10 version of Era: Balam has been received very well, with about 75% of people who backed the Kickstarter choosing to receive it. I think, overall, the project has been a great success, as well as proof that Era: The Consortium does still have more things that could be done, if people think there is more that could be added!

 

EGG – Era: The Consortium has received a great deal of praise, what’s the quote that gives you the warm and fuzzies as a creator?

ED JOWETT – Oh, that’s easy. There’s a review that was done very early on by RPG Knights who really inspired me to continue. In the low moments, I come back to it – I figure if one person likes the game this much, there will be others who like it just as much as well!

“It is literally the best sci-fi Role Playing Game I have ever seen and hence Era The Consortium is the game that I have been looking for.”

http://rpgknights.com/era-the-consortium-a-review/

 

EGG – What other RPG projects are you currently developing for Shades of Vengeance?

ED JOWETT – I currently have 9 active RPG projects! I can’t talk about all of them, but here’s what I can say!

The Core Rulebook for Era: The Empowered is close to completion. We expect to have all of the writing and artwork completed by the end of the year. That means we’re going to be looking closely at launching early next year on Kickstarter. This Core Rulebook will include the full character creation rules (which I finished writing on Saturday!), along with a complete history and multiple different types of superhero sub-genres to explore!

Era: The Chosen is something I’ve been working on for a while now (I recently realized I actually started artwork for it in January, although it had a bit of a break mid-year!). I also expect that to be done by the end of the year, and it is a bit of a race between Empowered and Chosen to see which one will get out first. Era: The Chosen is a Horror RPG – think Dr Who meets Turok 2: horrible creatures are snatching people from our world… will you be able to stop them? It also features some brand new rules around being terrified!

We’re also working on two high fantasy games with very different aims, which I expect to get at least one of finished this year. We’re working on a cyberpunk game, inspired by the Matrix, where you can actually modify reality as you travel through it…

And the last one I can talk about for now is one which is inspired by Final Fantasy in particular and JRPGs in general. I’m working with the talented Mr Mark Miller on the levelling up methods in order to get them nice and authentic with the correct feel.

There is one other game that I am not currently at liberty to announce… but I will be in 3 more days! Please join us at the AetherCon panel about what is to come to find out more [here].

 

EGG – Any parting thoughts? Where can we find out more about Ed Jowett and Shades of Vengeance?

ED JOWETT – You can find us at www.shadesofvengeance.com , where our news is always kept up to date. You can also look for us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/shadesofvengeance/) or Twitter (www.twitter.com/Shades_of_Venge). Finally, you can follow us on Kickstarter (and if you want to know what’s just become available, that’s the best place!): https://www.kickstarter.com/profile/shadesofvengeance/about

I’d like to thank everyone for reading! I hope to see you at Era: The Consortium – A Universe of Expansions 2 [here].

 

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Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

 

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

The Gilded Age Posts

Check out John McGuire’s The Gilded Age steampunk graphic novel on Kickstarter!

 

Doing my 4 Years Later look back last week, I realized that I’ve written a few posts on The Gilded Age, but never really compiled them into any kind of comprehensive Index. Instead, you would have had to search and claw and dig through the Tessera archives to potentially find any of this.

What follows is a collection of stories about selling the comics, coming up with the comics, and sometimes just finding a way to make the comics. I hope you check them out.

 

New York Comic Con Recap – Stories from the Con

While the overall post is about various things that happened, but the Steampunk Guy tale is directly related to my experience trying to sell a copy of The Gilded Age.

And something about Divergent Points.

The Gilded Age

Behind the Comic – The Gilded Age

Every Hero has their own Secret Origin, and this happens to be The Gilded Age’s Secret Origin!

Behind the Comic – The Gilded Age 2

A blog about the second issue of the comic, but also about the ups and downs of bringing a comic book to life in the first place. There are delays, expected and unexpected. Starts and stops. But don’t lose faith, it can and will eventually happen.

You Got Time Travel Mixed With My Steampunk!

This was a post announcing the digital release of Terminus Team-up #2, which also happens to take place in The Gilded Age.

I need to remember to do a full-on post for this one at some point, as I love the way it turned out.

Behind the Comic – Terminus Team Up #2

Oh, look at that. I did write a post about it. A story about how Amber Fox (Terminus Media’s resident Laura Croft meets Dr. Who) and how I managed to figure out a way to get another Gilded Age story out there mixed with my favorite subject: Time Travel!

Behind the Comic – Anatomy of a Panel

I wanted to take a look at one panel from The Gilded Age and really break it down. Look at the script, look at the pencils, look at the inks and colors and then the lettering. How does it all come together?

Steampunk Fridays – The Gilded Age Interviews

This is the post from a couple of weeks ago which pretty much serves as my Index of Interviews for the various people who worked on the books. I don’t know if I say it enough that I am very fortunate to have worked with all of them. They’ve made me a better creator.

Kickstart the Comic – Gilded Age: Vol 1 – A Steampunk Graphic Novel

Hey, have I mentioned that there is a Gilded Age Kickstarter still running? And we have just passed the funding mark and are now setting our sights on a couple of Stretch Goals? Still not convinced? Maybe you should check out this post where I break it all down.

Behind the Comic – Why Kickstarter?

Where I bear my soul a little bit and talk about what I’m hoping to accomplish with this Kickstarter Campaign. About how I’m nervous that all these years worth of work might be for nothing if this thing doesn’t fund. This was written in the days just before the campaign went live and my stress level might have been a bit high.

***

John McGuire

The Gilded Age Kickstarter is still going on. Check it out on Kickstarter here.

John McGuire is the creator/author of the steampunk comic The Gilded Age. Want to read the first issue for free? Click here! Already read it and eager for more?

Click here to join John’s mailing list.

His prose appears in The Dark That FollowsTheft & TherapyThere’s Something About MacHollow EmpireBeyond the Gate, and Machina Obscurum – A Collection of Small Shadows.

He can also be found at www.johnrmcguire.com.

4 RPG Kickstarters You Should Back – Mythic d6, NPC for Hire, Praxis: Black Monk, and Confronting Hastur

This week there are four games that struck my fancy. One gets at something I always want to push – diversity in gaming. It’s important to expand the industry by making everyone welcome at the gaming table and that starts with settings that appeal to all walks of life. Other games on the list look at Great Old Ones in 5e, varieties of games, and collections of NPCs. Read on to see what speaks to you.

 


Check out John McGuire’s The Gilded Age steampunk graphic novel on Kickstarter!

 

Dark Naga – Confronting Hastur for 5th Edition by Dark Naga Adventures (Kevin Watson)
Ends on .

“A non-linear adventure in the classic Sandbox style where the party (Level 10-11) opposes the followers of a Lovecraftian Old One

About This Project
About This Project

Confronting Hastur is an adventure for three to seven characters about level ten. It is designed for use with the Fifth Edition version of Gary and Dave’s RPG. It can be adapted to any fantasy RPG.

The Premise  

About a year after the events of The City of Talos, the characters return to the city of Meawold as part of their travels, and they are contacted by Cora, an agent of Talos. She wants the party members to accept a mission to investigate several leaders of the Meawold community to find the person or persons who are part of a newly risen cult of Hastur. The augers of Talos have sensed someone near Meawold is reaching out to Hastur, and appears to be preparing a vessel to hold an aspect of Hastur. Cora has a list of people she has observed behaving oddly who have the means to further a cultist plot. The party members are to investigate these people, identify the person or persons who are involved, and destroy the cult and their vessel before an aspect can be pulled across time and space.”

Potential Cover for DNH4-Confronting Hastur
Potential Cover for DNH4-Confronting Hastur

 

Wanna-lancer* Rewards:

“Pledge $100 or more / $200 or more
Involved Naga / Committed Naga

Both levels get all of the physical and digital rewards as well as:

… you will enjoy limited participation by naming and describing an NPC (subject to Head Naga final approval).

Committed Naga also includes:

This level also takes things a few steps further by having the NPC you helped develop crystallized with a B&W drawing. The art blends the description with your likeness (or a likeness of someone you want to immortalize). There are some Terms and Condition details on this item.”

 

*Wanna-lancer™ – A gamer that’s pursuing freelance RPG work. Some back RPG Kickstarters that offer rewards to create NPCs, spells, items, adventures, etc. in order to build up their resume, make contact with publishers, and learn what’s expected on assignments.

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

Need a 5e adventure with some Great Old Ones for your table? Is your table ready to take down a cult? Want to design an NPC for this adventure so it feels more like your own? Dark Naga has you covered with this one. On the surface, it’s what you expect but it’s also what you want at the table. This is going to be a fun adventure no matter how you look at it.

 

You can see examples of their work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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MYTHIC D6- The Role-playing Game by Khepera Publishing
Ends on .

“MYTHIC D6 is a dice-based tabletop RPG created to play heroic action adventure in your genre of choice.

MYTHIC D6 is a dice-based tabletop role playing game created to play heroic action adventure in your genre of choice. The spiritual successor of the D6 Legends games system produced by West End Games, it, and the game worlds it supports, opens new options and opportunities for playing across a wide spectrum of genres. Incorporating 20 years of innovation into a tried and true system gives gamers ultimate flexibility when looking for a transparent and intuitive system.

The MYTHIC D6, a 250-page softcover book that includes: 

  • A complete rule set for use with any super heroic action genre.
  • Flexible character creation.
  • Rules for super human powers.
  • Gadgetry rules.
  • A complete sample game world called Project Mythic!

 The writing, testing and basic layout are done.  

The game is done, its ready to go. All I need are the resources to print it and pay for art, shipping and marketing. The game is a reality, but YOU can make it better. I want this project to be the premier flagship for the future of D6 gaming and I can do that with the generous resources you will hopefully provide.

 A Fully Realized Setting!
Superheroes vs Monsters! This is the world of Mythic, a world where super human heroes battle the forces of a shadowy dimensional incursion while dealing with infighting and betrayals that threaten to tear their lives apart. Until recently Earth’s history was pretty much as we know it today. With one exception…

With the barrier between our dimension and the Otherlands weakened, things leaked from the dark dimension into Earth’s reality; not only monsters and cryptids but also spirits and dark emotional energy.

Into the mix comes the Institute, a shadowy organization with its origins in project Warhorse, the government program that succeeded in creating metahumans during World War 2. The Institute has set itself up to fight the invasion, bringing to bear superhumans it created for just this purpose.”

Bastion
(A MYTHIC D6 fantasy game world)
$30,000
A dark Afrocentric sword and soul post-apocalyptic fantasy game set in a world on the brink of ultimate annihilation. Heroes take on the roles of the Fihankra, warriors with the mission of delivering the city of Bastion and its people from the vile machinations of the Overfiend. (Think Stephen King’s The Mist, Merv Peake’s Gormenghast mashed together with Charles R. Saunders’ Imaro)

 

Wanna-lancer Reward:

“Pledge $200 or more
5D6

PDF and PRINT copy of the MYTHIC D6 roleplaying game.

Plus, all the reached Stretch Goals in PDF and Print.

Create a signature NPC or monster to be part of one of the game background in the book.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

I work for EN World because I believe in their missiondiversity in gaming. That mission is why I want this campaign to reach its stretch goal and unleash Bastion on the gaming world! “A dark Afrocentric sword and soul post-apocalyptic fantasy game set in a world on the brink of ultimate annihilation.” As a setting, this would be an exciting gaming option for fantasy RPG. It’s a distant stretch goal but one I’m hoping they achieve because, combined with the 5D6 backer level that allows you to create a NPC or monster, this game and world will shine that much more!

 

You can see examples of their work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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NPC For Hire: Heroes & Villains by Knights of Vasteel
Ends on .

“The masterfully illustrated tabletop RPG aid is back to bring you majestic heroes and epic villains.

We are the Knights of Vasteel. We are on a mission to create premium tools and accessories for tabletop RPGs that meld the physical and digital worlds into one seamless experience. NPC For Hire: Heroes & Villains is the next step on our journey.

What is NPC For Hire?

*Heroes & Villains art is still pending
*Heroes & Villains art is still pending

NPC For Hire is a deck of 52 cards with beautiful hand-drawn portraits of fantasy folk. At this point, we now have 3 editions of NPC For Hire:

Heroes and Villains

This campaign will add the 4th edition to the NPC For Hire family. We are proud to introduce Heroes & Villains. The money raised from this Kickstarter will fund the artwork, development, and shipping of these decks.

A lot of people have been asking for more heroes and villains to be included and as we’ve used NPC For Hire in our own campaigns, we found that we wholeheartedly agree! We decided to dedicate an entire edition to heroes and villains. This is what the breakdown of portraits will be on the deck:

  • 40 Villains
  • 12 Heroes

Notice that the majority of this deck will be of villainous NPCs. That’s because a great deal of our current NPC portraits can be used in a heroic role while not many can be used in a villainous role. By adding more portraits specifically tailored as villains, it will help balance things out. With that being said, we did feel that we were missing some of those more majestic heroes so we wanted to include a few in this edition as well.

If you want to see some of the artwork for previous editions, you can visit our Facebook page or our previous Kickstarters.”

 

Egg’s Thoughts:

With the growing ranks of the NPCs from the Knights of Vasteel projects, they’re getting close to populating a setting and that makes this a cool project. Add in the killer art and, if you need NPCs, this is an excellent set.

 

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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Praxis: Black Monk by Post World Games
Ends on .

“Five tabletop roleplaying games set in the twisted world of the immortal and unknowable black monk, who offers salvation… at a price.

The Black Monk is a series of five games set in a strange fantasy world where time means nothing anymore. Each game is set in a unique part of a desolate world, with strange characters passing the time until the Black Monk visits.

In between these visits, the character’s lives are interrupted by sometimes trivial and other times confusing events. Everything seems to fit together like an elongated jigsaw puzzle, but no one can see the starter pieces stretching across the horizon.

But they don’t complain. There is always more work. The village needs workers.

Then one evening, the sun stayed in the sky all day. When there should have been night, the sun remained. And now it feels as though it’s been years since the Black Monk came. But perhaps it was yesterday. Nothing is right…

Is that blood?

The first Black Monk game was written a year ago and is available online. For completion’s sake, it is available through this kickstarter as well.”

Egg’s Thoughts:

I backed Post World Games/Jim Pinto’s “The $1 Play What You Want Mystery Campaign RPG Project” and I have more than gotten my dollar’s worth of entertainment from it (plus PDFs and, of course, the forthcoming game). The title of my favorite update on the dollar project was “it’s 3am. do you know where your dollar is?”

How does that project relate to Jim’s current campaign? I have not gotten my $1 game yet, but I have gotten more entertainment than you can buy for a buck. If I’m tickled pink with an undelivered project, imagine how good this one could be since, you know, parts of it are already up and running here. This is going to be a winning project.

 

You can see examples of their work at DriveThruRPG here.

You can support this Kickstarter campaign here.

 

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Signal Boost:

 

Era: The Consortium – A Universe of Expansions 2 by Shades of Vengeance 
The critically acclaimed Sci-Fi RPG returns to Kickstarter: get expansions to the universe, as well as the Definitive Edition Rulebook!
Ends on .

Want to know more about the game? You can get the (free) Quickstart pack right here and try it out!

Why signal boost this? Because I’ll be writing one of the stretch goals – Sirona Specials Part 1 (Sessions 1-10)!

 

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Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

* * * * * *

Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

11 QUESTIONS ABOUT A Far Off Land WITH Megan Bennett-Burks (Bennett-Burks Design)

Megan Bennett-Burks of Bennett-Burks Design agreed to answer some questions about her Kickstarter for A Far Off Land, A Fate RPG in Two Worlds. We discuss the free preview, her company, and this RPG involving planewalking characters as they drive the destinies of two worlds.

 


Check out John McGuire’s The Gilded Age steampunk graphic novel on Kickstarter!

 

EGG EMBRY – Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions, Megan. Let’s talk about your Kickstarter, A Far Off Land, A Fate RPG in Two Worlds. What is it about?

MEGAN BENNETT-BURKS – Thank you! A Far Off Land is an RPG for Fate Core, it is about people called the Fated, which are demigod-like shapeshifters that travel between two different worlds. One world is essentially our own (deceptively mundane) reality and the other is the fantastic Far Off Land of eldritch beings. The focus is on the drama that goes on between the various organizations with an interest in The Fated and the fate of the two worlds. Ultimately the PCs can push the world towards the future their faction envisions, or rebel against that.

 

EGG – This game is for the FATE system, or it can be used as a system agnostic setting. What made FATE work for this world? Why suggest it as a non-FATE option?

MEGAN BENNETT-BURKS – Fate is the most natural fit for this game; it is layered in such a way that it can be picked up as a very light system, and then once someone is more comfortable they can add more to it. It also is meant for new settings to be built based on the rules, and its systems for stunts and aspects make this work excellent. It also tends to work ideally for larger than life characters.

It is definitely built for Fate; there is however, a lot of setting material, and you don’t have to use the rules to use that, especially if you want to use another relatively light-to-medium system. I could see someone perhaps using it with RISUS or even something like Savage Worlds. I do think it would take rather a lot of effort to make it work with something like D&D 5e or Pathfinder though for example.

 

EGG – Let’s talk about your stretch goal to make the game available for Apocalypse World / Powered by the Apocalypse system. As above, what makes PbtA the right expansion for this setting? FATE, system agnostic, and PbtA, are there any more systems you’re considering?

MEGAN BENNETT-BURKS – A lot of why I want to use PbtA is because I currently have a bit of, well, a crush on the system really. I’ve been home-brewing like mad with it. It’s a lot easier to make new settings and rules with than it might initially look, and it works excellent whether you want to build a game using Playbooks, straight up character classes, or just have players pick from a selection of abilities. We’ll probably use playbooks because I think there will be plenty of concepts in A Far Off Land that will fit perfectly with that. I also think the concept of Moves and how they give the games built in PbtA just so much flavor will really help emphasize certain aspects of the game that need it.

 

Ankou by Gennifer Bone

EGG – I’m fond of this question – When Russ Morrissey of EN World, the ENnie Awards, WOIN, and more asked what’s the best way to gauge how the pre-marketing for a crowdfunding was progressing, Owen KC Stephens (Design Lead for Starfinder) offered “I find downloads of free preview PDFs on DriveThru to be a pretty good predictor.” You have a free preview onRPGNow/DriveThruRPG, A Far Off Land – Preview. Was it up before your KS launched? And how has it “tracked” since the campaign got underway?

MEGAN BENNETT-BURKS – I did place it up before I launched the campaign, but, just barely. It’s tracked very well, but to be honest, most free previews seem to do very well on DriveThruRPG, so I think I need to see more research on how different ones compare, and what that really means.

 

EGG – What’s been the reaction to A Far Off Land – Preview, and the Kickstarter in general?

MEGAN BENNETT-BURKS – So far it’s been really good. When I first placed it up, it was on G+ and not DriveThruRPG (though I only waited maybe a few days until I placed it up there), and people liked it but found it was lacking some things it needed. The suggestions I got for what it needed were very specific so that was good.

 

Switching worlds by Gennifer Bone

EGG – In your opinion, what’s the best backer reward that you’re offering through this campaign?

MEGAN BENNETT-BURKS – The hardcover books, they always look great, and all the ones I’ve gotten from DriveThruRPG have been hardy as well. The quality from what I’ve gathered has just continued to climb on DriveThru as well.

 

EGG – You’re offering several rewards that let you create content for your game, and I’m a big fan of vanity press/wanna-lancer* rewards. Tell us about what the backers can create?

*Wanna-lancer™ – A gamer that’s pursuing freelance RPG work. Some back RPG Kickstarters that offer rewards to create NPCs, spells, items, adventures, etc. in order to build up their resume, make contact with publishers, and learn what’s expected on assignments.

MEGAN BENNETT-BURKS – There’s options to create monsters, magical artifacts, a character (which will also get you a custom character sheet for it), a Eldritch Court (which is a type of organization for the game), or finally a whole realm/location for the game. They all come with an illustration of the creation as well, and the backer gets to choose which of our artists does the illustration (dependent on artist availability, but we will try to give backer illustrations priority).

 

Air element Fated by Gennifer Bone

EGG – Tell us a little about you and what was the game that changed you into a gamer?

MEGAN BENNETT-BURKS – Rifts, that was the first RPG I ever played. My memories of my first Rifts games are fuzzy to say the least, but, I picked it back up again years later. I LOVE multiverse settings, which should show here, and that my favorite setting is Planescape.

 

EGG – Why did you create your gaming company, Bennett-Burks Design?

MEGAN BENNETT-BURKS – I freelance as a programmer and web-designer, and wanted to make sure I was doing that legitimately so formed a sole proprietorship. Honestly, I didn’t even think about making a separate company for my RPG books, so I’ve just put everything under one umbrella.

 

Hatters Court Member by Tanyaporn Sangsnit

EGG – What projects are you currently developing?

MEGAN BENNETT-BURKS – Beyond this one, I have Oneiros: Five Dragons on the back burner. I placed the early access on DriveThruRPG, and plan to return to it, but, it’s a free supplement that I’m really doing for fun. I also have some other projects planned for the future, one of which will be for PbtA and preliminary I’m calling Fennel Witches. It is about the Benandanti and will deal with a lot of Italian folklore, small town weirdness, and coven oriented game-play. Right now I’m just doing research for it, and that will be the case likely for some time.

 

EGG – Any parting thoughts? Where can we find out more about Bennett-Burks Design?

MEGAN BENNETT-BURKS – My G+ page right now is the best place, I’m very active on there.

https://plus.google.com/u/0/+MeganBennettBurks

And DriveThruRPG:
http://drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/8639/BennettBurks-Design

I will eventually overhaul my company website. But, I spend a lot more time working on other people’s sites, so much I have no time for my own!

For A Far Off Land there’s also this: http://farofflandrpg.com/

 

Try the free preview of A Far Off Land – Preview here.

You can support the Kickstarter for A Far Off Land, A Fate RPG in Two Worlds here.

Wonderland Fated by Gennifer Bone

 

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Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

 

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to DriveThruRPG.com and Amazon.com.

Savage Worlds: Fast, Furious, and Fun! - Available Now @ DriveThruRPG.com

 

* * * * * *

 

Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer™

Wanna-lancer™ Checklist T-shirt available at Cafepress

Interested in being a wanna-lancer? Start with the official Wanna-lancer Checklist t-shirt or wall clock or ice tea glass!

 

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Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by:

Want your RPG Kickstarter reviewed? Have some RPG wanna-lancer thoughts to share? Contact me here or on Facebook (Egg Embry) or on Google Plus (+Egg Embry).

Four Years Later

Check out John McGuire’s The Gilded Age steampunk graphic novel on Kickstarter!

I’m about a month late with this particular article (this is my 212th “regular” blog post). Normally I like to use the beginning of October as my look back at the previous year’s blog posts and point out some of the ones that either got some reaction or others that I felt good about but got overlooked.

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Behind the Comic – Why Kickstarter?

Insight on why exactly I’m doing a Kickstarter for The Gilded Age. And a snapshot of my feelings a few days before I pulled the trigger on something that determines whether a lot of my time might have been wasted on being a comic book writer.

 

Tales from the Loop – Thoughts about the Best Game I Played at GenCon

Probably the one post that surprised me with how well it did, but really it shouldn’t have. If playing the game was as fun as it was, then writing about the game should have had the same amount of excitement for it. If I remember nothing else from GenCon 2017, I will remember this particular game and session.

NES Games Left Off The Classic

I wasn’t sure if I would get the NES Classic. Considering how hard it was to find the system, it seemed more like a pipe dream than anything else. But then my old roommate, Mike, got me one. And I was amazed by what was included and a little disappointed by what wasn’t included. With a few tweaks, they could have taken it from a “10” all the way to “11”.

Death of Ideas

An essay about whether or not you should worry about the idea that “There are no new ideas” or “Sequels are killing the film industry”. I’d like to argue that it might not be as big of a problem as you think.

Not Like This

The aftermath of this year’s Superbowl when things were still very raw and my mind was trying to process everything that had happened.

Gotta admit, rereading it was a little rough.

20 Things I’ve Learn at Concerts

After decades of going to concerts in all sorts of venues from the extremely small to full on stadiums, I’ve decided to classify some of what I’ve seen and learned from all these shows. Think of it as a do and don’t do list (you get to decide which one is which).

Interview with a 9 Year Old

Much like everyone thinks that the past was always better than the here and now, so too do they think that the current generation will be the death of everything Personally, I believe it is just a different way of looking at the world. So in an attempt to get to know a tiny bit of insight – I interviewed my 9-year-old nephew.

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John McGuire

The Gilded Age Kickstarter is still going on. Check it out on Kickstarter here.

John McGuire is the creator/author of the steampunk comic The Gilded Age. Want to read the first issue for free? Click here! Already read it and eager for more?

Click here to join John’s mailing list.

His prose appears in The Dark That FollowsTheft & TherapyThere’s Something About MacHollow EmpireBeyond the Gate, and Machina Obscurum – A Collection of Small Shadows.

He can also be found at www.johnrmcguire.com.