I am always curious what Kickstarters inspire other tabletop RPG designers. Last week, I asked several friends what they were backing and enjoyed seeing the answers, the overlaps, and the interest they have in games. This week, I reached out to another set of RPG Kickstarter creators to find out what they’re excited to see in Kickstarter. What projects excite the creators of:
“An old-school fan-made, DIY collaborative RPG Zine is a fandom supplement anthology for Masks: A New Generation by Magpie Games. We are paying all our contributors a fair and competitive rate, and are including a plurality of voices, all supported by an amazing system of fans and networks. As the editor and organizer of this zine, I’m immensely proud of this community of designers and writers who have dedicated their time and expertise to this zine.”
Linda H. Codega recommends:
“Zine Quest is winding down, but there are still a few RPG Zines I’m psyched about. If you’re looking for a last minute zine to support I recommend:
The Tomb of Black Sand: A more traditional OSR supplement full of fantastic and incredible art that is system neutral and an easy in for GMs. These creators make beautiful work, and sometimes it’s nice to do a traditional swords and sorcery gambit with a lot of leeway on the world you can create and system you can use.
Comrades:Fight the power, support anarchist ideals, fund indie artists, and bring down the corrupt government with your friends. This PbtA [Powered by the Apocalypse] game looks like it’s going to be fantastic, has multiple settings in the book, and includes playbooks that speak to traditional agitator roles and can also be used for both futuristic and ancient story narratives.”
“A tabletop roleplaying game about life in the revolutionary underground, where a roll of the dice can change the world.”
W.M. Akers recommends:
“I am extremely excited about Rosenstrasse, an “elegiac RPG” about romance across the boundary of religion in Berlin, 1933. I recommended it to the backers of Comrades because I felt like history-minded players who hate fascism—which is exactly the sort of person who likes my game—would enjoy this beautiful-looking RPG.
I’m also really intrigued by Grey Cells, a mystery RPG inspired by Agatha Christie’s Poirot. I write mystery novels—I’ve got one coming out in May—and I’m interested to see how they approach the difficulty of providing a satisfying mystery in a format that necessarily requires so much improvisation.”
“Bioengineered bounty hunters take on challenges in newly colonized space. Part Cowboy Bebop, part Blade Runner.”
Fraser Simons recommends:
“Obachan Panic! has a unique premise and stretch goals for hacking the concept into various OSR settings. Neurotic aunties who save the world. I’m down!
Manifest RPG is a sci-fi western game. While I’m not usually into westerns, the concept and explicit direction toward inclusion makes me hope that it’ll take all the interesting parts and discard the problematic things that tend to dog the genre.”
“Tavern Encounters: The Heroes’ Feast is a gaming book designed to enhance your favorite tabletop roleplaying game experience!”
Jaye Sonia recommends:
“I’ve backed over sixty Kickstarters, so the things I look for in a KS may vary wildly. I tend to back a lot of my friends’ Kickstarters, especially when those friends worked on something. I’m not sure when they’re launching, but I have several friends working on the Starfinder Kickstarter for Grimmerspace; I’m excited to see it, especially since my friends Ben McFarland, Lou Agresta, and Erik Frankhouse are working on it.
Mind you, two of the Kickstarters (outside of stuff I’m directly working on) right now aren’t live any long, but look incredibly cool nonetheless. I backed Into the Wyrd and Wild (which raised nearly 60k) because it looked breath-taking. A system-neutral bestiary, this book gave backers over 100 locations designed to keep your games weird and different. I can’t wait to get it.
I’m also gingerly flipping through my digital copy of The Expanse (which has some beautiful maps in it) and I can’t be happier with what I’ve seen so far. My hat goes off to Chris Pramas and the game design team over at Green Ronin.”
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.
“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.”
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.
“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.
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.
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.”
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.
“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 SomersetLanding 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!
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.”
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!
“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.”
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.
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: