What Kickstarters Excite Creators? CAPERS Noir, Dino Wrangers, Manifest, and Absconding

I backed into this column in which I ask RPG Kickstarter creators what games they’re excited about on Kickstarter/Indiegogo, but I’ve grown to really enjoy getting other creator’s feedback. It lets creators share what they are looking at and helps shine the spotlight on quality games. Some of the RPGs listed below are collecting multiple recommendations, all genuine votes for their quality. This week there are recommendations from:

CAPERS Noir RPG by NerdBurger Games

Ends: Thu, April 11 2019 9:00 PM EDT.

“An RPG of Criminals, Cops, Mystery, and Monsters…with Super-Powers!”

Craig Campbell of NerdBurger Games recommends:

“I’m digging Hair Metal Horror: Glam Metal Horror RPG Zines. Being a child of the 80s and a huge horror movie fan, this one really speaks to me. Plenty of 80s horror movies had rocking soundtracks, and the mash up of glam metal and horror is just too good to pass up. Mash ups like these just go to prove, if you can think of an RPG idea, there’s a game for it. The description makes it look incredibly fun with plenty of horrific elements, but dotted through with glam rock and humor.

Also on my radar is Dino Wranglers – Zine Quest. A family RPG, it’s about wrangling dinosaurs but with a thoughtfulness that can be missing from some games. Specifically, the characters are “tending to the safety and wellbeing of the creatures in their charge.” The game uses a token system that younger players will easily grasp. It’s designed by a parent who found they were having a hard time enjoying playing RPGs with their kids. So they made a game that would do what those other games didn’t. And that’s very much in the spirit of indie game design.”

Dino Wranglers – Zine Quest by Rachelle Dube

Ends: Thu, March 28 2019 11:08 AM EDT.

“A pick-up-and-play narrative RPG for families about overcoming obstacles as a dinosaur wrangler.”

Rachelle Dube recommends:

With Kickstarter’s Zine Quest and several game designer friends putting out bigger projects, 2019 has been absolutely brutal. My wallet only goes so far! I’ll limit myself to three I pulled out of a virtual hat.

First: Escape from Dino Island by the Sams—Sam Roberts and Sam Tung. We’re all about dinosaurs in our house! The fact that it is designed for one- or two-shots makes it perfect for those random nights friends pop by or plague hits our usual gaming groups. If Sam Tung wasn’t doing, you know, his own Kickstarter, I would have loved to have his art in Dino Wranglers! This game checks a lot of boxes for me, and I can’t wait to get it!

Second: Mythsea: Legends of the Borderlands by Jay Iles. She describes it as emulating, “Final Fantasy 12 crossed with Steven Universe. You’re crystal-powered heroes sent to a conquered territory to make it useful for your masters, but as you play (and grow invested in the territory) you’ll develop new loyalties and see your homeland in a whole new light.” I’m probably one of two people that haven’t ever played any Final Fantasy games, but it’s beautiful and engaging, so I’m interested anyway!

Third: Swordsfall: An Afropunk Sci Fantasy Setting by Brandon Dixon, AKA Tikal. I’ve been following him for a while on Twitter, and I’ve been following this project for a while now. I love everything about the setting and art, I can’t wait to get it on my table. Full disclosure, Tikal will write a scenario for my game, Dino Wranglers, if it hits the $2100 stretch goal.

NOTES:

Manifest the RPG by Waypoint Game Designs

Ends: Mon, April 1 2019 3:00 PM EDT.

“An exciting and immersive Sci-Fi Western tabletop roleplaying game”

Waypoint Game Designs recommends:

“Here at Waypoint Game Designs we’re really intrigued by Grey Cells. We’re big fans of the crime genre. And the exclusion of an charisma stat is an interesting way to equalize the player’s opportunity to “break the case.”

The other live Kickstarter we’re fans of is Justice Velocity by Polyhedra Games. Their fast and loose, adrenaline filled RP experience seems like it will be a lot of fun to play at any table.

We are totally in love with Swordsfall: An Afropunk Sci Fantasy Setting. We missed it on our first pass because it looks like a setting guide, not a complete game. But on closer inspection it looks like there’s so much to love, we’ve already backed it and the people who make it are kind of amazing. And we can’t wait to get our hands on it!!”

NOTES:

Absconding: Indie RPG zine for 5E by Joshua Rivera

Ends: Thu, March 28 2019 8:45 AM EDT.

Absconding is one part literary/fantasy/sci-fi journal, one part ephemeral art magazine, and one part fifth edition game material.”

Joshua Rivera recommends:

“I backed these projects, and I want to give them a highlight.

CHTHONIC CORNBELT by Lee Barber is a weird little zine that’s pulpy and resembles advertising print design from the 1980s. It’s implied world reminds me of what an 80s baby would dream up in their notebook margins between boring math lectures and a substitute teacher day. The little pieces of ephemera on display will surely be a springboard for some fantastic ideas.

Be Witching is an RPG from Anna Anthropy, whose work in indie games I’ve followed for over a decade now. This is an adorably designed, inclusive game where players are even encouraged to draw their characters, which should be a very nice twist the first time I’ll run this. Also, this ostensibly being a game simulating prom night interviews, this is likely to get very passionate.

Yugika appears to be a zine full of RPG miscellany from Joesph Reid and friends. Each copy will also be painstakingly hand-bound with string, which is just fascinating to me. Yugika seems to be having trouble making it’s goal, so I really hope people decide to check this out and help bring it to fruition.

About Egg Embry

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.
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