We’re living in exciting times – especially when roleplaying games are concerned. At any given moment there are several exciting Kickstarter projects running, every other week new roleplaying games are announced. Especially in the weeks around Gen Con you can read about a new game or a new supplement almost daily.
I have to admit I am an avid collector of roleplaying games. I already own way more games than I could ever play in a lifetime but still I keep adding more to my collection. Even if I don’t have the time to play them all, it’s still fun to read the books, think about how one could use them. And from time to time I stumble over a game I am so excited about that I just have to run it!
Although I haven’t done so in a while our regular RPG pub meeting is a great opportunity to try out new games. Since you never know who attends, running a regular campaign is difficult but these meetings are great for one-shots or short campaigns. For the last months we played Dungeonslayers a lot, then one of the regulars playtested a game of his own design with us. For the near future we’re planning to play some Palladium Fantasy 1st Edition. Yeah, we’re rocking retro style!
Recently two of the pub meeting regulars decided to join me in a Fate game, so’ll I get the opportunity to run Fate Accelerated starting the end of this month. Scheduling is – as always – an issue, but hopefully we’ll get things done. Last but not least I am considering whether I could run something over Google+ Hangout as well. I don’t feel confident enough to run a game for random players, so I’ll ask a couple of friends first, but we’ll see how things will turn out.
But even with games at the pub, a new gaming group, and Hangout games there will still be a lot of games I’ll never get to play. But I don’t mind. I get a lot of enjoyment out of reading new games, even though I don’t get the play them immediately. What do you think about this “issue”? Are you a collector of games, too, or do you only buy game you’ll definitely be able to put to use? Please share your thoughts below!
Modiphius Entertainment seems to have great plans for the future. The Achtung! Cthulhu Kickstarter was a huge success and they are currently also working on a new edition of the Mutant Chronicles RPG. Today I got a press release that announces the cooperation between Paolo Parente and Modiphius to release a roleplaying game based on the popular Dust universe. Here’s the press release:
Scheduled for Spring-Summer 2014, DUST Adventures will consist of a core rulebook and setting guide and will be followed by supplements and campaigns. The books will feature both new artwork as well as stunning photography of DUST miniatures.
The campaigns will also feature DUST Tactics and DUST Warfare missions allowing fans of the miniatures games and roleplayers alike to enjoy the DUST universe in new ways. The system being written for DUST Adventures draws heavily on the elegant systems of DUST Tactics, uses the same familiar dice, and aims to easily bring characters from DUST Tactics in to the roleplaying game or roleplaying characters in to your DUST Tactics or Warfare games.
Campaigns will explore the background behind the major events in the DUST universe as well as presenting new storylines for players. Allowing players to create heroes from the Allies, the SSU, or independent factions, the game system is designed for both first time roleplayers as well as offering advanced rules for experienced players.
Modiphius recently launched theAchtung! Cthulhu game line via Kickstarter and is producing a cross-over book called , which let’s players mix characters from both universe’s in a terrifying mission beyond their worlds. This book will be compatible with the DUST Adventures roleplaying game, DUST TacticsandDUST Warfare.
In the latest update Angus Abranson mentioned that all backers at the Digital Rulebook Plus or Rulebook Plus levels get a Space 1889: Soundtrack for free (MP3 files) or for £11 if they need a physical copy as well. The soundtrack has been composed by German musician Ralf Kurtsiefer. You can check out a sample on Youtube.
I have always been a big fan of roleplaying game soundtracks and I am very happy that we’ll get one for Space 1889, too! If you haven’t backed Space 1889 on Kickstarter, yet, you still have 13 days to do so.
As you might already know, Chronicle City’s Angus Abranson is currently running a fundraiser on Kickstarter for the English version of the new Space 1889 game which was released in 2012 in Germany. German publisher Uhrwerk Verlag secured a license from Frank Chadwick back then. They released a beautiful new edition of Space 1889 which not only used a new rules system but also made some changes to the setting. At this point I should also mention that Pinnacle Entertainment released Space 1889: Red Sands back in 2010 which uses the Savage World rules. But while Red Sands is a single campaign book, this new edition is not limited to a single release. A lot of sourcebooks and adventures are already planned or already released (in German at least).
Angus Abranson graciously provided me with a copy of the German core rules of the new Space 1889 game which I’ll use as a basis for my preview on the upcoming edition.
Uhrwerk Verlag’s Space 1889 is a beautiful 264-paged book with a mostly black & white interior with a few pieces of color artwork thrown in. At first glance it’s obvious that the new edition is much more pleasing on the eyes than GDW’s original. The artwork fits the theme perfect and some pieces look like they were created back in the 1880s. It’s a joy leafing through the pages.
Psi-Punk is a 193-paged cyberpunk roleplaying game written by Accessible Games’ Jacob Wood powered by the Fudge System. Like many other recently released roleplaying games it has been funded over Kickstarter. Although it didn’t do as well as Numenera or Fate Core, I am very glad it has met its funding goal. In a nut-shell it’s a trip back to the 80s and early 90s and I mean that in a good way!
Let’s have a look at the presentation of the book first. This review is based on a PDF copy graciously provided by the author, so I can’t judge the physical product. The PDF has a clear and simple layout. It’s not too fancy but readability is good. I especially like the artwork. The b&w interior artwork reminds me a lot of what you would expect from a game from the early 90s or late 80s. It fits the setting perfectly well, aside from a few pieces that look a bit off. But that’s probably just me. Overall the artwork and layout are pretty good, even though you can’t compare it with the full-color interiors that are so popular nowadays.
What sets Psi-punk apart from classic cyberpunk games is the setting. While you’ll find all the common tropes like cybernetics, megacorps, runners etc. there’s one addition: psionic abilities. The first chapter of the book gives a good overview of the history of the world of Psi-punk, gives information on the major nations (like the North American Union), important corporations (like Magicorp), and other organizations and factions. In Psi-punk there are people which can use psionic abilities to do incredible feats but there’s also technology able to emulate a psionicist’s abilities. These devices are usually called “magic”. Overall Psi-punk presents an interesting twist on the classic cyberpunk formula. It definitely has its charm, even though I have to cringe every time I read “magic”.
I have a kind of love-hate relationship with Kickstarter. One the one hand I am totally excited about all the cool new and amazing projects I can support there but on the other hand I too often get tempted to put down my money even though I probably shouldn’t. But let’s not think about money for a moment but focus on the excitement!
Hollow Earth Expeditions: Revelations of Mars This is one of the products I’ve been waiting for for a very long time. Back in 2010 when I visited Gen Con I was hoping I could already pick it up there, but it had been delayed. Lack of time and money have obviously been the cause for this and the Kickstarter is meant to finally get Revelations of Mars done. So what is Revelations all about? It’s a sword and planet sourcebook for Hollow Earth Expedition, the pulp RPG using the Ubiquity System. At the time of this writing the project has already been funded and several stretch goals have been reached including new addons (like special Relevations of Mars dice), a free Fat Dragon Martian terrain set, and a free adventure. The Kickstarter will end in about 59 hours, so you still have a chance to pledge a few dollars.
Space 1889 Space 1889 is probably the granddaddy of all steampunk RPGs even though they used the term Victorian Sci-Fi back in the day. Alas the original rules were a bit clunky, so German publisher Uhrwerk Verlag got the license to produce a new version using Exile Games’ Ubiquity rules. Now Chronicle City’s Angus Abranson is running a Kickstarter for the funding of an English-language version of this new Space 1889. Aside from the regular edition, backers can get a special limited edition book bound in faux leather and heat-branded with the Space 1889 logo. And if you’re pledging £100 or more you’ll even get a special edition bound in real leather, signed and numbered. Sweet! As with the Revelations of Mars KS, the goal has already been reached and several stretch goals have been unlocked. The KS will run for another 27 days, so you still have some time to decide whether you want to support the new Space 1889 or not.
Iron Empires: Void I have to thank my fellow blog author Roberto for pointing out this Kickstarter. Iron Empires is the comic series Luke Crane’s award-winning RPG Burning Empires is based on. Even though I wasn’t able to wrap my head around the rules in Burning Empires, I still loved the setting and artwork which were created by the creator of the comic series, Christopher Moeller. I haven’t read any of the comics yet, but luckily there are several pledge levels were you can get the PDFs of the older books in the series. Void will be a 112-paged hardcover book and like its predecessors be a standalone, complete story. The KS hasn’t reached its goal of $16,000 yet, but there are still 23 days to go. For a pledge for just $10 you get a digital copy of the book and for just $10 more you even get digital copies of the first two books. So what are you waiting for?
These are the Kickstarters I supported in the last few days. Is there anything else interesting I should know about? What Kickstarters have you backed recently? Please share your thoughts in the comment below!
Things have been quiet on the blog last week. I was enjoying a few days off and actually found a new and exciting pastime: ComputerCraft. ComputerCraft is a modification for the highly popular game Minecraft and it allows you to craft and program computers and robots called turtles in-game. Yeah, this is totally unrelated to RPGs, but I am currently so excited about ComputerCraft that I decided to post about it here. I hope you can forgive me.
The programs are written in LUA, a pretty easy to learn scripting language. I haven’t done any programming in a while, but I found it pretty easy to write some simple programs in ComputerCraft. Especially programming the various turtles is a lot of fun. I always found mining in Minecraft pretty boring, but now I can just order a mining turtle to do the work for me. If my interest in ComputerCraft doesn’t wane pretty quickly, I might actually start a ComputerCraft blog and post my programs there. Please let me know in the comments if you are interested in something like that. And now back to our regular program…
P.S.: The trailer above was created for the launch of CC1.3. At the time of this writing CC1.55 is available.