Tag Archive for: RPG

The Twilight Accord

Twilight Accord for 5th EditionThe guards shifted nervously, coughing a bit, breath fogging in the chill night air. They were all a bit uneasy, and with good reason. One glanced again at the wood piled and arranged in the courtyard, and thought about the hours until dawn.

“Some of them are little more than children,” he announced aloud to no one in particular.

“Then they can repent their ways,” the other guard replied, “and perhaps His Holiness will see fit to spare them, although if you ask me there’s no hope for their sort. Perverts. Unnatural. We’re well rid of them before they corrupt anyone else.” He spat in the dirt in disgust. The first man sighed and shook his head.

“I don’t expect there will be any mercy for any of them,” he said, “repentant or not…unless.”

“Unless what…?”

“Well…” the guard hesitated to go on. “You know. You’ve heard the stories.” That earned him a dismissive snort.

“Just stories. You don’t believe them, do you?”

“I don’t…” he began.

Then there was a deafening sound like thunder and the heavy wooden gates of the keep exploded inward, fragments raining down over the courtyard. The guards who were not knocked down by the blast stood in shock, mouths agape.

Figures appeared in the clearing smoke, wreathed in flames of seven colors that glimmered from their armor and weapons and in the hard glare of their eyes. They were not “just stories.”

“We are of the Accord and we have come for our people,” one of them announced. “Let none who hope to see the dawn stand in our way.”

The battle, if it can be called that, was brief, and so we were freed, and walked the Night Road to Gloamingate, to the promise of hope, freedom, and a home to call our own, if we can claim it—and we will.Twilight Accord On Patreon!

TWILIGHT ACCORD: THE FALLEN CITY: A Queer-focused #5e #TTRPG Fantasy Setting and Campaign, now on Patreon for Development.

Not “gay as in happy” but “queer as in ‘roll for initiative.’”

Do You Hear the Call…?

Back Into The Expanse: Worlds and Systems

Some of you may have seen the recent actual play of Cthulhu Awakens that I ran in conjunction with the Kickstarter. I really enjoyed running the game, but after that brief foray into the realms of eldritch horror, I’m excited to say that it’s time for me to get back to The Expanse!

Colony worlds and systems in the Expanse

During my first official visit to ThursdAGE last week, we talked a little about the new Expanse sourcebook, Beyond the Ring. (Check it out if you want to see some of the amazing art in this book) We also did a bit of a deep dive into Chapter 5: System & World Creation in Beyond the Ring. If you check out the stream, you’ll get a behind the scenes look as I go through both the system and world creation systems step by step. One of the challenges I have as the developer for The Expanse RPG is where to draw the line between story and science. This chapter, in particular, proved to be quite a balancing act in that arena. After all, this is a game about telling stories, not a science textbook. But on the other hand, The Expanse novels are heavily grounded in real science. Creating your own systems and worlds is an excellent opportunity for bringing a little more science into your games.

In Chapter 5: System & World Creation, we do our best to give you all the pertinent information needed to create your own worlds and systems without getting too bogged down. All of the charts and tables might look a little daunting for someone who doesn’t know much about the science of spectral types, orbital zones, or atmospheric compositions, but I promise you don’t need to know any of the science. Just follow the steps, and you can design a system without any difficulty. Truthfully, the luminosity of the star or a planet’s orbital period probably won’t come into play in your story, but being able to provide all of the star system information to your players lends a sense of authenticity that this is a real system with real planets. Your scientifically minded players will love it, and your story-driven players will appreciate the attention to detail.

One question I’ve been asked is whether science 100% accurate all of the time? My simple answer is: I’m sure it’s not. But it’s pretty close and certainly more than enough for telling a good story. Ultimately even The Expanse is about the story and the characters. The science is there to give it a backdrop of realism and authenticity, but in the end, it’s a good story that matters.

So, do you want to know more about Beyond the Ring and how you can use it in your own campaign? Well, you’re in luck! My appearance on ThursdAGE was just a teaser for what’s to come. In the following weeks I’m going to be running an actual play of The Expanse RPG that showcases a lot of the key systems in Beyond the Ring, especially colony creation and advancement. In Session Zero we’re going to build the colony that the PCs are going to be connected to using the rules in the book. Sessions 1 and 2 will be a story that centers around the colony. Finally, Session 3 will be the finale, and we’ll go through colony advancement, including the repercussions of the PC’s action during the adventure. So, keep your eyes peeled for the exact dates.

There will also be opportunities for those of you watching live to ask questions, and maybe even some audience participation. So, if you’re considering purchasing Beyond the Ring and want to know more this will be an excellent opportunity to see what it’s all about.


You can Pre-Order the print version of Beyond the Ring right now and receive the PDF for just an additional $5! But we understand that shipping internationally is a little difficult at the moment, so our overseas fans can also get the $5 PDF add-on by just letting their Friendly Local Game Store know that they would like to Pre-Order the book there. Just ask your store clerk to contact us, or their games distributor, and mention the Pre-Order Plus program, we will take care of the rest!

Beyond the Ring: Available Now

Beyond the Ring Available Now!

Available for Pre-Order Now!

The ring gates have opened up opportunities on 1300 worlds for scientists, adventurers, explorers, and colonists. Royal Charter Energy is seeking brave and bold individuals of many diverse backgrounds for colony and mining operations beyond the rings. Be the first to set foot on a new world. Make new discoveries. Explore. RCE is currently hiring scientists with backgrounds in geology, chemistry, as well as those with mining, agriculture, and security experience. Stuck on Basic Assistance? We may have a place for you. Find yourself on a new world.

Applications are being accepted by our offices in Lovell City, Luna, either in person or electronically.

 

Ever wanted to run an off-world colony? Beyond the Ring presents a whole new way to play The Expanse RPG. Instead of traveling the Sol system, the player characters can be a part of a new colony. They get to make decisions about the colony’s advancement and deal with issues and threats as they arise. Chapter 4: Colonies opens with rules for designing your own colonies. Colonies have abilities just like player characters.

You have three options for creating colonies, freeform (basically make it up), point allocation (you get a number of points to spend) or random (speaks for itself). There are five core abilities for colonies: Economy, Force, Infrastructure, Media, and Science. In addition to these, every colony has three additional statistics: Size, Stability and Resolve, which help determine how resistant the colony is to disasters and setbacks. Colonies also have Focuses that represent things like specialty installations (like greenhouses), extraordinary knowledge (like local ecology), special resources (like lithium), or colonists with specific expertise (like a doctor or security forces). Disasters can have an impact on both these abilities and Focuses.

Once your colony is established, you get to see how your colony grows or fails. The rules for running a colony exist to provide new opportunities for adventure, provide a sense of investment in the protagonist’s community, and help players feel like an important part of the dynamic and ever-growing Expanse universe. The colony rules interact with the rest of a campaign in two ways: growth checks and plot actions.

For a colony to survive, it must endure the harsh realities of an alien world, grow to support itself, and thrive in the face of adversity–growth checks represent this. The frequency of these checks is usually from one to three months and can result in the colony growing or expanding or suffering a mishap. Mishaps can lead to adventure opportunities as players can sometimes take plot actions to mitigate their effects.

While growth checks represent the everyday ebb and flow of life in a community, plot actions represent deliberate efforts by the colony leadership toward specific goals. Often plot actions are made in response to a threat or rival colony, but colonies may also be proactive, attempting to undermine rivals or build new projects to improve conditions. Successful plot actions can hurt rivals, disarm threats, and make headway on projects, while failed plot actions do the opposite. The GM also gets to take plot actions. A group of pirates that the PCs previously tangled with past might become a direct threat to the colony.

Finally, this chapter offers a few sample colony operations that were built using these rules. These can be used as a guide for building your own colonies or plugged directly into an adventure if a GM finds they need a colony. As you can see, an entire campaign could be built around a crew starting and managing a colony in the worlds beyond the rings.
If you’re looking for inspiration for telling your own colony-based stories, Cibola Burn offers a lot of good material on what it’s like to live in a colony under threat from multiple directions. The novella Strange Dogs offers a good look into the early days of Laconia. And I was super excited to see that the final Expanse novella, The Sins of Our Fathers, is set entirely on a colony world. The story presents some of the difficult choices colonists might be forced to make. We can’t wait to hear the stories of the colonies on new worlds that you and your players create!


Expanse Beyond the Ring on ThursdAGE

Tune into ThursdAGE this Thursday, April 7th at 2p Pacific to catch designer Ian Lemke as he walks us through star system creation and world building in Beyond the Ring, with your pals Owen KC Stevens and Troy Hewitt

You can watch us on Twitch, YouTube, Twitter and Facebook and don’t forget to subscribe to Green Ronin’s official streaming channels to be notified when we go live with The Expanse RPG: Beyond the Ring Actual plays throughout the month!

The Expanse Meets Cthulhu Awakens!

Expanse meets Cthulhu!

Art by Tentacles and Teeth

The Kickstarter for Cthulhu Awakens, which brings cosmic horror from the unimaginable past, through the 1920s, and into the 21st Century, is now live! Both The Expanse RPG and Cthulhu Awakens are powered by AGE: the Adventure Game Engine, which opens new realms of possibility for both universes.

Cthulhu Awakens: On Kickstarter Now

Live on Kickstarter now!

The stars have truly aligned….

Part of the appeal of The Expanse are the elements of horror carefully blended within a science fiction setting. Certainly, some chapters are as chilling and terrifying as any horror novel. The changes that the protomolecule causes in humans are ghastly and reflections of Frankenstein’s monster can be seen in Project Caliban. And, of course, the entities beyond ring space could step right from the pages of the Cthulhu Mythos. By now, I suspect you know where I’m going with this: how can Cthulhu Awakens be used with your Expanse game? Even if you don’t want to bring the eldritch horrors into the Expanse universe, Cthulhu Awakens offers both players and narrators some intriguing new possibilities.

Alienation

Let’s start with the good stuff. In Cthulhu Awakens, alienation represents the influence of eldritch forces on the psyche. Through Holden’s eyes, we see throughout the Expanse series how much effect close encounters with the protomolecule can have on an individual, particularly through his ability to communicate with “ghost” Miller. A protomolecule connection like Holden’s could easily be replicated by the use of Enlightenment stunts which give Cthulhu Awakens characters insight into the Mythos. The other aspect of alienation—terror—could also be implemented to manifest the primal fear and horror resulting from many encounters with the protomolecule.

Bonds

Cthulhu Awakens has Bonds that are very similar to Relationships in The Expanse, but they are greatly expanded in both concept and utilization. Personal Bonds, which are much the same as Relationship Bonds in The Expanse RPG, are broadened to include a character’s ideals, oaths, or beliefs. There is also a completely new kind of Bond called External Bonds. These represent involuntary influences on characters and can be used by the GM to generate Stunt Points that put characters at a disadvantage. Interestingly, External Bonds may appear on the surface to be advantageous (membership in an OPA faction, a close relationship with a friend or sibling), but the GM controls them. Examples of External Bonds might be ties and obligations to organizations (the OPA, religious group, or employer), or individuals(someone you care about so much that it can become a detriment to you). And as with personal bonds, they could also be personal ideals, beliefs, or oaths. Alienation is also a form of External Bonds.

Talents

The talents in The Expanse are tightly focused and allowing some of the new talents from Cthulhu Awakens could offer some diversity that could make for interesting character development. Talents such as Bootlegger, Emergency Care, Esthete, and Hard Case could all fit quite comfortably into an Expanse campaign.

The Mythos

Finally, Cthulhu Awakens contains an enormous amount of information about the Mythos that has been adapted for the Adventure Game Engine. The two games are compatible and require very little tinkering to tell Mythos stories beyond the Weird Century. Or perhaps you want to take your Expanse campaign in a completely different direction and surprise your players with true cosmic horror. Perhaps the entities beyond the gate are something other than described in the novels and are, in fact, the Outer Gods, now awakened after untold millennia of slumber. Or maybe the Ring builders were the Mi-Go or the Elder Things. The possibilities are endless. The universe is yours to make as you will.

Synopsis Based One Shot Design

A great resource for an adventure synopsisHello heroes! Hope you’re having a great day out there in gamer land. As you may know, event submission is open for a few major conventions happening later this year, so I imagine quite a few of you are starting to put together the wonderful games you’re going to run this summer. I got my start in this business running games at Origins Game Fair in Columbus, so this time of year is near and dear to my heart. All year long I compile a list of characters or topics I want to write an adventure about. I love the excitement of narrowing down those ideas to create the perfect playlist. I enjoy coming up with a punchy title, deciding how many players I want to run for, and coming up with that sweet 1-2 sentence synopsis about the game. This synopsis is required at most conventions. It’s the snippet they’ll use to describe the scenario to the public in the hopes of getting people to buy tickets to your game. What you might not know, is that it is also a valuable tool you can use in adventure design.

I might be weird in this instance—as opposed to all the other times I’ve been weird—but I usually create my synopsis long before I put together the adventure. Sometimes, it’s all the adventure creation I manage to get to before the convention arrives, but we’re not here to talk about my procrastination habits. This synopsis is my favorite place to begin because it forces me to ignore any extra information and cut to the heart of the story I want to present. I tend to think of it as starting small and building out. Sort of like designing a village in your game world before moving on to building the epic history of your cosmos.

Knowing the core action of the story gives you as the writer a perfect place to begin your planning. You should have an idea of who the major players are going to be, what the driving action is going to be, and what research you’ll have to do to plan your scenes. The synopsis doesn’t have to give away the whole story, in fact I find less is more when it comes to pulling inspiration from it. I try to limit myself to 30 words or less.

Hades can be found in Freedom City 3rd edition

I’ll give you an example of what this process looks like to me. My most recent actual play for Green Ronin—link here in case you missed it— was titled Freedom League: All in the Family. I knew before I wrote the synopsis that I wanted to tell an unconventional story with the Greek gods set in Earth-Prime, so I started thinking of who the main NPCs were going to be. I decided to go sort of stereotypical. The synopsis for this wound up being: “All isn’t as it seems when Zeus requests the Freedom League’s assistance in foiling his brother’s latest scheme to take over Earth-Prime.” I kept it short and sweet, knowing that it would be the springboard to a larger outline process.

Hades is a known villain in Earth-Prime, and this pantheon is known for their family melodrama so I figured it would be a knockout story. I kept the synopsis simple, sharing to the players that Hades was going to be the villain and Zeus was going to be their insertion point to the story. With the synopsis in hand, I set about researching various Greek myths. They were going to be the “antagonists” for the story, not necessarily villains but the thing standing between the heroes and a saved Freedom City. I looked at Zeus and Hades’ immediate circles and started brainstorming where some of them would be lurking in the modern world. I built a through line from Zeus to Hera to Hephaestus to Hera to Charon to Hades, and then built scenes around those characters.

Starting with the synopsis narrowed the range of possibilities to make selection easier. It helps you find the beginning of a story, especially in a genre of infinite possibilities like superhero stories. I hope the next time you sit down to design a new adventure that you consider starting with a synopsis or a title. Happy writing!

Device vs Equipment

Devising the Difference Between Devices and Equipment

Hello heroes! Thank you for popping by the Round Table for one of my posts, grab a snack and settle in. I wanted to take a crack at answering one of the questions I see most often from the M&M community. That question being, “How do you differentiate between Devices and Equipment?” It’s a fair question, especially with the difference in Power Point cost between the two, and one that I feel every GM has a different answer for. This isn’t a bad thing, because more often than not if someone asks me is this a Device or is it Equipment my answer is, “It depends.” In the following post, I’m going to share some of my rules of thumb for telling the difference and offer some advice for when it inevitably crops up at your table.
Device or Equipment?

Basic Rule of Thumb

When trying to decide if a player can purchase a certain gadget with Power Points or Equipment Points, I start by asking myself if that item is able to be bought in an appropriate store almost anywhere in the setting. If this item is something that everyday people use in their profession (from laptops to 9mm handguns) then it should be Equipment in terms of the rules. Equipment is often mass produced and lacking in unique characteristics. The setting of your game can have an impact on this basic rule of thumb. If your M&M campaign is set in deep space 3,000 years from now it’s going to have different items that can be considered equipment. A laser rifle is probably a Device if your game is set in 1986 but that same weapon with the same stats could be standard issue for soldiers in 3576 making it Equipment in my opinion. One thing you have to do as Gamemaster is sit down and world-build some of the standard technology in your setting. Usually, if I’m setting a game in a place or time wildly different from present day, I’ll create a uniform list of different weapons, items, and armor that I consider to be Equipment which I share with my players. It also bears noting if the heroes’ mundane tools of the trade—for example swingline launchers, motif-inspired boomerangs, smoke bombs, body armor, and fancy wrist mounted computers—are provided by the same benefactor, consider making it Equipment instead of a Device. We’ll go over this idea a little more in depth later.

This is my Rifle, There are Many Like it, but This One is Mine

Once you’ve determined the availability of a given item, the next thing to ask the player is, “How unique is your version of the item?” If their hero has an assault rifle with a laser sight and a recoil stock, it’s probably still in the realm of Equipment. However, if that gun is only usable by someone who is worthy and has tendon-seeking buzzsaw bullets it’s more likely to be a Device. Keep an eye out for the unique features the player hopes to bring to the object and let that guide your decision between Equipment and Devices.

Disposable?

Another thing I advise GMs to look out for is how easy it is to destroy a specific item. Equipment is meant to be disposable. You can smash Equipment with impunity and not even give the player a Hero Point for the inconvenience! This cavalier attitude is due in part to the points they saved during character creation and in part due to how easily Equipment can be replaced. Devices, however, should be treated with more care as it’s possible the destruction or removal of that Device can rob a player of a large percentage of what makes their character viable. Always give a player a Hero Point if you decide their battlesuit has run out of power or they have used the last of their awesome trick arrows. This leads into my last point.

How Integral is this Tool to the Character Concept?

This is the highest-level question I ask myself and the player when deciding if something is Equipment or a Device. Heroes need tools at different levels depending on concept and archetype. A Green Lantern ring, for example, is an object that is uniform and handed out by the same benefactor as a mentioned earlier, but it is 90% of what makes that character a superhero in pure mechanics terms. As such I would consider it to be a Device and charge the full Power Point cost it incurs. I would do the same thing to a gadgeteer or a character flying around in a mech suit. Characters who use their tools as peripherals to their core concept, such as a Crime Fighter, are at the other end of this spectrum. They will have a lot more Equipment than Devices, because most of what they do, mechanically speaking, doesn’t rely on their gear. There will be some gray areas, such as Archer characters, and there’s no reason you can’t declare some of their tech to be Equipment and some to be Devices. An Archer might have standard broadhead arrows, swing line arrows, and explosive arrows as Equipment while statting up their acid arrows, disintegration arrows, and the good old boxing glove arrow as Devices.

As I said at the beginning of this post, the answer to what is Equipment versus what is a Device, depends. That is the most succinct way to explain the difference. Now that you know to look for that basic rule of thumb, the features of the object, it’s disposability, and its importance to the character you’ll be able to trust your gut the next time this question comes up. And if there’s anything I know about M&M Gamemasters, it’s that you have a lot of guts. Thank you for reading and have a great day!

Salvage Op: An Adventure PDF for The Expanse RPG

Salvage Op: A short adventure PDF for The Expanse RPGIt can be hard to keep track of the days when you’re on the float, but our hand terminals tell us it’s Monday. In honor of another week spent breathing recycled air, we’ve put  Salvage Op, a short adventure PDF for The Expanse RPG, up for sale.

(If you backed our Kickstarter campaign for The Expanse RPG you should already have this PDF as a part of your backer rewards.)

Salvage Op is a short adventure for The Expanse Roleplaying Game intended for a crew of four to six 1st to 3rd level characters. The characters encounter a small ship floating dead in space. Salvaging the ship’s cargo could be an opportunity for riches, but what danger awaits onboard? What happened to the crew, and why is it here? This adventure works well as a one-shot or can be easily inserted into an existing campaign.

Green Ronin To Publish The Fifth Season Roleplaying Game

Green Ronin to publish The Fifth Season Roleplaying Game. [Image shows the three novel covers from N.K. Jemisin's The Broken Earth trilogy. The Fifth Season, The Obelisk Gate, and The Stone Sky.]

 

GREEN RONIN TO PUBLISH THE FIFTH SEASON ROLEPLAYING GAME

N.K. Jemisin’s Broken Earth Trilogy Comes to the World of RPGs

August 2, 2019—SEATTLE, WA: Green Ronin Publishing announced today that it has signed a licensing agreement with N.K. Jemisin to create a roleplaying game based on her critically acclaimed Broken Earth series. Each book of the trilogy—The Fifth Season, The Obelisk Gate, and The Stone Sky—won the Hugo Award for Best Novel, an unprecedented achievement in speculative fiction.

“The world building in the Broken Earth Trilogy is incredible and ripe with roleplaying possibilities,” said Green Ronin president Chris Pramas. “More than that, the books are searingly relevant to the current state of our world and we hope the game gives people the opportunity to explore the issues and themes the novels handle so deftly.”

“I’ve heard from many of my readers that they’re fascinated enough by the world of the Broken Earth that they’d like to visit it (nobody wants to live there tho!) and now they’ll get their chance,” said N.K. Jemisin. “I’ll be working with Green Ronin to try and make sure the spirit and feel of the books is rendered successfully in this new form.”

Green Ronin will publish The Fifth Season RPG in the Fall of 2020. Tanya DePass (I Need Diverse Games, Rivals of Waterdeep) and Joseph D. Carriker (Blue Rose, Critical Role: Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting) will co-develop the game. The Fifth Season RPG will use a revised and customized version of Green Ronin’s Chronicle System, which powered the company’s long-running Game of Thrones RPG, A Song of Ice and Fire Roleplaying.

More information and previews for The Fifth Season RPG will appear on greenronin.com in the coming months.

 

About Green Ronin Publishing

Green Ronin Publishing is a Seattle-based company dedicated to the art of great games. Since the year 2000, Green Ronin has established a reputation for quality and innovation that is second to none, publishing such roleplaying game hits as The Expanse, Dragon Age, and Mutants & Masterminds, and winning over 40 awards for excellence. For an unprecedented three years running, Green Ronin won the prestigious GenCon & EnWorld Award for Best Publisher.

 

About N.K. Jemisin

N(ora). K. Jemisin is an author of speculative fiction short stories and novels who lives and writes in Brooklyn, NY. In 2018, she became the first author to win three Hugos in a row for her Broken Earth novels. She has also won a Nebula Award, two Locus Awards, and a number of other honors.

Orktoberfest: November, Shmovember—Orks Am Ignore Sour Man Sense of Time!

So, this is the capstone on the Orktoberfest series, where I went over some of the notable elements of Ork!: The Roleplaying Game, Second Edition. Subtlety is not especially orky, so I’ll lay it out: This was to make you interested in it, so you would buy it. Krom, god of the orks, is a cruel cosmic overlord, but he’s honest! Therefore, I’m going to end things by making a “stone staircase pitch” (elevators are rare in the World of Orkness; anyone capable of building or maintaining one would probably be eaten by a troll).

Enter the World of Orkness!

Enter the World of Orkness!

Why You Am Buy Ork?

  • A simple, intuitive system for casual “beer and pretzels” roleplaying, that even gets around to supporting a theme—you against your god!
  • You play an ork: a short-tempered, uncannily tough, green-skinned-boar-faced bruiser, hoping to earn glory and dethrone your village’s sinister warlock overlord!
  • Full color, blood-spattered-yet-humorous illustrations by Dan Houser (see Icons: Superpowered Roleplaying too!) throughout.
  • New to this edition: Revised and expanded rules for magic—a potent art tainted by the curse of Krom, the ork god!
  • Finally, a game whose jokes refer to both Werner Herzog’s Fitzcarraldo and Buck Rogers in the XXV Century.
  • Limb-ripping, bone-crunching combat, revised for the new edition!
  • A full-sized catalog of things to kill, from annoying flying monkeys to giant robots. Plus: All giant lizards breathe fire!
  • Seriously, a truly complete game, that includes enough adventures to run an entire campaign. Start by raiding the village of the pie-making, hair-footed squishy men, move on to crashing airships piloted by mutant stinkbugs, and meet your fate in the legendary dungeon called Horserat Mountain!

Why You Am Have “You Am” Sentence Constructions?

Okay, I keep forgetting to put this down in various blog articles. Part of Ork!’s fun is talking like an ork! Orks live in an eternal present, like stereotypical enlightened masters or excitable mastiffs chasing cars, so always use the present tense, with emphasis, because the word “am” usually precedes verbs and adjectives. “Am” also replaces “do,” “be,” “is,” and a bunch of other weak, worthless words. Orks use “me” instead of “I,” and frequently reject stupid dithering definitive articles, and generally employ Hemingway-eqsue economy of speech. Me am tell you good? You am get ork points for good ork talk!

Where Am World?

I never bothered to get into the setting before, either! Orks live in a place called the World of Orkness, because we don’t pass up cheap jokes around these parts. In development, we got rid of a bunch of stuff detailing specific areas because orks have terrible memories and if they mostly have a geography divided into their village and a fluid, enemy-filled not-village, this frees Orkmasters from the burden of consistency. However, the World of Orkness has a basic set of stuff in it, including:

  • Various weak and worthless creatures you may recognize from equally weak and worthless sources, including sour men (who we might call “humans”), squishy men (small, annoyingly cute, hairy-footed, and weirdly free from copyright claims until the point they throw rings into lava), bagpipe-playing goblins with Scots accents (so you can’t use them for dwarves—well “stunty men” to orks—in this setting!) and so on.
  • Anti-science trolls eat anyone trying to move things past a fantasy world technological steady state, and as an ever-comforting allegory for the anti-science stuff your weird uncle shares on Facebook.
  • A magic-ravaged world. Long ago, the World of Orkness’ (WoO? I should have thought of that during development!) mighty civilization Am Go Too Far, and suffered a magical catastrophe that ripped open the skin of the world like an old-timey hockey goalie’s face. Strange people, creatures, and things rained through rips in reality, and mountains got tossed around like the teeth of, once again, an old-timey hockey goalie’s face. Things have calmed down a bit, but you can still find virtually anything, anywhere. This includes items from the 21st century, since, well, we have a lot of stuff to dump due to the productive forces of late industrial capitalism. Magic may warp such things, from their shape to how they work. This is a whole bunch of words to tell you, “You can have your orks fight an animated Mazda Miata if you want.”
  • The aforementioned giant fire-breathing lizards.

What Am Next?

That’s it for Orktoberfest (at least for this year! Heh.). All that’s left is for you to buy Ork! However, that’s not all! Coming up next year, the Orkmaster Mayhem Kit will give you a screen and new adventures.

Furthermore, after experimenting with Ork!’s system a bit, I decided to see how it would work for a more serious rules-light game. I can’t say much about it now, but the wheels are turning. Watch this space!

Now Pre-Ordering: Modern AGE Basic Rulebook

Modern AGE Basic RulebookThe Modern AGE Basic Rulebook is now available for pre-ordering in our Green Ronin Online Store and through participating brick-and-mortar retailers! And, when you pre-order the physical book, you can get the PDF version right away for just $5! (If your favorite local game or book retailer doesn’t know about the pre-order deal, please point them at our Retailer Support page for details.)

Enter the Modern AGE!

Leap into exciting adventure in any era from the Industrial Revolution to the modern day and beyond. The Modern AGE roleplaying game allows you to shape the setting to suit your style—whether it’s gritty action or high adventure, urban fantasy or a dystopian future. With a new, classless character-building system, twenty levels of advancement, and optional rules for psychic and magic powers, you can create the heroes your world needs. Along with an innovative stunt system, rules for thrilling chases, and an introductory adventure, you’ll find all the action you’re after inside the Modern AGE Basic Rulebook.

The Modern AGE RPG features:

  • A classless implementation of the Adventure Game Engine. Develop characters based on their backgrounds and experiences across 20 levels of advancement.
  • Focuses, talents, and specializations like Investigator, Hacker, and Martial Artist let you customize your character.
  • Fast-paced combat featuring modern weapons and high-octane vehicle chases.
  • A game based around action, exploration, and social stunts. Roll doubles on three six-sided dice and something cool happens!
  • Arcane magic and psychic powers for modern era games.
  • Advice for first time and veteran Game Masters, including ways to customize the system for gritty stories, two-fisted pulp, and cinematic high adventure.
  • Sample antagonists and other non-player characters, and an introductory adventure: everything you need to start playing right away.

Use Modern AGE in the campaign setting of your choice, including the upcoming World of Lazarus, based on Greg Rucka’s creator-owned comic series of near-future feudalism, or use it to run adventures in the world you create. Grab three six-sided dice, and you’re ready to play in the Modern AGE!

Pre-Order Modern AGE Basic Rulebook today!