Cypher System
  • Cypher System


    Monte Cook Games' latest Kickstarter is still going strong and has three weeks left to run. A new stretch goal was recently announced, and it's a little different to the usual ones. "If we hit the 24 achievements milestone, we’ll work with our good friends at DriveThruRPG to launch the Cypher System Creator program. Through this program, players of the Cypher System will be able to publish their original Cypher System-related adventures, supplements, creatures, settings, and so on in PDF format through DriveThruRPG. You’ll be able to sell your publications, if you like, or make them free for others to download." It sound very much like a Cypher System version of WotC's Dungeon Master's Guild.  ...READ MORE

    Today marks an incredibly important and special day in our hobby. Early on, it might be said it was something of a whim, but over the years, the RPG culture truly embraced the idea of celebrating our Game Masters on an annual basis. After all, no GM, no game! In 2008, the holiday took on an even greater and more powerful meaning, as one of the Godfathers of Gaming, Gary Gygax, went on to other realms of adventure. Sites like DriveThruRPG are holding massive sales for those wanting to celebrate by buying tons of gaming stuff (and maybe, you know, giving something nice to their favorite GMs). Here's a bunch of great Picks, as well as a link to the DriveThruRPG sale page at the end.
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    Starting tomorrow morning (Tuesday, March 4th) through Thursday noon, Bruce Cordell will be holding an Ask Me Anything (AMA) right here at EN World. Bruce is a game designer who has worked on Dungeons & Dragons since the 1990s, and more recently as part of Monte Cook Games on titles like The Strange. He is known for The Gates of Firestorm Peak (1996), Die Vecna Die! (2000), Returns to both The Tomb of Horrors and White Plume Mountain, and The Sunless Citadel. Not only that, he is a multiple ENnies winner, and co-creator of The Strange, a Cypher System roleplaying game from Monte Cook Games. Note that this is the announcement post only; I have closed comments on this post - head on over to the actual AMA thread to Ask Bruce Anything!  ...READ MORE


    The Worlds of the Cypher System Kickstarter is coming from Monte Cook Games, and they sent me an exclusive teaser and some images for the upcoming Kickstarter. The project starts on Monday the 29th of February. UPDATE - the Kickstarter has now launched.

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    There's a lot going on this week with the Pick of the Day web site. I added in two new categories that I am going daily with as well. The first is a return to something I did before, but a bit more structured, as I am now doing a daily Kickstarter Pick. I've also decided to launch something that helps me pay it forward for all the wonderful things others have done to help me follow my own bliss. It's called Happiness, Peace, and Dreams, and it's a daily Pick of someone's efforts to do something special and important for themselves and their families. Sometimes it's about helping them with a trauma or tragedy, while other times it will simply be about helping them fulfill a dream or find some joy. I hope you will all help me in making the world just a little better, one dream at a time. Now, on with the game Picks!
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    Fumble mechanics have been part of the tabletop RPG experience for decades. Even where games don't have a fumble mechanic, many players house rule them in. A fumble is the opposite of a critical hit (or critical success) - its most common manifestation is a roll of 1 in a d20-based game (with a roll of 20 being the critical). Veteran game designer Monte Cook has some thoughts on fumble mechanics, and talks about them and how his Numenera RPG (and all of the Cypher System line) use an "intrusion" instead.  ...READ MORE

    That's Monte Cook Games, not McG the movie director. It looks like they're planning to expand in support for their core Cypher System rule set beyond the directly Numenera and The Strange product lines. What that entails exactly is yet to be seen, but the image below likely gives away a few clues. Monte Cook Games runs a blockbuster Kickstarter every year, and is pretty much near the top of the game when it comes to crowdfunding.
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    It's been over a week since I got out of the hospital from my operation, and I want to thank you all for the kind wishes and support. It was rough going that first week (as anyone who follows me on Facebook can attest), but the journey's gotten progressively easier, and I am doing much better. More on that later. As for this week's Picks, you've got quite an assortment - a game that calls back to the 70s by design, and the original D&D from the 70s bookend a number of other cool offerings. Ours is a deep, rich, and varied hobby with so many exceptional choices. As always, I hope I can help you make a few.
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    It's a New Year Big Name Kickstarter Bonanza! For fans of the Scarred Lands, Numenera, or Burning Wheel, or an unholy mix of the three (The Scarred, Burning Lands of Numenera?), these three new Kickstarters are all set for some fairly epic success from the starting gate. All three are produced by veteran publishers already known for their high quality work, and based on existing well-loved settings and games. It looks like 2016 is starting off with a bang!  ...READ MORE

    In celebration of tonight's Star Wars: The Force Awakens release, I've put together a list of Star Wars themed fan RPG material. By that, I don't mean fan created content for official Star Wars games (folks make that all the year round!) but rather Star Wars inspired stuff that people have created for other games. Know of any more? Put a link in the comments! And don't forget that EN World has an entire forum devoted to Star Wars tabletop gaming in all its many varieties, both official and fan-created!  ...READ MORE

    Here we are, well into the first week of December, and many of you are thinking of gift-giving. Not only should you consider what you wish to give your friends and fellow gamers, you may also wish to get a Wish List put together of things you'd really like to get. It seems self-serving, I know, but the truth is most folks greatly appreciate knowing what kinds of things they should get a friend or family member - especially if said friend or family member has off-the-beaten-path hobbies like us. May I humbly recommend the DriveThruRPG Wishlist option, which you can fill in, then post up on social media or send out via email. It makes shopping for you Click-and-Easy. (OK, I am so sorry for that pun...)
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    For much of the world, it's All Hallow's Eve (AKA Halloween AKA Samhain), which is the gateway to the Holiday Season. For Americans, this means places like Cracker Barrel have already begun pimping Christmas like it's a Kickstarter on its last days, and the battle strategies for Black Friday are well into the planning stages. It's kind of... you know what, never mind. Tonight and tomorrow, my clan is enmeshed in Halloween parties and celebrations, and we'll continue to embrace this as the geekiest holiday of all! Speaking of celebrating, check out the Halloween Sale among the Picks!
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    I rarely start out with a theme in mind when I start doing Picks for the week, but there are times when one seems to evolve. The nature of the more recent releases sometimes informs that, but there's also a basic intuition at work. This week, it feels pretty Old School, even though some of what's on the list isn't exactly part of what others consider that particular "movement" in game design. There's a direct 5e adventure, but there's something for Numenera on the list as well; the link, of course, is the focus on the d20 resolution paradigm. The Viking theme of another just calls back to the influences of gaming, even with its new game design. Maybe I'm looking for patterns that aren't there, but it makes for some amusing rumination, at any rate.
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    As promised, here's this week's Picks, actually on the right day. For those who've been so kind in expressing concern - I am fine. A bit more at the end, if you care. In the meantime, I want to call your attention to the fact that it's October already! Why is it that, as we get older, time flies ever faster? It's a kind of psychological relativity thing, isn't it? Seriously, I feel like I was just thinking about how the end of summer was shaping up, and now the holidays are already knocking on the door?! Well, at least the really cool holiday is up first, as always. I'm wondering if I want to try a different costume than my usual this year...
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    "If you haven't got your health, then you haven't got anything." ~ Count Rugen, The Princess Bride. Oh, friends, this is so very true. The last few days have been a bit rough, I will say, and much of what I am dealing with comes from failing to do the kinds of things I should for far too long. Ours is a very sedentary hobby (unless you're one of those magnificent maniacs that plays action/combat LARPS), and it's all-too-easy to let horrible habits settle in. Bad food, no exercise... trust me, this will catch up to you, as it has me. I am taking steps, but they are difficult and drastic, and you'd be much better off getting up once in a while, wandering around a bit, and substituting some healthy stuff for the pizza. OK, sermon over, on with the Picks!
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    Tomorrow (August 10th), RPG designer and publisher Monte Cook will be holding an Ask Me Anything (AMA) right here at EN World. You can ask him about anything, including Numenera, D&D, Monte Cook Games, Malhavoc Press, and more. The AMA will continue through the week.
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    So there was this show - you might have heard of it - a convention called Gen Con. I was there last week, from Wednesday to last Sunday. I spent Monday in a kind of lethargic coma, and really only started to be remotely human Tuesday. During this time, the Pick of the Day went largely untended, and I totally missed doing this weekly roundup of mine whilst in the midst of the madness in Indianapolis. You all have my sincerest apologies on that mark, and I hope to make it up to you with this cornucopia of selections. Included is a large number of ENnie Award winners, so read on and discover gaming grandeur!
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    Monte Cook Games has just launched another Kickstarter! This one's for the Into the Ninth World series of sourcebooks for Numenera, which includes Into the Night, Into the Deep, and Into the Outside - supplements covering outer space, under the sea, and interdimensional realms, respectively. The series was announced just last week at Gen Con.
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    Into the Night, Into the Deep, and Into the Outside are three Numenera sourcebooks announced today by Monte Cook Games, describing outer space, under the sea, and interdimensional realms, respectively. The three books were announced today at Gen Con and form a new product line they're calling Into the Ninth World. The first (Night) will be Kickstarted on August 5th.  ...READ MORE

    Lists of anticipated Gen Con releases are popping up around the web, so I thought I'd join in with my own. What's the worst that can happen?* What's below are the items I'm most looking forward to. Not being at Gen Con, I'll have to order them after the convention, so if you're there and you pick up any of the following items - I'm jealous! These are not in any particular order. Well, they are in a particular order, or else they couldn't be on the page, but not a deliberate particular order. My list is probably very similar to all the other lists, but with all this awesome stuff coming out the odds on that happening are kinda high.
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