Critical Role Teases Upcoming Syndicult RPG

Darrington Press, Critical Role's publishing arm, is set to produce a new TTRPG called Syndicult. Written by Critical Role's Matt Mercer, Syndicult is described as a "a modern magic role-playing game... where underground syndicates vie for magical powers in a world of artifacts, mysteries, and crime." Accompanying this is a comic panel--and that's it. No release date has been mentioned yet, so we'll have to wait to hear more about the game.

Last year, Syndicult was announced as "an original modern magic roleplaying game designed by Matthew Mercer in which mob families jealously guard secrets and battle it out for power on the city streets.”

syndicult.jpg



 

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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey





TarionzCousin

Second Most Angelic Devil Ever
The relevant blurb from Darrington Press's website: "Syndicult is an original modern magic roleplaying game designed by Matthew Mercer in which mob families jealously guard secrets and battle it out for power on the city streets. Featuring an elegant storytelling dice mechanic, Syndicult is a low magic world where all bets are off."

It doesn't sound like a 5E hack to me.
 

I’ve wondered lately if one of WotC’s biggest threats with D&D is the possibility that Critical Role ever decides to switch systems again. Right now they’ve got a nice little strategic partnership going, but Critical Role is a valuable brand in its own right—maybe one day they decide to publish their own game and cut out WotC’s middleman?
 

Haiku Elvis

Adventurer
I did wonder about the system, a D20 or adjacent system would probably be better for sales but it'll do well, at least initially, anyway no matter what they use.

It sounds interesting in terms of setting but the name is rubbish.
 



TarionzCousin

Second Most Angelic Devil Ever
I’ve wondered lately if one of WotC’s biggest threats with D&D is the possibility that Critical Role ever decides to switch systems again. Right now they’ve got a nice little strategic partnership going, but Critical Role is a valuable brand in its own right—maybe one day they decide to publish their own game and cut out WotC’s middleman?
I don't think any of the players would be eager to switch systems. They sometimes still struggle with 5E. Learning a new system seems too daunting.
 


The relevant blurb from Darrington Press's website: "Syndicult is an original modern magic roleplaying game designed by Matthew Mercer in which mob families jealously guard secrets and battle it out for power on the city streets. Featuring an elegant storytelling dice mechanic, Syndicult is a low magic world where all bets are off."

It doesn't sound like a 5E hack to me.

I wonder if someone made Matt and offer he couldn’t refuse.
 

I’ve wondered lately if one of WotC’s biggest threats with D&D is the possibility that Critical Role ever decides to switch systems again. Right now they’ve got a nice little strategic partnership going, but Critical Role is a valuable brand in its own right—maybe one day they decide to publish their own game and cut out WotC’s middleman?
The thing is its not like WoTC is getting the traditional middleman's cut of the action (AFAIK at least) so it seems like there'd be little of the traditional motivation to take on the incremental costs of building out, playtesting, editing, etc. a new set of rules to if theyre just going to play in the same genre fantasy sandbox (and that's not even considering the potential legal costs if WOTC decides whatever new system they adopt looks a little too familiar)

Could it happen? Sure, but I'd wager against it barring some seismic shift in the content and structure of the show.
 

TarionzCousin said:
I don't think any of the players would be eager to switch systems. They sometimes still struggle with 5E. Learning a new system seems too daunting.
This itself could be a reason to change to a narrative system. Those types of games have become ultra-popular these days, and “fast to learn, easy to play!” is a huge selling point. (I say this as someone who much prefers the crunchier types of games.) For live play purposes, they might find a different ruleset suits their needs better anyway.


Gammadoodler said:
The thing is its not like WoTC is getting the traditional middleman's cut of the action (AFAIK at least) so it seems like there'd be little of the traditional motivation to take on the incremental costs of building out, playtesting, editing, etc. a new set of rules to if theyre just going to play in the same genre fantasy sandbox (and that's not even considering the potential legal costs if WOTC decides whatever new system they adopt looks a little too familiar)

Could it happen? Sure, but I'd wager against it barring some seismic shift in the content and structure of the show.
Overall I agree with you, it’s not immediately likely. But it might not be as difficult as you think. Regarding legal threats, remember that Pathfinder exists and WotC didn’t have a legal leg to stand on against Paizo. As for content and structure of the show, the beauty is that a new ruleset could be designed exactly around the needs of their production and still look “familiar enough” to players. My strong guess is that it would be rules-light and casual-friendly, but with a strong D&D “feel”.

Anyway, I’m not saying this is imminent, just possible. It’s also possible that this Syndicult game is testing the waters with a new system and publisher. Big success could point the way for CR’s future.
 


Haiku Elvis

Adventurer
I really like it.

But then, I'm rubbish at naming things.
I like the concept and the name.
Maybe just me then 😋

I'll say it sets it's stall out well "criminal syndicates and mystical cults but together! It's the original odd couple!"

It just feels (to me) clumsy or awkward when I try to say it. I can't really describe it well but it's like the rthymn is wrong or there should be a following word. Sindicult Chronicles prehaps
 


Jer

Legend
Supporter
I’ve wondered lately if one of WotC’s biggest threats with D&D is the possibility that Critical Role ever decides to switch systems again. Right now they’ve got a nice little strategic partnership going, but Critical Role is a valuable brand in its own right—maybe one day they decide to publish their own game and cut out WotC’s middleman?
The thing is - WoTC isn't a middleman for the Critical Role folks. It's not like Wizards takes a cut of their profits or anything like that - the financial incentive would be if they thought they could get a significant fraction of their viewership to buy their game, and even then I wouldn't see it as a "threat" to Wizards any more than any other TTRPG company is a threat to Wizards. They could turn a significant profit on a game and still not be a dent in Wizards sales.
 


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