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Free League: Explore Many Worlds with One Game System Part 1 of 2

Using one game engine experience a ruined world as a mutant, fly through Arabian Night influenced space trading and exploring, unravel mysteries as a young 80s teen, and hex crawl through a fantasy world filled with monsters and treasure. Year Zero is a d6 dice pool system created by Free League, an RPG publisher in Sweden.

Free League, Fria Ligan in Swedish, publishes Mutant Year Zero (including Mutant Genlab Alpha and Mutant Mechatron), Coriolis, Tales from the Loop, and the upcoming Forbidden Lands. Some of Free League’s designers include Tomas Härenstam, Nils Karlén, Kosta Kostulas, and Christian Granath.

Free League and Team Järnringen, two Swedish publishers of RPGs internationally, announced yesterday that they are merging. Tales from the Loop and Symbaroum will be under one banner. Mutant and Coriolis were published by a previous incarnation of Järnringen. The combined company will be named Free League Publishing.

Modiphius distributed their RPGs starting in 2014 with Mutant Year Zero. Fast forward to 2018 and several kickstarters later. Fria Ligan has updated their website to include an English version. They sell their English language RPGs directly from their website while Modiphius continues to also distribute.

Their game system is called Year Zero and due to the success of their last kickstarter will soon be OGL. Regular six-sided dice are required to play, preferably 10-15 in three different colors. Forbidden Lands also uses a D4, D8, d10, and a d12. While the rules are tweaked for some of the RPGs, here are the basics.

To perform an action a number of six-sided dice are rolled equal to skill level plus the current score in the attribute that is connected to that skill. Gear may also provide extra dice. To succeed at an action, at least one 6 must be rolled. If more than one 6 is rolled then stunts can be performed. The roll can also be pushed. All dice that did not come up a 1 or 6 are rerolled. Any 1s left after the reroll cause damage to the PC or his gear.

Free League has grown into other areas. Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden is coming to Xbox One and PC gaming. Developer Bearded Ladies and publisher Funcom (who previously worked on Hitman and Payday) described the game as a tactical adventure featuring a story set on a post-human Earth. combining strategy and turn-based tactical combat with real-time exploration and stealth gameplay.

Amazon will air a Tales from the Loop eight-episode drama based on Simon Stålenhag's art as a co-production between Fox 21 TV Studios and Amazon Studios. Free League also just kickstarted their first board game, Crusader Kings, based on the grand strategy computer game. In this game, 3-5 players lead the historical dynasties of medieval Europe to triumph - or downfall. Free League has also released he art books Tales from the Loop and Things from the Flood by artist Simon Stålenhag. His third book The Electric released exclusively to the backers of the kickstarter campaign. Stålenhag is a full fledged member of the Free League and also illustrates covers for the RPGs.

Recently kickstarted, in Things from the Flood you to play teens in the 1990s – a decade of change and disaster. You try to balance day to day life while solving exciting mysteries with your friends. But this is a darker time, and the stakes are higher. Unlike Tales from the Loop, in Things from the Flood your character can die.
Part 2 includes an overview of the rest of the RPGs from Free League.

This article was contributed by Charles Dunwoody as part of
EN World's Columnist (ENWC) program.We are always on the lookout for freelance columnists! If you have a pitch, please contact us!

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Charles Dunwoody

Charles Dunwoody


Also stoked to hear the Year Zero engine gong OGL. I have already written a fair bit of stuff for this system, including enough of a Star Wars conversion :)

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