Here Are Your 10 Most Anticipated Tabletop RPGs of 2023

After thousands of votes, we now have our annual list of most anticipated tabletop RPGs for the coming year. As I do every year, I recently took nominations for the most anticipated tabletop RPGs for the coming year, and then opened the floor to voting. Here are this year's winners - the most anticipated tabletop RPGs of 2023!

Previous winners include 13th Age (2013), Star Wars Force & Destiny (2015), Rifts for Savage Worlds (2016), Trudvang Chronicles (2017), Vampire: the Masquerade 5th Edition (2018), Savage Worlds Adventure Edition (2019), Dune: Adventures in the Imperium (2020, joint 2021), and Twilight 2000 (joint 2021), and Blade Runner (2022). Who will join their ranks this year? Read on to find out!

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10. Monty Python's Cocurricular Mediaeval Reenactment Programme (Exalted Funeral)
Exalted Funeral made quite a splash when they announced this game earlier this year, which went on to make neary $2M on Kickstarter. And how could they not? It's Monty Python fergoodnessake! A rules-lite gaming system, spam, a minigame with catapults, spam, coconut dice rollers, spam, and an irrepressible Python-eque sense of humour. Did I mention the spam?



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9. Old Gods of Appalachia (Monte Cook Games)
This is MCG's first entry onto this annual poll, and with over $2M raised on Kickstarter, it has certainly earned its place! Based on a podcast series, this game drips with flavour, the Appalachian mountains forming tombs for ancient beings of eldritch power. A standalone, Cypher-powered game and tons of accessories and add-ons, Monte Cook Games knows how to run a Kickstarter.



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8. Warhammer 40K Imperium Maledictum (Cubicle 7)
Cubicle 7 is no stranger to this list, having previously featured with Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay 4E, and Warhammer: Age of Sigmar: Soulbound. There's a lot of Warhammer games. This one is focused on investigation and social encounters and uses a d100 system. Combat is deadly, so you should only enter into it very carefully. Lifted out of the endless toil that most citizens in the Imperium suffer, you are tasked by your patron to carry out secret missions.



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7. The Walking Dead Universe RPG (Free League)
It wouldn't be our annual most anticipated TTRPG poll without a showing from Free League (spoiler: this isn't their only entry in the list this year!) Announced recently, this official Walking Dead TTRPG uses Free League's usual Year Zero Engine. There's not much else known yet, but if you've seen the TV show, you probably know exactly what this game will be like.



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6. Shadow of the Weird Wizard (Schwalb Entertainment)
Rob Schwalb's family-friendly incarnation of his Shadow of the Demon Lord ruleset featured last year at #7. Announced in 2020, this game went through numerous names, and has been long in the making, and redesigns the Demon Lord system for a new audience. The Weird Wizard is an eccentric character who lives in Clockwork City, and whose magic has transformed the lands.



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5. Mothership 1e (Tuesday Knight Games)
Tuesday Knight Games had a clever strategy with this one -- the Mothership game was available for free long before the epic Kickstarter, slowly gathering its forces. When the official '1E' boxed set launched on Kickstarter, a ready-made audience was waiting. This is sci-fi horror at its best -- you can play scientists, teamsters, androids, and marines using the d100 'Panic Engine'. Yep, it's Alien(s), pretty much.



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4. Household (Two Little Mice)
So you're in an abandoned house where each room is a 14th century nation. You play 'littlings' (which are kinda faries) and go on adventures using a d6 dice pool system. There's spiders and rats and centipedes to fight, and ton of miniatures, cards, and other accessories. This hit Kickstarter fairly recently, making nearly half a million dollars.



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3. 13th Age, 2nd Edition (Pelgrane Press)
Designed by lead designers on D&D 3E and 4E, 13th Age was the most anticipated game of the year way back in 2013, when we first did this annual poll. 10 years later, it's back with a new edition! This edition will be backwards compatible with your existing 13th Age books and is currently undergoing public playtesting. It comes to Kickstarter this year.



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2. Dragonbane / Drakar och Demoner (Free League)
Free League always does well in these polls; they have two games in the top 10 this year, and were in the #1 position for both 2021 and 2022, with Twilight 2000 and Blade Runner, respectively. Drakar och Demoner is a Swedish RPG, 40 years old; Dragonbane is the new, reimagined English language version (the new version is also available in Swedish under its original title). It's classic fantasy with a playstyle they call 'mirth and mayhem', and comes in a boxed set which focuses on the Misty Vale, a hidden mountain valley under threat of orcs.



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1. King Arthur Pendragon, 6th Edition (Chaosium)
In this list for the third year running, Pendragon 6E was #4 in 2021 and #3 in 2022. This year, it's right at the top -- officially the most anticipated TTRPG of 2023! Pendragon was created by the late great Greg Stafford in the 1980s, and has passed through various editions and owners over the years. Now it's back with Chaosium, and a 6th edition is on its way. Pendragon is one of those games which designers speak of with reverent tones -- it appears in any 'best of' list, has won many awards, and is often regarded as a masterpiece. In this game, you don't just play a character, you play a lineage -- campaigns can cross generations, with players taking on the roles of the heirs of their previous characters.

So there we have it. Pendragon 6E is officially our most anticipated TTRPG of 2023. Congratulations to every game which made this list -- it has formed my shopping list for the year, for sure!



PREVIOUS WINNERS OF THE ANNUAL EN WORLD MOST ANTICIPATED TABLETOP RPG OF THE YEAR
#
2013
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
2020
2021
2022
1
13th Age
Star Wars Force & Destiny
Rifts for Savage Worlds
Trudvang Chronicles
Vampire: The Masquerade 5th Edition
Savage Worlds Adventure Edition
Dune
Dune/
Twilight2000
(joint)
Blade Runner
2
Numenera
Deluxe Exalted 3rd Edition
Mutant Crawl Classics
Tales from the Loop
Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay Fourth Edition
Pathfinder 2nd Edition
Vaesen - Nordic Horror Roleplaying
-
Broken Tales
3
Star Wars Edge of the Empire
Unified Rolemaster
7th Sea 2nd Edition
Kult: Divinity Lost
Kult: Divinity Lost
Lex Arcana
Cyberpunk Red
The One Ring (2nd Edition)
Pendragon 6E
4
Shadowrun 5th Edition
Conan Adventures In An Age Undreamed Of
Conan Adventures In An Age Undreamed Of
Star Trek Adventures
Forbidden Lands: Retro Open-World Survival Fantasy RPG
The Expanse
Fallout
King Arthur Pendragon 6th Edition
Avatar Legends
5
Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition
Deluxe Tunnels & Trolls
DCC Lankhmar
Conan: Adventures in an Age Undreamed Of
RuneQuest: Role-playing in Glorantha
Eclipse Phase 2nd Edition
Warhammer: Age of Sigmar: Soulbound
Level Up: Advanced 5th Edition (A5E)
Mothership 1E
6
Firefly
Barbarians of Lemuria: Mythic Edition
RuneQuest 4
Starfinder
The Witcher Roleplaying Game
Dune RPG
Swords of the Serpentine
Rivers of London
Rivers of London
7
Fate Core
Feng Shui 2
Torg: Eternity
The Witcher Roleplaying Game
Warhammer 40,000 Wrath & Glory
John Carter of Mars
Rivers of London
Pathfinder for Savage Worlds
Shadow of the Weird Wizard
8
Hillfolk
Fantasy AGE
Blue Rose AGE
Coriolis
The Expanse
Changeling: The Lost 2nd Edition
Stargate
Brancalonia - The Spaghetti Fantasy RPG
Cy-Borg
9
Torchbearer
Paranoia
Paranoia
Delta Green Roleplaying Game
Legend of the Five Rings 5th Edition
Things from the Flood
Fading Suns 4E
Werewolf: The Apocalypse 5th Edition
Swords of the Serpentine
10
-
Shadows of the Demon Lord
Delta Green
Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea 2E
Numenera 2: Discovery & Destiny
Judge Dredd & The Worlds of 2000 AD
Cortex Prime
SLA Industries, 2nd Edition

Werewolf: The Apocalypse 5e
 
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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey




Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
For what it's worth, in link previews, it is the Monty Python cover that shows up.

So from a strictly marketing standpoint, it's more valuable to be #10 on this list than #1 😂

How the heck you maneuver your game to be the 10th most anticipated game in an ENWorld poll? "dammit Jim, I was an English major not a social media marketing major!"
 

Didn't expect Pendragon to score quite so high (same for 13th age 2e and Household, to be fair). Still a lot of games that I look forward to on that list.
 






There was a lot of mentions for Pendragon in the build up to the poll, it was a holdover from 2022 to a degree and, to be sure, I don’t think any better roleplaying game exists. So, yep, it would me my major anticipated game of the year. Slightly surprised that Monty Python wasn’t higher placed, but like me, I guess people don’t really know what to do with it. Big surprise entree was Household, which looks interesting.

No mention of Paranoia Perfect Edition or Pioneer from Mongoose, Werewolf: The Apocalypse 5th Edition from Paradox/Renegade or the new editions of Marvel (Multiverse) and DC (Gotham City), but I guess this isn’t the site that follows these games as much.
 

MNblockhead

A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
I'm interested in checking out Pendragon as I've heard so much about it but have no experience with it. Will definitely take a look at the starter set when it is released.
 

dregntael

Explorer
I'm sad that none of my favorites made it into the top 10. I guess my tastes have evolved too much away from the mainstream in the direction of story games..
 



Having said that, Greg Stafford's "King Arthur Pendragon" is the (grand)father of all narrative games.
It depends on how you define a ‘narrative game’. There are lots of antecedents towards the notion of a game driven by narratives. I’d argue that games like James Bond 007, Marvel Super Heroes or Steve Jackson’s Toon had narrative mechanics in certain aspects, while games like Paranoia had very specific narrative direction. Games like Runequest or Call of Cthulhu also had very well scripted scenarios and campaigns too.

The first game to present itself as a ’Storytelling game’ was Ars Magica (1987), which used 'whimsey cards’ and ’troupe style' play. Greg Stafford’s Pendragon (1985) was of the same ilk in terms of promoting long term play through family legacies and personality traits and also had a rich, well researched background. His later work, Prince Valiant (1989) also presented itself as a ‘Storytelling' game like Ars Magica. Indeed, it’s coin-flipping stats were formative in the development of White Wolf’s Storyteller system.
 
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Aldarc

Legend
Once again, it's a shame that Stonetop didn't make this list. But no surprise that established IPs and sequels (i.e., new editions) tend to fair better on these polls than others. This year, to best of my knowledge, only two games aren't either: i.e., Mothership and Household.
 

Once again, it's a shame that Stonetop didn't make this list. But no surprise that established IPs and sequels (i.e., new editions) tend to fair better on these polls than others. This year, to best of my knowledge, only two games aren't either: i.e., Mothership and Household.

Totally agree, but I think it'd take a miracle for a storygame to make the list at this point. Not entirely sure people even knew just how PbtA Kult: Divinity Lost was going to be back when it got voted in.
 

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