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News Digest for the Week of December 18

Hello everyone, Darryl here with this week’s gaming news. Casting news for Dungeons & Dragons movie, special Stranger Things D&D stream, Cyberpunk gets a new miniature game but loses Sony Playstation, pocket-sized Pathfinder and Starfinder releases, and more!

Don’t forget, you can get all the week’s RPG news every week with Morrus’ Unofficial Tabletop RPG Talk! This week, Morrus and Peter are joined by Sean K. Reynolds from Monte Cook Games to talk about Heroes of the Cypher System plus what it’s like working for some of the biggest names in the RPG industry!


You can also get all the week’s RPG crowdfunding projects ending soon with Our Favourite Game in All the World based on the RPG Crowdfunding News column by Egg Embry.


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In case you missed it elsewhere on EN World this week…
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Paramount and eOne (the film studio purchased by Hasbro one year ago) closed a deal with actor Chris Pine to star in Dungeons & Dragons. Chris Pine is best known as Captain James T. Kirk in the reboot Star Trek films, Steve Trevor in Wonder Woman and Wonder Woman 1984, and the voice of Peter Parker (the one from Miles’s universe) from Into the Spider-Verse giving him a lot of geek cred. There’s new information about the film otherwise as is typical for pre-production of studio films. Dungeons & Dragons is scheduled for release in 2022 so shooting will most likely start sometime next year, Jonathan Goldstein and John Francis Daley (writers of Spider-man: Homecoming) still slated to direct based on their re-write of the Michael Gilio script.

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R. Talsorian Games and Monster Fight Club announced a new miniature skirmish wargame set in the Cyberpunk universe, Combat Zone. The big twist for this game is that it is not turn-based but “features a new, fast-paced game engine where the players can act and react in organic, free-flowing actions”. The game also eschews traditional ruler/tape measurements for movement and range in favor of a new “Limiter” system based on the quality of the action taken, ranked Green, Yellow, and Red with different chances to succeed. The game will have miniatures and terrain produced by Monster Fight Club and is expected for a 2021 release.

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The other big Cyberpunk licensed property hasn’t been doing so well. CD Projekt Red’s Cyberpunk 2077 has been heavily criticized for its buggy release and quality issues on consoles. Thursday evening, Sony Interactive Entertainment announced it would offer full refunds for all purchases of Cyberpunk 2077 via the PlayStation Store and that the game will be removed from the store. The announcement followed a company conference call on Monday where CD Projekt Red Board Member Michal Mowakowski admitted they took “the wrong approach” to the game released on Playstation 4 and Xbox One consoles, saying “In terms of the certification process and the third parties – this is definitely on our side. I can only assume that they trusted that we’re going to fix things upon release, and that obviously did not come together exactly as we had planned.” The issues also hit the company hard financially with stock prices losing a third of their value and Bloomberg reporting that company founders lost over $1 billion in the process.

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A trio of updates came out of Paizo and their partners this week. First, new releases for both Pathfinder 2e and Starfindxer, pocket editions for the core rulebooks for both. Though I’m not sure if they’ll fit in even a large coat pocket since they’re 640 pages and 528 pages respectively, but the 6.5 inch by 8.5 inch paperbacks are significantly smaller than their hardcover editions. Both books are available now from Paizo’s online store with a retail price of $29.99.

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Paizo also posted an update of Pathfinder (both editions) and Starfinder compatible products from third party publishers. The listing includes products from Rogue Genius Games, Legendary Games, Dias Ex Machina, Jon Brazer Enterprises, and Little Red Goblin Games all available on the Paizo store.

In other third party news, the upcoming Pathfinder for Savage Worlds core rulebook is headed to Kickstarter in 2021. In an official press release, Paizo announced the new product line will include a full core rulebook that will contain all rules necessary for play (meaning you will not need to purchase the Savage Worlds core rulebook as with most other licensed material for the system) and will also include options for two boxed sets, a core rules set with the rules, bennie tokens, an action deck, game master screen, power cards, and more and an adventure path boxed set for Rise of the Rune Lords including all six books of the adventure made for Savage Worlds. In the words of EN World commenter “Doctor Futurity” (who was quoted in the official press release), “As a fan of Pathfinder and Savage Worlds this feels like a peanut butter and chocolate moment.” The Kickstarter will launch in January 2021 with fulfillment and a commercial release expected in Q4 in 2021.

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Finally in Paizo news, we got an “announcement of an announcement”, a new playtest for Pathfinder 2e is on its way. From January 5 to February 5, Paizo will playtest two new classes and those participating in Pathfinder Society will be able to try them out while earning credit toward their main character at the same time. A full announcement, including what the two classes are, will come in just a few short weeks as we enter the new year.

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Speaking of playtesting, EN Publishing’s Level Up 5e has another playtest available, the Berserker. This class is the rage-fueled fighting powerhouse of the classes, replacing the barbarian class by removing it from the more culturally influenced tropes. The typical boosts to combat you’d expect are joined by the choice of several social advantages (such as the ability to provoke people to action, assist an ally with a Deception or Persuasion check with a feat of strength, or a reputation that causes villagers to seek out your assistance) and exploration advantages (including advantage on tracking, assisting allies in athletics or acrobatics checks, cold or hot weather resistance, and more). You can find the document available on the Level Up website with a survey forthcoming.

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Paradox Interactive released the free supplement, Vampire: The Masquerade Companion for the fifth edition of the dark urban fantasy game. The supplement features three new clans, the Tzimisce, Ravnos, and Salubri, and their related Disciplines, expanded rules and roleplaying information for ghouls and mortals, new Merits, rules errata, and more roleplaying and lore information. The digital supplement requires a free account with Paradox Interactive’s website in order to download.

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Speaking of Paradox Interactive and World of Darkness, we have our first gameplay look at the video game Werewolf: The Apocalypse – Earthblood. You take on the role of Cahal, a Garou who has been exiled due to not mastering his Rage. The gameplay is in third person and allows you to switch seamlessly between human form (to interact with humans and use tools/weapons), wolf form (to sneak around), and crinos (a massive wolf/human hybrid for berserk combat). This game is scheduled for release in February 2021 on Playstation 4/5, Xbox One/Series X/S, and PC with retail prices ranging from $39.99 to $59.99 depending on the platform.

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The cast of Stranger Things will come together for a Dungeons & Dragons one-shot later today, December 18. Chris Perkins will run a holiday-themed adventure “Toy Time for Ten-Towns” with David Harbour (Hopper), Finn Wolfhard (Mike), Gaten Matarazzo (Dustin), and Natalia Dyer (Nancy). A trailer was posted to the Netflix Twitter account earlier this week. The “live stream” (it’s not actually live as the session was pre-recorded) begins later today on the Stranger Things YouTube channel starting at 1 PM Eastern/10 AM Pacific.

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Speaking of YouTube and D&D, the World of Chaldea is getting an original series. The campaign setting is based on the home campaign of Peter Adkison (Wizards of the Coast founder and current CEO of Gen Con) started back in 1981 based on Greek, Egyptian, Norse, Babylonian, Celtic, and Japanese mythology and history. The series will feature a combination of live-action shorts and animation in order to tell the tales with over 130 actors involved in the production. A trailer is available now on YouTube with a two-part premiere scheduled for December 20. Episodes will continue every two weeks until March 15, 2021, for the first season with future seasons already in development.

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Gen Con announced a delay of badge registration and event submission ahead of the 2021 convention. The move appears to be in hopes of holding a physical, in-person convention this year. With the announcement and distribution of a vaccine against COVID-19, the originally scheduled dates of August 5-8 may be feasible depending on safety guidelines and local, state, and federal regulations on gatherings or they may need to be moved back. Expect further announcements as the circumstances of the pandemic develop over the coming months.

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There's still time to pick up the plethora of RPG bundles available on Humble Bundle right now. New this week is the Pathfinder Monster Lore Bundle featuring thirty sourcebooks for Pathfinder 1e focused on expanding the lore and background of monsters, so a lot of the information carries over to Pathfinder 2e for those who have switched to the new edition. This bundle benefits Comic Books for Kids! and runs until Monday, January 4. The Cyberpunk Bundle has been extended, featuring a library of books for Cyberpunk 2020 for the lore or if you want the full retro experience and the Cyberpunk Red Jumpstart Kit if you want to learn the new edition. This bundle benefits Able Gamers and also runs until Monday, January 4. Cubicle 7’s bundle for Warhammer 40,000: Black Crusade is still going with nineteen books for the grimdark science-fantasy setting. This bundle benefits Heifer International and runs until Wednesday, December 23. Finally, regardless of what game you play, you can find use in the Maps Extravaganza Bundle which features licenses for Campaign Cartographer 3+, City Designer 3, Dungeon Designer 3, multiple asset sets, and an instructional book to get the most out of your new software. This bundle benefits Save the Children and Game Changer and runs until Wednesday, January 6.


That’s all from me for this week! Don’t forget to support our Patreon to bring you more gaming news content. If you have any news to submit, email us at news@enpublishingrpg.com, and you can get more discussion of the week’s news on Morrus’ Unofficial Tabletop RPG Talk every week. You can follow me on Twitch where I’ll be streaming as soon as I get a proper night’s sleep, subscribe to Gamer’s Tavern on YouTube for videos on gaming history, RPG reviews, and gaming Let’s Plays, or you can listen to the archives of the Gamer’s Tavern podcast. Until next time, may all your hits be crits! Note: Links to Amazon, Humble Store, Humble Bundle, and/or DriveThru may contain affiliate links with the proceeds going to the author of this column.
 

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Darryl Mott

Darryl Mott

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