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News Digest for the Week of January 1

Hello everyone, Darryl here with this week’s gaming news! Even during this holiday season, we have the release of the Terminator RPG quickstart, more previews from EN Publishing’s Level Up 5e, and more!

Morrus’ Unofficial Tabletop RPG Talk will be back next week with an all-new episode recapping the RPG news but until then, Morrus and Peter count down the top 10 favorite RPG podcasts in the Talk and Actual Play categories based on a poll of EN World readers. For those who prefer a text-based version, you can find the list of your favorite podcasts of 2020 here.


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In case you missed it elsewhere on EN World this week…
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Nightfall Games chose the quietest time of the year to release the QuickStart for The Terminator RPG this past Monday. The rules cover the two major time periods of the films, the “present” where Cyberdine Systems is just another military computer and weapons contractor and Skynet is just a project in development and the “future” after Judgment Day when Skynet has scorched the planet and declared war on the human species remaining who are fighting for survival. The system is an interesting d10 dice pool system called the S5S system. Task resolution is handled by rolling a Success Die to which you add your relevant skill and attribute rating in order to meet or exceed a target number, plus a number of Skill Dice equal to your skill rating where each success on those dice indicates the degree of the success. Of course, that’s just the core mechanic and there are also rules for passive checks where you simply compare your skill rating to the difficulty and modifications to the rolls through your FATE stat. The 48-page PDF is available for Pay-What-You-Want on DriveThruRPG, and a Kickstarter for the full core rulebook is scheduled for early this year.

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EN Publishing, the RPG publishing arm of EN World, took the final week of the year to post an update on the state of the advanced 5e ruleset Level Up. The “State of Level Up Address” linked above features a preview of the layout of the upcoming book along with a lengthy description of the changes from the base 5e rules you can expect from this updated system. We also got a look at the in-progress list of the new Archetypes available for classes in 5e, which is what the system is calling “subclasses” from core 5e. Each class will get at least two and up to five different archetypes to choose from – more than 40 total – in addition to those available in the core rulebook. Finally, the cover image has been revealed from artist Alba Palacio, a wraparound art piece showing four of the system’s iconic characters engaging in an exploration challenge. You can keep up to date on all the previews and playtests for Level Up 5e on their website, and don’t forget to sign up for notifications when the Kickstarter for the core rulebook goes live later this year.

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Cubicle 7 announced new setting book for Warhammer Fantasy Role Play available for pre-order now, Middenheim: City of the White Wolf. The book focuses on the Grand Province of Reikland and the city of Ulric featuring both original and brand new writing on the setting plus all-new stats for creatures, NPCs, locations, and more. From the product description:

Middenheim: City of the White Wolf takes players out of the familiar Grand Province of the Reikland, and drops them in the centre of Ulrican influence and power in the Old World. Middenheim sits at the heart of the Empire’s Northern expanse, and is the perfect setting for endless grim and perilous adventure! Each district of the expansive city is carefully detailed, with locations, plot hooks and NPCs too numerous to list. A beautifully illustrated map, provided with both GM and Player versions, shows off the city in exquisite detail. Need an Inn in the Altmarket? A Pawnbroker in The Kleinmoot? Details on the Kisvilite Embassy? Middenheim has everything you require.

You can order the 160-page PDF now from DriveThruRPG for $19.99 or pre-order the hardcover expected for a Q2 2021 release for $39.99 and receive the PDF for free.

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The official World of Darkness Twitter account announced the passing of designer and author Jackie Cassada on December 29, 2020, at the age of 72 from complications resulting from COVID-19. Cassada was best known for her extensive work in the 1990s and 2000s on the White Wolf lines Changeling: The Dreaming, Mage: The Ascension, the licensed 3.x Edition setting books for Ravenloft as well as contributions to other games. A GoFundMe has been set up on behalf of Cassada’s widow, Nicky Rea, to assist with medical bills and other expenses.

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It’s the final few days of three large RPG bundles from Humble Bundle. The Pathfinder Monster Lore Bundle features a selection of Pathfinder 1st Edition sourcebooks rich in lore and adventure hooks usable in any fantasy game (and stats and rules for your Pathfinder 1st Edition games). There’s also the Cyberpunk Bundle from R. Talsorian Games featuring an entire library of Cyberpunk 2020 rulebooks and sourcebooks full of game lore plus the Jumpstart Kit for Cyberpunk RED. The Pathfinder bundle benefits Comics for Kids while the Cyberpunk bundle benefits Able Gamers, and both bundles are only available until Monday, January 4. You’ve also got time to pick up the Maps Extravaganza Encore Bundle featuring Campaign Cartographer 3+, City Designer 3, Dungeon Designer 3, and a selection of pre-made assets and tutorials to create your own unique maps. This bundle benefits Save the Children and Game Changer and runs until Wednesday, January 6. Finally, for those with 3D printers, the 3D Printable Miniatures for Board Games & Wargaming has a selection of plans ready to print with over thirty monster and hero models. This bundle benefits No Kid Hungry Connection, Extra Life, and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and runs until Wednesday, January 13.


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 some test streams this weekend, 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

Birmy

Adventurer
Surprised and saddened to hear about Jackie Cassada--my shelves have tons of her Changeling/White Wolf work on them, and the Cup of Dreams POD has been on my to-read pile for months now. Off to the (sadly necessary) GFM page now.
 

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