News Digest for the Week of January 28

Hello everyone, Darryl here with this week’s gaming news! More details about the Dark Souls RPG, new Level Up 5e products announced, RuneScape getting a tabletop RPG, and more!

Don’t forget, you can keep up with all the week’s gaming news with Morrus’ Unofficial Tabletop RPG Talk! This week, Morrus and Peter talk about the upcoming Dungeons & Dragons sourcebook Monsters of the Multiverse!


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In case you missed it elsewhere on EN World this week:
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EN Publishing announced several new products for the Level Up: Advanced 5th Edition line. First we have To Save a Kingdom, a new adventure that takes characters from Level 1 to Level 15 following up on the introductory adventure Memories of Holdenshire. Next is the Dungeon Delver’s Guide, a collection of new tools for players and narrators both to facilitate underground adventures including new player options, new equipment, new magic, new regions, and several pre-made dungeons. Finally, we have Voidrunner’s Codex, a sourcebook to add space opera science fiction to your Level Up games. The book features new heritages, classes, starships, psionic rules, and more all ready to bring your Level Up game into the future. No release dates have been set at this time, but we’ll get more information about these books throughout the coming year.

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Modiphius released a free quickstart set for Homeworld Revelations. The 68-page PDF features the starter rules for Homeworld Revelations, an adventure that sends a team of archeologists searching a thousand-year-old spaceship wreck for artifacts, and five pre-generated characters. Homeworld Revelations uses Modiphius’s 2d20 System and is based on the Homeworld real time strategy video game series that follows aliens exiled from their home planet after it was destroyed by the Taiidan Empire for developing hyperspace jump technology. The quickstart PDF is available for free from DriveThruRPG, while the core rules are expected for release in May 2022.

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Steamforged announced a new tabletop roleplaying game based on RuneScape, the free MMORPG. RuneScape was originally released in January 2001 as a browser-based MMORPG which later got a stand-alone client. The game is still running and is actively updated with over 200 million accounts created over its lifetime, setting a Guinness World Record for the largest free MMORPG. From the press release:

The games will draw on adventures, characters, and locations from across RuneScape’s rich 21-year long history, with the board game taking between one to five players on quest-based campaigns through Gielinor. They will craft and upgrade equipment, upskill their characters, cook special recipes, engage with NPCs, and test their skills while exploring different regions of the world, with a variety of enticing side quests to distract and entertain them on the way.

RuneScape is scheduled for release later this year, and Steamforged is currently running a survey for existing RuneScape players to give their input on the tabletop RPG version.

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Details are coming out about the upcoming Dark Souls roleplaying game from Steamforged. The dark fantasy roleplaying game will use 5e, but will be adapted to fit the dark lore and tactical combat of the Dark Souls series. The rules will include new character classes, an entirely new magic system, and stats for many of the monsters from the video game franchise. From the press release:

“First teased in December with a surprise trailer premiere, Steamforged can now confirm DARK SOULS™: The Roleplaying Game will be a standalone RPG powered by fifth-edition rules enriched with unique DARK SOULS™ mechanics.

Drawing on the rich lore and award-winning gameplay of the DARK SOULS™ video games by From Software and BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment Inc., DARK SOULS™: The Roleplaying Game — designed and published by Steamforged Games — will feature everything players need for exciting and challenging campaigns set in the sinister universe.

Inside the lavishly illustrated, hardback core book, players will find bespoke character classes, a brand-new magic system, and a full bestiary teeming with DARK SOULS™ creatures. Together, roleplayers can brave the crumbling landscape of Lothric and the myriad locations within, encountering familiar faces along the way.”

Pre-orders for the hardcover will begin in February in anticipation of a Spring 2022 release.

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IDW announced a new comic book based on iconic Dungeons & Dragons characters Minsc and Boo as a prequel for the Baldur’s Gate III video game. From the sales solicitation:

After decades spent in magical stasis, Minsc and Boo awaken in a Baldur's Gate that is very different from the one they knew, but there will always be evil in need of smiting! SMITING! And while they're perfectly capable of kicking the butt of badness to the Spine of the World and back on their own, it never hurts to have a little help from their companions, the rest of the Baldur's Gate heroes. Now, say it with us: "Go for the eyes, Boo!"

The 100-page book is written by Jim Zub with art from Max Dunbar, Nelson Daniel, Dean Kotz, and Francesco Martarino with cover art from James Biggie and will hit comic book stores this April with a retail price of $5.99.

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Edge Studio announced the third edition for Midnight: The Legacy of Darkness for 5e based on the Fantasy Flight Games campaign setting. The gritty fantasy setting places the players in opposition to the forces of the Shadow who have taken over the land. The free cities of humans have been crushed, the elves driven into the deep wood, the dwarves besieged inside their mountain fortresses, and the lieutenants of the wicked god Izrador rule the shattered kingdoms with steel and cruelty. The updated version of the setting will feature 13 new cultural variants unique to the world, a Heroic Path system, new unique feats and spells, a detailed guide to the setting, and a collection of “adversary profiles”. Midnight was originally published by Fantasy Flight Games from 2003 to 2009 and was adapted into a film, Midnight Chronicles, in 2010. This marks the first update since the product was announced at the joint FFG/Edge panel at Gen Con 2020.

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Fat Dragon Games and Humble Bundle released the Dragonlock and Ravenfell 2D and 3D printable terrain bundle this week. This bundle includes 3D printable terrain from the Dungeonlock series along with accessories and miniatures plus 2D terrain from the E-Z Dungeon and Ravenfell sets that can be printed on standard inkjet and laser printers for construction into amazing 3D terrain. This bundle benefits Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and runs until Thursday, February 3. The Black Library is back with another bundle of ebooks for the Warhammer and Warhammer 40,000 worlds. This bundle features 25 DRM-free ebooks for $18 at the top level with works covering Warhammer 40,000, Warhammer Fantasy, Warhammer: Age of Sigmar, Necromunda, The Horus Heresy, and more. This bundle benefits the EveryLibrary Institute and runs until Thursday, February 17.


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 to get notifications when I go live, 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

eyeheartawk

#1 Enworld Jerk™
The concept of Midnight always appealed to me, but third edition wasn't really my thing so I skipped it back in the day. I'll be giving this version a look though. As I recall, this got third place (?) in the competition that Eberron ended up wining. Does anybody remember what won second place and what happened to it?
 

Weird Dave

Explorer
Publisher
The concept of Midnight always appealed to me, but third edition wasn't really my thing so I skipped it back in the day. I'll be giving this version a look though. As I recall, this got third place (?) in the competition that Eberron ended up wining. Does anybody remember what won second place and what happened to it?
As I recall, FFG snagged up two of the runners up for the setting competition - Midnight and Dawnforge. Dawnforge had a fun, "early age" fantasy feel where everything was big and epic without it being high level. Pretty enjoyable setting, I hope they revive that one for something in the future!
 

The concept of Midnight always appealed to me, but third edition wasn't really my thing so I skipped it back in the day. I'll be giving this version a look though. As I recall, this got third place (?) in the competition that Eberron ended up wining. Does anybody remember what won second place and what happened to it?

Second place was a world submitted by Rich Burlew of Order of the Stick fame. I don't remember any details of the world any more. I don't believe Midnight was submitted for the contest, as it was already in creation by that time. The 3rd place was a world by Nathan Toomey but I believe wizards still owns it (along with Burlew's entry).
 

Details are coming out about the upcoming Dark Souls roleplaying game from Steamforged. The dark fantasy roleplaying game will use 5e, but will be adapted to fit the dark lore and tactical combat of the Dark Souls series. The rules will include new character classes, an entirely new magic system, and stats for many of the monsters from the video game franchise. From the press release:


Pre-orders for the hardcover will begin in February in anticipation of a Spring 2022 release.
Spring 2022 release? That's a hella lot sooner than I was expecting it to release. Wonder how long they were working on it before the announcement/trailer.

Worse case, the magic system/tactics change up might be portable over to regular 5E. Guess we'll see.
 

Abstruse

Legend
Yeah, Wizards of the Coast owns the settings from the 2002 setting search competition that Eberron won. Burlew talked a bit about it several years ago and I can't remember what he said exactly, but basically WotC owns them, he can't publish it on his own without their permission, and he's limited in what information he can tell about it. Though I'm not sure how much of that reluctance to talk is due to any NDA or just Burlew being overly-cautious.

Anyway, Midnight was from Fantasy Flight and written by Jeffrey Barber, Wil Upchurch, and Greg Benage back in 2003. Dawnforge was also published in 2003 written by Greg Benage, Darrell Hardy, Seth Johnson, and Shannon Kalvar. Both have been out of print for a while with even the PDFs pulled off storefronts like DriveThru.
 

Jaeger

That someone better
Yeah, Wizards of the Coast owns the settings from the 2002 setting search competition that Eberron won. Burlew talked a bit about it several years ago and I can't remember what he said exactly, but basically WotC owns them, he can't publish it on his own without their permission, and he's limited in what information he can tell about it. Though I'm not sure how much of that reluctance to talk is due to any NDA or just Burlew being overly-cautious.
...

A very astute move by WotC.

People were putting forward their best ideas. And now WotC owns them all...

So now none of those setting ideas can be melded with the d20 OGL to create a competitive product.

Even if WotC never did much with Eberron, stifling potential future competition, and cribbing people's good ideas was worth the effort for the contest all on its own.

EDIT

After reviewing the links in Eyes of Nine's post immediately below, I have seen the error of my ways.!!!

WotC was Lucky to get paint-by-the-D&D-trope numbers magicpunk Eberron out of all that.
 
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Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
If folks are interested in some other settings, here's an rpg.net (I know, sorry) thread from 2010. As you scroll through the posts, you'll find some links to folks' submissions. Some of the links are 404s now, but some are still good.

Here's a link to an entry about D20Zine's special edition on worlds that didn't win, submitted by their authors. Wish I had that zine now.

Looks like I can sign up for Scribd and get access to it. Here are some preview pages.

If you've ever read the Demon Cycle novels by Peter Brett (as I have, the first ones were great) - you can now boast to your friends that this series was rejected by WotC in said contest.

So... that's like 29 of 11,000 submissions. Wonder where all the rest are? I wonder if WotC even still has them all somewhere in a hard drive or a box?
 

Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
If folks are interested in some other settings, here's an rpg.net (I know, sorry) thread from 2010. As you scroll through the posts, you'll find some links to folks' submissions. Some of the links are 404s now, but some are still good.

Here's a link to an entry about D20Zine's special edition on worlds that didn't win, submitted by their authors. Wish I had that zine now.

Looks like I can sign up for Scribd and get access to it. Here are some preview pages.

If you've ever read the Demon Cycle novels by Peter Brett (as I have, the first ones were great) - you can now boast to your friends that this series was rejected by WotC in said contest.

So... that's like 29 of 11,000 submissions. Wonder where all the rest are? I wonder if WotC even still has them all somewhere in a hard drive or a box?
Oh how funny, on Scribd's website, the preview is blocked at like page 6; but here on EW I can read the whole thing!
 

R_Chance

Adventurer
A very astute move by WotC.

People were putting forward their best ideas. And now WotC owns them all...

So now none of those setting ideas can be melded with the d20 OGL to create a competitive product.

Even if WotC never did much with Eberron, stifling potential future competition, and cribbing people's good ideas was worth the effort for the contest all on its own.
They actually put out quite a bit of Eberron material back in the 3.x days as I recall... not quite the glut of setting specific stuff 2E settings got, but not insignificant. Or maybe it's age affecting my memory :D
 





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