Orun: The Anti-Post-Apocalyptic RPG

It seems every RPG Kickstarter claims to do something different. Most aren't, but Orun by New Agenda Publishing definitely is — a “Post-Apotheosis, Afro-futuristic Sci-fi RPG mixing Mysticism and Adventure to create a unique gaming experience.”

If you've never heard of New Agenda Publishing, that's because Orun is its first project. Founders Misha Bushyager, Jerry D. Grayson and Eloy Lasanta have decades of game industry experience between them. Bushyager has written for Chill: SAVE, Lovecraftesque and Dead Scare and was an editor for the award-winning nanogame collection #Feminism. Grayson designed GODSEND Agenda, HELLAS: Worlds of Sun and Stone, and ATLANTIS: The Second Age. Lasanta is the ENnie Award-winning creator of Part-Time Gods, The Ninja Crusade, and AMP: Year One.

Considering their talent it's no surprise the trio decided to do something fresh for NAP's first project.

Misha Bushyager

“We wanted a setting that all sorts of people would be drawn to and still be able to put our spin on it. It became clear all of us loved Star Trek and Star Wars, so we came up with something that reflected the elements we identified with most from those properties: exploration, struggle for good to triumph, new and different species and cultures, and space,” said Bushyager.

Don't mistake Orun for typical space opera. The back story involves beings called Orisha who led the way to apotheosis – transcendence from the physical reality. In our world, Orisha are deities in the Yoruba tradition, which influences Orun.

“The idea was to give the game a new non-Western baseline. The Yoruba culture and religion were great inspirations. The Yoruba strive self-improvement for the betterment of self and society. Our 'Iwa' concerns our behavior and character, or innermost being, or soul,” said Bushyager. “Improving our Iwa betters not only ourselves, but our culture and society. In Orun, heroes have a civic, moral, and cultural responsibility (on a cosmic scale) to make reality better. In Orun, ascension doesn’t exist for personal glorification, but for the betterment of the universe.”

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Eloy Lasanta

“The assumptions are different, the goals of the players are different, and ultimately the 'feel' of the game is different.” added Grayson.

It also gives Orun a different tone from grimdark or post-apocalyptic games.

“One of the things I dislike about post apocalyptic settings is the lack of hope. I want people to aspire to something better, not descend into despair,” said Bushyager.

As befits a new project from a new company that even has “new” in its name, Orun features its own rule set. Called the Horizon System, the mechanics have a classic sensibility yet have a modern, streamlined feel. Players can try it now with ORUN, Post-Apotheosis Space Opera RPG QuickStart. It features five of species available from the aquatic B'Bocci to the Alimnuro, who are energy beings, but the full version of Orun features 11.

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Jerry D. Grayson

“We've got some fun things with the others. A plant-based species, a quadrupedal one that uses telepathy and telekinesis, a tiny aggro species in mechs, a paired symbiotic combined species, a chimera species, and an automaton construct 'species,'” said Bushyager.

Both the Quickstart and Kickstarter demonstrate a rich setting with much more to come, so I had to ask the creators what their favorite parts of Orun are.

“I’d have to say the array of species. When we planned them out they each had a touchstone to us that resonated. And I'm constantly amazed at the artwork that come back to represent them. It's never what I expected, but I always love it,” said Bushyager.

“That bad thought and memes have a physical manifestation in the form of corrupted souls and a warping of reality,” said Grayson.

Last year, NAP held a contest to recruit its writing team and discover new talent, which represents one of NAP's founding principles.

“We put our money where our mouth is. We don't just talk the talk of diversity and inclusion, we walk the walk and actually do the work of bringing in new voices.” said Bushyager.

This article was contributed by Beth Rimmels (brimmels) as part of EN World's Columnist (ENWC) program. If you enjoy the daily news and articles from EN World, please consider contributing to our Patreon!!
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Beth Rimmels

Beth Rimmels

Thomas Kalbfus

First Post
So let me guess, a nuclear war wipes out Western Civilization and probably East Asian Civilization as well, since China is the other superpower, leaving Africa.


So let me guess, a nuclear war wipes out Western Civilization and probably East Asian Civilization as well, since China is the other superpower, leaving Africa.

It’s as if someone didn’t even read the title of the thread. I wonder what made them come to the conclusion above.

Thomas Kalbfus

First Post
Anti-Post Apocalyptic Afro-futuristic RPG perhaps? If something is not post apocalyptic, then why incude those words and put the word "Anti" in front of it? Dungeons & Dragons is not usually Post Apocalyptic, but it does not carry the label "Anti-Post Apocalyptic". The explaination is a bit long winded and hard to follow.


So let me guess, a nuclear war wipes out Western Civilization and probably East Asian Civilization as well, since China is the other superpower, leaving Africa.

Not 'post apocalyptic', but 'post-apotheosis'.

This is 500 years after humans already established a galactic civilization - however long that took. After that much time, old one-planet nation-state stuff like 'China', 'America', 'Russia' are just distant memories you might find footnoted in a history disc.

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