RPG Crowdfunding News 023 : City of Mist, Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea 2E, League

Welcome back to our weekly look at tabletop roleplaying game, and accessories, crowdfunding roundup! Each week we’ll be looking at a few campaigns currently running that have caught our eye as well as occasionally speaking to some of the creators about their campaigns, or looking at some of the ‘behind the scenes’ business aspects of putting together, launching, operating and then delivering a crowdfunded project. If you have anything you’d like us to cover, or questions about anything we talk about, please don’t hesitate to leave a comment or contact me directly.

This last week has seen a fantastic amount of tabletop RPG Kickstarters launch, including a number of ‘heavy hitters’ that have busted through their initial funding aims and are flying past $30k, $40k, $50k or even $60k in pledges so far! It’s a real shame I can only cover a few of these each week, but here goes…

City of Mist, a noir RPG of modern-day legends by Amit Moshe

(Campaign Ends : Friday 25th November 2016; 03:00 UTC)

City of Mist is part urban fantasy, part superhero, with a nice slice of noir and horror added to the mix. Inspired by film noir and detective comic book genres the game focuses on the players search for answers in a city that shrouds itself in false appearances.

City of Mist is a game about ordinary, modern people who discover legendary powers within themselves and all around them. As gateways to a mysterious legendary force – a Mythos – your characters are driven to investigate strange Cases and unsolved mysteries. Sll the while they are searching for answers to their own questions and trying to keep their personal lives together as their Mythos calls them to break free and give in to its enigmatic power. But there is a mysterious force at work in the City that hides all that is legendary and makes it look mundane – the Myst – as well as a plethora of other awakened legends with their own agendas, working against you. Will you manage to uncover the truth? Will you survive the inner battle of legendary and ordinary – and at what cost? Will your Crew stay together or will your personal goals tear you apart?

From a plumber in whom a mythological primordial lizard resides to a hipster girl with a mercurial ability to bend time, space, and information, City of Mist is rife with legends awakening inside average Janes and Joes. Create your own legend in modern guise, gather your ragtag Crew of conflicted and yet hopeful Gateways, and venture into the dark streets of this strange metropolis to tackle other incarnated Mythoi and to find your answers – or lose everything you hold dear in the attempt.”

You can download a free Starter Set of the game from their website to check it out. I’ve had the starter set for a month or so now, and was also sent a set of the character Playbooks which are some of the nicest I’ve seen. The game uses the Powered by the Apocalypse system and is really worth checking out.

Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea 2E by Jeffrey Talanian

(Campaign Ends : Monday 21st November 2016; 03:59 UTC)

Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea 2nd Edition is going to be a massive tome – currently estimated at between 420-500 pages of hardback goodness. Each book will also include a 32 x 40 inch full colour map of Hyperborea.

“The hardcover Second Edition includes new classes, spells, monsters, and magic items. Errata have been incorporated, and ambiguities clarified, but no substantive rules changes have been made. This Second Edition is not a wholly new game to be learnt, it remains fully compatible with the AS&SH original edition boxed set.”

The game is inspired by the fiction of Robert E. Howard, H. P. Lovecraft, and Clark Ashton Smith whilst the rules are a direct descendent of the original 1974 rules created by E. Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson.

“The heroes of an AS&SH game delve dungeons filled with horrifying monsters, lethal traps, and bewildering puzzles; they explore savage wilderness frontiers and hostile borderlands; they probe ancient ruins and investigate cursed tombs; they match steel against sorcery and sorcery against steel; and they plunder for gold, gems, and magical treasure.

Hyperborea is the default campaign setting for AS&SH. This “flat-earth” realm is hemmed in by the mystical boreas (“North Wind”), and under the scarlet light of a bloated, dying sun, its roiling seas spill eternal over the world’s rim. Hyperborea is in a perpetual state of decay, populated by disharmonious men, hostile monsters, and weird, alien, beings.”

Leagues of Cthulhu by Triple Ace Games Ltd

(Campaign Ends : Monday 14th November 2016; 08:00 UTC)

Leagues of Cthulhu is an expansion for the Leagues of Adventure RPG of Victorian exploration and steampunk weird science, although is also fully compatible with other Ubiquity system games (such as Hollow Earth Expedition and the most recent Space: 1889). The book is set a generation earlier

The light of science has yet to banish the darkness of the supernatural from the Victorian world. Yet lurking beyond what is a mere shadow of horror is a far more darker and malevolent reality – a world where sanity can be shredded in an instant by the startling revelations that mankind is ultimately an insignificant speck of dust in an uncaring universe inhabited by immense and hostile beings from beyond space and time.

Inspired by the works of H. P. Lovecraft, Leagues of Cthulhu explores the mind-rending terror of the Cthulhu Mythos.

The main 96-page book gives you an overview of the Cthulhu Mythos, new skills, weird science devices, Mythos magic and sample characters (and henchmen) for the setting as well as information on a dozen Mythos locations around the globe, Alien gods, terrifying monsters and dastardly cults as well as advice on handling the Mythos along with extra adventure seeds.

Stretch goals include the 64-page book Realm of Morpheus: The Dreamlands and Cutthroats & Cthulhu, a 64-page book blending swashbuckling pirates with the Cthulhu Mythos.

You can see a preview of Leagues of Cthulhu here

Open Legend: Open-source RPG & Amaurea’s Dawn Setting by Seventh Sphere Publishing LLC

(Campaign Ends : Sunday 20th November 2016; 07:00 UTC)

Open Legend is a new open-source set of rules which has been attracting some serious attention, not least because names such as Ed Greenwood (Forgotten Realms) and Matthew Mercer (Critical Role) are attached to the project.

“The rules respond and react to your narrative, not the other way around. So you can get deep into the strategy but have the freedom to shape many stories from each combination of character attributes and feats. It’s not the first time a classless system has been attempted, but we believe that both the strategy of character development and the storytelling of freeform roleplay can compliment each other. So we’ve merged the two in a fresh way that (through much testing) has proven very rewarding to veterans and newcomers alike.

You aren’t tied down to a limited subset of character options or a pre-chosen path, archetype, or race. Instead you paint a picture of your character in your imagination, and then use the rules like a paintbrush to bring forth your creative masterpiece. The only limit is your imagination (and maybe the GM’s veto power). This is accomplished through feats, attributes, perks, and flaws. All characters can access all of the options for each, rather than being forced into a list of set classes with a menu of skills, you freely choose from each set of options and create an infinitely variable and unhindered character.”

Open Legend has been designed for all genres, with the mechanics focusing on resulting effects rather than causes, allowing you to explain things in a way that tells the most satisfying story for you game. Dice rolling also makes use of the ‘exploding dice’, where if you roll the maximum number on the dice you get to re-roll it and add the new number to your total, and so on if you roll the maximum number again. This means that no task is truly impossible and your character can potentially do truly fantastic feats usually well outside their usual ability.

Amaurea’s Dawn is a campaign setting being released alongside the Open Legend rules, whose writers include Ed Greenwood and Matthew Mercer. The setting serves as “an exemplar campaign setting with a genre-bending and narrative rich world. Breathtaking illustration by world-class illustrators accompany and reveal the deeply layered world.”

“It was years ago the portal closed. None who passed through had ever returned. Driven to the brink of self-destruction, the Council of Three re-opened the old portal. Stepping through once more in a desperate gamble, they hope to discover untapped resources and save their dying planet, the people of Schlectenberg struggle to survive in the savage jungle world of Amaurea. But with new hope comes hidden danger for the settlers’… their unwelcome pilfering does not sit well with the native elven houses.”

Meanders: Themed Boards with Connecting Paths for RPG by Kris McDermott

(Campaign Ends : Tuesday 8th November 2016; 15:59 UTC)

Whether your game takes you across alien terrain, to villages or through fields, exploring Gemstone caverns or Elven Treetop Cities, or visiting a fantasy city or crossing jungles or deserts, Meanders: Themed Boards with Connecting Paths will have something for you. Offering 32 27” x 18” designs across a range of terrain types for use on your tabletop.

The Powder Mage Roleplaying Game by Brian McClellan

(Campaign Ends : Tuesday 22nd November 2016; 15:45 UTC)

Based on the successful Powder Mage novel series by Brian McClellan (the fourth book in the series is due out soon) this 180 page Savage Worlds RPG will “immerse players in a world of muskets, intrigue, sorcery, and revolution set against the backdrop of an industrializing fantasy world”.

The book will contain world information about The Nine, and the lands beyond, sorcery and more, while having rules for playing your very own Powder Mage, Magebreaker, Privileged, Knacked and many other characters. There will be rules, new canon information, art of popular characters from the series, and pregenerated adventures to get players and GMs into the action.

You will need a copy of the core Savage Worlds rulebook from Pinnacle Entertainment to play the game.

Bluebeard’s Bride by Marissa Kelly

(Campaign Ends : Monday 21st November 2016; 02:59 UTC)

I really like the idea of Bluebeard’s Bride, a horror RPG where you play aspects of the Bride’s psyche investigating your husband’s haunted manor. Now I watched Crimson Peak (one of the influences behind this game) last weekend and having read the campaign pitch I can certainly see where the game is coming from.

Bluebeard’s Bride is an investigatory horror tabletop roleplaying game for 3-5 players, written and designed by Whitney “Strix” Beltran, Marissa Kelly, and Sarah Richardson, and based on the Bluebeard fairy tale.

In this game you and your friends explore Bluebeard’s home as the Bride, creating your own beautifully tragic version of the dark fairy tale. Investigate rooms, discover the truth of what happened, experience the nightmarish phantasmagoria of this broken place, and decide whether or not you are a faithful or disloyal bride.

“The Bluebeard fairy tale is simple enough. A young bride is wed to an ugly, but powerful man with a blue beard. On their wedding night he must attend to other urgent matters. He gives her the keys to every room, inviting her to explore… but one room in his house is forbidden. The bride eventually falls prey to her curiosity and opens it, discovering the gruesome sight of former brides who had been murdered… evidence that reveals her husband to be a killer of women.

When you play Bluebeard’s Bride, you aren’t repeating the dark events of that morbid tale. You’re following the skeleton of that story to tell a new one covered in your own bloody fingerprints. The Bride’s story is unpredictable and engaging, leading her down a dark path to an unknown future. Your fate, the terrible contents of the final room, may not yet be fixedm but every step you take moves you closer to your doom.

Your experiences in Bluebeard’s house are guided by the original fairy tale, a framework that ties your story to the many tellings of the Bluebeard myth – past, present, and future. You move from room to room, gathering tokens and encountering horrors, before eventually making your way to the final room – and sealing the Bride’s fate forvere. And along the way, questions arose…

What will you find in your new husband’s house?

What horrors will haunt you?

What darkness will you find within yourself?

But in the end, there is only one question for a new Bride: will you open that final door?”

Each player takes on the role of a distinct part of the Bride’s mind – called a Sister - and helps guide the Bride through her exploration of the house. Each Sister speaks as the aspect of the Bride’s Psyche would speak, deciding what actions the Bride takes, pushing her deeper into the mysteries of each room. “The Sisters tale turns in moving to the forefront of the Bride’s personality, guided by a core mechanic of the game: The Ring. Whichever Sister holds the Ring is the main guide of the Bride’s actions. Over the course of play, the Sisters may suffer trauma (physical or mental); should a Sister receive too much trauma, she shatters. Ehen a Sister shatters, the Bride loses that part of herself to madness… and that lost Sister becomes part of the house’s horror and darkness, adding to the twisted nightmares the Bride must endure.”

Bluebeard’s Bride is based on the Powered by the Apocalypse system used in Apocalypse World, Dungeon World, Monsterhearts, and more.

Darren Watt’s Golden Age Chmpions by High Rock Press

(Campaign Ends : Thursday 17th November 2016; 17:21 UTC)

The original Golden Age Champions was first published in 1994 for the Champions RPG by Hero Games and written by Chris Cloutier. Now long time Champions writer, Darren Watts, is writing a whole new book for the latest version of the game, exploring the Golden Age of Superheroes from 1938 to 1950.

The book will include such things as :

· A detailed examination of the earliest days of superheroic storytelling, describing the history of the actual comics and providing guidelines for simulating all of the elements and aspects of the Golden Age.

· A complete description and history of the period between 1938 and 1950, both in the real world and the Champions Universe, focusing of course on the global conflict that involved over 100 million people and defined the “Greatest Generation”.

· Extensive information and assistance in creating your own superheroes and villains, including Package Deals, expanded rules for Skills, Perks, Talent and Powers and over 60 characters (both heroes and villains) from around the world of the Champions Universe setting.

· A detailed timeline of the entire period, including important events in the fields of war, politics, science, and popular culture, as well as the strange and weird details that provide both color and plot ideas for your own campaign. Includes information and events from “Champions Universe Earth” with the permission of Cryptic Studios!

· Play two heroes at once! Players will enjoy creating and adventuring with two distinct types of characters, mighty four-color superheroes who stay on the home-front to combat sinister supervillains and foil fascist schemes, and two-fisted heroic spy-smashers who fight alongside our soldiers in the trenches or undertake daring raids behind enemy lines.

In addition to the Golden Age Champions books the project is also looking to fund The Encyclopedia of Golden Age Superheroes (Second Edition) which is “the definitive resource for information on the heroes of comics’ Golden Age’, the years from 1935 to 1949. Every heroic character from Abdul the Arab to ZX-5 has their own entry – nobody was overlooked or forgotten.”

Home by Dark – A Story Game of Hope and Fear by Protagonist Industries

(Campaign Ends : Friday 18th November 2016; 23:59 UTC)

Home by Dark is a game that proudly sings its influences and when those influences include E.T., Flight of the Navigator, Super 8, The Iron Giant and this years breakout success on Netflix Stranger Things, you already know what the games about without reading any further.

Home by Dark is a collaborative story game, inspired by games like Fiasco and Our Last Best Hope, for 3 to 5 players, that is designed as a one-shot game that doesn’t require a Game Master. In the game you play a group of kids and adults trying to save an innocent being, whom has fantastical powers, from mysterious pursuers whilst trying to stop a daunting danger that threatens everything!{/hq]


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If you have a forthcoming Kickstarter, or see one that excites you, please feel free to drop me an email on angus.abranson@gmail.com You can follow me on Twitter @ Angus_A or on Facebook where I often post about gaming.

Until next week, have fun and happy gaming!

Angus Abranson



I had been chomping at the bit for ASSH 2e and backed it as soon as it went up.

I believe they are about 300% + funded. I backed an earlier KS for adventures and they are beyond excellent and Jeff T. runs a great KS and follow up to completion.

And the system is a very elegant take on some old O/AD&D mechanics and classes. Some of the mechanics are the types of things where you say "why the hell did no-one else do it like this/figure it out?"


I played Bluebeard's Bride this year at Origins. It was the highlight of a convention packed with a lot of great games. I can't say enough good about this game. I am backing at the $180 level.


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