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RPG Crowdfunding News: Ironsworn, Fantasy World, Court of Blades, and more

This week, I look at RPGs and a related product, all ending between May 10th and 27th. This weeks games run on a variety of engines from 5e to Forged in the Dark to Powered by the Apocalypse and many more.

Ironsworn- Starforged.jpg

Ironsworn: Starforged from Absolute Tabletop and Shawn Tomkin
  • END DATE: Thu, May 27 2021 12:00 AM EDT.
  • SYSTEM(S): Ironsworn
  • PROJECT TYPE: Core rulebook
  • MOST POPULAR PLEDGE: $68 + S/H for two books, a deck of cards, pluse PDFs
  • WHY SPOTLIGHT THIS CAMPAIGN? Ironsworn is a Mithral level seller at DriveThruRPG and a 2019 ENnie Award winner for best free game, so it is awesome to see that the Kickstarter for the sci-fi version of the game is already in the four figures for backers and six figures for dollars. Ironsworn: Starforged brings the core rules of its predecessor and applies them to space. Designed for solo, co-op, or guided play, you’ll take on the role of a spaceborne adventurer in this 300-page core rulebook. In addition, there’s a deck of assets (75 cards of background, skills, resources, and more) plus a 120-page reference guide. If you want to play a sci-fi RPG with a proven and versatile system, this is worth a read.

Fantasy World from MS Edizioni
  • END DATE: Mon, May 10 2021 7:00 AM EDT.
  • SYSTEM(S): Powered by the Apocalypse
  • PROJECT TYPE: Core rulebook
  • MOST POPULAR PLEDGE: €40 + S/H for the PDF and hardcover of the book plus another PDF and dice
  • WHY SPOTLIGHT THIS CAMPAIGN? It’s a fantasy world exploration RPG that runs on the Powered by the Apocalypse (PbtA) engine. All PbtA engines are dear to my heart. This one is a 260-page production that let’s you explore. That’s the focus, learning about this fantasy world. Using PbtA, you’ll design and engage with this world as you play to find out what’s next.

Court of Blades from A Couple of Drakes
  • END DATE: Sat, May 22 2021 12:59 AM EDT.
  • SYSTEM(S): A version of the Forged in the Dark system
  • PROJECT TYPE: Core rulebook
  • MOST POPULAR PLEDGE: $35 + $4 US S/H for the PDF and softcover book
  • WHY SPOTLIGHT THIS CAMPAIGN? In a fantasy renaissance city-state, you’ll encounter courtly drama, power politics, magic, peril and romance using a version of the Forged in the Dark engine. In this game, you server one of the major houses of the city. The structure of the gaming sessions is interesting, each one involves completing an errand for the house that you serve. If you want an easy-to-follow setup that leaves lots of room for roleplaying, this game was forged for you.

The Prophecy of Nine Omens Trilogy (5e) from Midnight Tower
  • END DATE: Thu, May 27 2021 9:02 AM EDT.
  • SYSTEM(S): Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition
  • PROJECT TYPE: Adventure module
  • MOST POPULAR PLEDGE: £20 for four PDFs and a POD of the book
  • WHY SPOTLIGHT THIS CAMPAIGN? Need a 5e adventure for levels 10 to 12? In this adventure, your characters travel to a lost, undersea realm to destroy an artifact before it can be used to destroy the world. Sounds easy, but there’s a lot of ground and sea to cover before you’ll get the chance to save the world. If you’re interested, try out the preview on the campaign page.

ChangedStars - A Sci-fi TTRPG from DieselShot
  • END DATE: Thu, May 27 2021 9:05 AM EDT.
  • SYSTEM(S): An original system
  • PROJECT TYPE: Core rulebook
  • MOST POPULAR PLEDGE: $15 for the PDF of the book
  • TRY BEFORE YOU BUY: ChangedStars Quickstart for free at DriveThruRPG
  • WHY SPOTLIGHT THIS CAMPAIGN? This sci-fi RPG offers up a hopeful future designed around utopian feminist science fiction offering a post-patriarchal society full of aliens for you to adventure in. Using a unique d6 system, this game embraces sci-fi to tell tales unlike what we see today.

Battlemasters & Berserkers: A DnD 5E class expansion from Legendary Games
  • END DATE: Mon, May 10 2021 11:59 PM EDT.
  • SYSTEM(S): Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition
  • PROJECT TYPE: Sourcebook
  • MOST POPULAR PLEDGE: $10 for the PDF of the book
  • WHY SPOTLIGHT THIS CAMPAIGN? Legendary Games is coming at you with a new 5e sourcebook dedicated to fighters and barbarians. 72 pages of martial archetypes and barbarian paths, backgrounds, 35 combat feats, rage powers, new weapons, and magic items, all meant to make your tanks tank-ier. The PDF will deliver this month, so you’ll get to enjoy this product shortly after the campaign.

LokDown TTRPG from Nor Cal Mythos
  • END DATE: Wed, May 12 2021 2:59 AM EDT.
  • SYSTEM(S): Tri-Forge Engine
  • PROJECT TYPE: Sourcebook
  • MOST POPULAR PLEDGE: $25 for the PDFs of all three products
  • WHY SPOTLIGHT THIS CAMPAIGN? 2,000 years after they left, a fleet of ships lands to colonize their planet. Survivable only along a narrow strip of the planet’s land, this world is home to some nasties and you have to survive them and make this best of this home. This anime inspired RPGt uses the Tri-Forge Engine. This game stands alone or can be used as an expansion for their Carbyne Jungle game.

The Fanzine Trip: Issue 1 from Tollenkar
  • END DATE: Mon, May 17 2021 12:54 PM EDT.
  • SYSTEM(S): The Fantasy Trip
  • PROJECT TYPE: RPG zine
  • MOST POPULAR PLEDGE: $12 + $4 US S/H for PDF and print zine
  • WHY SPOTLIGHT THIS CAMPAIGN? If you’re a fan of Steve Jackson Games’ The Fantasy Trip, check out Tollenkar’s fanzine. This 48-page zine offers articles that introduce pulp sci-fi to TFT, an adventure, a healing spell, and more. If you want to see some unofficial TFT options, this zine promises some wins.

Of Monsters Most Foul: A Broadsword Bestiary from Bloody Eye Games
  • END DATE: Wed, May 19 2021 10:12 AM EDT.
  • SYSTEM(S): Broadsword
  • PROJECT TYPE: Sourcebook
  • MOST POPULAR PLEDGE: $125 + S/H for the book, digital copies of all Broadsword products, and you get to design a monster, art included
  • WHY SPOTLIGHT THIS CAMPAIGN? Broadsword is a mix of boardgame and RPG that lets you spend time crafting your combats. With this book, they add more monsters to the mix (including some created by the backers). If you’re interested, there’s a preview on the campaign page.

The Witcher Hybrid Dice from Q-workshop
  • END DATE: Wed, May 19 2021 5:59 PM EDT.
  • PROJECT TYPE: RPG dice
  • MOST POPULAR PLEDGE: €83 + S/H for the metal dice set
  • WHY SPOTLIGHT THIS CAMPAIGN? The Witcher gets a new dice set, this one combining either metal with wood or metal with composite or plastic with composite. If you’re a fan of The Witcher and unique dice, these are worth a look.

Egg Embry participates in the OneBookShelf Affiliate Program and is an Amazon Associate. These programs provide advertising fees by linking to DriveThruRPG and Amazon.
 

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Egg Embry




imagineGod

Legend
So I'm not the only person perplexed by PbtA? Do they simply explain it better?
If you are a traditional D&D player who grew up with random tables , then the solo mode in Ironsworn helps bring that to PbTA, plus it also remove the focus on personal relationships that plague other PbTA games.

PbTA is very story driven, so combat is resolved quickly, basically a roll or two to narrate the outcome instead of each combat round of commentary.

The dice resolution is still convoluted, but if you remove the combat round mindset, the payoff is that the dice arrive at faster end scene results, hence, the solo mode is a great first step into Ironsworn PbTA.

And yes, Starforged is basically, Ironsworn-in-space
 



Aldarc

Legend
If you are a traditional D&D player who grew up with random tables , then the solo mode in Ironsworn helps bring that to PbTA, plus it also remove the focus on personal relationships that plague other PbTA games.
You say "plague" as if it were a bug and not a feature. I would also not say that it removes the focus on personal relationships as oaths and complications (weak hits) can very much be driven by personal relationships.
 




darkbard

Hero
PbTA is very story driven, so combat is resolved quickly, basically a roll or two to narrate the outcome instead of each combat round of commentary.

I wouldn't say this is strictly true of all PBtA games. Though there are no traditional rounds or initiative order, in a recent Dungeon World session my Paladin, his squire, and my wife's Wizard went toe-to-toe with an ancient blue dragon, and that dynamic battle of four participants involved a dozen or more rolls, and that's with only players making rolls! (The GM makes moves on behalf of monsters or obstacles but doesn't roll dice.)

I can only recall one or two scenes, combat or otherwise, across a score of sessions that were resolved with only a roll or two.
 

imagineGod

Legend
Moreover, the idea of the oath in Ironsworn is pretty much the very definition of personal relationship made manifest. So there's that...
The difference is that in Ironsworn Oaths do not have to be personal relationships with other PCs because Ironsworn had solo mode built in.

Too many traditional older design PbTA games saddle the whole table into unnecessary PC-vs-PC conflicts.

Many non-PbTA groups I know gave up on PbTA because they could not grok that PC-vs-PC requirement in play. Ironsworn clears that hurdle to PbTA play, with the option to bring it in if you wish, but not mandatory.
 

ART!

Hero
Not a lot I'm super-interested in this time around, but I might back Changed Stars just to support the creators and ideas behind it.

Re PbtA games: Masks is a great game, and I ran several sessions of it. I had two stumbling blocks: I was coming from a few years of playing only D&D 5E, and I was learning the system, teaching it, and running it. Whew!

If you're used to games built like D&D, PbtA is very different. One of my players, who was also very used to D&D, got very frustrated in combat, because defeating the bad guy isn't a hit point attrition thing at all.
 

Monster of the Week.
I've got that one. What made it click for me was that they were describing as moves a lot of things that D&D DMs do already, but without any structure or labels. So when they say a Keeper should do X or Y in response to players doing Z, it's just giving labels to what your instincts would probably be as a DM anyway.

Otherwise, Monster of the Week is about minimal prep (although I like to have a list of NPC names handy, because players) and just advancing the clock periodically of the monster's plan, so that players are motivated to do something.
 

Sunsword

Adventurer
I've got that one. What made it click for me was that they were describing as moves a lot of things that D&D DMs do already, but without any structure or labels. So when they say a Keeper should do X or Y in response to players doing Z, it's just giving labels to what your instincts would probably be as a DM anyway.

Otherwise, Monster of the Week is about minimal prep (although I like to have a list of NPC names handy, because players) and just advancing the clock periodically of the monster's plan, so that players are motivated to do something.
I think labeling things I just do as a GM is what throws me. It feels like only have a certain number of options and it causes me to freeze up.
 



ART!

Hero
I think labeling things I just do as a GM is what throws me. It feels like only have a certain number of options and it causes me to freeze up.
I had this exact reaction while running Masks. It was an awful experience for me - but I still really admire the system and think people should try it if they're interested.
 

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