Sean's Picks of the Week (0328-0401) - Savageness, I Am Zombie, Post-Modern Supers, and More!

Kind of wandering across the RPG timeline with this week's Picks, since we've got the return of Mark Rein-Hagen, a new post-modern superhero setting, an OSR-1e driven product by Steve Perrin that shows what the first RPG might have been had it been inspired by sci-fi instead, and a couple of new Savage Worlds guidebooks. We're looking at convention season ramping up soon, so you're looking at some great opportunities to try new games and see if you like them. Seriously, find a show you can get to, sit down and play some games, and build some adventurous memories!

I Am Zombie

Mark Rein-Hagen was arguably one of the most impactful and noted (notorious?) game designers and writers of the 90s, a leading force with the launch of Vampire: the Masquerade and the World of Darkness revolution. He left game design for a long while, but he’s back and bringing the style and innovation he’s known for with this new effort. The link is for the bundle for the entire set of game elements.

Alive or Dead? Open for debate.

Decaying. Lost. Ravenous.

On the fast lane to the Road to Perdition.

Think you’ve got problems? Try this half-life on for size.

WARNING! Read at your own risk.

If you’re still human, STOP! This book is not for you. Walk away before you know too much. What has been seen cannot be unseen. You can’t go back: you’ll never forget the ghastly truth.

There are thousands of curious BREATHER folk like you who just couldn’t help themselves and who now fill the asylums. (“Psychiatric Internment,” they call it.) We’re not so bad, but BLEACH stops at nothing to protect its massive cover-up and conspiracy.

If you’re a breather and STILL reading, then know this and know this good: You can be infected just by HANDLING the book. The only semi-SAFE way to read this material is to download the PDF. But there is a danger to just reading this stuff, it can put you on Watch List for one thing. Downloading this over a safe connection using a throwaway e-mail address is the only chance you won’t get tagged.

But, never mind. You don’t tell the cow about hamburgers. Consider it a kindness. You’re either one of them, one of us, or you’re lunchmeat.

This is the point of no return. We’ve done our best to wave you away. What happens after this is all on you. Your belief in a just, compassionate, and ordered universe is one of the lies you tell yourself to pretend that…


I AM ZOMBIE is Mark Rein-Hagen’s first new roleplaying game in years, and the first to run on his in-house design engine, the Axiom System.

Played exclusively with cards, dice, and tokens, I AM ZOMBIE replaces the traditional character sheet with hands of ID cards. Each ID card adds special skills and abilities to your character, and the more powerful you become, the more ID cards you can have in your hand at one time!

The two core decks for I AM ZOMBIE are the Core Humans deck and the Core Toxic deck. Each deck contains 54 unique ID cards, each bearing both a “Warm” side, for when you’re normal and healthy, and a “Cold” side, for when the virus takes hold and you really Skag-out!

Shaintar Guidebook: Galea

Another in the cavalcade of Shaintar Guidebooks is out today, friends, and this one covers the kingdom I first created for this world I still love dearly.

Galea – The Shining Beacon of Shaintar!

Welcome to one of the most progressive kingdoms in Shaintar – and perhaps the most important, given how it came to be. Galea is considered the reason that the rest of the Southern Kingdoms and the Freelands exist today. You’ll learn that the people who live here believe that anyone can rise to any station as long as they have the talent and honor to do so.

Founded by refugees who broke away from the power of the Kal-A-Nar Empire and Malakar Dominion, these are a proud and independent lot, though not as stubborn as might be found in the Freelands. Women own property, run businesses and rule right alongside the men. In fact, Galea has been ruled by a woman more than once and when the current King’s parents held the High Throne, the King considered his Queen his best advisor. Walk the streets of a local town and learn of its history with the Silver Unicorn and the traditions that have come to be.

Inside, you’ll find everything you need to create a character or NPC from Galea including some new edges and gear.


Eschaton – “the final event in the divine plan; the end of the world.”

Supers are hot, perhaps hotter than ever, so it’s not surprising to see some new entries in the genre. The trick for any designer/creator is to figure out which way they want to go with it. Greg Porter picked a pretty interesting direction.

What if one morning, you woke up and superheroes actually existed? If hundreds of thousands of people worldwide suddenly had powers ranging from trivial to godlike? The same people, with the same hopes, dreams, flaws and ambitions, but with powers so outside the scope of law and custom that there was no framework to fit them into? And what if each of these people had a secret that affected everything they did, but which they could tell no one about?

This is the backdrop for Eschaton. A world weaned on comic books that suddenly gets the type of heroes and villains it previously only saw in print or on the big screen.Eschaton is a superheroic setting, but one that takes a hard look at how the real world would view such empowered individuals and the social chaos that would come when people with ambitions and agendas acquire the power to be above the law. Eco-warriors who can lift bulldozers, terrorists who can teleport, politicians who can cloud minds, and so on.

You play an Agent, Super or even an Ultra in a world rebuilding from what was called the Year of Chaos, using your powers to make a difference, thwart those who oppose your vision, and sway the hearts and minds of the seven billion who do not have your powers but do have to live in the world you and your kind are making.

Eschaton is a supplement for the EABA v2 rpg, 289 pages of powers and perils, with over 50 pre-constructed heroes and villains of varying power levels, and a hundred pages of campaign guide and setting material. Eschaton is an augmented pdf whose full features work in Acrobat Reader and PDF Expert (iOS 9), but normal hyperlinking and indexing should work on any pdf reader.

Colonial Troopers

My friend, Steve Perrin, helped create a very intriguing product, one that effectively goes back in time and pretends the very first RPG was sci-fi based…

What if the first RPG was inspired by hard Science Fiction as written by Robert Heinlein, Poul Anderson, Isaac Asimov, and Frank Herbert instead of Tolkienesque fantasy?

Colonial Troopers is a science fiction RPG compatible with the original fantasy roleplaying game and subsequent editions, and other “OSR” games that follow in the mold of the original like, Guardians, Warriors of the Red Planet, and others. If your tastes run towards battle hardened combat armor, some attention to real physics, and explorations of just what it is to be human, you’ve found the right book. As in the fiction of the above writers, the players are confronted with an unforgiving universe full of wonders and deadly quirks of science ready to astound and enchant, and cull the unwary.

Accursed: Bone and Barrow

No, not doing any April Fool’s mess today, all the Picks are legitimate, friends. This is the latest for Accursed fans, featuring new information and game material for the world of Morden.

Cairn Kainen and the Outlands were the first casualties of the Bane War. Neither could mount an effective defense against the Witch Armies, though for very different reasons. In both cases, their early collapses provided the Witches with the resources they needed to push the battle into Morden’s other surviving nations.

Now, both regions suffer under tyranny, long after the Witch Council dissolved. Hecate’s Oubliette remains in the foothills of the Darkwall Peaks, and her banes prowl the Outlands. The Morrigan has made a new home in Blackroot Wode and collects a steady tithe of new souls to feed her cauldron.

Bone and Barrow provides additional information about the nation of Cairn Kainen and the Outlands that provide a barrier between the Darkwall Peaks and Morden’s more stable nations. It includes a broad range of different adventure hooks for GMs and players looking to explore these specific regions. It also introduces new banes as well as Hindrances and Edges specific to these cultures.

Accursed provides additional details about the setting used in this scenario, and is required to fully make use of the game mechanics presented. Savage Worlds and the Savage Worlds Horror Companion are also required.


Aaahhh, another weekend of intense gaming goodness for the Big Irish. Tonight, my Savage Star Wars campaign, Shadows Rising (we're re-telling the prequel movies completely), and I accidentally stumbled on the old Living Force campaign when I chose the Almas Academy as a central location. Hello, Amazon, yes I'd like to buy that used copy of the guide...

Tomorrow, another session of Savage Rifts House Party, well I run a demo for some more Denver locals. Some of them are the folks behind the really cool VENOM Assault project are involved, and I am having a lunch meeting with those guys for... reasons. ;-)

Sunday has me running another session of the Storm Wardens: Lighthouse campaign, using Prowlers & Paragons. The Storm Knights are in an alternate universe, fighting the Mayatec Empire (Mesoamerican gods as imperialistic tyrants). Should be a huge blast.

Hope you've got some fun planned, friends, and may your dice roll well.

The Adventure Continues!


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