Spirited Tools

The Cover ImageSpirited Tools is the most recent thing I have written for Torg Eternity on the Infiniverse Exchange.

In Torg Eternity, the rules of reality are different in different areas, and in the Living Land high technology and magic do not work, but there is a very high level of spiritual power. One of the fun things about the game is people from other realities trying to use tools that work perfectly well in the reality they are currently in, but which do not work in their own reality. Things can go wrong in entertaining ways. The problem is that, in the official material, the Living Land has almost no items like that. A lot of realities have technology that is above the level of many characters, and several have magic items in the same situation, but all the official things that draw on the Living Land’s high Spirit axiom are restricted to characters from the Living Land, who thus have the same Spirit axiom. That’s no fun.
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Infiniverse Exchange Bundle

The bundle cover imageThe Bundle of Holding, a very good source of digital RPGs at bargain prices, is currently running a bundle for Torg Eternity. I felt that this was a good opportunity to run a bundle of all the products I have written for Torg Eternity, and am selling on the Infiniverse Exchange. So, I have created a bundle at 50% off.

I actually made it yesterday, and I’ve already sold five of it. Five sales of everything (well, apart from the things that purchasers already owned) in a day is much, much faster than normal, so the limited-time special offer appears to be working its marketing magic.
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An Edeinos in Core Earth

The Cover ImageAn Edeinos in Core Earth is a small supplement for Torg Eternity, which I published on the Infiniverse Exchange earlier this year. In the game, earth (called Core Earth) has been invaded by a number of different realities, one of which, called The Living Land, has focused on North America. These realities have their own natives, who are human, or nearly so, in most cases. The Living Land, however, is an important exception. The native intelligent species there is the edeinos, who are humanoid lizards. This means that they are obviously “not from around here” when they travel in Core Earth.
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Home Front: Philadelphia

The Cover ImageHome Front: Philadelphia is another short supplement for Torg Eternity. In Torg Eternity, Earth has been invaded by different realities, and much of North America is under the influence of a primitive action reality called The Living Land. The city of Philadelphia, however, is an island of Earth’s old reality, called Core Earth in the game. I wanted to make it into a viable base for a campaign set early in the game’s timeline.
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8 Million Gods

The cover image8 Million Gods is another supplement that I wrote for Torg Eternity. As you might be able to guess from the cover image, it is an adaptation of Shinto to work within the game world. One of my reasons for writing this is that I wanted to be able to create and play Shinto characters in the game, and that had not been a priority for the designers. (Unsurprisingly.) A further reason for writing it was that portrayals of Shinto in gaming have, in the past, not been very good. (Recently, Scion, from Onyx Path, has done a good job — and I wasn’t really involved.)
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12 Perils for the Living Land

Image of the Book Cover12 Perils for the Living Land is not really a book; it is a very short supplement for Torg Eternity, specifically for the Living Land, as you might be able to guess from the title. The Living Land is a primitive reality, complete with jungles, dinosaurs, and lost ruins, which has primarily taken over parts of the USA and Canada.

Torg Eternity makes a lot of use of cards, including “Cosm Cards”, which can be played while in a certain reality to reinforce the conventions of that reality, and make each of the realities feel different in play. This is a very good idea, because the differences between realities are an important part of what makes Torg feel distinctive. One of the cards for the Living Land is “Perils of the Living Land”, which means that the group face a peril.
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Road to Philadelphia

Torg was a roleplaying game released about thirty years ago in which earth was invaded by different realities, different genres of roleplaying game, and you played characters from these different realities who all worked together to fight the invaders. Thus, fantasy wizards worked with cyberpunk hackers and two-fisted pulp detectives to defeat dinosaur-riding lizardmen. It was a lot of fun, but never one that I got into in any depth.

A couple of years ago it was relaunched as Torg Eternity, with new rules and a slightly revised background. The publisher also created a Community Content program, the Infiniverse Exchange, where fans of the game can publish material for it and charge money for them.
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Corellon Larethian

I have just published a short, new roleplaying book.

Corellon Larethian is the chief deity of the elves in the Forgotten Realms setting for Dungeons and Dragons. The Forgotten Realms setting was released when I was a teenager, and I have loved it ever since. In a lot of ways, it is the classic RPG fantasy setting, and I like those settings, particularly the elves. I’ve often thought about writing something along those lines, but the question of the Forgotten Realms always came up. Why do it again when it already exists?
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Playtest Results

I am currently designing a new roleplaying game, with the working title of Universitas Magarum. It is a GM-less, co-operative roleplaying game, and, as one playtest group said, it is sufficiently different from those currently on the market to avoid the question of why you would play this game rather than something else. If you want to do what this game offers, this is your only option.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t work.
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Playtest Scenario Draft Finished

I have a complete first draft of the playtest scenario for the Universitas Magarum game. It’s about 17,000 words long, and has five situations, introducing all the major rules for the game and the background, just like a playtest and introductory scenario should. I’ve already played through it by myself, because the rules do support solo play, and it works.

Obviously, I do plan to go through it again before I send it out to other people for playtest. There may be places that need a bit more explanation, and I need to check for typos. Then I need to lay it out do that it’s easy to use; there are a few bits in the rules that work much more easily with a nice layout.

I am not, however, planning to do any more structural revisions. There are a couple of things that occurred to me as I wrote it. For example, I think it might be better to have more explicit connections to the climax from earlier in the scenario. Everything does build up to it, but the results of some situations do not make a significant difference to the final outcome of this scenario, although they would be very significant in a campaign using the rules. However, I want to get feedback from other players before I start tinkering like that. There may be more fundamental problems that need fixing first.

I’ll be asking around my friends and contacts to find playtesters from next week, I think, but if anyone reading this would be interested in playtesting, leave a comment. The playtest scenario should work with one to six players; with more than six players there would be situations where at least one player had no opportunity to act.

Nearly there! (And then, of course, I have to revise, and start working towards the full game, which will be at least five times the length of the playtest scenario.)