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Story Stacks is a one night, card based RPG that puts the storytelling at the center of the action. Never play the same legend twice!
Story Stacks is a one night, card based RPG that puts the storytelling at the center of the action. Never play the same legend twice!
190 backers pledged $8,845 to help bring this project to life.
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You're in an old Transylvanian castle. Somewhere inside is the Evil Time-Traveling Clone of Benjamin Franklin. You and your team have been hired to capture him.

The primary mission will have to wait, though, because a unicorn just walked into the hallway and he has a homicidal look in his eye. It's your move. What do you want to do?

Story Stacks is the game of shared storytelling. You control the characters, but the cards decide your fate!

In this fast-paced roleplaying card game a new surprise waits around every corner, even for the Narrator. The card based system focuses on taking players on unique adventures, using a quick duel to determine the success and failure actions instead of dice and spreadsheets.

If you've never played a storytelling game before Story Stacks is a great place to start. If you're a long time veteran, it's a chance to break out of the traditional stat sheet and exercise your creative side. Everything you need to share a great story inside the box, with thousands of adventures and only minutes of setup time

 

 The choices are up to you, but the cards decide your fate!

 

We lovetraditional tabletop roleplaying games. However, most RPG's have a long learning curve. While this gives those who master the systems a great sense of accomplishment and satisfaction, it’s a barrier for those who don’t have the time to sit down and understand all the rules. On the the other hand, we love playing quick and social card games like Cards against Humanity and Boss Fight. They are incredibly fun but, these casual games don't provide the same epic adventures that you get from the traditional roleplaying games. 

Story Stacks delivers the best of both worlds. One convenient box provides quick and easy gameplay, along with fantastic storytelling and the challenge of traditional roleplaying.

"There will be no one to stop me this time!"
"There will be no one to stop me this time!"

 

 

 

 

 

Story Stacks includes five decks totaling 227 cards.  

Everything you need to play comes inside the box, and you can play 30 games without repeating a single plot point.

12 Character Cards let you fill the shoes of a dozen different heroes.

45 Central Narrative Cards combine into 3,000 ways for stories begin.  

90 Plot Point Cards provide 700,000 paths for your adventure to take.  

30 Complication Cards mean 30 unexpected wrenches for any story.  

50 Chance Cards are balanced to create the maximum level of tension.

You see... they're like stacks... of stories.
You see... they're like stacks... of stories.

 

First Establish a Central Narrative

Every story happens somewhere. The Setting side of the Central Narrative card determines where your tale will take place.

Stories also need motivations which is where the Mission side of the card comes in. Mix & match cards to go on thousands of unique adventures!

Next You Draw Your Heroes

Each Player takes on the role of a protagonist in the story. Who you are is determined by drawing a Character Card. When you perform actions that fit your character's expertise you'll have a better chance at being successful.

 

You'll Need Some Plot Points

Every story has a beginning, middle, and end. A handful of Plot Point cards will determine what happens in each act. You’ll have to be ready, though, because even the Narrator is unaware what situation will turn up next!

 

Don't forget the Twist

The best stories always have an extra wrinkle. So will yours. You may come down with a case of the cooties, or find yourself on a secret mission that has you betraying your friends. Whatever the complication, you’ll need to overcome it to reach the end of the story.

The Narrator Tells the Story...  

As the Narrator, you are the storyteller, the game master, and the dealer. Your job is to guide the other players through the adventure with each of them playing the role of a character in the story. That means any non-player characters or events are controlled and determined by you (with a little help from the cards). You are not playing against the rest of the group, but attempting to tell the craziest story you can. You’re all in this mess together! 

                         ...the Cards Decide Your Fate

Whenever you take an action or something happens to your character you’ll end up in a Chance Draw. Make good choices and be rewarded. Be careful, though, because automatic failure cards are ready to spoil the best laid plans.

Story Stacks is about having adventures that could never, ever happen!
Story Stacks is about having adventures that could never, ever happen!

 

 

 

 

We are Playground Zero, a group of friends and industry veterans looking to make our own games. We have a simple goal: Give players stories to tell. To achieve that aim we follow five key design criteria for our games: 

1. People are more creative than they think they are. Inside every one of us is an inherent ability to communicate with others. Whether its with a pencil, words, numbers, or gestures, we communicate our thoughts outwardly in some way. Our games give players a reason to think on their feet. The way they do that makes each session unique.  

2. Every turn is interesting, even if it's not yours. We're not big fans of downtime. In our games we want you engaged from beginning to end. Watching another player think through a multi-step turn that has no direct impact on you gets boring, and it kills the conversation at the table. In addition, you'll never be "knocked out" in one of our games. You're in it from start to finish.  

3. Silence is for anticipation of what comes next. We believe that silence is best when the game compels it from you. Everyone staring at the same card, waiting for it to be revealed. Everything riding on a single moment. No one breathing. When it flips the room explodes in energy. That's what silence is for.  

4. Predictability is boring. Players like figuring out a way to win. There is fun in seeing how your strategy plays out. But, stories are less interesting when everything goes according to plan. If you're going to share an adventure it's going to need a little drama.  

5. There are no failures, only unexpected results. Things don't always go your way. You'll make a mistake in strategy. Luck will abandon you. Another player will cut you off at the pass. That shouldn't ruin your chances. It should give you a new path forward.

 

Technically this was the second deck.
Technically this was the second deck.

 

The first was just index cards
The first was just index cards

 

But, a Uno deck and some address labels can go a long way.
But, a Uno deck and some address labels can go a long way.

 

The first "real" deck.
The first "real" deck.

 

Five decks. Thousands of adventures.
Five decks. Thousands of adventures.

 

Now it starts to feel real!
Now it starts to feel real!

 

Prototype and playtest decks.
Prototype and playtest decks.

 

We had a great time playtesting Story Stacks with the Ohio Gaming Brigade
We had a great time playtesting Story Stacks with the Ohio Gaming Brigade

 

 

 

 

We rub elbows with publishers and fellow inventors at ChiTag, the Chicago Toy and Game Show!
We rub elbows with publishers and fellow inventors at ChiTag, the Chicago Toy and Game Show!

 

 

We even took Story Stacks to GenCon.
We even took Story Stacks to GenCon.

 

 

 

 

Getting ready for Kickstarter.
Getting ready for Kickstarter.

 

 

We took the game everywhere we could to get feedback.
We took the game everywhere we could to get feedback.

 

 

We've tested over and over again, refining cards until they have the right mix of fun, zany, and playability.
We've tested over and over again, refining cards until they have the right mix of fun, zany, and playability.

 

Risks and challenges

We've been playing, testing, and designing Story Stacks for the past three years, working hard to make sure we had a great game before we came to Kickstarter. The visual and aesthetic design is complete (done in-house), and we've used thousands of man hours to refine the card selections that will be included in the box. If we reach our goal, we'll call the printer and say, "Make it so!" And yes, our goal amount accounts for shipping.

While we've done our best to have the game as close to ready as possible, there are risks to any venture. Boxes could be shipped to the wrong distribution centers, or the evil, time-traveling clone of Benjamin Franklin might kidnap the delivery driver. We'll do our best communicate issues quickly and honestly if they do arise. Thankfully, this is a card game, which means we aren't packing in strange components or breaking new ground on the production design. In fact, our printer has shipped many Kickstarter projects before, including some of the largest card games on the planet. We feel good about them, and believe they can deliver on their promises. If they don't, that's still on us, and we'll make it right.

We love Story Stacks, and know you'll love it, too. That motivates us to make sure we deliver a quality product that will take you on thousands of adventures.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 5 or more About US$ 5

    Hey, we kinda like your style

    So, you like what we are doing? Thanks for helping out. For five bucks you get your name on the PGZ website for all time. (or until we go out of business)

    Includes:
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 15 or more About US$ 15

    Story Stacks: Digital Print and Play

    It's my game and I want it now! For fifteen dollars you get the Story Stacks: Premium Digital Print and Play Edition emailed directly to you! You also get your name on the Playground Zero website forever and ever.

    Includes:
    • Story Stacks: Premium Digital Print and Play Edition
    • Writing on the Wall
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    17 backers
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    Pledge US$ 30 or more About US$ 30

    Story Stacks: First Edition

    The meat and potatoes. Gets you the full 227 cards in Story Stacks. You also get the Premium Digital Print and Play Edition and your name on the Playground Zero website.

    Includes:
    • Story Stacks: First Edition
    • Story Stacks: Premium Digital Print and Play Edition
    • Writing on the Wall
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    126 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 50 or more About US$ 50

    When it ships it'll almost be Christmas!

    What's better than one copy of Story Stacks? TWO copies of Story Stacks! Give one to your friend that missed out, or just keep both!

    Includes:
    • Story Stacks: First Edition
    • Story Stacks: Premium Digital Print and Play Edition
    • Writing on the Wall
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    30 backers
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 100 or more About US$ 100

    Come play with us!

    Have a play session with us, which we'll record and post online for posterity. We built it, who better to play it with? Also two copies of Story Stacks and all the other rewards.

    Includes:
    • Guest star on the Story Stacks Podcast
    • Story Stacks: First Edition
    • Story Stacks: Premium Digital Print and Play Edition
    • Writing on the Wall
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    12 backers
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 6,000 or more About US$ 6,000

    Knock Knock!

    For six thousand dollars all of the designers of the game will hand deliver your two copies of Story Stacks and and run a personal game for you.

    Includes:
    • Door to door service.
    • Guest star on the Story Stacks Podcast
    • Story Stacks: First Edition
    • Story Stacks: Premium Digital Print and Play Edition
    • Writing on the Wall
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    0 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 8,000 or more About US$ 8,000

    Gen Con!

    For only $8000 dollars we will take you to GenCon with us. We'll even buy your badge! (Get your copies with everyone else, and join us at GenCon 2018.)

    Includes:
    • Guest star on the Story Stacks Podcast
    • Story Stacks: First Edition
    • Story Stacks: Premium Digital Print and Play Edition
    • Writing on the Wall
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    0 backers
    $

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Funding period

- (31 days)