About this project
The World of Aden is struggling for survival against a foe that seems invincible. Not so long ago, the world was in the throes of an industrial revolution, with the discovering of gunpowder and steam power giving rise to the incredible power of mechamagic, the union of magic and technology. Each passing year brought incredible new advancements, and war had been absent for so long that it was virtually forgotten. But ten years ago, the sun went black during an unexplained eclipse, and in that moment of darkness, every horror imaginable crawled from the shadows to prey upon the people of the Known Lands. This event became known as the Darkfall, and it changed the face of the world forever.
Ten years later, the world of Aden still fights for survival. The creatures created by the Darkfall, known as Nocturnals, have destroyed countless hundreds of settlements, tens of thousands of lives, and brought entire nations to ruin. Every day brings a sigh of relief that the world has survived, and every nightfall brings another threat that it may end. And yet, there is hope.
Those who fight against the Darkfall are not necessarily heroes, for there are many who seek to preserve Aden for their own purposes. Regardless, however, the common folk look upon them as leaders and inspiration, because the struggle for their survival is a desperate one. Foremost among the warriors who take the field against the evil plaguing the land are those who possess the power of mechamagic, either in the form of a mechamage, who commands a powerful golem to do his bidding, or a golemoid warrior, whose body has been modified to possess steam-powered weapons built right into their flesh. Others, including the technology-creating steamwright and the survivors of the divinatory Seer order, are only a few of those who hope to save Aden from an evil that no one yet understands.
In Thunderscape, your character can fight against the hordes of nocturnals spawned by the Darkfall in a desperate attempt to win back the vast stretches of wasteland lost over the course of years. Or you can defend the few remaining settlements from your enemies, both nocturnals and mortal. You can take up the banner of Urbana and forge new trade routes across the Known Lands, or you can fight against the oppressive regime of Lord Urbane in hopes of liberating the people from his brand of 'necessary tyranny.' You can plumb the depths of the Burning Coast in hopes of retrieving lost treasures, or search for the mysteries of the lost creators of Le'Ciel. Hunt giants in the deep jungles of the Misland Republics, or fight off necromantic incursions from the Gray Isles as part of Arasteen's Radiant Order.
The possibilities are limitless!
“In my mind, Thunderscape: the World of Aden is one of the best campaign setting books released, and if I had anything bad to say about it, it would be that 224 pages left me wanting more…” – Jere M., DriveThruRPG
“This book is great! I wasn't familiar with the history of the world of Aden until I picked this up, but I'm quite glad that Kyoudai Games got their hands on the rights. The book has some pretty amazing magi-tech related material: from people with cybernetic implants to airships and tanks, this book probably has what you are looking for.” – James Langley, Paizo.com
“I'm a big fan of mixing magic and technology. I love properties like He-Man, Thundercats and Flash Gordon so for a while I was on a huge lookout for products that would satisfy my need to run a few Magitech or Dungeon Punk campaigns. Thunderscape is the book that satisfied me in ways that other similar products didn't.” – Malwing, Paizo.com
Savage Thunderscape is a complete campaign setting and mechanics sourcebook for the Savage Worlds role-playing game. It details the World of Aden, including eleven different races (including the standard human, elf, and dwarf that so many fantasy aficionados love), twelve unique nations, and countless different groups and organizations that are perfect for a party of enterprising adventurers to be a part of. Editing is still in progress, so we can’t give you an exact page count just yet, but the final product of Savage Thunderscape will be a full-color, 8.5’ by 11’ work with a high quality and density of artwork designed specifically for our setting.
When Kyoudai Games first brought Thunderscape back to tabletop gaming, we utilized the Pathfinder system. Since that time, though, the most frequent question we’ve been asked is whether or not we were going to create a Savage Worlds version. Our initial Kickstarter reached a stretch goal that would allow for a free conversion guide to Savage Worlds, but the writer we contracted to write 5,000 words ended up producing 50,000! Finally we admitted that it seems the universe wants this book to happen. And why shouldn’t it? Both are creations of Shane Hensley, after all.
The World of Aden was created and developed by Shane Hensley in the mid 1990s as the setting for two computer games, three novels, and two role-playing supplements. Many years later, Shane would go on to develop Savage Worlds with much the same emphasis on vibrant, exciting experiences for everyone involved. Uniting Thunderscape and Savage Worlds is a perfect opportunity to pay homage to the man’s vision while simultaneously spreading our deep and abiding love of the setting to more people. The members of Kyoudai Games have been playing RPGs set in Aden for literally two decades, using all manner of different systems. We’ve had the time of our lives, and we want to share that with you.
This is an extremely important section so please read this carefully! Barring the achievement of some really high-end stretch goals, we are not producing a line of printed books as part of this Kickstarter. Rather, if you back at a level that would give you access to a physical copy of the book, you gain the ability to purchase an at-cost print-on-demand copy. That’s why the increase from PDF to physical copy is only $5, because you will still have to pay the printing cost and the shipping cost for that book. Make no mistake, paying for printing is a lot less than a normal book’s cost, but we do want you to be aware of what you’re getting for your money. For example, one of our 48 page adventure modules has an actual print cost of about $8, which is significantly less than the cover price. With regard to shipping, you may want to investigate how close the nearest Lightning Media printing facility is (that is the company we use through DriveThruRPG). The closer you are to one of their outlets, the less shipping will cost you. We know that they have European facilities, so that should save a tremendous amount on shipping if you are a European backer. It may seem a little bit unusual, but we believe that this process will actually save you money if you are interested in a physical copy. Many of you are likely familiar with the quality of work that DriveThru print-on-demand services provide, and the sheer volume of shipping that they do, even internationally, will allow them to offer you a less expensive rate.
Of course, if you’re just interested in a PDF, please disregard this entire disclaimer.
Digital Add-on Menu: These may be selected by any backer!
- Thunderscape: the World of Aden, Pathfinder Edition PDF: $10 (normally $20!)
- Thunderscape Pathfinder Edition Ultimate Bundle: $50 (normally $117!) This includes all fourteens products from our Pathfinder line, including the core rulebook up through our April release, Heroes of Aden, all at a better than 50% discount!
- Deck of Thunderscape Playing Cards, at-cost print-on-demand: $5! (With this, you may purchase a deck for the cost of printing, which is between $4 and $5, and the cost of shipping it to your house.)
- Unique Thunderscape Fiction: $25! You can create your own Thunderscape character in either system and the Kyoudai Games Creative Team will write a fiction about your character, based on your requests! If we get enough of these we will compile them into an epub file, which will be free to all participants, and offer it for sale on Amazon!
Physical Add-on Menu: These items are restricted to our Misari Giantslayer backers and above in order to consolidate physical items with the shipments we're already sending you!
- Thunderscape T-Shirt: $10!
- Deck of Thunderscape Playing Cards: $10!
- Thunderscape Bumper Sticker: $5!
- Thunderscape Bumper Pin: $1!
The Thunderscape Playing Card Deck is something new that we're working on right now. The design is not yet final, but here's a glimpse of what Mike "Mad Max" Brodu has been working on so far. Witness the Queen of Hearts!
As this is our second Kickstarter, we learned a great deal about the proper preparation of stretch goals. To be honest, we were surprised by the level of success we experienced in our first one, and as a result we had to scramble to put some stretch goals together at the last minute. That led to some choices that we perhaps might not have made if we had considered it longer! As a result, we have more stretch goals planned out than you can possibly achieve, just in case. For now, however, here are the first few.
Thank you so much for your help! Let’s get Savage!
Reaching this level of funding means that we will immediately commission conversions of our two Thunderscape Vistas settings, the Mechamagical Academy and the Besieged Village, upon conclusion of the Kickstarter. No waiting for them to be paid for by sales! You get them as soon as we can get them converted and laid out, thanks to your generosity!
As above, this goal means that we will immediately convert and lay out the Savage Worlds conversion of our two Thunderscape Nights mini-modules, Trouble at the Dunswood Inn and Mission of Mercy! No waiting around, they get converted immediately, and like many other items on this list, are free to backers at level $20 and above!
The first great adventure in the Lost Lexicon series, Heart of the Machine, will be converted immediately upon conclusion of the Kickstarter!
Two of the most popular types of characters in Thunderscape are the Golemoids, men and women who have given up parts of their body to be replaced with mechamagical steam-powered weaponry, and the Thunder Scouts, who roam the wastelands in steam-powered vehicles, bringing order to the chaos brought by the Darkfall! Ready to get Savage with these guys? More options, more steam, more everything! No waiting for it to be paid for by sales, it's paid for now!
Immediate commissioning of the first in our series of Thunderscape World books, the Radiant Order! Curious about the egalitarian paladins who rule the nation of Arasteen? Here's everything you need to know!
Immediate commissioning of the first installment of our Aden Wildlife Journals! Read the bickering expertise of Dr. Danderfall Malcolm of Mekanus and his BFF Professor Atticus Caesar of Refuge! Learn all the secrets of the goreaux race! Learn about the enigmatic salamanders that hide away beneath the smoking volcanoes of the Charred Peaks! And learn all the horrible truths six of Aden's most dangerous and deadly creatures!
Immediate commissioning of the second Lost Lexicon adventure, Radiant Demise! What horrible secrets are hidden in the history of Arasteen? Where will the path of the lost lexicon lead next? What is causing the breakdown of diplomacy between mankind and the secretive slurgithians? Find out here!
Hey, who’s making this thing anyway?
Well, as you know, the setting and system were both originally created by Shane Hensley, which might explain why they seem to mesh together so well. However, since Kyoudai Games got the rights to Aden from Shane Hensley, all creative direction has been handled by Shawn Carman and Rich Wulf, both of whom you may know from their days working on the Legend of the Five Rings CCG and RPG (and Rich also wrote an amazing trilogy of Eberron novels for Wizards of the Coast!). Shawn and Rich are operating largely in an oversight capacity on Savage Thunderscape, however, helping provide direction and guidance to ensure all mechanics mesh with the themes of Thunderscape as it currently exists, a delicious blend of old-school Hensley innovation and modern role-playing advancements.
For our Savage Worlds mechanics, we turned to a couple of long-standing members of the Savage Worlds community, Mark Swafford and John Beattie. These two gentlemen have done an amazing job of taking the spirit of the World of Aden and translating it into the fast, furious fun of Savage Worlds. You’ll be seeing a lot more of these guys in the months and years to come, I’ll wager.
And of course we would be remiss if we did not mention the wonderful Jodi Black of Pinnacle Entertainment Group. Jodi has been a mentor to us as we work to ensure that our game is 100% worthy of the mantle of Savage Worlds, and with every suggestion she offered us she included ample amounts of encouragement as well, for which we will forever be in her debt. Thanks, Jodi!
I would go on for pages about the amazing graphic design skills of our layout guy, Mike Brodu, but I don’t have to. You’ll see the pages and you’ll know this man is a champion among designers. It’s going to be amazing.
Risks and challenges
This is not Kyoudai Games’ first Kickstarter. It’s our second! And in the execution of our first, we learned a great deal about the process of fulfillment and, to be perfectly frank with you, what not to do when promising things to our backers. We have constructed this Kickstarter very meticulously to ensure that we can deliver 100% of the items we promise in the manner we have promised. Like our previous endeavor, the text for this particular book is already complete and in editing as this Kickstarter launches. Unlike last time, however, we are not adding material directly to the core book as a result of the backer levels, so we can have the text ready for backers to review as soon as the Kickstarter ends. (The exception to that being the special edition version, which will have additional items, hence its arrival date being several months behind the basic release. Extra chapters, don't you know!)
Delays are possible, because frankly there’s always something that can be overlooked or complications that can arise that no one could have predicted. We’ve been doing this for a little while now, though, and we’re ready to deal with whatever gets in our way. And you can ask any of our former backers… sometimes we run a little slow, but we always live up to our promises.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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