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A Techno-Fantasy roleplaying game inspired by Pirates of Dark Water and Shannara series.
138 backers pledged $5,264 to help bring this project to life.

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$5,264

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Renard knew he was screwed. He'd been left holding the bag…literally. Yesterday, his captain had told him he would be with a thieving party that would stick it to the Elves, and the old man had stressed that the job would be easy.

Renard should have turned him down right then.

Any time someone goes out of their way to tell you a job'll be easy, it won't be.

There were four Elyrian guards on him now and the rest of the team was dead. The Elves were a cold bunch of bastards and they stood, slender blades drawn, taking his measure as coolly as if he hadn't just rammed a dagger through their leader's throat. One of them murmured something and another responded softly---as if worried that Renard might understand their language.

Renard had no idea what the pointy ears were saying. His knuckles were white around his cutlass' grip while his left hand strayed towards the loaded pipe pistol on his belt. In another few seconds the Elves would remember that he was just one man, that he couldn't hope to repeat the trick he'd pulled with their leader.

So he didn't give them that chance.

Bellowing like a wounded animal, Renard snapped up his pistol, fired at the largest Elyrian, and charged blade-first into the jaws of death.

Mutant Pirate
Mutant Pirate



What Is Pirates Of A Shattered World?

The newest release from The Polyhedral Knights, Pirates of a Shattered World is a post-apocalyptic science-fantasy swashbuckling adventure. Taking place in the Fractured Sea---an archipelago filled with monsters and wreckage from the second apocalypse---it puts the PCs in the roles of explorers, swashbucklers, and science-mages and sets them against a backdrop of gunpowder, sorcery, altered beasts, and haunted ruins beneath the waves.

Gameplay in Pirates is fast and pulpy. You build your characters using Archetypes like Sailor, Mystic, Science Mage, or Courtier (among others) and races like Iguana Hybrid, Hobgoblin, Mutant, and Elyrian, then dig into the crunch with a host of Attributes, Skills, Talents, Combat Techniques, and Spells to flesh them out how you want.

Pirates also puts a vast, fully-fleshed out setting at your fingertips, including a bestiary packed with ne'er do wells, ancient hazards, and oceanic horrors, as an atlas with locations like Vek (the fractious nation of the Hobgoblins), the Brotherhood of the Sail (a windborne pirate nation ruled by voting council), and the Spider Kingdom (a toxic jungle full of people infested by a parasitic hive-mind).

Pirates of a Shattered World is the culmination of years of design and is a distant-future sequel to Pathogen: Unclassified. It draws inspiration from works such as Shannara Series by Terry Brooks , Hawkmoon by Michael Moorcock, and Pirates of Dark Water. 

What Is The Travelers' Guide to the Fractured Seas?

The Travelers' Guide is a companion PDF that comes with certain pledge levels. It is a booklet filled with people, places, and items that a GM can use for his/her campaign or any quick pick up game.  The core book will contain NPCs, locations, and items too, but the Travelers' Guide includes plenty of new material and will be a valuable asset to GMs and players looking to explore the world.

Beast Man Gorilla-Barbarian Savage Archetype
Beast Man Gorilla-Barbarian Savage Archetype


Character Sheet Page 1
Character Sheet Page 1
Character Sheet Page 2
Character Sheet Page 2

Lore

Despite what scholars will tell you, history began long before the second apocalypse.
 

Long ago, when humans were the dominant species on earth, a weapon capsule was sent to their planet by the Elyrians. The Elyrians planned for the parasite to infect much of the population, and for those infected to begin the process of terraforming the planet for Elyrian habitation. Gaia Life Solutions, an ancient mercantile guild, got a hold of the delivery pod before it could release its infection and decided to tinker with it, thus altering the Elyrian's bioweapon. When the plague was ultimately released due to a malfunction in Gaia's laboratories, it did not behave quite as the Elyrians had intended. Human civilization fell, but not completely, and the earth was able to recover from the disaster.
 

Then the Elyrians arrived on their ships, thinking Earth would be ready for colonization.

It wasn't.

Neither were its people.

Not wanting to turn around, the Elyarians decided they would try and take it by force from these humans. Unfortunately for the Elyrians, they found humanity had done some reverse engineering of the technology in the pod and made significant scientific advances. A war began between the aliens and humans and it dragged on for a long time, with many "servant" races being created by both sides to try and alter the course of the conflict.

This was the origin of the beast men (Gorilla, Wolf, Iguana, and Ram)  and the Synth (artificial humans). Furthermore, there was a servitor race designed by the Elyrians that quickly gained a human nickname: Goblins. These "Goblins" were servants and technicians, and to supplement them the Elyrian designed a species of larger, more brutish cousins---the Hobgoblins.



In this same struggle the Elyrians were given the nickname "Elves"---a slur that they hate to this day.

The war lasted a very long time, with both sides using every dirty trick they could think of. Earth became a wartorn wasteland, all but uninhabitable by either faction. Then, unexpectedly, a series of tectonic plate collisions caused catastrophic earthquakes and shifts in the tide, drowning much of the available land. Many on both sides perished, and the Elyrians' leadership ultimately decided that earth was not worth the fight. Their ships pulled out of orbit and left, leaving all their ground troops behind.
 

Earth was in ruins, and since then the world has devolved into a medieval state. The remaining Elyarians have adapted and tried to establish their own way of life, carving out swaths of the remaining land for their civilization. The beast men, goblins, hobgoblins, and others have similarly taken terrain for themselves.

Elyrian Soldier
Elyrian Soldier

Elyrian ("Elf") Soldier
Elyrian ("Elf") Soldier

Compared with the ancient past, the world map is unrecognizable and ships are the new power. They allow for easy travel between nations, international trade, although they have also caused a return of piracy.
 

Powers exist in this world that are on the edge of human comprehension, and those of particular bloodlines can harness and wield them. Scholars sometimes say that these powers are caused by something called "nanos", invisible specks that run through the blood of the gifted. The term for manipulating these nanos, and thereby the effects they can cause, is Science Magic.

Our Staff

John "Mickey" Barfield (Creator, Head Writer)

    Mickey has been involved in Roleplaying games as a Game master for 40 years. Started The Polyhedral Knights almost 7 years ago. He is responsible for creating Spy, Pathogen Unclassified, Wicked Pacts, Dark Times and now is launching Pirates of a Shattered World. Writing inspirations for Mickey has been Michael Moorcock and Robert McCammon.  Even in Mickey's day job we work in the creative field (Hair Stylist). 

Richard Kelly (Supporting Writer, Editor) 

   Richard is an indie game designer responsible for The Dawnline and culpable for Firefighter Sharks In Space. He has previously worked on Pathogen: Unclassified, Wicked Pacts, and Dark Times for The Polyhedral Knights, as well as Oubliette Second Edition and the Heroines Of The First Age product line for Voidspiral Entertainment, plus the Splinter and Psionics product lines for End Transmission Games. He has a copy of Scott Lynch's Red Seas Under Red Skies on his bookshelf, and it whispers advice to him when the night is late and the coffee supplies are low.

Mitch Mitchell (Art Director)

   "Mad Mitch" has been designing and making games since the early 90's. As a professional graphic artist his ability to design and print his own games made convention attendees ask, "who publishes this game?" Mad Mitch's Games had their own successful Kickstarter "WWII Assault - A Tactical Skirmish Miniature Game" in 2015 and continues to design and develop new games.

James Shields (Artist)

   James is a freelance artist for the roleplaying game industry where he does business as J.E.Shields. James has been commissioned by many independent companies such as The Polyhedral Knights, Barrel Rider Games, Blackfall Press, Dread Unicorn Games, EN World, Kalos Comics, New Comet Games, Rogue Comet, The Wrecking Crew, and many others. In addition to direct commissions, his stock illustrations appear in numerous roleplaying products.

Jeff Madding (Artist)

  Born in the late 70s, Jeff Madding began drawing around the age of 13 and, after being inspired by the comic art of the 1990s, decided in high school that a career in art was his goal. Life happened and he gave up art in the early 2000s before deciding to pick the pencil back up in early 2018. At the urging of an old friend, he began work for The Polyhedral Knights. Creating the art for “Pirates of a Shattered World”, is a goal finally fulfilled. He has also worked with Throwingames and has done illustrations for the game, Nefarious Designs. He hopes to be involved with more projects in the future. He currently resides in the Midwest with his wife and kids.  

Science Mage
Science Mage


Stretch Goals

If we hit these funding levels, anyone who qualified for a PDF of the game (i.e. Crewman backer level and up) will also get these rewards in PDF form. The more folks we have backing the project, the more we'll be able to enrich all of the books with new content and art. So tell your friends to tell their friends.

$7,000 - Atlas of the Fractured Sea

This book will cover the important places of the Fractured Sea. It will break down the various countries and factions that are in power, listing the movers and shakers of the world as well as what they mean to the regions they inhabit. Not only will this book be filled with details about the places it discusses, but it will provide a Ship full of plot seeds and npcs to use to fuel many adventures. 

$10,000 - Temple of the Gods

A full campaign for you to run with your crew, this book will also offer many offspring plot seeds that you can use to spin off further adventures. It will cover certain campaign-relevant parts of the Fractured Sea in more detail than the Atlas of the Fractured Sea. 



Risks and challenges

The biggest risk we have here (aside from reaching funding, which is the first and biggest risk any project faces) is making sure that art and writing are done with minimal delays.

To avoid this problem, Pirates has been in pre-production for close to a year, ensuring plenty of lead time to develop the game, commission artwork, and put together a team for the project.

This is The Polyhedral Knights' fifth tabletop RPG core book, and all of the previous four have been funded and delivered.

We are still producing and delivering supplement books for the Dark Times kickstarter, but those use a parallel pipeline and thus work on one project will not affect the other.

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    Crewman

    For your Pledge, upon release of the game, you will receive the following.

    • A complete PDF of the rules of the
    game.
    • Your name in the book as a backer.

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    Scholar

    For your pledge, upon release of the game, you will receive the following.
    • A PDF of Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF copy of Travelers Guide to the
    Fractured Sea.
    • Your name in list of backers in the book.

    This is a PDF ONLY level. No physical copies of any rewards are involved.

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    Soldier

    For your pledge, upon release of the game you will receive the following.
    • A full color (8.5"x11") Softcover book of
    Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF of Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • Your name in the book as a backer.

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    Garrison Soldier

    This only applies to anyone living in the Jacksonville, Florida or nearby region. For your pledge, upon release of the game you will receive the following. When the books come in we agree to meet somewhere to pick up your book.
    • a full color (8.5"x11") Softcover book of
    Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF of Pirates of a Shattered World
    along with the PDF. When the books
    come in we agree to meet somewhere to
    pick up your book.
    • Your name in the book as a backer.

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    Boatswain

    For your pledge, upon release of the game you will receive the following.
    • A full color (8.5”x11”) Softcover book of
    Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF of Pirates of a Shattered World
    • PDF of Traveler’s Guide to the Fractured
    Seas.
    • Your name in the book as a backer.

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    Gunner Mate

    For your pledge, upon release of the game you will receive the following.
    • a full color (8.5"x11") Hard cover book of
    Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF of Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • Your name in list of backers in the book.

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    Fort Guard

    This only applies to anyone living in the Jacksonville, Florida or nearby region. For your pledge, upon release of the game you will receive the following. When the books come in we agree to meet somewhere to pick up your book.
    • a full color (8.5"x11") Hardcover book of
    Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF of Pirates of a Shattered World
    along with the PDF.
    • Your name in list of backers in the book.

    When the books come in we agree to meet somewhere to pick up your book.

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    Quartermaster

    For your pledge, upon release of the game you will receive the following.
    • A full color (8.5”x11”) Hard cover book of
    Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF of Pirates of a Shattered World
    • PDF of Traveler’s Guide to the Fractured
    Seas.
    • Your name in the book as a backer.

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    Knight

    For your pledge, upon release of the game you will receive the following.
    • A full color (8.5”x11”) Softcover book of
    Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF of Pirates of a Shattered World
    • Soft cover of Traveler’s Guide to the
    Fractured Seas.
    • PDF of Traveler’s Guide to the
    Fractured Seas.
    • Your name in the book as a backer.

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    Baron

    For your pledge, upon release of the game you will receive the following.
    • a full color (8.5"x11") Hard cover book of
    Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF of Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF copy of Travelers Guide to the
    Fractured Sea.
    • Your name in list of backers in the book.

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    Science Mage

    For your pledge, upon release of the game you will receive the following.
    • ALL of our books in PDF in the Polyhedral
    Knights listing which include the
    following listed.
    • Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF copy of Travelers Guide to the
    Fractured Sea.
    • Dark Times
    • Supplemental Books for Dark Times
    (including Steele City Sourcebook, Merc
    Works, Villains, Allies, and Corporate
    Files).
    • Wicked Pacts
    • Pathogen Unclassified
    • Spy.
    • Your name in list of backers in the book.

    This package ONLY covers PDFs of all those listed.

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    Priestess

    For your pledge, upon release of the game you will receive the following.
    • A full color (8.5”x11”) Hard cover book of
    Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF of Pirates of a Shattered World
    • Soft cover of Traveler’s Guide to the
    Fractured Seas.
    • PDF of Traveler’s Guide to the Fractured
    Seas.
    • Your name in the book as a backer.

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    Admiral

    For your pledge, upon release of the game you will receive the following.
    • a full color (8.5"x11") Hard cover,
    Autographed by Mickey Barfield, book of
    Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • 1 hour video chat session with Designer
    Mickey Barfield on your choice of Help
    with campaign design, Rules
    mechanics or anything you feel might
    lend toward your game.
    • PDF of Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF copy of Travelers Guide to the
    Fractured Sea.
    • Your name in list of backers in the book.

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    Warlord

    For your pledge, upon release of the game you will receive the following.
    • Hard cover book full color of
    Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF of Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF copy of Travelers Guide to the
    Fractured Sea.
    • Your name in list of backers in the book.
    • Mickey Barfield will run a complete game
    arch (usually 3 or 4 games) for you and 4
    of your friends. This will be online.

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    King

    For your pledge, upon release of the game you will receive the following.
    • Hard cover book full color of
    Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF of Pirates of a Shattered World.
    • PDF copy of Travelers Guide to the
    Fractured Sea.
    • Your name in list of backers in the book.
    • Mickey Barfield will run a complete game
    arch (usually 3 or 4 games) for you and 4
    of your friends. This will be online.
    • You will get to help create either a
    creature, adventure outline concept, or
    an NPC of significance. When the staff
    holds their meeting online you will be
    brought in on that meeting to discuss
    your concept of what you wish to
    contribute. You will also have a
    personalized character sketch done
    by one of our artist.

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Funding period

- (30 days)