“Eons ago, the Old World faded. Some tell of a sea of fire. Some of air that spoiled and made throats raw. Some of a sickness that ravaged the land. But all refer to it as the Calamity. Those that were left retreated to our Havens, huge silos, deep underground. Hundreds were built, across the more habitable areas of the Old World. Some connected to form Mega-Havens, but some were simply left, alone, forgotten, waiting for the moment to return to Surface. Each of these Havens developed independently, to form communities, ecosystems, and they changed. Homo-sapiens was no more.”
The World After is a Tabletop Roleplaying Game formed through collaborative sessions across the UK, specifically influenced by the wildlife and landscape of Canvey Wick; a post-industrial nature reserve located on Canvey Island in Essex, UK. The project aims to create a game space where community is created through diversity in a post-human world, challenging the euro-centric vision of conventional high-fantasy. Taking on the lessons from the worlds of Ursula Le Guin, particularly the Earthsea saga and the Left Hand of Darkness, North European Male is not the default character choice. Instead, The World After offers a wide range of societies, ethnicities and genders to roleplay, as your characters strive to rebuild a world torn apart by catastrophic man-made ecological collapse.
Working with a diverse group of roleplay gamers in Essex, white and POC, with a range of gender identities, the game is being built around an open world, called Fain, where danger lurks in the form of magically enhanced flora and fauna and a shadowy “Corporation” that seeks to exploit its untapped riches.
Why launch a Kickstarter?
With the rules, gameplay and designs having already been developed collaboratively with a community group, we now need your help to make the book of the game as beautiful as it can be, by commissioning illustrators and artists to bring this vision to life, to give this new world a new visual identity.
We particularly recognise how important Kickstarter is for the gaming community, inspiring an ecology of professionals and enthusiasts to come together and support each other. Above all, we are most excited about connecting and sharing The World After with as many of you as possible.
Why play The World After?
The World After will be a full-colour hardcover book packed with rules, setting, art, bestiary and a starting adventure. The World After brings together a range of influences to create a unique table-top RPG.
- Designed to be intuitive and accessible, but with deep options for customisation and simulation, the d6 system models almost any action that could take place in the intricately designed world.
- Five distinct Societies present a wide range of opportunities for character creation
- A character development system reminiscent of tactical videogame RPGs.
- Suitable for both epic narratives and small-scale campaigns, the diverse world of Fain has been built from the ground up to be open to all.
This is a world that feels familiar, but gives a new perspective on current global turmoil, imagining a world after humanity, where the emerging societies must cooperate to face new threats from old foes.
Have you ever wanted to play a game where you could...
- Create a character that can change gender every Lunar cycle?
- Be part of a lost underwater civilisation founded by People of Colour?
- Play with magical Essence, letting you manipulate Blood, Bone, the Elements and Time itself?
- Set the world to rights while learning about a fascinating deep-future version of our world, where our flora and fauna have adapted into incredible and terrifying forms?
The World After offers a new gaming system that veteran players will feel familiar with while approaching core fantasy mechanics in a new way. In our ruleset, you will find:
· Diverse Societies - Will your character come from the Safeer Haven, a society that has evolved to define their own gender with every passing of the Moon? Will you come from the Matriarchal Dahra, the males compelled to undertake the treacherous harvest of magical Shah (a foodstuff that has made every Dahra shimmer with Essence) while the Female Royalty control all aspects of society?
· Deep, Easy to Learn Rules - Instinctive core gameplay based on d6s, modelling a huge range of potential actions in this fantasy world. Define your Physical and Mental Attributes and the system gives you your full range of Ability scores.
· Character Creation - Build a unique character from five distinct Societies, all with rich history. Every choice at this stage defines possible future Evolutions, with multiple routes along the way. Do you want to be able to eventually transform into a hulking behemoth, or end up piloting a Mecha powered by magical Essence and Clockwork? Decide your route through the Evolution system.
· Unique Initiative Mechanics - In The World After, your choice of action helps define your Initiative in combat. Rigid turn orders will be a thing of the past as the combat ebbs and flows to reflect every participant’s choices - whether you want to run across the battlefield, cast a devastating spell or dive into cover and shoot an arrow, your adversary may just get lucky enough to react more quickly than you can. This organic, free-flowing combat system accurately reflects speed of thought and action in every moment.
· Experience System – With every successful roll, you build up a pool of experience which you can use at any time to increase your abilities as defined by your choice of character backgrounds. Once all increases have been applied, you can move onto your next Evolution. This creates a sense of constant improvement through your adventures, and the knowledge that you are entering into a potentially epic character journey.
· A Game Born of Community - The game has been created and tested by a dedicated group of gamers in Essex, re-imagining the world around them, drawing the societies and monstrous denizens of this future world.
· A Rich Set of Adversaries - From outsized Arachnids and Humanoid Ant societies, through to the shadowy off-world Cryo-Gen Corporation who are seeking to enslave the planet, The World After caters for many campaigns’ worth of different scenarios.
· A New Magic System- Magic in The World After is made of and referred to as Essence, a substance that can be found in concentrated form and also imbues the very air of the world of Fain. It is Essence that has created the rapid Evolutions of the Societies into such disparate forms, and Essence that is increasingly harnessed through each character's Evolution through the Job Tree. Almost a hundred new spells have been devised for the system. Ideas of Light and Dark magic common to fantasy games have been re-configured as Blood and Bone, emphasising the visceral rather than moral aspects of magic-use.
The current “Societies” that a player can choose from as their avatar in the game:
Safeer Lithe, with golden brown skin, 6-7ft tall, able to change gender every lunar cycle, living in an Anarchist agrarian community where even the youngest children are encouraged to thoroughly understand their own minds and emotions.
Uroch- Albino heavy-set shadow-dwellers, 6’6”-8ft tall, a Matriarchal tribal society adapted to the subterranean depths.
Shards Deep red, purple or green-skinned humanoids, with smooth slightly chitinous skin- horns and spiked tails, 5-6ft tall, live in a feudal society dominated by four Houses and a despotic ruler.
Nautian Dark blue skin, gilled with webbed fingers, adapted to undersea life, an advanced technocracy based on magically-imbued Clockwork inventions and the Ashanti governmental structure.
Dahra Rich brown skin, slightly iridescent, lithe to stout build, 3-4ft tall, a desert-based hereditary Matriarchy, the economy dominated through the harvest of Shah, a magically-imbued foodstuff.
The World After Sample Pages
Take a quick look into the rulebook with several sample pages, full of art, narrative and rules!
- £5 pledge: Pre-launch digital copy of The World After rulebook.
- £10 pledge: Pre-launch digital copy of The World After rulebook and listed name credit.
- £25 pledge: Physical copy of The World After rulebook with your name listed as a supporter in print.
- £30 pledge: Signed physical copy of The World After rulebook with lead artist David Blandy. Your name will also be listed as a supporter in print.
- £65 pledge: Printed digital edition of game design artwork. Two versions of your choice are available including The World After campaign image by artist Cat Rogers or a character design digital drawing by artist Wumi Olaosebikan. Produced as an A2 C-type print.
- £85 pledge: Game rulebook and artwork edition combo! Receive a hardback copy of 'The World After' and a printed artwork edition by either artist Cat Rogers or Wumi Olaosebikan!
- £100 pledge: Original game design pencil drawing by Cat Rogers. Limited edition of 5 available signed by the artist.
Now that we're fully funded, let's see how much we can put in this unique book.
The World After rulebook has a fixed delivery date for launch in October 2019 to tie in with other aspects of a wider project including a film commission and events to coincide with its launch. Rewards, except for the final printed version of the rulebook, will be shipped prior to this as listed on the rewards section. However, if there are any further questions please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Who are we?
The game has been devised in collaboration with the Essex Roleplay Game community with gameplay ideas, art and characters designed by them during a series of open sessions led by artist David Blandy along with graphic novelist Daniel Locke. Bringing together local artists, designers and enthusiasts, this collaborative group have worked to imagine and build a new world to share with you.
The project is primarily lead by artist David Blandy in collaboration with multiple participants including Matt Goulson, Daniel Locke, Cat Rogers, Wumi Olaosebikan and many more. Importantly, much of the group is made up of emerging artists or enthusiasts who believe in the success of the project, setting a precedent for others locally who may wish to imagine, build and create their very own game.
The World After is a labour of love, created by tabletop gamers from Essex headed by artist David Blandy and games designer Matt Goulson. We wanted to create a game that was open to everyone, both embedded in a specific place, Canvey Island, yet reimagining fantasy through the work of fantasy authors Ursula LeGuin and Octavia Butler, where race and sexual orientation were acknowledged as integral to the gameplay experience. What could a Fantasy RPG be if we released it from Euro-centric legend, and acknowledged the implications of human impact on our planet? Inspired by the site of Canvey Wick, where nature has reclaimed the site of an oil refinery, everything in the game springs from nature, from the “Essence” magic system to the enlarged organic forms of the flora and fauna.
The game also forms part of a wider project in collaboration with Focal Point Gallery, commissioned as part of New Geographies, a three-year project between nine arts organisations in the East of England. Focal Point Gallery is a contemporary visual arts organisation based in Southend-on-Sea, Essex, UK.
Risks and challenges
The main risk for the project is the time implications as 'The World After' is due to launch alongside a major exhibition of the project at Focal Point Gallery, Southend-on-Sea in October 2019. However, since the rules, gameplay and designs have already been developed, we are confident that we can achieve this, allowing for plenty of time for artwork production, design lay-out and print-production. Participants of this project in particular also bring significant experience of delivering previous publications and artistic projects under these kind of time pressures.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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