Share this project


Share this project

John Wick brings 7th Sea back in a 300-page, full-color, hardbound book. Revised rules, revised Nations, updated for the 21st Century.
John Wick brings 7th Sea back in a 300-page, full-color, hardbound book. Revised rules, revised Nations, updated for the 21st Century.
11,483 backers pledged $1,316,813 to help bring this project to life.

Core Rulebook Preview

Posted by John Wick (Creator)

Hey everyone!

When we first started planning the 7th Sea: Second Edition Kickstarter, I told Mark that I wanted to have the book ready for Gen Con 2016. Since we didn’t finish negotiating the purchase of the IP until late in 2015, Mark said, “I don’t know. I don’t think we can do it.”

We knew that there were a lot of obstacles to getting the book ready in time for Gen Con. We needed to finish playtesting the system, write the book, commission art, edit all the writing, get the book laid out… and so much more. So we said we’d have the Core Rulebook ready in October because we knew that we could make that deadline.

Then you all raised $1.3+ Million. And you changed everything.

I said: “We can do it. We can make Gen Con.”

Mark said: “Okay. Let’s do it. It’s crazy, but let’s do it.”

And now it’s done.

Core Rulebook Preview 

In just a few minutes, you’re going to get an email from Backerkit with instructions for downloading a preview of the 7th Sea: Second Edition Core Rulebook. The preview contains a nearly finished PDF, complete with the finished mechanics, 100 pages of Théan setting, beautiful art and so much more. We’re incredibly proud of it.

We’re not going through DTRPG for this preview. You’ll be able to download the file directly from Backerkit. If you have problems, please contact us through the Kickstarter messaging system or reach out to Backerkit directly. When we finalize the PDF, we'll release it through DTRPG, but today is all about getting the PDF into your hands as quickly as possible.

When you download the preview PDF, please don’t share it with anyone. We’re close to releasing the full PDF, but there are going to be important changes as we get feedback in from the backers. (We’re also going to add an Appendix with extra maps, a character sheet, and an index.)

Backer Feedback 

The truth is… we’re not quite ready to make our printer's Gen Con deadline (May 31st). We’ve finished the book and proofed the hell out of it, but we need your help. We need you to look for typos, errors and other problems before we send it to the printer and tell them to print up 20,000 copies of the book!

But… please don’t email or post in the comments with your feedback. With over 11,000 backers, you all would quickly overwhelm our ability to deal with emails, messages and comments. Let's try to keep those channels of communication open for folks who have problems and other questions.

Instead, give us feedback via this link by May 29th at 11:59pm Eastern:

We have a few known issues that you don't need to submit feedback on:

  • The short story (p4) is missing some art. 
  • The map is not the final version (p21). 
  • The text is too close to the image on page 182
  • We have not yet filled in the "page XX" references

We will have all these problems (and others you spot!) fixed when Thomas runs through the PDF next week to make final changes. Huge thanks to our proofers who have already done a full pass on the book and caught many, many problems: Shelley Harlan, J. Derrick Kapchinsky, Carrie Ulrich and Amanda Valentine. Thank you!

And now... I can’t wait to hear what you all think of the book. It’s the 7th Sea I’ve always wanted to make, packed from cover to cover with the best version of Théah that’s ever seen print. Thank you so much for helping me to make this a reality!

Backerkit Housekeeping 

In addition to releasing the Core Rulebook preview, we also released the Swashbuckling Adventures corebook and locked down Backerkit this past month. If you’ve got any problems with getting your Swashbuckling Adventures corebook (or any of your PDFs) or your Backerkit account, please contact us via Kickstarter message.

We’ll be charging folks on June 1st, 2016 via Backerkit. I know we slipped a bit on the lockdown deadline, but we won’t miss this one. After all, the book will already be at the printer. :)

Writing Submissions 

Finally, a quick note on writing submissions. We got… a ton of awesome applications. We expected a few good writers, but there were over 400 great applications. Amazing.

Unfortunately, we don’t have time to reply to all the folks who applied. In general, if we haven’t contacted you yet, your application didn’t get selected yet. But we’re also going to keep going back to that pool to look for more writers as the line develops, so don’t give up hope yet!

Next Steps 

We’ll have more info on Monday about finalizing the PDF, but our next steps are pretty simple: 

  • get the book to the printer next week
  • get the books from the printer in July
  • ship the books to all of you before Gen Con

We'll have more to say about how all that shipping is going down (and an update on the other parts of the project, like Pirate's Booty and Pirate Nations, in early June). For now... enjoy the book! 

Matthew Tyler-Jones, Renee M., and 110 more people like this update.


Only backers can post comments. Log In

      /rant on/ I look at it this way....Theah is not Earth....languages, nations etc are near clones not perfect copies of 17th Century Earth but lets leave off the exact duplication and enjoy the uniqueness of the setting as is. I for one don't care if a Eisen word is not the correct tense of a German word, its Eisen on Theah not Germany on Earth. If you want your game to reflect an exact representation of 17th Century Earth, do so its your game but let John Wick and his team get to work. //rant off//

    2. Edward B on

      @Greuh and @John Wick: Montaginois makes sense for the name they give themselves, but it is fair that English/Avalonian would use another name. Not "Montaignes" though which does not make much sense, more like "Montagenese" would be appropriate.

    3. Missing avatar

      Robert D on

      Loved this preview!!!! the artwork was sublime, the writing was awesome, and the & world are AMAZING!!!! Can't wait for Nations of Theah 1 & 2 to find out more about the Nations as well as the 6 sorcery types in the core AND hopefully more about the Vestenmennavenjar's rune magic and whatever mystic secrets Castille may hide :)

    4. Sean Butler on

      Anyone else kind of unimpressed with the dueling rules? The idea that you often start combat with one or more unopposed wounding blows doesn't really feel right. I haven't actually playtested them yet, but it seems like it would feel mostly like taking turns trying to beat each other into submission.

    5. GREUH on

      It seems we were several to report on the French used by our cousins of Montaigne... I hope the particle "du" gets finally removed entirely to be replaced by the formal "de". And they finally get called "Montaginois" (monn-TAH-jean-wah) as they should with their money the "soleil" (SOL-hey).

    6. Kevin Brown on

      Looks like I missed my deadline to report the capital of Inismore being called Tara in the description of Dunkeen on page 52. Hope someone got that, it was kind of obvious.

    7. John Wick 10-time creator

      Hey folks! We set a short timeline for notes so that we could process that enormous batch of feedback you all generated. We'll be posting an update soon with next steps now that we've gotten your feedback. Thanks for all your notes!

    8. Shawn Carman

      I've been on vacation! Yay! I never got a Backerkit email, boo!

      Looking forward to seeing your work!

    9. John Bellando

      I'm sorry I missed the deadline, as I found several issues that while,not "errors" are definitely bad sounding. I hope there is one more opportunity for review since several days over a holiday weekend is not enough.

    10. Missing avatar

      Sean McHugh on

      @Thomas I think that there will be an overview in the finished version that will include a history of Theah. There are a lot of elements referenced in passing, but not actually explained (the Ifri Migration for example). I'll bet they are incorporating the influence of the New World and Ifri into the timeline so it's not in this preview.

      I also had some corrections that I didn't get to submit. Did anyone else catch the discrepancy with the date founding of the Kruezritter (page 261)?

    11. Missing avatar

      Marc Hertogh on

      I only had a small time to look at the book this weekend, and I now hit the message that you have all the corrections you need. Considering how many issues I saw, I doubt your plan for Gencon is going to work. We have waited this long for the book, don't screw it up by rushing it. After those 700 corrections are made, send it to us and let everyone vote to approve it.

    12. Jakk Kryga on

      I have to say I love the Sarmatian magic, 'doing good by evil' is pretty nice and reminds me of the Hucksters in Deadlands rpg. I agree with jherz - the German terms are so far, just in the old 7th sea - a little distracting... But my problem so far is the new versions of all the swordsmans schools. What happened to all of them? It seems like atm, the focus has been put heavily on sorcery and the secret societies. But personally, I feel that all that fencing and various schools have been an important part of the 7th sea's gameplay and flair and should not be overgone. What's your opinion about this?

    13. Havoc on

      There's a lot of problem in the text. Giving it only couple of days is bad. It isn't written as bad as 1ed, but there is room for improvement, that will be wasted will all this rush for GenCon.

    14. Missing avatar

      Thomas Harrison on

      @Julien It's covered under Stories. Basically, XP are now "story steps". If you want to raise your Weaponry from 1 to 2, you need to complete a 2-step story. Want to buy that 5-point advantage? You need to complete a 5-step story. The character can have one personal story going on at any time, but the GM can have stories going on too. It's a pretty cool concept, reminds me of Dragonlance 5th Age.

    15. Missing avatar

      Thomas Harrison on

      Ack! Missed the deadline on this one.

      Did anyone else point out on pg 23, Avalon Names, that it mentions the Montaigne occupation of Avalon in passing? This isn't covered anywhere in the text prior to this. Probably should be.

    16. Julien Mondoloni on

      Did i missed the part relative to experience points (to increase skills/stats) ? i could only find the vote system for gaining hero points between adventures.

    17. Anders on

      I might be missing it, but is there a character sheet available?

    18. Edward B on

      Not a big fan of the new Dracheisen and its even stronger limitations than in 1st edition. Are more balanced than 1st edition but keeping its political aspect would have been nice (and do-able).

    19. Missing avatar

      tsuyoshikentsu on

      Are all backers going to get a copy of this?

    20. Cobweb Parasiel on

      Did i miss the rules for the Arcana-Cards?
      Will they be integrated in the final version of the corebook?

    21. jherz on

      The articles of Eisen names and places are mostly not correct, e.g. it has to be 'die Südlache', not 'das Südlache' (at least in german), or 'der Rotstrom' instead of 'das Rotstrom'. The best solution would be to change all articles to the english 'the'. For a german reader this is much better to read than a wrong article.

      Greetings from Germany


    22. Mike Brodu on

      I don't know what is the rule for the italicization of foreign words, but it does not appear to be consistent. Porté or l'Empereur are not italicized, but sorcier, strega or devais are.

    23. Mike Brodu on

      I've submitted comments that are all related to the French language. I'd be more than happy to act as a retainer native French speaker to answer any questions or translation requests.

    24. John Wick 10-time creator

      @all - Thank you for your feedback! Please remember to fill out the form above to give us official feedback that we can integrate into the book. Thanks!

    25. David Morrison

      Extremely impressed, and very excited to get playing. ^_^ The book didn't feel rushed, and what errors I did notice were fairly minor. (All submitted through the form)

      In terms of the content, the biggest issues I encountered in the quick start seem to have been addressed (Most notably the number of wounds kicking about, and the strength of some Virtues) Plus some excellent additions.

    26. Jetstream

      @John "Great question. In general, the correct usage is to avoid the Oxford comma. Example: "lions, tigers and bears" is correct."

      What? No. Evil! Bad! Out, demons! Oxford Comma 4 ever!

    27. Richard van Deursen on

      I like it. I like the style of the art (had to go colour) Black and white seems so primitive. I look forward to seeing more of the same in the following books.
      Maybe a gallery in the future of downloadable art for desktops and such.
      I only saw a couple typos and I'm sure others have sent them in already.
      I'm going to create a character and see how that goes.
      The problem is which nation/country will he come from? I like the subtle changes from 1ed especially to the Vesten. Who really used Rune magic. :)
      I like the emphasis on the setting. Now with not-Afrika and not Central/South Amerika it will work better than 1ed.
      Concentrate on the Nation characteristics for your character.
      There is in my humble opinion more than enough scope for customising characters.
      I think Frank Carr was just taking the p**s before.

    28. Biomage on

      Love the book, layout, art and style. The setting is even better than in 1st edition. Looking forward to the rest.

      I am still not a fan of the mechanics, but the will be easy to convert to a Storyteller style system. That's what's great about having the primary focus on the setting.

    29. Frank Carr

      Other than my minor gripe below, I am loving the book and enjoy how the duelist shools keep their national flavor while the rules do not limit where a student of the style must come from. I feel free to make a hero who travels abroad to learn his swordsmanship before heading home at the start of the campaign to discover corruption and evil-goings-on back home and then takes up the sword style no one realizes he now knows. That little difference in editions is freeing up my inner Zoro.

    30. Frank Carr

      Something doesn't seem right with the case being made in the book for how sorcery generally fits in the setting. Also, what happened to Laerdom? The Vesten are now without sorcery. I liked Laerdom and thought it was coming back in 2e. What is worse is that it is glaringly obvious something is missing when reading about Vesten beliefs and how the gods of the All-Father walk among the Vesten.

      Also, 2e is still presenting sorcery as related primarily to the nobility. It's right there in the introduction on page 14; however, Ussuran sorcery and Sarmatian sorcery are simply granted by non-human creatures now without any proscribed inclination to target nobles specifically. (Yes, I know that, technically, all Sarmatian's are now nobles, but that is a very recent development that goes against the spirit of the case being made in the introduction) In fact, just going by the setting information, it seems easy to make a case for non-Ussuran and non-Sarmatian sorcerers to learn those sorceries just by either passing through the countryside and having an encounter with Matushka or a dievas or even by being foreign-born. The only thing really prohibiting that is how the rules are written. I dislike the ambiguity between the setting information and the contradicting rule that states in the Sorcery Advantage, "You gain the Sorcery from your National bloodline." I suppose that might get fixed in the future with something akin to the Half-blooded and Twice-blooded Sorceries from the first edition of the game. But, at this point in time, we don't know if that will happen or not.

      Avalon's sorcery also seems to be similarly disinclined to focus on this at first glance, though it is limited to just twenty folks in the whole world - which isn't so bad for keeping it rare - and they are all called to be knights, which makes them nobles (titles seem to be implied), even if they weren't born as such. It just seems far too rare now.

      The new Eisen sorcery is neat, but is clearly an underground sorcery with good reason to keep hidden in many places, let alone touted as a quality for a noble. Only Porte, Sorte, and to a lesser degree, the Avalon sorcery seem to have any true adherence to the case that sorcery is the power of nobles. I don't mind it if there is now less focus on the nobility having a monopoly or at least a majority on sorcery, but it is presented as a theme of the setting in the introduction and it doesn't seem to be supported in much of the Sorcery material now.

      I guess I'm just ranting now because I want Laerdom back for my Vesten character concepts and I also want to make a foreign-born Trickster-like Sorcerer with the blood of a Knight Errant raised in either the Commonwealth or Ussura after his parents were living in exile prior to Queen Elaine's rule who, as the childhood embodiment of Cenhelm, the Keen, either learned to trick a devil on the road or learned a lesson he took to heart from Matushka. I know I could do that last concept with a story, but I don't see why the rules should prevent me from creating the concept whole-cloth during character creation. All I really need is to get Sorcery for either the Avalon or Sarmatian Sorcery I want with the foreign-born Advantage and one of the Sorcery-related Backgrounds for the other Sorcery.

    31. Rory on

      Actually, it doesn't matter. I was able to just log in to backerkit and find it! :)

    32. Rory on

      I don't seem to have received any email yet! :(

    33. Missing avatar

      Michael Bowman

      I’ve finished reading the whole book and am very impressed. I’m really looking forward to giving it a try.

    34. Missing avatar

      Sean McHugh on

      Is there going to be a timeline of Theah/recent history section in the book or is that going to appear in the Nations of Theah books? I'm having a little trouble getting my head around the setting without just referring back to the 1st edition lore. The Montaigne/Castille war is one that is especially hard to take in as is since the information referencing it is split across multiple sections. It seems that the war has ended and Montegue is now invading Ussura but the Ussurans don't seem to have noticed yet.

      The various Nation sections draw heavily from the 1st edition GMs guide, which is fine, but they assume a bit of prior knowledge. For example, the Inismore section in the Theah chapter references the O'Bannon several times but the Inismore page in the Hero chapter later on is the only place to explain who he is.

      That's just about want ISN'T there. So far I'm very pleased what IS here. The art is great, I'm loving the Commonwealth and I'm seeing a lot of solid improvements from the playtest. I'm excited to get more into the rules sections. Also, the Oxford comma is a hill upon which I am prepared to die.

    35. Missing avatar

      Michael Bowman

      I’ve read about 2/3 of the book and it’s pretty error-free. And, yes, I’ve been submitting those I’ve found

    36. Missing avatar

      AndreasDavour on

      I hope the rush to get it done for GenCon is not making it filled with errors. I'm a bit wary...

    37. John Wick 10-time creator

      @all - Quick reminder, folks. Please submit your feedback (and questions!) to the form in the update. We'll be looking there for revisions on Monday.

    38. Edward B on

      Meanwhile, this is a natural consequence of the streamlining of the rules compared to first edition, but various special effects in game (such as swordsman's schools) loose their specificity by becoming simple +wound or -wound, which is a pity. This is actually a major design problem in my view, swordsman's schools need to mean something, like they did in 1st edition, that is how rules reflect setting as they did at least in part in 1st edition. I hate to say this, bur unfortunately from what I see the game seems rushed with cool concepts but not enough thinking through. A pity as I hope 7th Sea continues it's long run of success, not the short sprint of hype.

    39. Maguila Gorila on

      I find very good your change form "Los Vagos" secret society to "Los vagabundos"

    40. James Maclennan on

      No sign of an email from backerit

    41. Edward B on

      I am disappointed to see Montaigne Names are not "fixed" (p59) from 1st Edition: For Nobility you put "de" NOT "du" which sounds like the opposite of noble in French. You use "du" for common names, such as "du pont" = "from the bridge", to say "From the town of Pau" you say "de Pau" not "du Pau" which just sounds very silly in French. (Yes I know Theah not Europe, I am the first to say it, the point is suspension of disbelief fails if you know French names and read the names with "du" which just are silly, like if Avalon names sounded silly in English). Please John Wick fix this.

    42. BRADLEY CLARK on

      Mr Wick I thought I would share something that happened as I was reading through 2nd ed at work. I have a co worker who used to be into role playing games years ago but stopped abruptly and I never knew why. So as I am reading through I come across the pic with the two gentlemen being affectionate with one another. She stopped me when I was at the pic and stared at it. A tear rolled down her cheek and she said she was glad to see that there was an rpg accepting of her orientation. You made her day John Wick and brought someone back into the role playing community that previously felt alienated. She definitely wants in on my game. While some may be horrified and disgusted by the pics, I am proud that I am part of a KS that has reached out to the LBTQ community

    43. Missing avatar

      Matthew Keevil on

      Quick question about Sanderis; will future supplements have new Deals in them or is there some lore reason why the dievas just have power over Darkness, Cold, Fire, Sea, Storm, Knowledge and Love but not, say, Dreams, Mirrors, Stone, Greed and Art?

    44. nyarlathotep111 on

      @Netobvious; Not every game is a good fit for every type of story. If a game full of murder and backstabbing is your bag, this might not be what you are looking for. There exists a Game of Thrones RPG. It takes place before the books so it has slavery galore in it too. That might be more your thing. Go nuts.

      Seriously though. The only way to shoehorn every conceivable playstyle into a game is to make it very, very generic or to houserule it to your liking. I am glad they didn't do the former and no one is going to stop you from doing the latter.

    45. Shotofentropy on

      @Thomas Harrison the logo did stand out to me as well, not negatively, just as different. The lead in page as movie poster is seriously amazing though! Great work from John Wick and team.

    46. Chuck Dee

      @netobvious, I'm not sure where your mind is on this insistence with the representation of slavery in a fictional world. There is in my opinion that it is their choice, and totally unnecessary except for the extent to which the writers wish to include it.

    47. Missing avatar

      David Woolley on

      I have the email and link that downloads the book but it wont open/work once downloaded.
      Any suggestions/solutions be much appreciated.

    48. Ana Silva on

      @JohnWick, you still haven't disclosed the identity of the wonderful lady from page 182. Why do you torment me so?

    49. Missing avatar

      Thomas Harrison on

      Ok, that was supposed to go in the general comments section. Weird. But hey, still applies. Mooch. Logo.

    50. Missing avatar

      Thomas Harrison on

      I'm going to interrupt this discussion of heroes, villains and MURDER to say one of my players is going to be TERRIBLY disappointed that the Mooch knack is not represented. Oddly enough, that was one of his favorite aspects of the original edition (that you could have Mooch as a skill). I haven't read the wealth rules yet, but I'm going to suggest adding it as a 1 pt Advantage. Seriously folks, mooch!

      Also, am I the only one who doesn't like the new logo?