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for GMs and players - 5e, Pathfinder, and more. Create limitless backstory, one-shots, side quests, and more that add to your campaign.
for GMs and players - 5e, Pathfinder, and more. Create limitless backstory, one-shots, side quests, and more that add to your campaign.
1,837 backers pledged $50,533 to help bring this project to life.

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Party Backstory Generator for 5e and Other Systems

$50,533

1,837

How did everyone in your party meet? What alliances or tensions exist? Who screwed over who and what will you do about it?

For Fifth Edition (all editions really), Pathfinder, and other fantasy RPG systems, the Party Backstory Generator solves this problem quickly and easily. This is a simple, straightforward guide of limitless customization.

Build meaningful alliances and tensions between multiple party members with this map making, backstory and one-shot off-night story builder. “Choose two characters…” – it’s the prompt in this unique book that will bond your party in fun and meaningful ways. This book doesn’t create individual characters. It solely focuses on unifying your players with randomized background, conflicts, skills, and tragedies.

Do you need a Game Master to use this book? Nope! If your party wants to use this book without a Game Master, you can take it and create your own backstory by yourselves.  

Suitable for all ages.


What's in the book?

  • Over 300 randomized and detailed alliances or conflicts that build on each other - tables, drop-tables, and unique location attributes. Each random event compounds upon the next so each reuse is unique 
  • Fillable pages for Characters, Relationships, Events, and Locations
  • A tabbing system for easy locating of related characters and events
  • Event-based dice drop-tables that turn your shared map into a usable game board
  • 30 illustrations
  • Cover by Luke Eidenschink 
  • Sturdy 70 pound paper 
  • PDF is printable and reusable 
  • Hardcover is professionally printed
  • Lots of replayability 
  • Suitable for all ages

What's NOT in the book

Anything that creates individual playable characters. There's plenty of great resources for that. This is all about the party. That said, the book does create non-playable characters that the GM can use to enrich their story or campaign. 

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How does it work?

Please not that, even though each decision and choice compounds on one another, the GM has a lot of freedom to pick and choose which details to insert into the backstory. The narrative compounds, not the tables per say. So you, the GM, can absolutely steer the story wherever you want. 

Step 1

Everyone sits down with their pre-made characters and collectively draws a map of where they are from. With the guidance of the Game Master, they take turns and flesh out details of a place (town or city or anything) that they all visit in the area. They take turns drawing and building the world.

Step 2

Roll dice to generate hundreds of options that compound as the backstory builds: trades, loot, friendships, family, romance, lore, education, property, mysteries, and more. Each player takes a turn as they familiarize areas, meet locals, and acquire property. With each roll, relationships develop, compound, and grow in complexity. The GM is free to steer the prequel narrative in any direction they want.

Step 3

Once enough locations and events are created on the map, the map itself turns into a playable drop table where more random content can occur. This is one of the most fun parts of the book because your players see their map become an interactive space. You'll be propted to drop dice on the map to generate battles, calamity, new locations, and more. The map is a living document of your collective backstory. 

Step 4

Return to the map on off-nights to go back in time to create more backstory and feed details into your campaign.

What else?

The Party Backstory Generator is also a tool for the Game Master to keep track of backstory content with easy-to-track pages with tabs. Fillable pages help detail characters, locations, events, tensions, and alliances. 



STRETCH GOALS!

  • $8,000 - Custom Drop Tables! We will design pages where you can fill in your own custom drop tables. This will make the book even more your own.
  • $12,000 - Map assets! We will create pages of trees, dwellings, bridges, and more for you to print out / photocopy then cut out and glue to your map (if your party doesn't want to draw).
  • $18,000 - New Drop slide tables that are unique to the Party Backstory Generator. As far as we can tell, no one has done this type of 3D6 table before. 
  • $24,000 - New pledge level with custom dice from our past Kickstarter.
  • $29,000 - MEGA Stone Loot Crate pledge! We created a new dice tray for this Kickstarter and we will make a new pledge level to unlock it.
  • 40,000 ____________?

MEGA STONE LOOT CRATE PLEDGE

Solid Hydrostone Dice Tray - handmade and hand painted
Solid Hydrostone Dice Tray - handmade and hand painted

This is a version of the dice tray see on The Stream of Many Eyes (see the pic posted on Amazon). As soon as we hit $29,000, we will post the new dice tray pledge. 


Want more books? Click "manage my pledge" and add funds:

  • Add $23 per hardcover if you are in the U.S. and $28 per hardcover if you are international (not in the U.S.). 
  • Add $13 per softcover if you are in the U.S. and $18 per softcover if you are international (not in the U.S.). 
  • Any pledge can add on all four PDFs for $15 - that's the Party Backstory Generator, Campaign Notebook, Mega Dungeon Maker, and the Campaign Spell Book. 

Is the book finished?

Yes. :) It's completely ready to print and ship! Printed in the U.S.A. and printed/packaged/shipped as soon as the Kickstarter succeeds. 

The book is written and illustrated by Justin Sirois, author of seven novels and the system-neutral campaign book Beneath. He has won five individual Maryland State Arts Council grants for fiction and poetry. 

Fulfilment

You will be mailed the book very soon after the Kickstarter ends. The book is totally finished and ready to print. 

Risks and challenges

The book is fully completed -- proofed, illustrated, and designed -- but we're going to have another proofer go through it to make sure everything is tight. We have over 15 years experience in the publishing industry and will have this book out to backers ASAP.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $9 or more About $9

    PDF only

    1 printable PDF copy of the PBG. You cannot add physical copies of the book to this pledge.

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    1 Softcover

    1 softcover. Add a PDF for $5 by managing your pledge before the campaign ends.

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    Pledge US$ 15 or more About US$ 15

    PDF BUNDLE (4 Books)

    You get PDFs of the Party Backstory Generator, the Campaign Notebook, the Campaign Spell Book, and the Mega Dungeon Maker. These are all of Severed Book's recent hits.

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    1 Hardcover

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    Pledge US$ 39 or more About US$ 39

    Hardcover + PDF BUNDLE (4 Books)

    You get a hardcover copy of the Party Backstory Generator plus PDFs of the Party Backstory Generator, the Campaign Notebook, the Campaign Spell Book, and the Mega Dungeon Maker. These are all of Severed Book's recent hits.

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    Pledge US$ 79 or more About US$ 79

    Severed Books Bundle + PDFs

    THREE HARDCOVERS: Party Backstory Generator, Mega Dungeon Maker, and the Campaign Notebook. You also get all the PDFs for those books and also the Campaign Spell Book PDF.

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    Pledge US$ 99 or more About US$ 99

    Mega Loot Crate

    THREE HARDCOVERS: Party Backstory Generator, Mega Dungeon Maker, and the Campaign Notebook. You also get all the PDFs for those books. 1 set of OSR custom dice as well as 2 red, 2 black and 2 blue "F*** Yeah" D20s. You get 1 of each of our stickers: This is How We Party, Not a Mimic, and MurderHobo. You will also get an original sketch by Justin Sirois.

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    Pledge US$ 139 or more About US$ 139

    MEGA Stone Loot Crate!

    NEW PLEDGE! You get a heavy stone dice tray (Hydrostone), all three of our hardcovers (Party Backstory Generator, Campaign Notebook, and the Mega Dungeon Maker), all three PDFs for these books, a set of polyhedral F Yeah glow in the dark D20s (8 dice in all), and six color F Yeah D20s (2 black, 2 red, 2 blue), three custom OSR dice, as well as three stickers: This is How We Party, Not a Mimic, and MurderHobo.

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    Pledge US$ 199 or more About US$ 199

    DOOM Loot Crate!

    NEW PLEDGE! You get very rare copies of Sickest Witch and Sickest Wizard (our newest RPG-like game), any shirt of your choice from the Severed Books catalog, a heavy stone dice tray (Hydrostone), all three of our hardcovers (Party Backstory Generator, Campaign Notebook, and the Mega Dungeon Maker), all three PDFs for these books, a 1 set of polyhedral F Yeah glow in the dark D20s (8 dice in all), four extra glow-in-the-dark F Yeah D20s, and twelve color F Yeah D20s (4 black, 4 red, 4 blue), three custom OSR dice, as well as six stickers: 2 This is How We Party, 2 Not a Mimic, and 2 MurderHobo.

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    EARLY BIRD Softcover

    1 softcover. Add a PDF for $5 by managing your pledge before the campaign ends.

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    Reward no longer available 80 backers
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    EARLY BIRD Hardcover

    1 hardcover. Add a PDF for $5 by managing your pledge before the campaign ends.

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    Pledge US$ 35 or more About US$ 35

    Hardcover + Custom F Yeah Glow D20s +PDF

    1 hardcover PGB, a full glow-in-the-dark polyhedral set of F*** Yeah D20s with 2 custom D20s (8 dice total), as well as the PDF and all three of our stickers - This is How We Party, Not a Mimic, and MurderHobo.

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    Pledge $35 or more About $35

    Hardcover + Custom Glow F Yeah D20s +PDF

    1 hardcover PGB, a polyhedral set of custom glow in the dark F*** Yeah D20s (8 dice total), as well as the PDF and all three of our stickers - This is How We Party, Not a Mimic, and MurderHobo.

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    Pledge US$ 69 or more About US$ 69

    Severed Books Bundle

    THREE HARDCOVERS: Party Backstory Generator, Mega Dungeon Maker, and the Campaign Notebook. You also get all the PDFs for those books. You will also get an original sketch by Justin Sirois.

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    Pledge US$ 299 or more About US$ 299

    DOOM Dungeon Loot Crate

    NEW PLEDGE! You get a full set of our dungeon terrain tiles = 50 tiles in all, fully hand painted. You also get very rare copies of Sickest Witch and Sickest Wizard (our newest RPG-like game), any shirt of your choice from the Severed Books catalog, a heavy stone dice tray (Hydrostone), all three of our hardcovers (Party Backstory Generator, Campaign Notebook, and the Mega Dungeon Maker), all three PDFs for these books, a 1 set of polyhedral F Yeah glow in the dark D20s (8 dice in all), four extra glow-in-the-dark F Yeah D20s, and twelve color F Yeah D20s (4 black, 4 red, 4 blue), three custom OSR dice, as well as six stickers: 2 This is How We Party, 2 Not a Mimic, and 2 MurderHobo.

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    Reward no longer available 3 backers
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Funding period

- (35 days)