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Lone Shark Games' epic card game of exploration and skill, set in Monte Cook Games' Numenera universe.
Lone Shark Games and Monte Cook Games create an epic card game of exploration and skill set in the Numenera universe.
Lone Shark Games and Monte Cook Games create an epic card game of exploration and skill set in the Numenera universe.
1,534 backers pledged $133,369 to help bring this project to life.

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The Ninth World: A Skillbuilding Game for Numenera

$133,369

1,534

Hi, I'm Mike Selinker of Lone Shark Games. Let me tell you about a game I fell in love with. Actually, let me tell you about two of them.

While my team and I were designing the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game and The Maze of Games, our friends down the road at Monte Cook Games made the best new RPG of the century. Monte and his team created Numenera, setting their game a billion years from today, after civilization rose and fell eight times. In the Ninth World, adventurers explore a mindbending landscape of bizarre creatures and unfathomable technology. This world enriched a line of fiction, many supplements, and an upcoming digital game called Torment: Tides of Numenera. I was smitten.

Meanwhile, as we were starting the Apocrypha Adventure Card Game, my co-designer Paul Peterson showed me a game he and Boyan Radakovich were working on. It was a new kind of card game called a "skillbuilding game" that they had set in the world of Numenera. They'd taken the Numenera RPG's brilliant core character concept—a character boldly described by an adjective, noun, and verb phrase—and painted it as a tight card game engine. You wouldn't get a deck of cards; instead, you'd get a hand of cards that you'd improve over the course of the game. You'd build your skills as you explored the Ninth World. I knew we had to make it. 

We've now made something weird and fantastic, and we call it The Ninth World: A Skillbuilding Game for Numenera. One part deckbuilder, one part Eurogame, and one part RPG, The Ninth World is something Lone Shark Games and Monte Cook Games want to bring to your table. Take a look and you'll see a game that goes beyond your expectations.

The Ninth World is a card game for 1 to 5 players. It can be played competitively, cooperatively, or in solo mode.

The game is designed by Paul Peterson, Boyan Radakovich, and Mike Selinker, with graphics by Shane Tyree and the artists of Numenera. The team at Monte Cook Games is also deeply involved in making this game what it is today.

Our game is set in the Numenera universe, where heroes explore the nine kingdoms of The Steadfast, each a very different place to adventure. They discover strange relics of the past, trying to discern which are powerful cyphers and which are just weird oddities. And they fight creatures of all shapes, sizes, and limb arrangements. Outside of the Steadfast is The Beyond, a wild and remote realm. And there are even places beyond The Beyond, awaiting your discovery.

If you want to learn by experience, download the playtest rulebook and the print-and-play demo version. When you play, enter your results into this Google form so we can learn what happened in your adventure.

If you're interested in a tutorial, Paul and I are happy to provide one:

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To continue our journey, meet Nlixa, a Nano who will serve as our guide.

Nlixa is one of 12 characters in the game. Nlixa's a Nano, a master of using relics. That's one of the 3 classes in the game. In addition to the Nano, a Jack is a skilled explorer helping the settled towns with their quests, while a Glaive is ready for combat against the growing danger of the roaming creatures from the wilderness.

You can see how we describe Nlixa: with an adjective ("I Am a Learned..."), noun ("...Nano..."), and verb phrase ("...Who Rides the Lightning"). Each of those parts describes a different element of Nlixa's character. The first two parts show what cards Nlixa gets and can use best, while the third describes a special power that changes gameplay.

Nlixa and the other characters will explore one of the nine kingdoms of The Steadfast—or they may venture into the even stranger lands of the Beyond. Each kingdom is illustrated with a set of 5 region cards, such as Malevich shown here. 

Over the course of a quick 5-round game, Nlixa and friends will simultaneously explore the starting region on round 1, and then continue out to the Voil Chasm on the far reaches of the kingdom. In a standard game of 9 rounds, they'll then head back home on the other side of the card.

Each round, Nlixa and the others will choose how much time to spend performing actions with their 5 skills—scouting the wilderness, tinkering with cyphers and oddities, charming allies, combating creatures, and focusing on skill advancement—and then bid against the other heroes for the choicest cards.

Each phase, you can adventure in the town, where rewards are predictable and creatures not so dangerous. Or you can head out to the wilderness, where strange cyphers have unpredictable powers and the creatures look to bash you into oblivion.

Gameplay is simultaneous and every action is rewarded with victory points. Whoever has the most points at the end is the most legendary adventurer.

That's in competitive mode. In co-op mode, you can work together to defeat the creatures and garner the relics, but there's a catch: the wilderness is trying to kill your town. Cards flip off the wilderness deck whether you want them or not, and you have to take them out before the creatures destroy your town locations and the relics and quests make it impossible for you to win. It's a battle against time to see if your entire adventuring team can master the chaos of the wilderness. Or you can go it alone in solo mode, which is like that except no one is there to help you.

The base game contains:

  • 12 character tableaus (4 Nanos, 4 Glaives, 4 Jacks)
  • 45 Steadfast region cards (5 each in 9 kingdoms)
  • 54 town cards
  • 54 wilderness cards
  • 115 skill cards
  • 15 wound cards
  • 5 bid cover cards
  • 50 powers cards
  • 1 co-op threshold card
  • a gamebook
  • dice
  • a turn marker
  • 50 player markers
  • scoring markers
  • monolith token

Plus, if you pledge for The Game and Beyond (or any higher level):

  • 55 unlocked Beyond region cards—The Black Riage, the Plains of Kataru, Seshar, the Cloudcrystal Skyfields, the Frozen South, Vralk the Red Kingdom, Lostrei the Spiritlands, Rayskel Cays, Corao, Bruul, and the Lands of the Dawn

For those who want more than one copy of the game, you can get an additional copy by adding $50 to your pledge, or $60 if you want the Beyond preview cards. You don't need to add anything else for shipping if you pledge for two copies of the game; any additional copies each require additional half as much as the regular shipping amount. So if you wanted three copies sent to the USA, it's $12 shipping ($8 + $0 + $4).

Games to backers in the European Union will be shipped from the EU.

At our $75 level, you will also get a very cool double-sided Ninth World playmap specially designed for this game. At the $125 level, your map will be signed by Mike, Paul, Boyan, Monte, and Shanna. 

On one side, it'll show all the locations in the Steadfast and where they appear in the card game, so you can chart your progress during the game. (The map below is from the RPG, and shows the Steadfast and its environs.)

On the other side, it'll have a playmat in which you can array your region cards, skill cards, and town and wilderness cards.

And if you want to see why everyone in the RPG fanbase is over the moon about Numenera, we've also made available some RPG PDF starter packs. At the $110 and $125 levels, you can get a Numenera Core Rulebook, the Ninth World Guidebook, and the Weird Discoveries adventure pack. You'll get these right after the campaign funds. This is the material that inspired our card game, so check it out if that's your thing.

We've got some higher levels too, including getting into a swanky exclusive party at Gen Con with us and our friends, getting yourself illustrated into the game, and more. Check them out. (FYI: Anyone who pledges above the $300 level will get an invite to our Gen Con party.)

The more this campaign evolves, the more places we will take you. As we reach certain goals, we will open up more locations like the Frozen South and the far-flung Lands of the Dawn. These new realms will be packaged as extras with your game, but may appear later in future expansions. If you pledge for The Game and Beyond level or higher, you'll be playing with them before anyone else.

Stretch goals we unlocked:

Italicized stretch goals are available for those who pledge at those levels. Those backers who pledge for The Game and Beyond ($60) or higher will get the Beyond region cards, while those who pledge at levels which have a world map ($75 and some others) will get the double-sided playmap. All non-italicized stretch goals will go to all backers.

As we explore this campaign, you can help us share the game with your friends and the world. Here are some things you can do.

Everything you do can help. If you want this game to be as rich as it can be, tell folks and they'll come over to see what all the fuss is about.

And if you bought this game for someone else, give them this holiday card.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0Byjyih2D6m24OFNSejdBZUs2WGs/view?usp=sharing
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0Byjyih2D6m24OFNSejdBZUs2WGs/view?usp=sharing

Risks and challenges

Lone Shark Games has created or co-created some of the biggest games in the tabletop industry, including the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Lords of Vegas, Unspeakable Words, Pirates of the Spanish Main, and the upcoming Apocrypha Adventure Card Game, as well as the interactive puzzle novel The Maze of Games. We know how to write complicated and interconnected rules, commission fantastic pieces of art, and send a massive game to production. Our team is one of the most experienced in the world at making these types of games, and we feel confident about this one.

On Kickstarter, we've created and fulfilled two big projects--The Maze of Games and its audiobook--and are on our way to fulfilling our third, the Apocrypha Adventure Card Game. As of now, Apocrypha has gone through systems design and is getting its final card text and art in place. We bring high production values to everything we create, and we polish our work down to its most painstaking details.

There are often possibilities of delays or hiccups in the process, but we've weathered them before. We're making a lot of art and testing the game thoroughly, and that takes time. Something could always go wrong. But we're going to do everything in our power to keep this game as cool as possible while getting it to you as soon as we can. We aim for awesome, and we rarely fail to hit it.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    THE GAME: One copy of The Ninth World: A Skillbuilding Game for Numenera.

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    THE GAME AND BEYOND: One copy of The Ninth World: A Skillbuilding Game for Numenera, plus all the Beyond cards we unlock.

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    THE GAME AND BEYOND, AND THE WORLD MAP: One copy of The Ninth World: A Skillbuilding Game for Numenera, all the Beyond cards we unlock, and a printed world map that shows all the locations in the game.

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    Pledge $110 or more About $110

    THE GAME AND BEYOND, PLUS THE RPG PDF PACK: One copy of The Ninth World: A Skillbuilding Game for Numenera, plus all the Beyond cards we unlock. Plus you get a PDF pack from Monte Cook Games, including the Numenera Core Rulebook, the Ninth World Guidebook, and the Weird Discoveries adventure pack.

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    Pledge $125 or more About $125

    THE GAME AND A WORLD MAP SIGNED BY THE TEAM: One copy of The Ninth World: A Skillbuilding Game for Numenera, plus all the Beyond cards we unlock, and the world map.Your world map will be signed by Monte Cook, Shanna Germain, Paul Peterson, and Mike Selinker.

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    Pledge $125 or more About $125

    THE GAME AND BEYOND, THE WORLD MAP, AND THE RPG PDF PACK: One copy of The Ninth World: A Skillbuilding Game for Numenera, all the Beyond cards we unlock, and a printed world map that shows all the locations in the game. Plus you get a PDF pack from Monte Cook Games, including the Numenera Core Rulebook, the Ninth World Guidebook, and the Weird Discoveries adventure pack.

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    RETAILER KIT FOR THE GAME: Five copies of The Ninth World: A Skillbuilding Game for Numenera plus a demo copy, plus retailer promotional materials. This is ONLY available to qualified retailers in the United States.

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    Pledge $175 or more About $175

    THE GAME AND BEYOND, A WORLD MAP SIGNED BY THE TEAM, AND THE RPG PDF PACK: One copy of The Ninth World: A Skillbuilding Game for Numenera, plus all the Beyond cards we unlock, and the world map.Your world map will be signed by Monte Cook, Shanna Germain, Paul Peterson, and Mike Selinker. Plus you get a PDF pack from Monte Cook Games, including the Numenera Core Rulebook, the Ninth World Guidebook, and the Weird Discoveries adventure pack.

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    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    THE GAME AND A WORLD MAP SIGNED BY THE TEAM, PLUS AN EXCLUSIVE GEN CON PARTY WITH US, CAH, AND EXPLODING KITTENS: One copy of The Ninth World: A Skillbuilding Game for Numenera, plus all the Beyond cards we unlock, and the world map.Your world map will be signed by Monte Cook, Shanna Germain, Paul Peterson, and Mike Selinker. Plus you get to attend an exclusive, backers-only party at Gen Con with Cards Against Humanity, Lone Shark Games, Secret Hitler and Exploding Kittens.

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    Pledge $1,250 or more About $1,250

    TRAINED IN CHARM: Everything at the $125 level, plus you get to appear as an ally in our game, illustrated by one of our artists. You will provide us images and we will project you a billion years into the future. You'll get 5 special prints of your ally card art signed by the artist. If you're at Gen Con, you can come to our Gen Con party.

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Funding period

- (31 days)