EMBERWIND is a new breed of tabletop RPG based on the belief that games should adapt to their players, and not the other way around.
EMBERWIND's modular game engine allows you to combine rulesets to suit the epic Heroes in your party. We're turning to Kickstarter to launch the EMBERWIND Core, an engine that offers the base for fast, fun, intense, customizable gaming. In the future, we'll release additional modules and content packages to help you further customize and deepen your play experience.
The Core engine combines the best elements of our favourite RPGs and video games from the past 20 years, plus some new innovations of our own, all streamlined to make it easy for new players to pick up and for experienced players to dive deeper into strategy and storytelling.
We think there's a lot to be excited about here. That's why we're releasing our beta live during the campaign and letting backers judge for themselves.
The EMBERWIND Core rules are intuitive enough to learn in minutes, but offer untold depths of strategy through co-op tactics and modular plugins.
We believe that a modular RPG has more to offer players, because players have more to offer each other than a static rules system will allow. That's why we're turning to Kickstarter not just a fundraising platform, but a community of tabletop-lovers.
We're looking for your input as we build a community and decide which rules modules to build onto the Core, and release new campaigns, storylines, and settings.
This starts with the EMBERWIND Hero Manual: Core Edition, a resource book that gives players everything they need to create fully fleshed, customized Heroes using the game's nine main Classes and drop them into new conflicts, storylines and challenges to test their mettle.
We think you're going to love our system. So much so that we're already releasing the beta of our Hero Manual to all reward tier levels during the campaign. We send new invitations to all backers every Monday and Thursday, but you can get yours sooner if you create an account on emberwindgame.com and message us your username or registration email via the Kickstarter messaging system.
To get your Heroes into the game, you'll either need one of our two campaign book releases, or our free DLC, which includes Foe Cards (monsters you can fight) and Vignettes (playable scenarios), both of which are accompanied by lore stories.
All books come with complimentary PDFs tied to your emberwindgame.com account and offer lifetime access to future versions of that same book. That means if we go back to fix errors, update rules or add new sections, you will be able to visit our website and download the updated version from your account.
Our campaigns teach players the rules as they play, so no one needs to spend hours learning the manual. Even better, we've made GMs optional, with a branching Crossroads system run by rotating narrators and dynamic party voting. Our combats are driven by a hex-based AI system for Foes so everyone can get in on the action.
You can show up to the gaming table and begin playing in minutes with pre-gen Heroes and a few print-outs.
For those who love deep dives, the Hero Manual helps you create your own characters. Plus, you can also have one player take on the full-time role of Storyteller and use our campaign books' enhanced Storyteller content for a more immersive role-playing experience with deeper ties to lore.
The Skies of Axia is our first campaign, released in March 2018. Take to the skies on a life-or-death mission to save Gelspar, the dangling slum district of the great airship city of Adriel. Deadly foes and hidden threats lie in wait around every corner, and it will take every bit of skill and knowledge your Heroes possess to uncover the secret of the hearth crystals and return before Gelspar falls from the sky—forever.
The Songweave Tapestry takes place on the eve of the Festival of Sparks. The mountaintop city of Summit teeters on the brink of chaos. The scions, a once-extinct order of heretic mages, are on the rise. Rumours say the cult plans to unveil a dangerous invention restored from the age of the Unravelling. As the festival approaches and the city becomes a madhouse of controversy, you find yourself at the heart of a conflict that threatens to tear the city apart.
EMBERWIND's game system, which we call the RISE Engine, has been in the works for a decade. Here are some of the features we're damn proud of.
You always know your target number. Rather than bogging down gameplay with complex calculations on both your roll modifier and target number, EMBERWIND uses a streamlined d20 system with simple math on one side of the roll so you always know the odds of pulling off a masterstroke.
CAP checks make attack rolls simple and fast. In EMBERWIND, it only takes a single die roll against a pre-calculated set of values to instantly determine if you hit your target, if you penetrate their defences, and if you score a critical hit.
We made our Classes as flavourful and adaptable as possible. They draw on elements of real-world history and culture, from Taoist philosophy to African war tactics to 12th-century Persian assassin training, re-imagined through mechanics and abilities that let you push past fantasy tropes.
Tell stories without a GM. EMBERWIND campaigns are told through a series of linked encounters read by a rotating narrator, so nobody needs to sit out as GM. At the end of every encounter is a Crossroad, where your party faces a set of branching narrative choices that you navigate together through dynamic voting systems. It's choose-your-path adventure book with epic combats and cascading consequences that culminate in epic finales.
Combats run themselves with Foe AI. Every EMBERWIND Foe has an AI Hex Grid that lets you roll a die and randomly execute a preset attack sequence. Default Characteristics determine how they move and attack, Optional Modifiers grant additional depth to combat, and learning mechanisms keep Heroes on their toes. Switch between Skirmish and War modes for AI to keep larger battles moving smoothly.
You can learn more about these specific mechanics in our FAQ section, including how GM-less storytelling works, how Foe AI Hex Grids, how to make a CAP Check, and what a Round of Combat looks like in EMBERWIND.
You can also review the quickplay combat turn rules from our Skies of Axia campaign for a simple walkthrough.
Or see the mechanics in action in Arvan Eleron's YouTube-streamed playthrough of The Skies of Axia!
Enter the EMBERWIND battlefield with nine powerful Hero Classes that let you reinvent your role in the party and your path to victory. We decided to build our Classes not around fulfilling a single role in the party, but by achieving any number of roles using a particular flavour or play style.
The Atlanta is the lion of war, always found where the fray is thickest. She relies on her mastery of arms and supernatural charisma to carry her allies to victory. With an Atlanta in their ranks, a small unit can fight with the ferocity of an entire army.
Spell Schools and Exploit Expertises: Restoration Magic, Skirmishing Expertise, Inspiration Expertise, Shielding Expertise
The Spiritualist moves like water. He is a sea of calm on the surface, hiding powerful currents of energy in his depths. He uses his mystic arts to raise fallen allies, drain the vigour of his enemies, or deliver blows that turn bone to dust.
Spell Schools: Healing Magic, Harrow Magic, Involution Magic
The Tactician is the most adaptable frontline leader. A good Tactician knows how to read his opponents, stack the deck in his allies’ favour, and play the odds to come out on top in the mud, blood, and chaos of the battlefield.
Exploit Expertises: Motivation Expertise, Bravery Expertise, Warfare Expertise
While the Archer is peerless in ranged combat, she can fluidly shift between combat styles to dispense with enemies near and far with and respond to the rhythms of combat to make sure every shot and slash lands true.
Exploit Expertises: Preparation Expertise, Wind Dancing Expertise, Sharpshooting Expertise
The Rogue uses a trickster’s cunning, a gambler’s courage, and an assassin’s unflinching instincts to claim victory. Relying on expert positioning, lightning reflexes and deadly poisons, the Rogue always ensures a swift kill and safe retreat.
Exploit Expertises: Trickster Expertise, Serpent Expertise, Slayer Expertise
To the Warrior, the battlefield is a canvas that can be painted with a hundred different kinds of bloodshed. A cunning fighter, the Warrior overpowers foes and defends fellow heroes with a constantly evolving arsenal of battle maneuvers.
Exploit Expertises: Armsman Expertise, Brutality Expertise, Defender Expertise
The Ardent weaves arcane power into complex chains of magic that can lay waste to a battlefield or strike down single targets with merciless efficiency. As dangerous as the magic she parleys with, the Ardent is driven by a burning obsession with power.
Spell Schools: Needling Magic, Destruction Magic, Manipulation Magic
The Druid is a keeper of the wilderness and an enforcer of its harsh laws. Like the natural world they draw their magic from, Druids are extremely adaptable, capable of unleashing a full spectrum of regenerative and destructive forces.
Spell Schools: Regeneration Magic, Degeneration Magic, Growth Magic
The Invoker is the unmatched master of control magic, capable of reshaping the battlefield and bending the minds and abilities of enemies. She specializes in adapting her strategies and directing combat with a well-placed curse or boon
Spell Schools: Alteration Magic, Curse Magic, Geomancy Magic
Note: Shipping costs will be calculated and charged in BackerKit after the campaign. We ship to all regions worldwide, but areas outside Canada, the US, and the EU may incur import tax.
Shipping costs will be calculated and charged in BackerKit after the campaign. We ship to all regions worldwide, but areas outside Canada, the US, and the EU may incur import tax.
NOTE: Physical add-ons can only be applied to reward tiers already receiving mailed rewards. Calculate the total cost of your desired add-onds. Then, click "Manage My Pledge" and increase your pledge total by that amount.
Physical reward tier comes with at least one of the 3 sets of 3 bookmarks featuring the EMBERWIND Classes with a shiny prism finish. Upgrade to a full set of 9 bookmarks. Together, the matte-finished backs of the bookmarks create a complete piece of landscape artwork.
A set of four 1" grid maps printed on a lightweight, durable cloth that can survive spills, folding, and rolling up. Compatible with EMBERWIND token sets and most inch-based minis, and as generic maps for other tabletop RPGs.
- Option A: Maps for The Skies of Axia campaign
- Option B: Maps for The Songweave Tapestry campaign
A set of 26 coloured 1" round tokens that can be used for their intended campaign or as a cheaper alternative to minis for any tabletop RPG combat.
- Option A: Tokens for The Skies of Axia campaign
- Option B: Tokens for The Songweave Tapestry campaign
Get a set of 3 enamel pins showing the emblems of one of the EMBERWIND Class categories. (Harbinger Classes and Soldier Classes already unlocked! Commander Classes unlocked at $42,000!)
Lifetime PDF access to the original release and all future updates of one EMBERWIND campaign.
A fabric-topped, grip-bottomed play mat. Provides a smooth, protective playing surface for picking up cards and dice w/ Atlanta artwork.
Set of six polyhedral dice made of durable zinc alloy finished with a sleek black exterior. Heavy and dramatic enough for even the most epic table-shaking rolls. Available in:
- A: Nomnivore Blue
- B: Atlanta Gold
- C: Archer Sakura
- D: Rogue Purple
- E: Backer vote (Spiritualist Green, Warrior Red, or Ardent Flame)
One printed copy of the EMBERWIND Hero Manual: Core Edition, as well as lifetime PDF access to the original release and all future updates.
A battery-operated replica of Rath's Clockwork Heart with a purple glow orb hand-cast in hypoallergenic Britannia metal. Comes with two replacement orbs and a nickel-free hypoallergenic chain so it can be worn as a necklace.
One printed copy of an EMBERWIND campaign book, as well as lifetime PDF access to the original release and all future updates of that book.
We're extending our Black Friday BOGO 50% off dice sale from our website for all Kickstarter backers for the duration of the campaign. Pledge an extra $67 CAD to get 2 dice metal sets in any of the unlocked colours.
*Emberwind is a trademark of Nomnivore Games, Inc.
Risks and challenges
We made a point of releasing our standalone campaign EMBERWIND: The Skies of Axia completely independently so we could run through a full project cycle from budgeting to delivery and learn the ropes without risking your time or money.
We’ve also hard-baked a live-development model into our company DNA to make sure we correct for mistakes, our consumers get value, and we have room to experiment with new gameplay features. We believe that if a customer buys a product, they've got it for life. That's why we offer lifetime PDF access to all future revisions of the print and digital books you buy through your account on emberwindgame.com.
The Core Combat rules have already been released for free use. The Core Roleplay are finished and will be released shortly once they’re finished their final editing and playtesting pass. Variant rule modules will be released in the future to provide players with new ways to customize their EMBERWIND play experience.
We've planned ahead to accommodate for delays and budget creep. As with any product, there is the outside possibility that some reward components could be delayed by production issues beyond our control, but we've built allowances into our delivery schedule to minimize the chance of you being affected.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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