This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Fri, May 10 2019 9:59 AM UTC +00:00.
You are an angel. Thousands of years ago you fell to earth because you believed it was the best way to fight evil and help humanity, but found yourself lost without God's guidance and your angelic strength. In all the time since you have not figured out how to win the war against demons, nor how to fit into this strange world of flesh and matter.
Now God is gone and the war might be over, and you can never go home again. The powers of angels and demons are returned anew, and with that power, an angel could rule the world. But without God, what is worth fighting for, and what sacrifices are worth the victory? How many sins can be forgiven to save the world?
Find out in Relics.
Relics is a new game by multi-award winning game designer and industry veteran Steve Dee (aka Steve Darlington) (Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay 2nd and 3rd ed, Shadow of the Demon Lord, Doctor Who Adventures in Time And Space RPG, Vampire: The Requiem and more). It uses the tarot-based "Fugue" system, first developed by James Wallis in the critically acclaimed Alas Vegas. Players use flashbacks to create the backstory of their characters, discovering the truth about themselves only as they play through the game. Players become unreliable narrators of their own past as they face the philosophical questions of their unknown future.
Relics has been developed over the last two years and the manuscript is complete. We've taken it to conventions all over Australia and run dozens of playtests. Now we'd like to present it to the world.
We need your help to take our game and turn it in a beautiful book, and make a beautiful tarot deck to accompany it.
We have a variety of backer levels to suit your needs and budget: you can get the hardcover rulebook and/or the beautiful tarot card set, or just the digital version of the book. Just want the tarot? Also an option. (Note: dollar amounts in image are Australian dollars)
Postage will be charged after the Kickstarter is funded because of the fluctuating nature of international shipping costs.
The Relics rulebook will be lavishly illustrated throughout, creating a book of approximately 250 pages, bound in hardback.
In it you will find:
- A world exotic yet familiar so players can jump in and start playing in just minutes
- Character generation where you can choose every aspect or draw randomly from tables, providing enough framework to prompt strange new ideas while still allowing the freedom to be whomever you wish
- A system where characters begin the game with shared experiences with the other characters, wiring them together and ensuring dramatic interactions and strong bonds
- A flashback mechanic for collaborative storytelling where everyone takes part in building all the characters together, and providing backstories that stretch back across all human history
- A unique rules set that uses the Tarot deck for swift, simple, scene-based resolution
- A blackjack mechanic for more detailed blow-by-blow conflicts such as combat
- A detailed system of angelic Miracles, including over three hundred examples
- A complete guide to angelic life, society, political factions and culture
- More than forty powerful Relics to hunt down
- Secrets for the GM's eyes only (or Dealer, as they are known in Relics)
- Appendices to help you create characters and flashbacks from every period of history without needing a History degree
Artists Dan Smith (famous for his work in In Nomine and many White Wolf games) and Dean Maynard are creating not just our beautiful game art but also a 78-card tarot deck (standard tarot size ~70mm x 120mm). It will be uniquely designed for Relics, featuring characters from the setting and showcasing the aesthetic of the game.
If you've played any kind of narrative RPG before, you'll find Relics familiar but with some unique tweaks of its own. If you've never played anything like it, rest assured that we've designed it with beginners in mind as well. The video below explains the core rules for Simple Tests, Complex Tests and the Memory mechanic.
You can also see some examples of characters that you can play in Relics or watch a short session of actual play. If you prefer to just use your ears, you can listen in to character generation and Actual Play on the Obligatory RPG Show Podcast.
The Quick Start Guide can be downloaded from DriveThru RPG and comes with a free included adventure. Or pledge at any level to get access to the full beta rules.
"Some very bold conceits ... more than meets the eye" - review from Rolling Boxcars
"A perfect marriage of system and setting" - review by David Chapman (Conspiracy X RPG, Doctor Who Adventures in Time and Space, WILD)
"...packed to the gills with depth... it is shocking [they were] able to jam this much information in just 275 pages." - review by Runkle Plays Games
There's also a heap of interviews with designer Steve Dee about the game! In text on Passionerdly and Rolling Boxcars and in voice/video on The Obligatory RPG Show, Meeple University, and Story Always.
We're keeping this campaign simple. We've figured out what it costs to deliver the book that we want to make. Once we hit that, we get to start adding scenarios for Dealers to run, and setting expansion material. If you want more Relics, we will provide!
$19,000 - FUNDED!
$20,000 - Opening fiction by Australian author Michael Aiken, author of Satan Repentant and winner of the Australian Book Review's first Laureate Fellowship
$22,500 - PDF Scenario: By Demons Driven by Steve Dee. A stand alone adventure that also can be used as a sequel to The Devil's Own Luck which appears in the Quick Start Guide.
$25,000 - PDF Sourcebook: An Angel's Guide to Las Vegas by Jake Nelson. A city book looking at the supernatural history of the city of sin and the secrets and Relics it holds.
$27,500 - PDF Scenario: Ill Gotten Gains by Craig Oxbrow. The things that hunt demons may also hunt angels, and be very well organised, and right on your tail.
$30,000 - PDF Sourcebook: An Angel's Guide to London by James Wallis. A city book of Old London Town and the angels of Islington and beyond.
...and we have even more to come!
Writer and Designer: Steve Dee
Steve Dee and Steve Darlington are the same person. A few years ago I was doing some political writing and getting hatemail and threats so I transitioned my professional identity to being Steve Dee. I've worked in the RPG industry under both names for over 20 years, on games such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Vampire: The Requiem, Cortex, Shadow of the Demon Lord, Grimm and Cartoon Action Hour. I've won several awards for my work on Warhammer 2nd and 3rd edition. My small RPGs are available on the Tin Star Games website, including It Is Forbidden, a nominee for Best Non-Digital Game at the 2018 Freeplay Awards.
Additional Material: Jake Nelson
Jake Nelson is a writer, journalist and game master from Sydney, Australia, with more than 10 years of experience playing and running RPGs. He wrote the Relics Quickstart adventure, "The Devil's Own Luck", and created several parts of the setting and fiction for the core rulebook. This is his first published credit in the RPG industry.
Layout and Art Direction: Matthew Roberts
Matt is a Sydney graphic artist, designer and retoucher with over 30 years experience in advertising, design and print houses. He has done artwork for Rolling Stone, Empire and Ralph magazines and designed album covers for several local acts. When he's not doing that, he's a musician in several local bands, an avid pinball player and a rabid boardgamer.
Artist: Dean Maynard
Dean has worked in educational publishing for over 20 years in Australia and the UK and in advertising prior to that. He has worked on several award winning projects including one chosen for display in the London Millennium Dome, as well as projects for UQ, The Scholomance, Harvard and Oxford University Press. He has a love of European Symbolists, history, Caravaggio, real ale, martial arts and Terry Gilliam movies.
Artist: Dan Smith
Dan Smith is an American illustrator and graphic artist known for his distinctive "SMIF" signature, and his work for Wizards of the Coast, FASA, White Wolf, Steve Jackson Games, Iron Crown, Hasbro, Nintendo, Namco and others. While known primarily as an illustrator, Dan Smith is also a designer of family card games, including Battle of the Bands, Portable Adventures, King of Crime and others.
Video Credits: Music - Cameron Lam, Voice Over - Jonathan Calleja, Directors - Matt Wendon and Zak Campbell
Risks and challenges
The book is completely written, and we've spent an entire year testing and retesting the rules. Steve has spent twenty years working in the RPG industry and has collaborated on several kickstarter projects. We have some of the industry's best artists and editors and proofreaders and printers all lined up, waiting to get started the moment we fund. Short of an act of God, the book will come out - and backers will get clear, consistent updates on our progress, every step of the way.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter