Aaron Lim’s tabletop RPG is darkly clever and contemporarily scary. Spectres of Brocken is about making friends and, much later, going to war. You’re determined you are right, your friends are wrong, and your giant mechs battle.
The Kickstarter wants AU$8,888 (a magic number?) to fund, has three weeks left to do so and is neary there. You can find out more on the pledge page.
The pitch casts your PC as a naive mech trainee who, in time, finds out what they want from friends and life. Years later, in their kickass custom mechs, find out what you’re willing to do to get it.
No GM is needed for Spectres of Brocken as players share responsibilities running the game, but someone can take the role of the person who remembers the rules.
System-wise, Spectres of Brocken is based on the No Dice, No Masters system, which features in games like Dream Askey and Dream Apart.
- A fun take on the No Dice, No Masters game, replacing Tokens with Words that may be used or gained as prompts for character action.
- Two distinct periods of play, each having its distinct mechanics and feel, underpinned by a shared core.
- The Academy Phase functions similarly to an extended character creation and discovery, with you starting with just one character characteristic and relationship and filling in the others as you play.
- The Conflict Phase pays off all of the relationships and desires established in the Academy phase, maintaining and recontextualizing Words from the past and adding in Blood tokens to highlight how acts now exact a severe toll owing to the magnitude of the pilots’ mechs.
- The mix-and-match scenario setup allows you to make a variety of entertaining combinations from 16 different scene settings and 16 key questions.
- Choose a theme tune for your character to play during dramatic occasions.
- As you play, design your mech’s characteristics and introduce them when they showcase your character’s attributes.
I remember those hot summer days when we skipped classes to cool off by this creek. I remember our arguments in the dining halls, or competitions in the sims.
How did it come to this?
Those days are over. We knew nothing of the world then. I know better now. I know what needs to be done. I know I have to win this, to end this war.
Even if it means killing you.
You can support this Kickstarter by sharing it on social media, and if there’s an excellent TTRPG to put in front of friends and say, “I saw this and thought of you!” then surely it’s this one!
If you have AU$22 (about £13) to back the campaign, you’ll get a full-colour PDF from itch.io.
At AU$27, you’ll get that PDF version and the author’s edition as well.
The softcover is swapped in, replacing the author’s edition, for backers who can make AU$40, and it ships only to certain countries.
If you want the author’s PDF edition and the softcover, that’s just AU$5 more, at AU$45.
Aaron estimates shipping will happen in October 2023.
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