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Not long ago, I posted a Why Play about the Cypher System, and yesterday I noted that I was planning to do demo games with an inclination toward using the same system for those demos and in-store campaigns. Just after I went to bed, their World of the Cypher System Kickstarter went live and blew through not only funding but the first two stretch goals before I woke up. At this point, they’re at double their initial goal and within US$5000 of their third stretch goal.
I’m backing it, even though I don’t really need settings from other people to run my games at this point. I’m looking forward to seeing what innovative ideas the authors cook up for their books, how they blend the themes they’ve chosen, and definitely looking forward to having more things that I can use to show people how modular this game system is.
At the time of writing, the Kickstarter covers three settings:
Gods of the Fall appears to be set in a somewhat post-apocalyptic fantasy world where the gods were deposed, heaven fell to the world in a wreck, and usurpers have risen in place of the true gods. The players are those who choose to take up the mantle of the fallen, intent on completing the tasks to confirm their divinity so that they can take on the usurpers and cast them out. It looks like it should be a fairly impressive epic fantasy setting, with potential for a wide range of characters and groups. A group of warrior godlings will play very differently from a set of sorcerous scions, nature deities-to-be, or a band of skulking gods of theft and deception. I’m looking forward to what it bring to the fantasy genre.
Predation is a setting book for everyone that wanted to ride dinosaurs as a kid. Set in the Cretaceous era, players take the role of people who have traveled back in time. Why, exactly, remains to be revealed, but everyone would really like to get to go back to the proper time before the Yucatan meteor impact happens. On the plus side, you get to have genetically engineered dinosaurs and sci-fi-grade technology with which to deal with the various threats facing your group! And hey, maybe the history books are wrong. Maybe the Cretaceous era really ends because of the fighting groups of time-traveling humans eventually causing a meteor-like explosion. I’m not quite as eager about this one, but I trust that Shanna Germain will make it worth the read.
Unmasked is the one with the most direct appeal to me; it reads at present like a blend of psychological horror and superheroes. People who’ve played with me know that I tend to drip elements of this kind of horror into almost all my campaigns, one way or another. The premise here seems to be that you can draw upon superhuman powers, but in the process you’re slowly losing yourself to the mask you wear; it calls you away from the world to some lost and mythical place called Magonia, which you share in common with all the other mask-wearers. And you all know something terrible is coming. I’m enthusiastic about this one, because it looks like it should push all the buttons for my GMing style.
Why am I supporting this? As noted, the settings themselves interest me, but there’s more to it than that. I appreciate companies that acknowledge people like me and my friends, and which support the kind of attitudes that I appreciate. MCG does this in spades – acknowledging people across the spectrum of human existence, and encouraging diversity in their writing.
It means a lot to me; it means they’re right there with Paizo, Evil Hat, and Posthuman Studios in companies that I want to help thrive. I hope you’ll consider doing the same. After all – you’ll get at least three great setting books out of it.