Following on yesterdays’ spotlight, which featured Project Darklight, here’s one about one of our quietly best selling game, which was released with out much fanfare early Autumn 2015.
What is It?
A self-contained game of monster hunting in the cosmopolitan city of Ancient Alexandria during the Roman occupation.
Although it is based on the Fate game system, it uses a variant called Fortune, which sits somewhere between Fate Accelerated and Fate Core regarding complexity.
How it Came About
Paul Mitchener (Age of Arthur, Starfall, Crucible of Dragons), the author, released it as a standalone game via his Historical RPGs Patreon. I liked the straightforward version of Fate that he used with it, called Fortune. While it retains the meat of the Fate system, there are differences. It uses Professions instead of Skills, (Fate Core), or Approaches (Fate Accelerated). Extras are used as standard to define anything that isn’t directly part of the character such as magical items, martial techniques or advantages due to some form of social status (the Legionary extra is a good example of this). I also liked the premise of the characters being monster hunters in classical Alexandria, since I’m a big fan of Roman Epics.
While I liked the Patreon version and I thought with some more work on it, It would be a nice small pick up and play the game. Paul agreed with me, so we started work on it.
The Development Processes
I did a small bit of editorial on the game, asking Paul to clarify a few bits and expand in a few areas (the section on Alexandrian Religion is new). The main aim here was to keep it short and to the point, including lots of gameable stuff without either being vague or going over the top.
After Paul had done his bit of creating this tightly focused game, I rounded off proceedings with an adventure called Saviour Gods. This adventure focuses on a plot to pull down the Lighthouse of Alexandria, which unknown to anyone is a magical ward dedicated to the “Saviour Gods” of the title
I commissioned the ever-talented Peter Town (Mythic Russia, Hearts in Glorantha, The Book of Glorious Joy) who actually relishes the ancient period, to do the art.
Another Peter, Frain (Duty and Honour, River of Heaven, Monkey), did the cover, a scene straight out the Saviour Gods, with a Roman Centurion battling a mummy before the Lighthouse of Alexandria.
I also re-used Stephanie McAlea’s (Stygian Fox owner who produce beautiful Call of Cthulhu scenarios) fantastic map of Alexandria, which she had originally done for the Patreon version on the back cover.
The Finished Product
An A5 11 Page self-contained game. It’s designed to be read quickly and then run with the adventure or scenario seeds straight out of the book. The game even comes with four ready made characters.
Currently available in the D101 Summer Sale with 25% off until Sunday 16th in print with free pdf, selling at £9 (usual price £12).
Also from DriveThru in Pdf/Print
And LULU in print.