In the last centuries of the Fifth Cycliad, a great malaise began to descend on the lands of humankind. The civilizations of the Earth, which for aeons had seemed on the verge of slumber, now finally began to rot from within. From the edges of the world, the ever-present enemies drew close, their hungry claws poised to tear apart the delicate flesh of a fruit a hundred millennia in the ripening. And all around, a cry arose for Heroes, to stand against the dying of the light, and save the world from the sins of its past.
Are you a fan of Clark Ashton Smith’s Zothique? Of Gene Wolfe’s Book of the New Sun? M. John Harrison’s The Pastel City? Do you yearn for a roleplaying game that exudes the vibe of Bruce Pennington’s gorgeous artwork? Then look no further — The Chronicles of Future Earth is here.
On Friday 28 September, Mindjammer Press launched its new Kickstarter for The Chronicles of Future Earth — Cosmic Fantasy Roleplaying in the Post-Historical Age. I’m Sarah Newton, the author of the game, which in some ways is the fantasy counterpart to my transhuman science-fiction roleplaying game Mindjammer. We funded the project in a little under 9 hours, and have been unlocking stretch goals since; as of this moment (Friday 5 October), we’ve raised just under £20,000 (appx $27,000), and have unlocked a Player Character Folio and GM adventure to add to the “Chronicler Pack” which forms the core of our offering: a gorgeous full-colour hardback rulebook, a GM screen, dice, tokens, and an A2 map of the “Springtide Civilization” — the world of the earth of the far, far future where the game takes place.
The Chronicles of Future Earth is a “cosmic fantasy” roleplaying game. What does that mean? Well, it’s fantasy — the game plays with your favourite fantasy tropes – but at the same time it plugs into a rich vein of golden age pulpy science-fantasy which we all know and love. The time — perhaps 100,000 years in our future. The place – the Mediterranean basin during an Ice Age, when the sea levels are lower and the continental shelves are exposed and resettled.
The action? The world is unimaginably old; tens of millennia ago, humankind reached the stars, then fell in a terrible cataclysm. Today the gods are real; sorcerers summon demons; monsters roam the land. There are ruins of cities older than history, and beneath them endless underworlds where sometimes artefacts of unfathomable technologies can be found. It’s a world with an ancient feel, with mediaeval levels of technology; but the moon is green, and Rathalos the Heretic travelled there thousands of years ago.
The gods tell us how to live. Their commandments keep the world unchanging, conservative, hidebound; otherwise, they say, the Great Hegemonist will return from beyond the Veil and the world will end. Nothing changes any more; there has been so much history, its evidence all around us, that history itself has ceased to matter. One day, one century, one aeon is very much like the next. It is the post-history of humankind.
Humanity itself teeters on the abyss. A breath is all it will take for it to fall. And that breath has come; an unfathomable explosion has destroyed the city of Korudav, and chaos beasts not seen for millennia sweep over the inhabited lands, mutating all they touch. Can humankind rise from its lethargy to save itself? Can people find the courage to disobey the way things have always been done, and find new ways to live and survive? That’s where you come in: the old ways no longer apply, a new order must be found if humankind is to survive. Can you rise to the great challenge of the age, and become a hero?
The Chronicles of Future Earth is a Fate Core roleplaying game, but heavily modified from the standard rules. I’ve worked from the rules system of Mindjammer the Roleplaying Game, but introduced new rules and even a new dice mechanic to help reproduce that gritty, epic cosmic fantasy feel at your table. If you’re a fan of RuneQuest, Tekumel, Hawkmoon, Stormbringer, or even Jorune, you’ll feel at home here. You’ll wield demon swords, incarnate avatars, and travel the planing machines to strange dimensions, facing unspeakable dangers.
I’ve been writing The Chronicles of Future Earth for almost twenty years. A short introductory book was published by Chaosium for the Basic Roleplaying System in 2010; now at last Mindjammer Press is looking to publish the game as a complete line of core book, adventures, and supplements.
I hope you’ll come and take a look at what we’re doing with the Kickstarter. The Chronicles of Future Earth fills a cosmic fantasy niche in the roleplaying game universe, one which approaches its tropes with a 21st century eye. It’s a game of ideas, but also of action and adventure.
Some said it was the end of days. Some said it was only the beginning. These adventures tell the history of that time yet to come. These are the Chronicles of Future Earth…
You can find out more about The Chronicles of Future Earth at the Kickstarter page here. The Kickstarter campaign runs until midnight UK time, Sunday 28 October 2018.
The Chronicler Pack Pledge — $100