New RPG Company, Obatron Productions, Launches Kickstarter with Two System Versions

Obatron Productions has launched a Kickstarter for their new RPG world Tunse’al in both Savage Worlds format as well as systemless.

From the campaign:

Obatron Productions, a new RPG company that has gained the use of the Savage Worlds license, recently launched a Kickstarter for Tunse’al, a tribal fantasy setting. Rather than creating for just one system, the company has written material for Savage Worlds and in a systemless format. With a little work, GMs can use the handy tables to adapt the material to whatever system they want. All products are being released in both formats: Savage Worlds and systemless. The Kickstarter offers the Tunse’al Setting Guide, Tunse’al Quick Starts and Side Tracks, Bonus Beasts, and more.

Tunse’al has some interesting features that combine to make it a unique setting. There are four playable races, none of which are human, although two are similar. The society is tribal rather than feudal or post-apocalyptic. There is no money, which means characters must be motivated by something else. The planet is decidedly not Earth seeing as it has a pair of suns and a trio of moons. Metal is rare since most is taboo, which affects technological advances. The environment is hostile with enormous reptiles and dangerously active plants sharing the world. And the tribes don’t all get along like civil neighbors. That’s just for starters.

  • Soulfinger

    It’s statements like “money doesn’t exist” because “the global society is tribal” that kill my interest. What, the global population has some inherent defect that prevents them from trading cowrie shells, axe heads, ropes, fabrics, beads, or the limitless other items used as currency by tribal societies. That seems like a justification for a game mechanic based in ignorance of economics and tribalism. On top of that, mining is taboo? Globally? Does that also apply to found metals that do not require smelting? Wouldn’t the taboo be against metallurgy? Why not just make metals rare, like in Dark Sun?

    Also, “the non-playable Skin Eaters have to eat skin to survive” Wtf? How does that even make sense? It’s only creepy in an eating your own snot sort of way and certainly not more intimidating than a lion needing to eat meat to survive.

  • Cherno

    It’s like mites who eat shed skin in your bed or on your head 😉

  • vickeya

    Thank you Soulfinger and Cherno for taking the time to write your impressions.

    Soulfinger, there is no currency, but the people barter. This is an RPG setting, not system, so how people choose to interpret their system’s mechanics is up to them.

    The Skin Eaters don’t eat their own skin, just as people don’t eat their own flesh, but they often eat the flesh of animals. Although, they wouldn’t be above eating other Skin Eater’s skin, out of necessity.

    Mining as taboo, and the guide explains why. That does not mean there are no metals, just that they are rare, as Soulfinger implied would be a good idea.

    If you watch the video, you can get a quick snap shot of more that might answer your questions that isn’t repeated in the text.

    Thank you again for your feedback.

    Have a great day!


    • Soulfinger

      Thanks for the reply.

      Settings do not exist independent of system mechanics. For example, currency — or lack thereof — is a game mechanic. The setting is just a means of obfuscating the mathematics. Essentially, moving X treasure from A to B yields Y reward. In this case, I suppose X would be a bunch of stone axe heads, animal tusks, and snozzberries, as opposed to sacks of coins. It complicates commerce for the players and/or relegates them to the obnoxious fetch-carry quests that are a mainstay of video games.

      I understand that skin eaters aren’t shaking people down for their dandruff. My point was that it is kind of silly. Maybe if there was some justification like them needing to eat skin for the melanin, which triggers melanin production in their own bodies, otherwise they die from the sun’s radiation. However, just eating it for nutrition doesn’t make sense. It’s not intimidating like a monster that would eat your eyes and leave you blind, because you are just as dead as if the thing had eaten you wholesale.

      All in all, the Kickstarter page doesn’t outline your game in a substantive way with the sort of details that would sell me on a game. “Honor is everything,” which I’ve seen in Hackmaster, Oriental Adventures, etc. “Money does not exist.” Meh. To me, it’s like saying nobody has an anus. “The world is out to get you.” Already done many times over. There is precedent for all of the stuff that you see as not typical in fantasy, and the part that promises details doesn’t say much. I’m not trying to be an asshat. I would like to see you succeed, but if there are no humans in the game then I want a concise one or two paragraph description of each race that blows my mind and leaves me wanting to know more.

  • vickeya


    Thank you for clarifying your points and elaborating on your view. More description is in the Kickstarter text specifically about the races.

    It appears that you are looking for something our setting simply does not offer.

    May you enjoy all your days of gaming in whatever settings and systems you choose!