Sing a song of six pence. A pocket full of rye.
Well, I guess this isn’t a song about six pence. More a song of swords. No, this isn’t tied in with the Heavy Metal Kickstarter (though that’d be cool). Song of Swords is a new fantasy RPG that’s up on Kickstarter now.
From the campaign:
Song of Swords is a game about people and the horrible things they do to each other. The system is designed to have a deep, involving mechanical base while remaining easy to play at the table. The game is best suited to gritty, lethal settings with a strong emphasis on personal drama and dangerous battles. Sword and Sorcery, Low Fantasy, or Historical games are all a perfect fit. I’ve been playing with this system and helping to playtest it for years now, and I’m excited to be able to finally hare it with other people.
The goals of Song of Swords are fairly simple.
A Focus on Characters: A roleplaying game is nothing without interesting characters to play, and SoS is built around that idea. Characters are created with goals, flaws, and passions built right into their mechanics and development, and only advance by striving towards those goals, or failing.
Fast Paced, Deadly Combat: SoS is built to make combat satisfying to play through as well as quick and easy at the table. Your dice pool is divided between actions in a back-and-forth skirmish, and your abilities are determined by your weapon and the maneuvers you know. Because of the maneuver system, combat can be as complicated or simple as you want. The system works just as well depicting the bloody cut and thrust of a duel as it does complicated counter attacks and specialized maneuvers. The developers have tried to replicate actual medieval combat techniques while still remaining fast and fun. What weapon you use and what armor you wear matters, and wounds wear down your ability to fight rather than draining hit points.
Modularity: Everything can be changed for the campaign you want to play. Character creation is easily fine tuned to the exact power level you want for Player Characters. Combat can be remade to be as complicated as you want. Multiple magic systems are being developed, each one capable of being dropped in or out as needed for the setting. Fatigue rules, infection rules, and even rules for fighting groups of mooks can be dropped in and out with ease. I’ve used the game to run gonzo fantasy, daring sword and sorcery, and brutal historical drama with minimal to no retooling of the system.
Intriguing Fantasy: SoS is also going to ship with a premade fantasy setting that’s infinitely gameable. Though the world is based on 16th century Europe, the world is just as alien as it is familiar. The best person to describe the game’s default fantasy setting is the creator.
“The fantasy setting is our own creation, we call it Tattered Realms, and it’s an honest, low-fantasy but high mysticism setting. Most of our effort has gone into making all of the nations and such actually feel like countries that developed around each other, because nothing in the world drives me crazier than fantasy settings where neighbors don’t seem to interact or have cultural exchange. The same thing with magic. It effected the world, society deals with it, rather than pretending it doesn’t exist. It’s got some serious fantasy elements, but until they’re on the screen, it feels very subdued.”
The campaign is closing in on being 2x funded with still 20 days left to go.