Dragon Heresy: The Last 48 Hours
As always, the last 48 hours of a Kickstarter are crucial. One can frequently match the first two days’ funding totals in the last two days, and for Dragon Heresy, if we did that, we’d be seriously flirting with the big stretch goal at $16,000 for an offset run with sewn binding.
We are currently sitting at roughly $11,000, with the initial funding goal having been $3,500.
But let’s back up a bit.
What is Dragon Heresy?
Dragon Heresy is a stand-alone Fantasy RPG based on a grittier take on the Fifth Edition game engine. It uses a two-level target hit roll, and differentiated between skill and endurance (“vigor”), injury (“wounds”), and retains Fifth Edition’s excellent use of Conditions, including Exhaustion. You do NOT need other Fifth Edition books to play the game; character generation, combat, social standing, flyting, grappling, wilderness and survival, and monsters are all in the book.
The setting is strongly Norse-inspired, which influences the cultures that are playable, but also the mechanics, since the vikings’ use of lightweight, buckler-gripped shields as very nearly the primary weapon heavily influenced the combat rules options.
Finally, it integrates one of the best grappling mechanics written for such games, making grappling interchangeable with striking on a blow-by-blow basis. One new player played a dragonborn berserker whose primary weapon was a net with no slowdown in play, full use of the rules, and outstandingly fun outcomes.
Tell Me More
No problem. I’ve done a lot of that – here are some additional resources for those who wish to check out the project
Podcasts and Video
- The initial video pitch for the Kickstarter (mainly thematic); the Designer’s Comments featuring me throwing an axe in full mail, and some viking sparring
- The Established Facts podcast featured a segment dedicated to Dragon Heresy, and another relating to the business of game design.
- Some old playtest reports . . .
- . . . and a new streaming session on Roles to Astonish with four players who’ve never played DH before
- I talked about Dragon Heresy from various perspectives on an net Chat, Table Top Babble, covered the what and why of mechanics on Down with DnD, martial arts in OSR systems with Hobbs and Friends of the OSR, and also hit the game’s inspiration and aspirations with Matt Finch on Uncle Matt’s D&D Neighborhood. Finally, I topped it off with an appearance on Nerdarchy with Nerdarchy Dave, and then was on a pre-recorded episode of Shane Plays Radio. We cover much ground in these, much from different perspectives. If I had to pick two, I’d hit Down with DnD for the mechanics, and the conversation with Matt Finch for how the mechanics meet the inspiration in a rules-light way.
There have been two reviews of the pre-release copy of the game (it’s fully written).
- Follow Me and Die! took a look and liked what he saw
- Moe Tousignant is in the middle of a truly comprehensive review, and allowed me to host his first two sections on my blog
- James Spahn (White Star and other games) took a look at a pre-release copy and liked what he saw.
The Kickstarter: What You Get
There are only a few pledge levels
- At $5 you get a stripped down version of the combat rules in sort-of edited PDF format, with minimal layout and no art. It’s for taking the combat rules for a test drive
- At $20 you get a full-color, hyperlinked, layered PDF
- At $50 you get a Black and White POD hardback and the PDF
- At the $100 sponsorship level, the hardback is upgraded to color
- At $500, you get everything from the $100 level and I will hand-make for you an authentic viking shield if you live within the USA. It will be fit to you up to 35.5” diameter, with hide-glued planks, 1oz hide edging, linen stitching, and a hand-carved oak handle. This is basically “buy the shield and get the game for free.”
What Can You Do?
Obviously, the best thing for me is for you to head over and pledge. It’s a great game, with a great layout, and even if I do say so myself, the initial book block (the interior pages without the binding) from the most likely vendor unless we hit the big offset print goal are simply superb.
If you are interested in the game but can’t pledge, I’d ask that you share it on social media so that others that might be interested might see. Like Fifth Edition rules but want more grit? You’ll like what you see here. Like Norse mythology and vikings? You’re a prime candidate to love the game.
48 hours to go. Please check it out, and pledge if you can!