[New Release] Unknown Armies Books 1-3

Unknown Armies is an occult game about broken people conspiring to fix the world. I worked on all three books, and they are now available for you to download in PDF format. This game is utterly dark, weird, gut-wrenching, and very cool! If you don’t want to get all three, I’d start with the first one or check out the Unknown Armies Kickstarter page for more information.

Unknown Armies presents magick as it might exist in a world informed by crime fiction and secret histories, as twisting wrinkles in reality created by greater and greater risk, sacrifice, and obsession. As a player, you are confronted by the consequences of your character’s actions, and challenged by the implicit threat of a world shaped by the will of those who want something more than you do.

Unknown Armies Book One: Play is the book for players. It details:

  • Obsession and identity.
  • All of the rules for resolving actions.
  • The central shock gauge mechanic.
  • How to avoid fights, and how to deal with them when you’re dragged into them anyway.
  • The magick of adepts and avatars.
  • Gorgeous full-color art and layout.

Unknown Armies Book Two: Run is the book for gamemasters. It tells you how to:

  • Present the characters with obstacles to their fevered dreams of changing the world.
  • Oversee character creation and setting collaboration in the first session of play.
  • Draw on the rich and disturbingly familiar world of the occult underground.
  • Create new creatures and antagonists.
  • Resolve conflicts as a fan of the characters.
  • Prepare situations to disturb and entertain.

Unknown Armies Book Three: Reveal is the book of the weird for everyone. It contains:

  • Gamemaster characters, locations, creatures, and events.
  • Heresy and hearsay, alphabetized like a devil’s dictionary.
  • Ideas, hooks, tidbits, scraps, lies, truths, and horrors.
  • Lists, stats, and ephemera.
  • Even more weirdness.
  • Even more magick.

Created by Greg Stolze and John Tynes, Unknown Armies presents an entirely original yet disturbingly familiar approach to mystery, horror, and action in roleplaying games. If this is your jam, check it out!

[New Release] Doubting Souls is Now Available

Although the most acute judges of the witches and even the witches themselves, were convinced of the guilt of witchery, the guilt nevertheless was non-existent. It is thus with all guilt.

—Friedrich Nietzsche

Immigrants and tribes struggled to co-exist on the Eastern Seaboard in the ever-expanding Colonies. Violent clashes, supernatural beliefs, and demonic influences spelled disaster for Salem Village and its surrounding towns, while others fought werewolves and vampires on the frontier. With so much at risk, only god-fearing men and women were deemed innocent — and those were few indeed.

Travel back in time to the 1690s and experience what it was like to hunt the denizens of the supernatural during the Salem Witch Trials. In Doubting Souls, you will find a comprehensive setting overview, detailed locations, new compacts, a historical overview of which compacts and conspiracies were active at the time, story seeds, and a whole lot more.

Now, you can download Doubting Souls, which was created for Hunter: The Vigil, as a stand-alone chapter.

If you enjoy this era, be sure to pick up a copy of Tales of the Dark Eras for my story set during the same time period.

[New Release] Conan RPG: Adventures in an Age Undreamed Of

Robert E. Howard’s Conan: Adventures in an Age Undreamed Of takes you into the world of Conan the Barbarian, where heroes raise blood-spattered swords against dire sorcery, exotic lands beckon to the daring, danger and treasure lurks in forgotten ruins, and where loathsome creatures haunt the spaces beneath the earth… as well as in the throne-rooms of mighty kingdoms!

I worked on the game in its early stages, and contributed to the gazetteer section. Here are some of the game’s highlights:

  • Create your own legend in this decadent and violent world.
  • Complete 2d20 game system, including combat, skills, talents, sorcery, and equipment suitable for adventuring in the age before history.
  • An extensive gazetteer covering the whole of Conan’s world: featuring fair Aquilonia, gloomy Cimmeria, magic-haunted Stygia, all the way to the far-off steaming jungles of Khitai.
  • Fearsome foes, ranging from bandits to sorcerers, apes to giant serpents, Children of Set to frost giants, forest devils, and characters of renown such as Conan or his most deadly foe, Thoth-Amon.

Excited to play in the Hyborian Age? You can download the Conan RPG at the FlamesRising.com shop.

[New Release] In Volo’s Wake Now Available

D&D Ampersand

Back in November 2016, I announced that I worked on In Volo’s Wake to celebrate the release of Volo’s Guide to Monsters. The adventure was first released at GameHoleCon for D&D’s Adventurer’s League, and was then available to play as as a store exclusive.

I’m happy to report that In Volo’s Wake is now available for all fans of D&D! This set of adventures was designed for beginner players; there are tons of notes for DMs to draw from to modify encounters and have a little (hopefully a lot!) of fun.

The town of Phandalin, nestled in the foothills to the east of the Sword Mountains, continues to grow since being rebuilt after the devastation wrought by rampaging orc hordes. It recently survived violent gang activity, drow machinations, and even the attention of a green dragon.

But can it withstand a new threat, bizarre but no less perilous: the fame brought by a visit from none other than loremaster Volothamp Geddarm?

If you’re interested, you can hop on over to DMsGuild.com to purchase a digital copy of the adventure or through the Flamesrising.com Shop. I’m sure your fellow adventurers would love to hear your thoughts on this adventure, too, if you get the chance to play it. Enjoy!

My 2016 Year-End Publications Post

I’m pleased to share with you my 2016 releases in gaming, fiction, and non-fiction. This year, my specific goal was to shore up my non-fiction to (hopefully) get more opportunities in that area. I also wanted to write some media/tie-in stories, to dip my toes back in before submitting my original work. Plus, I’ve been very happy to edit anthologies as well and enjoy doing that work.

A note about awards eligibility: I’d really appreciate it if you considered my work when you’re thinking about awards next year. It does mean a lot that you’re taking the time to think deeply about my art, and I do appreciate it. Thank you!

Fiction

I published three short stories this year, and all of them were for established settings.

    “Redder Than Red”, ENDLESS AGES for Vampire: The Masquerade, 2016, Onyx Path Publishing
    “Suffering of the Unchosen”, TALES OF THE DARK ERAS, 2016, Onyx Path Publishing
    “My Enemy, Mi Amici”, DRAWING DESTINY: A Sixth World Tarot Anthology, 2016, Catalyst Game Labs

I also edited two anthologies as well. The first is a media/tie-in collection, and the second is an anthology I conceptualized that examines tropes through a literary lens.

    THE CAINITE CONSPIRACIES, Vampire: The Masquerade Dark Ages 20th Anniversary Edition, 2016, Onyx Path Publishing
    UPSIDE DOWN: Inverted Tropes in Storytelling, 2016, Apex Publications

Non-Fiction

The big release this year, was a reference book I wrote and helped design for the Firefly TV show. Jenny Lynn, the show’s translator, also lent her talents to answer questions in an interview, and to offer a definitive and thorough look at the Mandarin Chinese used in the show. Additionally, I also started a column for the SFWA about writing for games as well, and that column kicked off in November.

    THE GORRAMN SHINIEST LANGUAGE GUIDE AND PHRASEBOOK IN THE ‘VERSE, 2016, Titan Publishing
    “We Have Always Been Here, Motherfucker”, Uncanny Magazine, November 2016

Games

I’ve been very happy and so pleased to add the legendary Dungeons & Dragons to my list of published games this year. So awesome!

    IN VOLO’S WAKE, Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition, 2016, Wizards of the Coast
    COURT OF SHADOWS, 2016, Catalyst Game Labs
    GHOULS & REVENANTS, Vampire: the Masquerade, 2016, Onyx Path/White Wolf Publishing
    DARK ERAS, Hunter: the Vigil “Doubting Souls”, 2016, Onyx Path/White Wolf Publishing
    CODEX INFERNUS, 2016, Gun Metal Games
    BATTLE FOR THE UNDERCITY for Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition, 2016, DMsguild.com (Self)
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