This is the kind of f***ed up scene I'm talking about that inspired the direction in the game I took.
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When it comes to inspiration for my games, I am always looking at the media that shaped me and had a strong influence on me. souruāmā is created in the same vein. The very obvious inspiration behind souruāmā is Mecha Anime, most notably Neon Genesis Evangelion. But I was always more interested in the characters and how they deal with the strain and pain of piloting these Mechas.
Another inspiration behind souruāmā that isn't that obvious is one of the first early sci-fi novel Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley. The inspiration here is more subtle and more about the question what we created with the tools we have. this is also the basic question behind another inspiration that comes from jiddish folklore: The Golem.
Giving souruāmā the visual anime treatment and providing nods to Japanese culture is the final inspiration here. Using Katakana transliteration of English words is intentional and should give you a hint that the world of souruāmā is not necessary a version of Japan. The same goes for the Mask that morph into the Armors for the Souls.
What are your inspirations when you read souruāmā? What vibe do you get from it?
I can see that not having experience with TTRPGs makes it hard to create something with it. I think you should check out solo games in the physical section here on itch. There are some amazing games in there and many of them free. This could be your first step into TTRPGs to see how this works. Most of them are beginner friendly and guide you through play. It's a great way to gain some experience.
Thanks for your kind words about RISE!
Hey! The idea behind the RISE jam is that you work with the Creator Kit on a game, but if you want to narrow it down to some specific features I would say these are the things that stand out with RISE compared to other Creator Kits or System Reference Documents (SRDs):
- 3 Act structure (1st Act introduces players to their character; 2nd Act that would be basic gameplay where players experience their character; 3rd Act with limited resources and/or attempts to test their characters)
- 3rd skill in each attribute is game specific
- Sparks (I think they really help the characters stand out)
I'm not against a game in a different medium, but in general I am looking for TTRPG games.
Here's the Tears in Rain monologue from the ending of the original Blade Runner film. The reason I didn't use this as primary inspiration is, that the premise in the 2nd movie has changed and we see the world through the eyes of a Replicant, which changes the focus.But either way, this scene and the monologue is one of the great moments of cinema and deserves praise!
The Baseline Test scene from the film Blade Runner 2049 was a huge inspiration for this game. The interesting thing about this scene is, that the Baseline test is based on a technique actors use to create emotional connections with words and phrases called Dropping-In - but the technique is turned on its head. Replicants are not allowed emotions, so they are not supposed to create connections with these words. Absolutely glorious!
5 Star Review!
This Solo PRG is comes with simple rules and some alternative additions you can use. I like the inclusion of a link to a Jazz playlist for anyone new to the genre and I am especially happy with the inclusion of an actual instrument as additional tools to use - but I’m getting ahead of myself.
In Midnight Melodies, you play a Jazz pianist that finds themselve investigating Unauthorized Deaths for the Grim Reaper. Each night, you find a name in your tip jar and you go and investigate how this person died and report to Grim Reaper your findings.
I love this premise for the eerie atmosphere and for the humor in which it is delivered. It allows the player to find the right tone for their game. Speaking of Tones, while investigating you will collect 9 tones that form 3 chords. These are your findings you report to Grim Reaper.
The first chord is composed of a tone representing the victims identity (1st tone), their death scene (2nd tone) and a clue (3rd tone). The second chord explores the mysterious circumstances and uncovers supernatural influences. The third chord focuses on the supernatural foe.
Once you are finished investigating you report to Grim Reaper and play them your 3 chords. This is where you get to play your three chords. I love that this adds a tangible touch to this supernatural story.
I love this setup and how it guides you through an evocative story. The game comes with tables to roll on to and everything you need to make this a supernatural time. As most solo games, journaling down your story is part of the fun, but not necessarily required.
5 Star Review!
In Breathing Stories you play either as Protector of the Stream or as a Pilgrim trying to cross the stream - but you are only able to communicate with 10 pictograms represented by the numbers on the Uno cards you play with.
I just love the premiss of this game being an immigrant myself struggling with communication - and being a mechanics nerd I live that the game has build in play phases and meta-game phases.
You play the game in 3 rounds - or how I think of it in 3 acts! All communication in character follows the use of the pictographs represented by the numbers on the Uno cards.
The three rounds are the Meeting at the Stream where the Protectors and the Pilgrims meet first, Sharing News from Home where Proctors and Pilgrims start building their shared language, and Communicating your Needs where we get to mold the shared language.
Then it’s time to cross the Stream and see if there are any consequences. I have personally been there and had situations with limited shared language turn out great, but I also had experienced the opposite. What I really would have liked in these situations is a chance to debrief - something this game will give, but sadly reality doesn’t.
Anyway, Babbling Streams is a great game with a wonderful premise and if anything you just read interests you, go ahead and get it now!
5 Star Review!
Tales from the Cockpit is a Lost & Found game about a prototype Mecha! You might think now, cool, I get to pilot a Mecha in this game - not so fast! The game is about the Mecha - not the pilots. And yes, one Mecha - different pilots. Because the pilots perish in this game, but the Mecha stays!
Tales from the Cockpit is designed as a solo game, but I could see this also a fun bonding activity within a group. Play is structured in Acts and you are prompted with questions that shape the story.
It is a very sombre game I could see myself play in cozy café on a day off - but play could also be in sessions throughout the year, since it is easy to pick up from you left of.
I would categorize this as a journaling game, but the game text suggests other options to play and do like the idea of making voice recordings instead of written journal entries.
I really enjoy the juxtaposition between the excitement of Mecha media and the sombre tone of this game. This really brings a unique perspective to the Mecha table!
Well, I'm biased, but I do love the post apocalyptic theme and survival definitely fits the 3rd Act of RISE.
My own ideas include a Neon Genesis Evangelion or Darling in the Franxx inspired game - or at least somewhere in that ballpark. I'm a sucker for coming of age stories and RISE just fits this character development presented in these anime.
Triforged by DiscoSoup is a lightweight, setting agnostic RPG that comes with its own Hack Pack for you to use and a pre-made fantasy setting - Forest of the Moon - to try it our right away. And when I say right away, I mean it. Experienced role-players will pick Triforged up in no time and even novice players will get the hang of it quickly by playing Forest of the Moon.
Triforged uses simple characters with 3 Attributes (Mind, Body, Heart) and 3 Skills the characters excel in. The resolution mechanic is lightweight and easy to use as well: You pick an attribute you use for an action and roll this against a difficulty level between 0-3 - you basically roll your die (a d8 or a d6) and subtract the difficulty level. Then you check in which range your result falls:
- 1-2: failure
- 3-4: partial success with a consequence
- 5-6: success
But the best part of this game/system comes next: remember the skills? You get to roll d6s equal to your skill number and every roll above the difficulty level earns you a Perk! Perks mean, that in a success, you get to add additional sentences to your simple success statement. This is a beautiful mechanic that is simple, easy to grasp and most of all transfers a game mechanic into an engaging aspect of the action in the game. I really like this on!
Triforges also gives you guidance on NPCs and how to handle them. Again, this is done in a simple way that makes coming up with an NPC super easy for any GM, so you can quickly adjust your game to the action in case your players wander off the path of your story.
Forest of the Moon gives the whole system a footing in a specific setting with various NPC parties within the world and roll tables for anything from encounters, quests, loot or oracles. The different NPC parties are introduces within the lore of the game and you will get examples of NPCs from various difficulty levels.
The Hack Pack on the other hand puts your creator persona into the driver seat. It lays out the individual parts of the game/system for you to add in lore, NPCs and any other idea you might have.
There is also a Triforged - Supers game available on DriveThruRPG which brings modern day super hero comics in the style of Silver Age comic books to your table. Definitely worth a look!
I give this game 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 stars!
Writing the 2nd Edition of RISE I had to claw myself out of a burnout I put myself in 7 months ago. Maybe it was fate that I stumbled over Voice of Baceprot, but this song kept playing in my head while I was working on the 4 additional mechanics.
Believe it or not, but I thought about an NGE RISE game myself. For me, RISE is about getting to know the character, coming of age really. NGE fits perfectly to that, especially focusing on the pilots! But I feel there should be something on top of RISE to emphasize on the relationship between the pilots and the Eva's. In Rise of the Apes we included the Strength tracker as additional mechanic and I could see something similar with that as well. But now we are getting into game design discussion, and that really should happen in the Design Question thread 🤣. Feel free to ask us questions there. The more specific the better, so the community or we can give you good answers. Or open up a new thread.
Thank you so much for your kind words! We didn't plan on making more of these bookmarks, but we believe you could adopt the principle of our bookmarks to any other book - even if you are not familiar with the book. Yes, you won't get prompts based on specific situations that are significant for a character within the plot, but we believe that journaling your thoughts based on situations you as the reader feel significant will turn reading into an exceptional experience!