On Monday 1st November, I’m opening a month-long Kickstarter for Reboot the Future, a cyberpunk RPG set in the 23rd Century that uses Paul Mitchener’s Liminal RPG as a rules base.
The Kickstarter page is now set up, and the pre-launch page, where you can sign up to be notified when it launches, is live.
- Reboot the Future Kickstarter pre-launch page (note this will also be the URL when the Kickstarter goes live).
What is Reboot the Future ?
I love cyberpunk, from the first days of Cyberpunk 2013, and the genre’s heyday as the setting of various RPGs in the 90s. I stopped mentioning that I could run it either at home or at cons to play other games, such was the demand.
By the early 2000s, I was burnt out on it as a setting, the ‘punks vs corps default, and the systems, which started off simple and rapidly descended into twiddly complexity when you start working out the effects. The computer hacking element of the game or Net running had got unbearable in the same way that low-level magic-users do in 80s versions of D&D. With the Netrunner sitting out most of the game. In contrast, the others charmed and shot their way around the adventure until it was time to hack the enemy’s computer system. When the tables were turned, and it was the time for the Netrunner to have their 15-30 minutes of fame while the rest of the party sat by twiddling their thumbs.
So Reboot the Future is my latest attempt to make the Cyberpunk game of my dreams. It’s based on an earlier attempt called Project Darklight, which I realised back in 2016, which used a D6 dice pool system called Wordplay, which worked ok, but wasn’t as lean as I wanted. So this time out, I’m using Paul Mitchener’s Liminal system, a 2D6 vs target number system, which is simple and accessible, yet has some very clever rulings to give it meaningful depth both in a rules sense and to support roleplaying.
The main selling points for Reboot the Future are:
- At its heart its a straightforward rules light Cyberpunk game. If you want to discard the setting and make your own you still get value for money just from it. The character generation, game rules, and even the example npcs and organisations are rooted in traditional cyberpunk tropes.
- Cyberpunk in the 23rd century. I wanted a setting that even if the players want to play straightforward cyberpunk, that was a little bit more than the Cyberpunks vs Corperations. Dragging the setting’s time period forward into the age of fringe colonies vs core corperate worlds, and the mystery of what’s in space, has done this for me.
- Everyone’s a Cyberhacker. Although there is a dedicated concept for cyberhackers, everyone can interact with virual reality and do stuff there. In fact sometimes they will have to work together to overcome the Artifical Intelligences that run Virtual Reality and guard its secrets.
- Play the Cyberpunk you want. Using a setting questionarrie and other player centred tools, the group gets to run the version of cyberpunk you want.
- Deep setting info you can ignore if you want. If you like the deep occult conspiracy type of cyberpunk that the Matrix brings, with a mixed with a dash of Ufology, the game supports that. But keeping with the point above, you can easily switch that off and ignore it it, if you or your players don’t want to engage with it.
I will expand on these five points as separate posts in the week before the Kickstarter opens.
What is Kickstarter going to Deliver?
The main rule book, 6-inch x 9 inches, 200-300 pages, colour hardcovers and black and white internals. Colour cover by Dan Barker, with black and white internal art by Jesheilds.
- PDF with full bookmarks and hyperlinked page references.
- POD via drivethrurpg.com.
- Signed and Sent. A properly printed book, with ribbons, endpapers and if they fund as a stretch goal colour plates, sent directly from me to you. Postage payable via my web store before I ship.
ETA for the final book, April 2022, with 1st artless draft as soon as the successfully funded Kickstarter ends at the beginning of December.
Unlike previous D101 Games, this Kickstarter, apart from a few already written adventures, will not have a long list of supplements attached to it as stretch goals. I’ve got ideas for sourcebooks, adventure campaigns for Reboot the Future aplenty, but they won’t be part of this campaign.
I’m still figuring out the entire list of stretch goals, but here are the ones that will be in place.
- More art. I’ll commision more images to do some of the setting-specific pieces, and colour plates for the Signed and Sent printed version and Pdf.
- Liminal SRD. Working with Paul Mitchener a combination of what’s in the main Liminal rulebook, and some of the new bits I bring to the table in Reboot the Future.
- Operation Wolverine. This is my go-to adventure at cons to demo what the game is all about. As well as the adventure it will come with a set of six premade characters.
There’s an Early Bird offer!
If you are a backer within the first two days of the Kickstarter, I have a short adventure for you in pdf format that you’ll get at the end of the Kickstarter.
- Brain Dead at the Shopping Mall. A Halloween themed adventure where the cyberpunks explore an abandoned shopping mall on the outskirts of their home city.
Sounds fantastic. I loved Liminal and it surprised all my players in how quick it was to make a character and how deep those characters could be in play. The system is simple bit not so light that we are all in a circle sharing a story.