Hello everyone, Darryl here with this week’s gaming news! Dungeons & Dragons documentary from Joe Manganiello, new D&D video game, Assassin’s Creed getting a TTRPG, Friend Computer has announced a new edition of Paranoia, and more!
For a quick summary of the week’s news, Jessica Hancock will bring you up to speed with EN Live’s This Week in TTRPG every Friday.
Don’t forget, you can keep up with all the week’s gaming news in detail with Morrus’ Unofficial Tabletop RPG Talk. This week, Morrus and Peter talk about the upcoming plans for EN Publishing and Level Up: Advanced 5e.
In case you missed it elsewhere on EN World this week:
Hasbro and the corporation’s entertainment arm Entertainment One announced a new documentary on Dungeons & Dragons. The documentary will be co-directed by Joe Manganiello (True Blood, Magic Mike) and Kyle Newman (Fanboys, Barely Lethal, Lana Del Rey: Summertime Sadness) featuring clips from over 400 hours of archive footage going back to the early 1970s. RPG historian Jon Peterson, author of Playing at the World, will also participate in the documentary. The press release, which you can read in full at the link above, also states the documentary team will “inside access to highly confidential developments concerning the game and brand — the company’s first time authorizing such access — position this project to be the definitive documentary on the game’s soon to be half-century history.” The documentary is set for a 2024 release to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the release of Dungeons & Dragons.
Wizards of the Coast announced some changes to their video game development team along with a new Dungeons & Dragons AAA title on the way. Tuque Games, developers of Dungeons & Dragons: Dark Alliance acquired by Wizards in 2019, will now be known as Invoke Studios and are working on a new game “derived from” Dungeons & Dragons using Unreal 5. The studio will continue to operate as an “autonomous and independent studio” and “we are not just the Montreal division of an international group. We will also continue to put forth the ideas and the direction of the game universes we expand and create.” No details are available about the game or its release, but the press release states that the studio currently has 80 employees and is seeking to expand to over 200 by 2025, which likely indicates plans to release around that time. The Montreal-based company’s website currently lists open applications for AI Programmer, Audio Programmer, and Lead Gameplay Programmer roles.
Going from video games based on RPGs to RPGs based on video games, CMON’s publishing imprint Guillotine Press announced a new RPG based on the Assassin’s Creed franchise. The video game franchise launched in 2007 setting up the story of the battle between the Templars and Assassins across all of history as modern agents of the organizations use ancestral memories of the past to seek the Pieces of Eden lost to time. The majority of gameplay for most games, though, takes place in painstakingly recreated sites from history along with major real-world historical figures showing a deep level of research in the foundational time period. Historical settings have included Renaissance Italy, the American Revolution, the Golden Age of Piracy, the Peloponnesian War between Athens and Sparta, Victorian London, and many others. For the tabletop game, players will create a modern-day character called the Descendent and then relive the lives of multiple ancestors in different time periods. The game’s lead designer is Francesco Nepitello, designer of The One Ring RPG, and will launch next year along with, as expected from Cool Mini Or Not, a line of miniatures.
That’s not the only video game franchise getting an RPG, as Open Sesame Games announced a 5e roleplaying game based on the Viking strategy video game Northgard. Like the video game, the tabletop roleplaying game will focus on settlement building with all new rules added onto the 5e framework for creating and building a local village. As players gain experience and level up, so will their settlements in this newfound continent. Which you’ll need as you’re not alone in this new land as you can find yourselves besieged by dire wolves, undead warriors, and worse. Open Sesame also states they are looking at ways to integrate the RPG into the board game version Northgard: Uncharted Lands which released this year after raising €514,472 on Kickstarter in 2021. The roleplaying game has a planned crowdfunding campaign coming in Q1 2023 with at least two books planned.
Friend Computer has allowed Mongoose Publishing to officially announce Paranoia Perfect Edition in what Mongoose has called “our worst kept secret”. I would be remiss if I didn’t point out the secret was so poorly kept that WJ MacGuffin appeared on the EN Live show Not DND to talk about it all the way back in July. Of course, it would be treason to state that the previously released Paranoia: Red Clearance Edition had any flaws as our friend Computer would not allow a flawed edition to come out, so this new edition will be an expansion and refinement of the previous edition to make it even more perfect. From the announcement:
Traditional RPGs are great but… they can get repetitive. How many times have you created a hero to fight bad guys or prevent destruction? Aren’t you hungry for something different, maybe a game that’s a little dark but really funny? Wouldn’t it be fun to play the ones causing destruction for a change?
Say hello to Paranoia: The Perfect Edition, otherwise known as ‘that cool game with a computer and Troubleshooters, and you shoot everything, and the GM lies, and you die repeatedly but holy cow is that game fun’.
Over the years, there have been several editions of the game, from the 1st edition published back in 1984 to the Red Clearance Edition in 2017. Five years later, we noticed three things:
1) Some players and GMs felt the last edition strayed too far from the original setting and themes.
2) Some players and GMs felt the last edition was amazing and want more.
3) If we sell a new edition, maybe us Famous Game Designers can pay rent this month. (We’re not Rich Famous Game Designers.)
When this happens, there is only one course of action: Try to appease everyone at the same time. Paranoia: The Perfect Edition uses a very modified version of the Red Clearance Edition rules. Some stuff was cut (like using cards) while other stuff was kept the same (wound levels) and new stuff was added (favours). Meanwhile, the addition of the new Accomplice Books means, among other things, you can use missions and material from every edition of Paranoia that has ever appeared (apart from the Edition That Shall Not Be Named).
Magpie Games is the newest developer to announce a deal with Demiplane as Avatar Legends: The Roleplaying Game is coming to Nexus. The Avatar Legends Nexus will launch in early access on October 23, giving players access to a digital reader, game rules compendium, and group video play service. Additional features are expected in 2023 including a character builder, interactive digital playbooks, campaign worksheets, and more. From the press release:
“We are thrilled to be partnering with Demiplane to create the official online toolkit for Avatar Legends: The Roleplaying Game! The Avatar Legends NEXUS is an incredibly special project – a set of next generation tools that make the rules easy to access while giving players new ways to connect and play together,” says Mark Diaz Truman, CEO of Magpie Games. “Everyone at Magpie Games believes that Demiplane is charting a new path for tabletop RPGs in digital spaces, and we’re honored that Avatar Legends: The Roleplaying Game is part of it!”
“With Avatar Legends: The Roleplaying Game, Magpie has created an outstanding game that truly captures the feel of my all-time favorite animated series – bringing the NEXUS to life has been a dream come true for our team,” says Demiplane’s Chief Development Officer, Adam Bradford. “We can’t wait for fans to experience these digital tools that help make connecting, preparing, and playing more convenient than ever.”
The website is available now to pre-order products including the core rulebook for $29.99, Wan Shi Tong’s Adventure Guide for $29.99, and five adventures each set in a different era available for $5.99 each. Backers of the Kickstarter for Avatar Legends may also enter their codes to add the books to their account.
Ultra Pro announced a unique licensed product, official Dungeons & Dragons coins from the city of Waterdeep. The set includes a Platinum Harbor Moon, Brass Toal, Platinum Sun, 2 Gold Dragons, 5 Copper Nibs, and 5 Silver Shards. The announcement is very clear that these are clad zinc recreations and do not contain any precious metals, just in case you thought you could get real gold and platinum that easily. No retail price has been announced (though one site has it listed for $115.49 Canadian which is about US$84.15 or £74.37) but the collector’s box set is due for release in summer 2023.
That’s all from me for this week! Don’t forget to support our Patreon to bring you more gaming news content. If you have any news to submit, email us at [email protected], and you can get more discussion of the week’s news on Morrus’ Unofficial Tabletop RPG Talk every week. You can follow me on Twitch to get notifications when I go live, subscribe to Gamer’s Tavern on YouTube for videos on gaming history, RPG reviews, and gaming Let’s Plays, or you can listen to the archives of the Gamer’s Tavern podcast. Until next time, may all your hits be crits! Note: Links to Amazon, Humble Store, Humble Bundle, and/or DriveThru may contain affiliate links with the proceeds going to the author of this column.