Cypher Chronicles, vol. 8-20

Literally thousands of pages of awesome game products—free or close to it. Plus squids, bats, flowers, Gustave Doré, and child vampires. It’s the Cypher Chronicles!

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This Week in Ptolus

In our last Cypher Chronicles, Darcy shared three weeks of news from Monte’s fantasy city of Ptolus. Here’s what’s happened in the week since.

Fourth Week of Wind

Priests from across the Empire gather in Ptolus this week to meet with the Holy Emperor in the first such synod in a decade. Many take this as further evidence that the Emperor of the Church has no intention of returning to Tarsis.

What’s the significance of this little snippet? There’s a lot going on in Ptolus, and the broader world beyond it. Maybe the politicking of the church will be central to your adventures. Maybe it’ll just be a minor factor. Or maybe it’s just background information, something that breathes life into the world around your characters as they go about their own activities. The key thing is that Ptolus is a dynamic city, filled with NPCs, factions, and other forces all pursuing their interests. You could run half a dozen full-length campaigns in Ptolus, and not use every hook it gives you.

This Week in Ptolus covers an entire year in the fantasy city, one short paragraph per week. It’s just one of a bunch of digital extras that come, standard, with the Ptolus book itself. This Week in Ptolus is a 6-page PDF—altogether the digital extras amount to nearly 300 pages. And that’s all in addition to the 672-page book itself!

Every copy of the mighty 672-page Ptolus comes with dozens of physical handouts, aids, and props. Plus there are nearly 300 pages of digital extras!

This Week in the Ptolus Kickstarter

What’s better than a 672-page, premium-quality setting book that comes with 300 pages of extras? How about all of that, plus stretch goals? That’s right, we’ve already upgraded the book a couple of times, unlocked a GM screen, and, as of this writing, are working on a new adventure. And it’s only day five of the Kickstarter!

The Ptolus Kickstarter campaign got off to an amazing start Monday, and is on track to be one of the hottest campaigns we’ve ever run.

With each stretch goal, we ask the backers to vote: Do we explore the city, delve into the dungeons, or ascend the Spire? Each option affects the campaign differently. It’s fun seeing where the backers want to go–will you help us choose?

2100 Pages of Additional Ptolus Stuff!

Ptolus is coming for 5e and the Cypher System. But most backers won’t have to wait for the new versions to start exploring the city and dreaming about their campaigns. Most backer levels include a huge library of existing Ptolus titles in PDF: map books, art books, adventures, and even the entire original Ptolus: Monte Cook’s City by the Spire itself. These rewards—a $250 value—will be delivered shortly after the Kickstarter campaign ends.

A sampling of the many bonus titles—free and delivered early with most backer levels!

An Astounding Deal on Cypher System and The Strange

If you haven’t checked it out yet, it’s not too late: The Humble Bundle offer of the Cypher System and The Strange is still on! For as little as $15, you can pick up The Strange corebook, the Cypher System Rulebook, and literally dozens of supplements in PDF—a total value of roughly $300. You will never find a better deal—even if your collection is only missing a couple of books, getting this bundle is worth it!

(Oh, and it supports the ACLU, and the WWF fund for Australian wildlife. So spread the word!)

  • You know we love gaming with kids. Designing games with kids? Even more awesome! RPG designer Chris Sims is Kickstarting Draculola, an RPG of child vampires he’s developed with his daughters!
  • Our friends at Druid City Games are making a board game called Wonderland’s War, which takes place when Alice returns to Wonderland. “The Looking Glass has shattered, madness is being drained from the inhabitants, and war has come. Who will rule Wonderland?” Will it be you?
  • The period running from the early 19th century through the early 20th is sometimes called, in the publishing world, the golden age of illustration. The output of that era was prolific, stylish, and beautiful—and it’s now in the public domain. If only there was some sort of handy database, filled with thousands of old illustrations just ready for you to download and use. . . .
  • Speaking of awesome old illustrations, here’s a database full of biological illustrations available for free download. From the Biodiversity Heritage Library, it includes animal sketches, historical diagrams, botanical studies, and scientific research.

Charles Ryan
Charles Ryan

Charles M. Ryan has written or contributed to titles in nearly every class of tabletop game—board games, card games, trading card games, miniature games, and roleplaying games—over a 25-year career in the game industry. He has also served as the global brand manager for Dungeons & Dragons and headed up the marketing department at the UK’s Esdevium Games, one of the world’s largest game distributors. He is the Chief Operating Officer at Monte Cook Games.