<+SteveDee> My professional name is Steve Dee, I am also known as Steve Darlington
<+SteveDee> I’ve been working in the RPG industry for fifteen years or twenty depending of magazines count 🙂 I’ve worked on every edition of Warhammer, Vampire the Requiem, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Shadows of the Demon Lord
<+SteveDee> I also make my own small indie RPGs and publish them and my other tabletop games on (Link: http://www.tinstargames.weebly.com)www.tinstargames.weebly.com
<+SteveDee> (Link: http://www,tinstargames.weebly.com)http://www,tinstargames.weebly.com
<+SteveDee> There we go
<+SteveDee> Last night we launched the Kickstarter for Relics: A Game of Angels, our big flagship RPG.
<+SteveDee> Relics is a roleplaying game about angels who have fallen to earth although not fallen into sin. God set Her canon against interfering in human fates, so angels fell to earth to make the world a better place
<~Dan> (Welcome to #randomworlds, JBR!)
<+SteveDee> But when they did they found themselves cut off from heaven’s guidance and without their miraculous divine powers. For thousands and thousands of years they have walked our earth,
<+SteveDee> strangers in a strange land. But now God has sealed the Gates to Heaven to fight the Final War on the other side and the angels left on earth are stranded forever.
<+SteveDee> And their powers are beginning to reawaken. Throughout history, angels and demons alike had found a way to use their powers were to bury themselves in magic items – Relics – and now all the Relics are alive with power.
<+SteveDee> Control the Relics and you can control the world, and become the equivalent of a new God. But with God gone, is the world worth winning?
<+SteveDee> The demons think so….
<+SteveDee> I can elaborate on things a bit more. It’s a big setting
<~Dan> Thanks, SteveDee! The floor is open to questions!
<~Dan> Sure, please do!
<+ShawnC> What’s the elevator pitch version of the system, if I may ask?
<+SteveDee> The Fugue System uses tarot cards for simple task resolution: the higher the value the higher your success. Benefits let you draw more cards and the most common way to get benefits is through Memories.
<~Dan> (Welcome to #randomworlds, Guest78! You can set your name with the /nick command; e.g., /nick Dan 🙂 )
<+SteveDee> Since Angels are thousands of years old they can potentially have any number of skills and start with an almost blank slate. Need to know a skill? Another angel will “remember” the time you showed off that skill in the past.
<~Dan> (Welcome to #randomworlds, TabletopDuck! That you, Jordan? 🙂 )
<+SteveDee> Oof I am tired after the big launch last night, let me know if I don’t make sense 😀
<+TabletopDuck> yep! sorry, just used the name it autofilled
<~Dan> You’re doing fine. 🙂
<~Dan> (No worries, TabletopDuck! Oh, SteveDee? TabletopDuck and ShawnC are both Kickstarting RPGs and are setting up Q&As of their own. 🙂 )
<+SteveDee> Tis the season 🙂
<+JBR> Hey Steve – how does Relics incorporate myths from outside the traditional Judeo Christian mythology? Can we go chasing after Aztec relics?
<~Dan> You may be planning on covering this in your further description of the setting, but is there anything “weird” about the world aside from angels and demons?
<+SteveDee> This answers both those questions: The default assumption is that as far as angels know they are the only source of supernatural things in the universe. But that has many possible outcomes.
<+Guest31> What existing RPG would you say that yours is closest to, or perhaps even inspired by?
<+SteveDee> One suggestion is that all human religions are interpretations of angels and demons through their own cultures. So the gods of Azteca are angels and demons as they drew them.
<+SteveDee> OTOH, it’s possible the angels are WRONG in this, and there are other supernatural things.
<~Dan> (Thanks, Chris!)
<+SteveDee> The same goes for other “weird stuff”: angels, demons and Relics have lots of different powers and it’s easy for a demon to be mistaken for a vampire, for example.
<~Dan> (Howdy, Kain!)
<+SteveDee> Angels can appear bestial and be mistaken for werewolves. Relics can give people the power to do incredible things.
<+SteveDee> But there are also secrets in the Dealer sections as well about even stranger things the angels don’t know about
<~Dan> (Kain here was last night’s Q&A guest. 🙂 )
<+SteveDee> Hi Kain hi Chris!
<~Dan> Oh, for those of you just arriving: (Link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/stevedee/relics-a-game-of-angels?ref=nav_search&result=project&term=relics)https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/stevedee/relics-a-game-of-angels?ref=nav_search&result=project&term=relics
<+SteveDee> So to come back to the titular Relics: when angels or demons fall to earth they find their powers shut off to them, and encased in a physical object, their Relic.
<+Kain> Hi SteveDee! I was looking at this on lunch today. So what happens if another entity gets your relic?
<+SteveDee> But they discovered a loophole: if they destroyed their physical self and put it into the item, their celestial powers were usable. Not by THEM but by whoever took up the item.
<+SteveDee> And they could speak out and sometimes control the user.
<+SteveDee> So maybe it’s not a vampire, maybe it’s a guy who picked up a magical knife that contained a demon that orders him to drink blood
<+SteveDee> If someone gets your Relic, they get all your powers.
<+SteveDee> So don’t lose it.
<+SteveDee> That’s a big part of the setting: it’s an arms race.
<+SteveDee> Even good angels don’t like the idea that this power is out there, waiting to be stolen. So they’re going to knock on your door and ask VERY NICELY that they, being more powerful, look after your Relic for you
<+Kain> can a being “hoard” relics?1
<+SteveDee> I mean you wouldn’t want it in the wrong hands right
<+SteveDee> Can hoard, will hoard, are hoarding
<+SteveDee> Someone asked about RPGs that it is close to: There’s certainly a lot of In Nomine in here, and it’s been compared a lot to Kult and Nephilim
<+SteveDee> It’s also not unlike Demon The Fallen, and the system comes from Alas Vegas by James Wallis
<~Dan> So just to clarify: A demon or angel has to sort of commit suicide and turn themselves into a Relic?
<~Dan> (Howdy, BryanDonihue!)
<+SteveDee> BRB, getting snacks
<+SteveDee> Dan: yes. Until very recently
<~Dan> In that case, I’m going to run to the restroom real quick. 🙂
<+SteveDee> The “ghost in the machine” aspect is something echoed throughout human myth
<+SteveDee> Get Excalibur but it comes with ties to the Lady in the Lake
<+SteveDee> Get the lamp, deal with the genie
<+SteveDee> Humans know that magic items come with burdens and curses
<+SteveDee> Angels, for their part, thought that if they just gave humans a magical sword or cup and said “hey, here’s how to make the world better” humans would do what they said
<+SteveDee> It did not work out that way
<+SteveDee> Humans were like “magic sword? HELL YEAH. Gonna kill my enemies”
<+SteveDee> Angels are like um can we not
<+SteveDee> STAB STAB STAB
<~Dan> (Sorry. That took longer than anticipated!)
<~Dan> Do you have a character sheet that we can see?
<+SteveDee> There’s an image on the kickstarter
<+SteveDee> Let me find a higher res version. OBVIOUSLY still in draf
<+SteveDee> wait, can I attach files here?
<~Dan> You can link to them.
<+SteveDee> (Link: ksr-ugc.imgix.net/assets/024/386/664/47d050e4c6b703b4dbcc1cc90490436d_original.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&w=680&fit=max&v=1552392627&auto=format&gif-q=50&q=92&s=23d9b7eea256e81b38418709325c9a89)https://ksr-ugc.imgix.net/assets/024/386/664/47d050e4c6b703b4dbcc1cc90490436d_original.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&w=680&fit=max&v=1552392627&auto=format&gif-q=50&q=92&s=23d9b7eea256e81b38418709325c9a89
<+SteveDee> how is that?
<+SteveDee> oh did it vanish?
<~Dan> Nope, it’s there.
<+Chris> I’ve gotta make like a tree. Good luck with it all, Steve. It’s sounding great. It looks well on its way to being funded too 🙂
<+SteveDee> Thanks Chris!
<~Dan> Take care, Chris!
<~Dan> Stop by any time!
<+SteveDee> So the character sheet shows off the “splats” of the game which I can talk about more
<~Dan> We’re always open here for general RPG chat. 🙂
<~Dan> SteveDee: Please do!
<+SteveDee> okay so your angel is made of three main building blocks: their Aspect, their Herald and their Mission
<+SteveDee> Your Aspect is your core nature, your form, and is based on the tetramorph
<~Dan> The tetramorph?
<+SteveDee> Are you an attacker, like the Lion, a tank like the Bull, a swift mover like the Eagle or a talker like the Human
<+SteveDee> The tetramorph is an ancient pre-babylonian spiritual concept of the Four Living Creatures, which also appears in Jewish, Christian, Persian and Zoroastrian mythology
<~Dan> So it’s a bit like a holistic physical stat?
<+SteveDee> Later they would also be built into the four gospel writers
<+SteveDee> It’s a sense of What Are You Best At. Think of it like a very general sense of “party role”
* ~Dan nods
<+SteveDee> Then your Herald, your archangel that taught you Everything You Know. This gives you a sense of your background and your Dominion, the thematic powerset your Miracles come under.
<+SteveDee> Finally, your Mission is why you think angels are on earth and what they should do about saving humans and saving the world.
<+SteveDee> This is your philosophy splat. Angels of course have lots of different ideas but they’ve coalesced into six main groups that are kind of allies and also enemies of each other
<+Kain> So it sounds like you are drawing from a lot of mythos for these characters. do you have to be a “good guy” are are atiheros an option?
<+SteveDee> It depends what you mean as “good guy”
<~Dan> “Refuses to eat puppies”.
<+SteveDee> You’re an angel. You may have murdered every person in Sodom and Gomorrah. Are you a good guy?
<+Kain> see that was my question
<+SteveDee> The real core of the game is to ask “What does it mean to be good”
<+SteveDee> Especially when evil is so real and so potent.
<~Dan> I take it that demons aren’t PC-able?
<+SteveDee> Not as written. Demons aren’t the interesting ones to me.
* ~Dan nods
<+SteveDee> BUT it is trivially easy to play one.
<+SteveDee> And you know…it’s all a point of view, isn’t it?
<+Kain> canonically what ARE demons?
<~Dan> So can you talk us through taking an action of some sort?
<+SteveDee> Originally, when angels created the earth they found lots of things developing spontaneously as it was abundant with life and the urge of creation. They met humans, creatures that seemed almost like them, and containing a true spark of the Divine
<+SteveDee> In humans they saw themselves and sought to make them more like them, and guide them towards becoming great
<+SteveDee> It ended in war and bloodshed and chaos as humans only wanted domination and destruction
<~Dan> (Welcome to #randomworlds, DiceandDex!)
<+SteveDee> So God decided that angels could no longer interfere with creation directly. Some angels rebelled at this. After all, they have BUILT this world, shouldn’t it be theirs to control?
<+SteveDee> They set out to rule it and kill anyone in their way.
<+SteveDee> The Great War broke out. Angels one side, demons the other.
<~Dan> Is there a Satan figure?
<+SteveDee> members on both sides fell to earth to gain an advantage
<+SteveDee> Not that angels are aware of. Lucifer, as far as they know, was a mistranslation beefed up by John Milton
<~Dan> They fell to gain an advantage?
<~Dan> So…. they were trying to get the drop on them?
<+SteveDee> Certainly no demons are cool rebels who are misunderstood and wear leather jackets
<+Kain> but but my angst! how will i edge lord!?
<+SteveDee> You can edgelord as an ANGEL in a leather jacket who is misunderstood
<+SteveDee> Angels in Relics have horns that are mistaken for halos, and hooves.
<~Dan> Interesting touch.
<+SteveDee> So like I say, it’s all a point of view. Are they demons? Hmmmm
<+SteveDee> Oh hi Dice and Dex people, they just did a review of the game!
<~Dan> Oh! I wonder why they didn’t stay…
<~Dan> (Welcome to #randomworlds, BobtheDickhead!)
<~Dan> SteveDee: Did you see my request for a task resolution example?
<+SteveDee> Oh yes, right, sorry
<~Dan> No problem!
<+SteveDee> So there are simple tests and complex tests. You can use either, whenever. They’re just for your prference, how much detail you want and how much crunch
<+SteveDee> We’ll start with simple tests.
<+SteveDee> Say you want to pick a lock.
<+SteveDee> Shuffle the tarot deck and pick a card.
<+SteveDee> If it is a minor arcana card, then check the rank: 1-6 is a failure. 7-10 is a Grudging Success (you get what you want but at a cost or with a twist), a court card is a Full Success
<+SteveDee> If it is a major arcana it may trigger some wacky stuff like a critical success or failure or grant you a new Miracle or just be a Grudging Success
<+SteveDee> If you have something that makes you better at picking locks, draw two or even three cards and take the best
<+SteveDee> If you have something that makes you WORSE, draw two or even three cards and take the worst
<+SteveDee> And that’s mostly the core system
<~Dan> What is something that would make you better?
<+SteveDee> You might have a really good toolkit, but the most common way to get a Blessing, as it is called, is from a Memory
<~Dan> Ah, right… and that’s like a skill?
<+SteveDee> This is the “skill” system. Are you good at Picking Locks? If you aren’t already, you can be.
<+SteveDee> You spend a Memory Chip, and another player describes a Memory they have of you using that skill
<~Dan> Are there any things that resemble attributes? How would you determine if an Angel can lift something, for example?
<+SteveDee> “I remember when we were breaking into that bank in Monte Carlo in 1889. You’d been studying locks for the last decade and you popped them open like nobody’s business. Of course, you then betrayed me and sold me out to the cops, but that’s another story”
<+SteveDee> There aren’t any real attributes, no. Angels can lift heavy things if they want. Make a Simple Test!
<+SteveDee> If they fail, then it was too heavy
<~Dan> Hmm. So how do human abilities work?
<+SteveDee> Humans aren’t really the focus of the game but in much the same way. I guess there are attributes in the sense they are written into the setting: we know angels are bigger and stronger and tougher than humans
<+SteveDee> So you might let an angel make a test to lift something heavy but not let a human make such a test
<~Dan> I see.
<+SteveDee> Alternatively, angels could have a Memory of “Ridiculously Strong”, although memories only provide real-world abilities
<+SteveDee> Which is to say, not supernatural
<~Dan> How does combat work?
<+SteveDee> Combat isn’t given any great special treatment; you can use simple or complex tests as you wish
<+SteveDee> Want to hit someone with a chair? Make a simple test
<~Dan> (Howdy, Akyla!)
<+SteveDee> Someone is going to hit you with a chair and you don’t want them to? Make a simple test
<+SteveDee> The GM never “rolls”
<~Dan> How is damage handled?
<~Dan> (wb, TabletopDuck!)
<+SteveDee> If you take a significant blow (ie fail a test) you’ll likely be wounded and have a Blight – ie you’ll have to draw two cards and take the worst. You can take two wounds like that, then get knocked down
<+SteveDee> It’s pretty fast and brutal but that goes both ways – it’s brutal to everyone
<~Dan> You mentioned a complex test. How do those work?
<+SteveDee> So complex tests trade in just flipping a card for a game of blackjack against the GM, or Dealer, as we call them
<+SteveDee> You get a hand, they get a hand, and you flip the cards over one by one. If you have a Blessing you get a hole card you can swap in if you need to
<+SteveDee> Highest hand that doesn’t bust wins, but the Dealer wins ties
<+SteveDee> And there’s a few funky rules with the major arcana
<~Dan> You mentioned the Herald giving a PC’s miracles their theme?
<~Dan> Can you give some examples of such themes?
<+SteveDee> There are eleven heralds and each is not just a general of its angelic legion but master of a Dominion, a part of creation
<+SteveDee> Fire, Lightning, Intercession, Communion, Shaping, Witness, Countenance, Passings, Protection
<~Dan> What is the latter?
<+SteveDee> and….what have I forgotten…
<+SteveDee> Excelsis is the power to make things stronger, faster, better. Yourself or others.
<+SteveDee> Healing. Healing is the last one.
* ~Dan nods
<~Dan> Since the GM never “rolls”, do the NPCs even have stats?
<+SteveDee> No. They just have a sense of how hard they are and how much pain they might dish out
<+SteveDee> The game breaks down levels of “consequence” or threat into three basic levels.
<+SteveDee> Angels start off at level 1, so level 2 threats can mess them up and level 3s can turn them into a smudge
<~Dan> (Howdy, Silverlion!)
<+SteveDee> But as they get more powerful, they can start to handle more stuff. The Dealer basically works out how bad things are compared to the angel and adjusts the nature of the tests accordingly
<~Dan> (Welcome to #randomworlds, Guest20!)
<~Dan> Can humans do anything to threaten Angels?
<+SteveDee> Yes absolutely, especially low level angels
<+SteveDee> I’m working on a short story right now about a hitman who specialises in hunting angels
<+SteveDee> Angels have an edge but any jackass with a machine gun can kill you
<+SteveDee> You’re an infinite immortal cosmic being but you can die crossing the road. Life is tough.
<+SteveDee> (immortal in the sense of unaging)
<+SteveDee> quick bio break brb
* ~Dan nods
<~Dan> With a spoiler warning, can you discuss the weird stuff Angels don’t know about?
<~Dan> (wb, Guest20!)
<+SteveDee> So HERE BE SPOILERS
<~Dan> You’ve been warned!
<+SteveDee> The game is built like Over the Edge and such in that the back of the book deliberately has stuff players shouldn’t read
<+SteveDee> Not everything angels believe to be true is true, and that includes stuff players are told at the front of the book
<+SteveDee> For example, angels don’t know that instead of binding their “soul” into a Relic, they can become a disembodied spirit that possesses people
<+SteveDee> Or other living things
<+SteveDee> Or indeed, the “souls” of dead humans.
<~Dan> So ghosts are really angels or demons screwing around?
<+SteveDee> The thing humans call ghosts are angels or demons who find the memorials and “embody” them
<+SteveDee> Mostly demons, but yes
<+SteveDee> To punish the living for their sins
<~Dan> Interesting twist!
<+SteveDee> There’s also the true origin of humans, which has to do with an experiment by angels
<+SteveDee> They were NOT made by God.
<~Dan> Also interesting!
<+SteveDee> But the angels who “uplifted” humans and gave them souls knew God would be mad and so would other angels so they hid the evidence and killed the angel of Truth so she couldn’t tell anyone
<+SteveDee> That mystery is waiting to be solved by the PCs
<+SteveDee> And there’s a bunch of these kind of secrets
<~Dan> Will most adventures be relic hunts?
<+SteveDee> Smaller ones too
<+SteveDee> Generally the Relic Hunt is the default. Either somebody bad has one and needs to be stopped from using it, or you get a sense of where one is and you race off, Indiana Jones style, to get it before anyone else
* ~Dan nods
<~Dan> In the time remaining, is there anything we haven’t covered that you’d like to bring up?
<+SteveDee> We’ve had such love from all the players
<~Dan> Who’s the target audience?
<+SteveDee> They love that they have this complete control of their own timeline and of OTHER PCS TIMELINES
<+SteveDee> It’s a niche, indie RPG, obviously. It’s not going to give everyone the kind of crunch they get from D&D or White Wolf
<+SteveDee> But if you love the settings of World of Darkness but like light, story-game rules sets, you will love it
<+SteveDee> People who liked In Nomine, Over the Edge, Kult, Durance…
<+SteveDee> It’s the only RPG I know of where you can kill Hitler in chargen
<~Dan> Cool. 🙂
<~Dan> Thanks very much for joining us, SteveDee!
<~Dan> Reminder: If you have enjoyed this Q&A and would like to tip me with a coffee, you can do so at (Link: https://ko-fi.com/gmshoe)https://ko-fi.com/gmshoe 😀
<+SteveDee> No worries! It was a lot of fun to babble instead of constantly just elevator pitch it 🙂
<~Dan> Now, if you’ll give me just a minute, I’ll get the log posted and link you!
<+SteveDee> Any other questions, ask them on the Kickstarter page: