Kickstarter: The Wanderer Gamebook+ System

Gamebook and RPG enthusiasts, take note! There is a kickstarter campaign in progress, one that promises to deliver the first instalment in a gamebook series in the sort of format we all know and love: YOU read the story sections, make a choice, see the next story section and resolve the consequences of your decisions, for good or ill. 

If you are intrigued (as we at GBN most definitely are!) here is an excerpt from the creator’s kickstarter page:

The Wanderer Gamebook+ system is inspired by such classic titles as the Fighting Fantasy series, as well as the Lone Wolf gamebooks by Joe Dever. It’s set in a pseudo-Viking, low-fantasy world where the strong prey upon the weak and the innocent need someone to stand up for them. That someone is you.

You play a member of the Yeorseggr, an order of oath-sworn defenders of justice. As a lone agent, your job is to travel the world under orders from the mysterious elders of your brotherhood. 

Following a shipwreck, you find yourself in the city of Kalbud.

Equipped with your sacred Halstel armor, you set about to restore peace to the land. Slay giants, rescue the wayward and avenge the death of your comrades in this unique adventure.

But this is even more than a gamebook; it is a gamebook+ system, which allows fans of RPGs to continue the narrative beyond the initial story by using rules for designing and going on quests that may be found in the latter half of the book.

Again, from the kickstarter page:

Through the use of random generation tables you can create brand new dungeons to explore and enemies to vanquish. The best feature of all is that once you’re done playing through, you can port your adventure over to a story to share with your friends!

The gamebook also promises some interesting combat mechanics to deal with traps, situations or enemies where you roll two (sometimes three) six-sided dice (among which there is a black and white die).

But what makes the Gamebook+ system extra interesting is that enemies scale in their difficulty, which can complicate combat in certain situations. Depending on their level, enemies have abilities that activate when you roll poorly on the white die! More powerful enemies can even activate their abilities when you roll well, adding another layer to combat.

Characters are created by using different Talents. These include weapon styles that reward you for using your chosen weapon, which have a real impact on combat. Which do you think is better: using longer weapons to keep enemies at bay, or getting up close and personal at the cost of your defense? The choice is yours!

Advancement in the game can follow two routes. The first is by collecting sacred Halstel Ingots. Take these to the Yeorseggr Armorsmith in town to have powerful, custom pieces crafted to suit your playing style. These include the impenetrable Tortoise, the powerful Bear, the graceful Swan, and others. As a Yeorseggr warrior your armor is your life, and it’s an expression of your identity. Choose wisely, for your life will depend on it!

The second method for character advancement is to level up at the end of the story. This gives you extra health and allows you to choose an additional Talent. The odds are stacked against you, but with perseverance, skill and luck you can triumph!

The Kickstarter campaign is also funding books called Adventure Chronicles, which are adventure generator books that have map pages, hex pages, and other spaces for recording your solo adventures. The intention is that these books will become gamebooks that you can then share and trade with friends, allowing like-minded souls to collaborate in games of “fiddlesticks” to come up with even more stories!

Although the main story of the first book is set in a pseudo-Viking period, the Wanderer fantasy world encompasses and embraces a variety of cultures and ethnic backgrounds. Custom character creation allows you to play as a character of the gender and ethnic or racial background that you choose, which is supported by multiple portraits of the world’s iconic characters. 

Support for the kickstarter has been so strong that the author, Jacob DC Ross, is planning out a complete line of sequels to support the initial release.

The kickstarter is currently running, so if you’d like to add your support to this exciting project, then head over to the Wanderer Gamebook+ System kickstarter page, and find the author on Twitter: @JRossDiscoSoup

You can also find Dean Spencer, the  cover artist for the gamebook at the following Twitter handle: @DeanSpencerArt

You can also read and review the tutorial section of the book for free at the link below:

Wanderer Gambook+ Tutorial

Article by KJ Shadmand

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