Rise of the Yōkai Koku - Crowdfunding Campaign Has Started

The crowdfunding campaign for Rise of the Yōkai Koku, by Alephtar Games, has started on ulule. Rise of the Yōkai Koku (妖怪國) is an adventure/campaign setting for Revolution D100 set in 16th-century Japan, at the time of the feudal anarchy known as the Sengoku Jidai (戰國時代, "Age of Warring States").
Although the campaign is specifically tailored for Revolution D100, I believe you can easily adapt it to any D100-based role-playing game.

my character from the play tests

Here are three excerpts from the ulule blurb:

"After his defeat at the hand of Oda Nobunaga, the great Daimyō Azai Nagamasa commits seppuku. The only hope for what is left of his retinue is a secret alliance with the Takeda clan, the only one strong enough to oppose Nobunaga. However, Takeda Shingen demands a hostage to guarantee the loyalty of Nagamasa’s former retainers. The hostage must reach the Shinano province without Nobunaga being aware of his presence, but the road passes through Oda territory. A group of brave adventurers must accompany the hostage in his dangerous journey."

The first part of the booklet contains two different methods to generate Japanese characters suitable to the Sengoku Jidai era – including some unusual ones – and specific rules for roleplaying in the period, and in Japanese culture in general: Buddhist schools, the influence of Shintō practices, Japanese martial disciplines and so on. The second part is the adventure itself, in which the player characters take the role of protectors of the hostage at the court of the great Takeda Shingen. The campaign is divided into ten chapters between which the players will have plenty of opportunities to evolve their characters along their preferred path.

Other information about the product:
  • Expected size 64 to 80 pages, letter format.
  • Standard character generation option based on Background and Occupation.
  • Questionnaire-based character generation option which defines your character abilities and history according to the answers you choose.
  • Stunts for Japanese swordsmanship and other martial techniques.
  • Statistics for Japanese weapons and armour.
  • Simple magic powers based on Buddhist meditation techniques.
  • Different flavours of Buddhist schools, from highly orthodox Zen to the weird practices of Shugendō, with all shades of esoteric Buddhism in between. Each school provides slightly different magic.


Free Sengoku Japan Supplement for Revolution D100

As per the title of this blog post... Here is the link; in 10 pages, you get more historically-accurate RPG material than in most faux Japanese role-playing games.



Blank Map of Sengoku Jidai Japan

I have a found a blank map of 16th century Japan on the net and I thought I'd share it.

This can be very useful for referees GM'ing adventures set at the time of Sengoku Japan, especially should the campaign revolve around daimyō rivalry and the conquest of the various provinces (the referee can track the by progress of the various armies by using different colours).


Monsters & Magic Back In Print

Sarah Newton (Monsters & Magic's author) has announced today that her seminal Old School feel/New School mechanics fantasy role-playing game would be launched soon as a print-on-demand book on DriveThruRPG / RPGNow.

Edit 17 May: here's the relevant link on DriveThruRPG.

She has also announced that there would be some new M&M announcements coming up shortly!


Wōkòu Mythbusting

A great article available here that busts several myths about the Wōkòu, the notorious Japanese pirates that terrorised Korean and Chinese coastal areas under the Míng.

倭寇 (Wōkòu)

Myth 1. Hǎijìn (海禁, lit. 'Sea ban') or maritime trade prohibition constituted the Wōkòu phenomenon
Myth 2. Poor Chinese coastal inhabitants were forced into piracy by oppressive Hǎijìn policy
Myth 3. Wōkòu were primarily swordsmen
Myth 4. Japanese Yumi is weaker/has lower draw weight than English longbow (or other bows)
Myth 5: Lángxiǎn (狼筅) was developed to specifically counter Japanese swords