A tabletop science-fiction roleplaying game of memetic horror.
Latest Updates from Our Project:
June Update – Draft Layout Complete!
15 days ago
– Mon, Jun 10, 2019 at 10:47:52 PM
It’s been about a month since our last update, but I am very proud to report that we have completed the first draft layout of After the War. All of the text is currently on the pages along with the art, though the document is still filled with pg. xx references and a number of small items that need attention. The importance of this stage, though, is to determine the final page count.
When I finish another polishing pass on the layout, I will be handing the near final PDF to Frances Rowat, who will be taking a look at the document with fresh eyes to see any minor issues that John and I missed in our previous revision passes. We want to make sure you get the best version of the game and her help will be greatly appreciated.
The Expansion Problem
When I was planning the kickstarter, I secured a handful of print quotes based on a forecast of a 264 page book. This estimate was based on my initial wordcount for the project and my experience on Sig: Manual of the Primes, however it didn’t quite account for all of the additional stretch goal content & art for the book. It also didn’t account for the fact that I found some areas of the text that needed to be expanded for clarity.
The current page count for the book is now 368 pages, which is a little bit larger than my previous plans. I just sent off another five print quote requests to secure some more competitive printing prices, and I’m investigating a few ways to reduce shipping costs.
Fortunately, I planned the budget for the project with a bit of room for unforeseen contingencies such as this. We are still on schedule to print and ship the book despite this challenge.
Here’s a choice selection of layout images for your enjoyment.
With that, I will return to print-buying and layout! Thank you again for all of your support.
Jason Pitre, Genesis of Legend Publishing
After the War – Text Version Released!
about 2 months ago
– Sun, May 05, 2019 at 09:58:05 PM
I know that we hoped to get you folks the full text be the end of April, but no plan survives contact with the enemy. That said, we now have a ton of progress and have plenty of good news, so let’s get to it.
I am very happy to announce that we have completed the plain text version of After the War. The first 11 chapters have been fully revised, while the final chapter is currently in the final edits. As such, we have been able to put together a pre-layout version of the text which is now available on the Backerkit digital downloads. You should be receiving an email from Backerkit to that effect shortly. If you don’t receive this download, please get in touch with me directly.
We have completed several revision passes on the text, but there is always room for improvement from fresh perspectives. If you find any sections of text that are unclear, rules questions, typos or grammar issues, we would invite you to fill in our handy corrections form at https://forms.gle/Le4Jm7QFemZXJ7icA
Anyone who provides feedback on the form will have the option to be listed as a proofreader in the credits for the book.
The vast majority of the art for the project is now complete. Claudia Cangini has finished a total of 32 amazing portraits including those for the five backers at the Black Sky Executive Tier!
Claudia also completed three stunning half-page pieces, and is in the process of finishing off the last three.
Juan Ochoa has been hard at work as well, completing 28 xenobiology/ecology sketches, as well as 18 half-page pieces of interior art. A couple pieces are presented below for your enjoyment.
Meanwhile, Damien Holder has completed the final version of the 6 Polvan settlement maps, and the sketch stage for the three off-world settlements. You can see an example of a military outpost below below!
Now almost all of the art and the text are complete, it’s time to dive into the layout. I expect that it will take a couple months to pull it together and that my June update will have some samples of the work for you.
I haven’t been idle though. Here is the new and improved version of the Game Master Plot Map for your enjoyment. This is the key worksheet that the GM uses to keep track of the drama between the settlements, face characters (NPCs), and the player characters. It’s divided into History Threads (Settlement <> NPC interactions) and Relationship Threads (NPC <> PC interactions).
Strange Gifts: Complete and illustrated for chapter 12, currently in editing.
AI Song Archives: Complete in backer update 8.
Covenant Yard: Complete, available in the plain text version of the game.
Recordings from Earth: On hold until the layout is complete and the PDF’s are in people’s hands.
Precursor’s Expansion: Complete and illustrated for chapter 12, currently in editing.
Polvan Cartographer: The core settlements are done and the off-world settlement maps are in progress.
Offworld Settlements: Complete and illustrated for chapter 12, currently in editing.
After the War – Progress Update 4
3 months ago
– Wed, Mar 27, 2019 at 08:33:49 PM
It’s been a month’s time since the last update, and we have plenty to share with you. After the War has been developing nicely. Here are some of the highlights you should be aware of.
The main text is now fully complete, and has received a number of revisions due to some valuable feedback we have received on the text. This consists of the first 10 chapter of the book, which John Adamus has fully revised. I still need to go through the edits, but they should be in good shape.
Current Tasks: We are nearly feature complete at this point and hope to get a final text together in the next month or so. At this point, I am finishing up writing about 2000 words of content on how to hack the game system & setting while Alasdair finishes off the Precursor’s Expansion. After that point, John will be able to edit the final chapters and I will be addressing his extensive edits.
We continue to get brilliant art from Claudia and Juan, which we hope to share with you in a little bit. We also have a few icons for the major factions to share with you in a little bit.
Our goal is to produce a final version of the text in a plain text format to share with backers by the end of April so you can dig into the content. After that’s done, I will dive deep into the layout process so that we can make this a beautiful book for all of you to enjoy.
Strange Gifts: This content in chapter 12 is complete. This explains how cybernetics, the mystic arts, psionics, Songcraft, and Tormenta Mutations work in play.
AI Song Archives: Complete in backer update 8.
Covenant Yard: Complete, comprising the entirety of chapter 11.
Recordings from Earth: On hold until the core book content is dealt with.
Precursor’s Expansion: The heart of this content, addressing the origins of the Song and the species that came before, is done. Alasdair is currently finishing off the final pieces for this and we are excited to share all of this with you!
Polvan Cartographer: The greyscale art for the 6 core settlements are now complete. I am pulling together the art direction for Damien to get the remaining 3 maps done.
Offworld Settlements: Alasdair has finished writing, and I have revised the three Offworld Settlements of The Oort Line, Long Fall, and Sargasso. We have also taken the opportunity to add some more Polvan settlement information as well.
Now that we have given you all of the operational updates, let’s get into some of the new content for the book. Here is a bit of information concerning the 5 factions that throw their weight around Povlo.
The Free Companies are comprised of the last women standing after the war. They’re all veterans, all refugees, all deserters, and all free. They’ve made their home on Dirt for a thousand different reasons; some can’t stop living the war, others can’t go back to the world, and others still feel they have to stay to pay off debts to friends long dead. The largest and most disparate group on-world, they’re the furthest from home. Depending on your point of view, they may be the closest.
The Free Companies aren't a single cohesive organization, so much as a dozen ideologically divergent factions who refuse to follow any individual leader. They are united only by their vision for Polvo as sanctuary for humanity. Some Free Companies embrace equality for Terran, Martian, Belter, and Alien alike. Others are the terran-supremacists, or anti-alien martian extremists who use hate and prejudice to “protect their homelands”.
The Free Companies fight for the humans of Polvo. They won’t allow anyone to control humanity every again, and will resist domination with their last breath. Dirt is for Humans.
The Peacekeepers were born in the fires of the war. They were volunteer Permancer, and later humans, who stood between the Choir and those who they wished to harm. Peacekeeping, in those days was a brutal, often short affair. Now, it’s a little quieter. Given the equipment they need by the remnants of the Union interim governments, the Peacekeepers have two roles; repairing Polvo and redeeming Fleet. One is all but impossible. The other is rebuilding a planet.
The Peacekeepers are now a dedicated force that seeks to obliterate any trace of memetic infection on Polvo. Their recon teams establish bases throughout human-occupied territories and send covert agents to visit settlements whose integrity is questioned. When they find traces of memetic influences, they bring in their heavily armed and Permancer-led strike forces to “purify” the infected. No price is too great, in order to keep the Song or Tormenta from resurging.
Black Sky is the descendant of every space program in human history. The company was originally founded as a prospecting company that led the expansion into the Belt. After losing significant resources in the Vesta Uprising, it diversified to more unorthodox research and development. Combining old black ops budgets with off-the-peg military surplus equipment and the fortunes of several venture capitalists, Black Sky set themselves up as humanity’s civilian face among the stars. A century later, Black Sky have become something greater than that. They’re an independent power in their own right, one part privately-funded exploration and one part corporate super-state.
Black Sky Industries are corporate scientists who want to chain Tormenta or The Song in service of humanity. They seek to learn from Precursor relics their research teams scavenge from beneath Polvo’s surface. They know they can change the universe through scientific exploration, and to hell with the “laws” or “ethics” that governments try to impose on them. They care only for the future.
When the Song swept across the settled worlds, the dream of a unified Fleet tore itself apart. Each officer found their mind a battleground and almost none were able to win. Some broke free of the Song others resisted and other still fell. Fleet was torn apart not by the other cultures it welcomed but by the culture that had started it. Now, Fleet is tiny and stretched to the breaking point. There are worlds where it’s still a pariah and others where a Fleet vessel in orbit is the only thing stopping full-on chaos, even if that vessel is staffed by a skeleton crew. There are plans for more, and Fleet have recently renovated their shipyards in Earth orbit, but everyone remembers The Song. For now, no one wants to give Fleet teeth again, for fear of who it may bite.
The Fleet seeks to rebuild the glorious, peaceful utopia which was shattered by the war. They are idealists and hard-workers who are desperate to restore what the Song had taken from them
Mars began as a cooperative, corporate partnership between many terran megacorps who settled the red planet in 2029. Forty years later, only one was left standing. Marscorp won the the Martian War of Succession, often referred to informally as “The Hostile Takeover”. MarsCorp unleashed troops outfitted in Titan armour, who secured the planet. Once done, and in a move many are still reeling from, they offered their fallen foes work. In doing so, MarsCorp established itself as an army, a government, a way of life and an ideal. They transformed a collection of shattered and war-weary corporate armies into a single, cohesive nation-state. They invested their profits in the wellbeing of their people; from decent wages, to free education, universal healthcare, and the limitless pursuit of terraforming Mars into a blue-green paradise. The war was over. No one lost.
MarsCorp helped rebuild Mars after the War of Succession. They seek to do the same on Polvo, building a brighter future for citizens of Mars. Even the decadent Terrans, reckless Belters, and arrogant Aliens will have a place in our new society.
Thanks for reading, and we look forward to showing you more in our update next month!
Jason Pitre, Genesis of Legend Publishing
Project Update 3: Concussion Update
4 months ago
– Thu, Feb 21, 2019 at 07:42:42 PM
I just wanted to give you the monthly update as promised, but it will be a relatively short one this time. I took a nasty fall a couple weeks ago on the ice and earned myself a minor concussion. I am recovering, but it has delayed things a little and I have been scrambling to catch up. That said, we still have progress.
Juan, Damien, and Claudia continue to produce amazing art for the piece, and I will gladly share some of the pieces for your enjoyment.
In the meantime, Alasdair has been preparing the three new settlements for you to enjoy.
Sargasso, a broken planet used by Black Sky Industries for their experiments.
Long Fall, another major settlement world that hopes to be the capital of the reborn Union.
The Oort Line, the settlements made around the ruined defensive perimeter, run by the Belters and other survivors.
I have also been doing a complete revision of the text to streamline trait names, establish NPCs, and generally tighten up the text. I have also gotten to dig into the Strange Gifts content and I'm excited to share that with you in a future update.
Meanwhile, John has been working hard on the editing process for the first 5 chapters of the text. I will be going through all of his edits shortly so we can finalise some of the text and start the layout process.
I will give you another update in a month's time!
After the War - Progress Update 2
5 months ago
– Mon, Jan 21, 2019 at 01:23:05 AM
I just wanted to give you fine backers a quick status update on After the War. There has been a great deal of progress over the last month and we have a lot of good momentum on the projects. Here is our handy progress image for your handy reference.
Now, here are some highlights.
The payments cleared on February 28th, and I was able to send those funds out to the many freelance contributors and collaborators quickly enough for it to be in the same year as the Kickstarter, for tax reasons.
I spent most of January 5th on a set of amazing art direction video calls where I discussed art needs in detail with both Claudia Cangini as well as Juan Ochoa. We agreed on timelines, scope of work, and the like. Claudia has been starting with certain background illustrations, and I have gotten backer photos for the five Black Sky Executives who will be illustrated in the book. Juan is busy sketching some xenobiology for us, and illustrating what the various Moments look like in play. Meanwhile, Damien Holder has been illustrating settlements for us. We actually have some sample art for you to enjoy below!
Alasdair and I have been revising the main text rather heavily so that it’s in the best possible shape for John Adamus to edit. Chapters 1-3 have been both revised and received edits by John, while 3-8 have been revised and 9-12 are in progress. Chapter 12 is where most of the stretch goal material lives, so it’s the last to go. This revision process has helped us refine the wording of traits and flesh out the settlements section, as well as adding a few more handy examples.
Jacqueline Bryk finished an amazing adventure for chapter 11, and I can’t wait to share it with you. Its dark stuff, but excellent and offers some real moral quandaries for players to wrestle with.
I have also launched the backerkit, for which you folks are clearly aware based on the stellar response rates. If you know anyone who missed the campaign and wants to pre-order a copy, please send them a link to this site: https://after-the-war.backerkit.com/hosted_preorders
Thank you again for all your support, and I will give you another update in a month’s time.