$29.95$59.95

    Authors: Kevin Kulp, Emily Dresner

    Cover Artists: Jérôme Huguenin

    Interior Artists: Simone Bannach, Mary Corballis, Siba Gasser, Olivia Hintz, Jérôme Huguenin, Pat Loboyko, Rich Longmore, Jen McCleary, Gill Pearce, Hannah Seakins, Phil Stone, Madison VanDoren, Piya Wannachaiwong

    Pages: 392

    ISBN: 978-1-912324-29-3 SKU: PELGSS01-P Category: Tags: , , , , , , , ,

    Swords of the Serpentine

    A GUMSHOE roleplaying game of swords & sorcery!

    by Kevin Kulp and Emily Dresner

    When it’s summer, you smell her before you see her. As you come around the curve of the Serpentine river the scent of the open sea is replaced by the stench of low tide, of boat tar, of rare spices spilled from a smuggler’s ship; of cooking smoke and human waste. Bells ring out across the water and echo like the song of ghosts, loud enough to almost drown out the chanted prayers of your ship’s rowers.

    You round the bend past the lower fort and there she is: the great city of Eversink, sprawled out on scores of islands across the sheltered water. Her jeweled and crystal turrets are reflected in a shimmering bay full of hundreds of brightly colored boats. Architecture from a dozen eras towers above a tangle of grand plazas and narrow canals. Temples to her goddess rise above the mansions and tenements, calling her people to prayer. She may be ancient and corrupt, slowly and inexorably swallowed by an endless bog; but she’s alive in a way most cities aren’t. She’s a melding of faith and stone and wood and water – and mud – that’s unique in all the world. 

    It doesn’t matter whether you’ve come to kill a rival, earn a fortune, learn a secret, or hire an army. You’re home now, and the Sinking City will embrace you. All you need to do is survive.

    Swords of the Serpentine is a sword & sorcery game of daring heroism, sly politics, and bloody savagery, set in a fantasy city rife with skullduggery and death. The rules adapt the GUMSHOE investigative roleplaying system to create a fantasy RPG with a focus on high-action roleplaying and investigation inspired by the stories of Fritz Leiber, Terry Pratchett, Robert E. Howard, and others.

    Your characters will discover leads that, if followed, propel them headlong into danger and forbidden knowledge. A lead might point the way to sunken treasure, jungle ruins, the missing key to a sorcerous trap, or the true identity of a notorious murderer. The GUMSHOE game mechanics ensure that you’ll always notice leads if you look for them. It’s up to you to choose which one you’ll follow into whatever perils lie ahead, in hopes of fortune, glory, justice, or just staying alive another day.

    If you want to track down foul sorcerers in a corrupt and decadent city, clamber through underground ruins to sneak into an enemy’s home and rob them, or wage a secret war against a rival political faction, you’re in the right place.

    Swords of the Serpentine offers:

    • A fantasy city of mystery and magic inspired by Lankhmar and Ankh-Morpork
    • Tools for fast and effective character creation
    • A customized combat system that opens the door for cinematic, heroic battles
    • Social combat that targets your enemy’s morale, letting you defeat some foes through wit, guile, and threats
    • Sorcery that allows you to rip apart a tower with the flick of a hand—but are you willing to pay the price in corruption to body and soul?
    • Powerful allegiances that give you influence in one or more factions across the city, but which can earn you equally powerful enemies…
    • Streamlined abilities that power four distinct types of heroes, and which you can mix-and-match across professions to customize your character further
    • Gameplay and rules mechanics that encourage players to help build the world they’re adventuring in
    • Rules for death curses, true names, alchemy, sorcerous items, ghostly possession, political manipulation, and more!

    • Swords of the Serpentine Hero Generator – Matthew Breen’s online tool allows you to build a character from scratch, or randomly generate a starting template for inspiration. Export a finished sheet as a PDF, or create a short-form stat block.
    • Four Heroes: Your Swords of the Serpentine source for pre-made heroes – Kevin Kulp’s short series featuring sample Heroes for each profession.
      • Four Heroes 1 – Sentinel, Sorcerer, Thief and Warrior pre-generated characters.
      • Four Heroes 2 – More Sentinel, Sorcerer, Thief and Warrior pre-generated characters.
      • Four Heroes 3 – Six pre-gens, as used for The Dripping Throne adventure, featuring Sentinel, Sorcerer, Thief, Warrior, pre-gens along with two mixed profession preg-gens, Sorcerer / Thief, and Sentinel /  Sorcerer / Thief.

    • Matthew Breen has designed some fantastic resources on his website:
      • Swords of the Serpentine Hero Generator – Build a character from scratch, or randomly generate a starting template for inspiration. Export a finished sheet as a PDF, or create a short-form stat block.
      • Adversary Builder – Create stat blocks for Adversaries and Monstrosities. Use existing Adversaries as a template, or start from scratch.
      • Triskadane Deck – Deal a hand of cards to populate the Triskadane, Eversink’s secret ruling council. The membership of the council and their faction affiliations can help determine the political climate of the city.
      • Name Generators – Generate names for people, professional societies, thieves’ guilds, and more.

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