Abenteuerspiel! v1.5 Update

I'm excited to announce a major update to Abenteuerspiel! Here are a handful of the most significant changes.


Old rule:

If the situation is stressful, roll the stress die. Rituals and combat are always stressful.

New rule:

Risky actions are inherently stressful so you always begin by taking the stress die.

If you are rolling dice in Abenteuerspiel it's because your character is doing something risky. Where there is risk, there is stress, so we now begin every roll with the stress die. This unifies the game mechanics around the stress die and adds stakes to every roll in the game. 


Old rule:

When You Roll the Stress Die
Compare its result to the size of your dice pool. If the result is equal to or higher than the number of dice left, exhaust one die from your pool. Exhaust the stress die last.

New rule: 

Read the Stress Die
If the stress die is lower than the size of your ready pool, move one die to your exhausted pool and track the change. The stress die is never exhausted.

Thinking about the stress die mechanic as a spiral, the old spiral starts slow and ramps up the stress as you play while the new spiral starts fast and slows down as you play. This change has multiple benefits:

  • Excitement from the beginning. Old rule: you might go a whole session without ever needing to exhaust a single die from your ready pool. New rule: there is now a very high likelihood that you will exhaust your first die during the very first roll of the game.
  • Hobbitesque characters. Old rule: characters go from strong and confident to suddenly spiraling out of control. New rule: characters start out precariously but become more resilient as they settle into the adventure. Huffa described this stance as "hobbitesque" and I think that description fits what I'm aiming for perfectly. 
  • Unified roll high mechanics. Old rule: you want to roll high, except on your stress die. New rule: Rolling high is always a good thing!


Old rule:

Add one die to your risky action roll if:

You have assistance.

New rule: 

Add one die to your risky action roll if:

You are supported by others in the fiction who will share the risk narratively and, if applicable, when you read the stress die.

Characters in the fiction (PC or NPC) now have to put skin in the game when they decide to support another character's risky actions. 


I've found that asking your players "What could go wrong?" after you've gathered dice (but before you've rolled them) can often result in interesting new outcomes and conditions when things go sideways. The degree to which you set things in stone before the roll is up to you.


New rule:

Optional: Devil’s Bargains
You may now ask the table for a devil’s bargain: a complication that occurs regardless of the outcome (themes: betrayal, separation, loss, sacrifice, collateral damage). If a bargain is offered and accepted, gain an extra die.

You now have the option to ask the table for a devil's bargain in exchange for an extra die on your risky action roll. This will become more appealing as your ready pool becomes smaller and smaller. 


Old rule:

Resist Outcomes
You may resist outcomes by rolling your stress die and narrating a new outcome based on the result.

New rule: 

Optional: Tempt Fate
If you are unhappy with the outcome, you may now roll the stress die again.
4-6: Things get incrementally better.
1-3: Things get incrementally worse.
Read the stress die and adjust your ready pool as necessary.

 Tempting fate is now a simple flip of a coin and things will get incrementally better or worse. But don't forget to read the stress die!


Instead of 36 discrete rituals, you now have the option of choosing from 36 actions and 36 subjects to create up to 1,296 freeform rituals. 


tweak to the pocketmod format eliminates the need for a cutting tool when folding up the zine.


The half-page character sheet has space for your character info, your dice pools, and helps you build out each risky action roll.

There are other minor changes and tweaks throughout.

I'd love to hear what you think of v1.5!

Please enjoy this beautiful day.

— Colin

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Big update! Thanks for sharing.

I shared my thoughts about it on a “Stuff I Been Reading” post: