Author’s Diary for September 25, 2020

Author's Diary - Update for the Week of September 25, 2020

(Don’t forget to contribute to our Patreon campaign or join us on the Radio Free Covenant Discord server! Don’t forget to tune in to the Radio Free Covenant podcast every Saturday at 4 p.m. Eastern (1 p.m. Pacific) on our Twitch page and get a summary of the game rules!)

Featured Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

We’ve gotten a lot done this week! Take a look below the fold at the dirty tricks we’re cooking up in the Dirty Tricks chapter.


The Dirty Tricks chapter is a weird beast, but that’s appropriate where dirty tricks are concerned. The list of rules that we announced on our free Wednesday Patreon post contracted and then swelled again, but it seems to have stabilized at this:

  • Hiding Your Character: How to hide your character or items from other characters
  • Disguising Your Character: How to disguise your character or items so that other characters won’t notice them
  • Counterfeiting Items: How make counterfeit identification, money, and art pieces, as well as make one item look like another
  • Sabotaging Items: How to damage or degrade the performance of items without attacking them
  • Setting Bombs and Explosives: How to set bombs to damage other characters or items
  • Setting Traps: How to set traps to slow down, stop, or damage other characters
  • Disarming: How to disarm other characters’ bombs and traps
  • Hacking Computers: How to gain illicit access to a computer and make it do what you want (within reason)


I feel like a broken record saying this, but I also think this needs to be repeated: there will be some scenes in Covenant where you’ll have to fight, but they shouldn’t be all the scenes.

One of the themes of Covenant is that the players will be outgunned and outnumbered, but not necessarily outclassed. Your character will have to pick xir fights and avoid the enemy whenever possible, because straight-up fights will often get you killed.

We’re trying very hard to give players and the Force Majeure options during play, including nonviolent or less-than-violent ones. The Dirty Tricks chapter is a perfect example of this. The rules in it will let you sneak past your enemies and then hurt them where it’ll do the most good.


We have completed everything up to the Setting Traps section. One of the reasons this post was so late was because we were working on both it and the Setting Bombs and Traps section tonight.

We hope to have the whole chapter done by Tuesday at the worst, Monday at the best.

After that, we have just one more chapter to complete – the Building and Improving Items chapter – as well as four appendices. We hope to have those done and edited by the end of October, which will give us four months to rewrite the playtest rules one more time before we hit our Feb. 28, 2021 deadline. Given the rate at which we’re going – and assuming no disasters, knock on wood – we think we’ll do that.

Once the playtest rules are done, we’ll make them available for free. All you have to do is send us feedback and your honest opinion of them.

That’s it for now. Talk to you next Friday!

Published by radiofreecovenant

A podcast about the science-fiction roleplaying game "Covenant" and the urban fantasy novel "Crossing the Line", soon to be published by Black Opal Books.

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