More on Failing Forward

We’ve talked about Covenant‘s fail forward mechanics, but I want to touch on something more fundamental here: how the Force Majeure (FM) can prevent failed bids from grinding their games to a halt. This was inspired by a post on the RPGdesign subreddit from xxXKurtMuscleXxx entitled: “A new (?) kind of social mechanic“. The rule […]

Vocabulary of the Orion Arm: The E’s through G’s

The chiroptim are some of the latest arrivals in the Orion Arm. They came here through a portal between our timeline and another where bats and humans evolved side-by-side on Earth. “The Crossing”, as they call it, occurred approximately 200 years ago. At that time, the Earth of their timeline was still deep in the […]

Episode 2 Is In Progress

Sean and Sazzy just finished recording the first half of Episode 2 tonight. We talked about how to portray the Covenant’s rivals in the game. These rivals are all either autocratic or fascistic, but there are reasons why they’re autocratic and fascistic, and we want to portray them in as empathetic a light as possible. […]

Covenant Game Design: Size

(Don’t forget to tune in to the latest episode of the Radio Free Covenant podcast!) Covenant is filled with sapient species of wildly different sizes, from tiny acoes to hulking valka Matriarchs. We handle that by assigning everything – people, creatures, even gear and vehicles – a numerical size based on their longest dimension. See […]

Covenant Game Design: Story Control

(Don’t forget to tune in to the latest episode of the Radio Free Covenant podcast!) Last week, we talked about how a character can fail forward in Covenant – that is, how they can succeed with consequences or fail with benefits. Failing forward is one kind of story control in Covenant, but not the only […]

Jeff Treppel: Rules Are for Fascists

I don’t know much about Varg Vikernes, and I definitely don’t know what I can say about him without opening myself up to a libel suit. I know even less about his roleplaying game MYFAROG (Mythic Fantasy Role-playing Game). I do know that some YouTubers like it and that Jeff Treppel of Metal Sucks does […]

Covenant Game Design: Failing Forward

(Don’t forget to tune in to the latest episode of the Radio Free Covenant podcast!) Bids aren’t simple pass/fail affairs in Covenant. Instead, it follows the recent roleplaying trend of allowing characters to fail forward – that is, to let them succeed even if they’re incapable of doing so, but with consequences. Characters can usually […]

Covenant Game Design: Ties

(Don’t forget to tune in to the latest episode of the Radio Free Covenant podcast!) So, characters in Covenant spend Discipline to make bids and accomplish things. This Discipline represents a raft of things: their money, their mental and physical health, their social standing, and more. This begs the question, though: From where does a […]

Covenant Game Design: Incapacitation

(Don’t forget to tune in to the latest episode of the Radio Free Covenant podcast!) If your character can spend and lose Discipline, it stands to reason that your character can run out of it. So what happens when they do? Before we get into that, let’s review how you can lose Discipline in Covenant: […]

tetsubo57: The d20 Profession Skill and Covenant’s Traits

A lot of people contributed to Covenant. Not all of them know it, though. The game’s rules, design, and even feel have been influenced by the ponderings of a lot of RPG nerds. We’re lucky for that, because nerds like to tear things apart and figure out how they work. Not that we haven’t done […]