It’s the most wonderful tiiiiiime of the yeeeaar!
Yes it’s almost time for the BIGGEST and BEST 4 days in gaming: GenCon! And this year we’re going to have a full court press of all the latest news out of Indianapolis. Dan may end up collapsing into a puddle of goo and meeples by the end of it…but we like to think it’s worth it. But before the show begins proper on Thursday, we want to give a preview of the games we’re most excited for that will be new at GenCon 2019. Some of these will be for sale, others are earlier in development and just available for demos, but all of them deserve a look whether you’re slogging through the Exhibitor’s Hall or not. Today, we’re going to list the biggest RPG products being released by some of the biggest publishers in tabletop.
Publisher: Evil Hat Games
RPG Starter Kits have become all the rage of late, with demand for RPG’s skyrocketing among people who might be new to the genre. As such, companies big and small are releasing pared-down versions of their popular RPG’s that help people get a taste of the game without having to drop a heavy chunk on the full thing. The Dresden Files RPG has been a big hit for Evil Hat, winning multiple ENnies and Origin Awards for it’s innovative and clever approach to the urban fantasy world of Jim Butcher. Dresden Files Accelerated boils the sprawling world down to an easy to understand introduction to the major players and locations of the Dresdenverse while also streamlining the game’s character creation and story to let players jump into action as quickly as possible.
Available at: Booth #1348 (Indy Press Revolution)
Publisher: Catalyst Game Labs
The grandaddy of cyperpunk tabletop is back and just in time for it’s 30th anniversary! Catalyst Gaming Labs is going all out for the newest edition of their most popular RPG, with all kinds of goodies being released to celebrate. Built around taking risks and getting advantage, the new edition has worked to streamline the game to make it easier than ever for new Shadowrunners to learn the game with faster combat and drama, more pre-generated characters, and streamlined character creation. But it doesn’t end there. You can enhance your game with NPC cards, special Dice & Edge Tokens, minis, and a Beginner Box that contains a bit of all of these so you can jump in to the game even faster. They’re also releasing two new splatbooks that flesh out the Sixth World: Neo-Anarchist Streetpedia gives you a street level view of the world while No Future gives you a comprehensive look at the neon-lit culture of the Sixth World. For the fanciest of lads, there’s even a Shadowrun Super Fan package that costs $500 and contains all of the above AND a limited edition statue of fan-favorite character Sledge./
Available At: Booth #1953, #1605, #1611, 1703
Shadowrun: Sixth World Core Rulebook $49.99
Shadowrun: Sixth World Beginner Box $24.99
Publisher: Serpent Cyborg Games
The smallest game on this list, Something Is Wrong Here is a self published effort by Kira Magrann with art by Elissa Leach. It’s also possibly the oddest game on this list, being inspired by the dark and off-kilter stories of David Lynch. The players all take on a character who is grappling with their dark past, and the game strives to create an atmospheric and emotional game where the “The line between player and character is intentionally drawn thin.” It’s hard to tell if this is meant to be a party game or an exercise in strangeness, but it’s definitely worth checking out.
Available at: Booth #1348 (Indie Press Revolution)
Published by: Ardens Ludere
Yeah we couldn’t just pass up a game called DINOSAUR PRINCESSES. An addition to the growing genre of all-ages tabletop gaming, Dinosaur Princesses is a game that’s all about teamwork. The game starts with each player picking a dinosaur (T. Rex, Velociraptor, Micropachycephalosaurus) and then choosing what kind of princess you are (like a chef or doctor seen on the cover). But before you start play, you get to draw and color your Dinosaur Princess any way you want! There’s no DM, there’s a Paleontologist, and their job is to cause trouble in your Dinosaur Kingdom that you and your Princess friends have to band together and solve. It might sound a little kiddie but, damn it, sometimes it’s fun to just have fun around the table
Available at: Booth #1348 (Indy Press Revolution)
Publisher: Arc Dream Publishing
The newest collection from one of the biggest cosmic horror RPG’s on the market, Control Group aims to be an entry point for players new to the unique horror of Delta Green. While we’ll be going into much more detail on everything about Delta Green soon, we can safely say this is a great opportunity for lovers of horror and the Cthulhu mythos. It comes with pre-generated characters that, combined with the free to download Need To Know book, has everything you need to get a taste of bleak insanity.
Availiable At: Booth #1413
Publisher: Modiphius Entertainment
If Delta Green isn’t enough to whet your whistle for darkness, you can stop by Modiphius to pick up Black Void, a sort of dark fantasy/cosmic horror RPG that sticks players in the role of humans trying to find their way home after a cataclysm nearly destroyed them all. It’s kind of like if Star Trek: Voyager were much darker and much, much weirder. It uses a simple d12 system to resolve checks, and resolves around a pair of factors called enlightenment (which grants you great powers and the ability to travel the void) and waastah (which gives a character influence and social standing with other sentient creatures.) It had a very successful Kickstarter (218% of its goal) and it will be available at GenCon.
Available at: Booth #2569
Publisher: R. Talsorian Games
If you’re excited about Cyberpunk 2077, you should seek out R. Talsorian Games at GenCon and pickup the game that inspired the upcoming CD Projekt Red RPG. A bit more of a “hard” cyberpunk than Shadowrun’s fantasy hybrid, Cyberpunk Red takes place after a time jump from the last edition, now being set in 2077 after the 4th Corporate War. The Jumpstart Kit will contain everything you need to jack-in to the Edge and get your punk on. Not only will it contain streamlined rules and pre-gen characters, it’ll also feature lore for the new era and some incredibly pretty dice from Q Workshop. It’s a great preview for the full release of Cyberpunk Red later this year.
Available at: Booth #1852
8. Robotech: A Macross Saga Role Playing Game
A little something for the weeaboos, this game comes from a partnership between production company Harmony Gold and Strange Machine Games to bring the classic mecha anime Robotech to the tabletop. A mix of mecha animes The Super Dimension Fortress Macross, Super Dimension Cavalry Southern Cross, and Genesis Climber MOSPEADA, Robotech is a classic series that was one of the first true gateways to serious Japanese animation for Western audiences. SMG’s game will adapt the “Macross Saga,” the first 36 episodes of Robotech derived from the Macross series that followed the adventures of Rick Hunter. It’s an asymmetrical game, with one player as an officer and the rest as Valkyries, and allows for the piloting of all sorts of giant mechs and sci-fi vehicles in air, sea, and space. For lovers of classic anime or giant mechs, this game will be a must-buy.
Available at: Booth #1850
Publisher: Hit Point Press
Humblewood will only be available for preview at GenCon, but we took one look at that art and we couldn’t NOT feature it here. A campaign setting for the D&D 5e rules system, Humblewood blew everyone’s socks off when it raised over $1 million dollars on Kickstarter (5X THEIR GOAL). It features adorable birdfolk races like the Corvum and Strig seen above, as well as furrier friends like the mouse-like Jerbeen and the deer-like Cerva. A beautiful mix of Redwall and Guardians of Ga’hoole, the game has a lot of love and care put into it and is one of the most original campaign settings produced this year. It’s currently available for pre-order on the Kickstarter and Hit Point’s website, and you should give it a chance if you make it to GenCon
Demo it at: Booth #2961
Publisher: Paizo Publishing
The biggest announcement in tabletop since the release of D&D 5e, Paizo has spent years perfecting the new edition of their now-venerable Pathfinder Role Playing Game. Produced by a who’s who of tabletop veterans, and vetted by an extremely thorough playtest earlier this year, Pathfinder 2e has already made waves as it tries to make the traditional “crunchy” play people love about PF less impenetrable for newcomers. It’s a rare treat to see such an industry-shaking release come out, and Paizo has all sorts of things planned to help learn about the game. Plus, most of the developers will be at GenCon as well, meaning there’s a chance you might get to learn about the game from one of the authors in-person! They’re also releasing the Bestiary, and between it and the Core Rulebook, you’ll have everything you need to enter the world of Golarion and the Age of Lost Omens
Available at: Booth #103, #403
Pathfinder Core Rulebook $59.99
Pathfinder 2e Bestiary $49.99
There’s of course WAY more going on in tabletop at GenCon, and this is but a taster. What games are you excited for at GenCon? Sound off in the comments! And keep an eye out tomorrow for our list of board games releasing at GenCon!
Images via their respective owners