Today we review The Spire, by Rowan, Rook and Decard.
Blurb – ‘You are a dark elf. Your home, the towering city of Spire, was occupied by the high elves two hundred years ago. Now, you have joined a secret organisation known as the Ministry, a paramilitary cult with a single aim – to overthrow the cruel high elves and restore the drow as the rightful rulers of the city. What – or who – will you sacrifice to achieve your aims? Will you evade the attention of the authorities, or end up shot in the street like so many before you?’
Book – 2 column 226 page pdf, color art. Each section flows into the next, a pleasure to read.
Character Generation = Choose a Durance (background), choose one of 10 Classes, two abilities from the class, choose gear, then Bonds (links to other pcs).
Lowdown – Based in fantasy, there is a real horror tone on the style spread throughout The Spire. The Spire is laden with Witches, sabotage, fortune telling, poison, festivals, occult, chemicals, assassinations, masquerade balls and smuggling.
– There are tons of quick roll tables to flavor your scenes and encounters throughout the book.
– Plenty of cults, groups and gangs to get involved with, undermine or struggle against.
The details on the areas of the city are thorough but not overwhelming, each section is evocative of the setting. Most games take place in the city, but there’s plenty of adventure to be had.
Resolution of tasks = D10, higher the better, partial or full failures mean you take stress, a depletion of one of your resources.
The setting is gritty in two ways. 1-You are not going to overthrow the High Elven rulers in a weekend. Its a big place and they’ve been there a long time. 2-Many people will sell you out to either get ahead or just keep afloat, so you have to careful.
Your characters advance from causing change in the setting, but the change and your advancement may not be for the better, you can get drawn in to the corruption.
Feataures : Demons = Yes. Ghosts = Yes. Guns = Yes. Magic = Yes. Medieval Weapons = Yes.
Influenced by films – Dredd, Hellboy 2, Dark City.
Downside = Not for the squeamish. One of the classes is a Carrion Priest. You can gloss over detail of some of the horror aspects, but there is a theme of rebellion and that’s not going to happen over a shared cucumber sandwich.
Summary = High recommended, excellent game with plenty of directions your characters story can take.
Maps – Two huge maps of the city, tons of detail done on an amazing pair of maps.
Where to get it – http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/235679/Spire
Actual Play – http://www.sixfeatsunder.com/the-spire/