1. THE STRANGE BUNDLE [revived from October 2015]The Strange Bundle again presented Bruce R. Cordell’s recursion-spanning Cypher System RPG The Strange. Beneath our universe lies a network of dark energy, a swirling Chaosphere called the Strange. The Strange is an alien data network that hosts myriad worlds, or “recursions.” These small universes operate by their own laws of reality, reflected from human experience or imagination.
Recursions are created, but not always consciously. On the prime of Earth in particular, the unconscious creative force driven by the writing and reading (and playing) of fiction can have unintended consequences, and spawn worldlets in the Strange through a process called “fictional bleed.” Recursions teem with life, incredible treasures, and sudden danger — and some of these worlds are jealous of our own. The secrets of the recursions lure the brave, the daring, and the unscrupulous. These explorers in turn draw dangerous enemies from these recursions back to our Earth.
Player characters are explorers who travel to these recursions for various purposes. Explorers could accidentally stumble on Sherlock Holmes’s London, Lovecraft’s Innsmouth, or Olympus from Greek myth. Literally every roleplaying world you’ve ever seen can be a recursion. Movement between recursions is called translation, and it involves inhabiting an entirely new form with different abilities and gear. In a given scenario, the characters might travel to multiple worlds and occupy a sequence of bodies. In each recursion, they capitalize on their equipment and abilities to solve problems and achieve goals.
The Strange uses Monte Cook’s Cypher System rules introduced in Numenera. If you’ve played Numenera, you already know how to play The Strange. And if not, don’t worry — The Strange is a standalone game with everything you need to play.
There were four titles in this offer’s Player’s Collection (retail value $41) as DRM-free .PDF ebooks:
- The Strange (retail price $20): The beautiful full-color 418-page rulebook. Includes the free recursion Ohunkakan: The Living Myths.
- The Strange Player’s Guide (retail $8): Create characters, explore the setting, and learn how to play with this 96-page extract from the complete rulebook. Includes six pregenerated characters.
- In Translation: The Strange Character Options (retail $10): More than 50 new abilities for paradoxes, vectors, and spinners — moves, revisions, twists, descriptors, and foci.
- Swordbreakers (retail $3): These elite operatives in the Ardeyn recursion can be an affiliate organization for characters who want to expand their horizons.
- Worlds Numberless and Strange (retail $17): A 226-page guide to nearly 70 new recursions.
- The Strange Bestiary (retail $15): 140 bizarre and imaginative creatures encountered on Earth, Ardeyn, Ruk, Crow Hollow, and Atom Nocturne — all compatible with Numenera and every Cypher System game.
- The Dark Spiral (retail $10): Investigating the drug Spiral Dust, the operatives fight the malign alien Dustman. These linked adventures make an ideal starting campaign.
- The Estate Dossiers (retail $2): Realistic handouts for new Estate recruits.
- When Worlds Collide: Converting Numenera and The Strange (retail $4): A guide to moving seamlessly between these two Cypher System games.
- Plus The Strange GM Screen (retail $2) and the introductory adventure Eschatology Code (retail $4).
2. CYPHER SYSTEM [all-new]Monte Cook expanded the rules set that underpins Numenera and The Strange into a universal system that encompasses all genres from high fantasy through history, myth, and fairy tales to espionage, superheroics, horror, space opera, and hard science fiction. This all-new Cypher System Bundle presented the complete Cypher System Rulebook, two world settings, and other titles funded by a successful February 2016 Worlds of the Cypher System Kickstarter campaign.
There were three titles in this offer’s Starter Collection (retail value $41), including the Cypher System Rulebook (retail price $20), its Expanded Worlds rules expansion (retail $18), and the supplement Cults, Factions, and Syndicates (retail $3).
This offer’s Bonus Collection had seven more titles worth an additional $56:
- Gods of the Fall (retail $18): In a dark age after a divine realm’s destruction, you carry the spark of godhood. Can you claim a place in the heavens?
- Two Gods of the Fall supplements: the introductory adventure After the Nightfall (retail $3) and the conversion guide Gods Beyond: Converting Gods of the Fall for Numenera/The Strange (retail $2).
- Predation (retail $18): Time travellers and their genetically altered dinosaur companions duke it out in the Cretaceous Era.
- Two Predation supplements: the adventure The Cawdor Complex (retail $5) and the Way of the Dinosaur conversion guide (retail $2).
- Extreme Cyphers (retail $3): A collection of super-powerful one-use devices that can create a volcano, command a god, defeat death, and (literally) move mountains.
- Assault on Singularity Base (retail $5): Rebel spies fight the Grand Imperium in a massive convention event for up to 36 players and seven Gamemasters.