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Tyrant's Conquest--A Fresh, New Fantasy Tabletop RPG

Tyrant’s Conquest is a fantasy tabletop role-playing game that draws from the well of medieval fantasy that has inspired popular tabletop games like Dungeons and Dragons and Pathfinder. However, this game was was developed as an alternative to D&D to offer players more options, and takes quite a few departures from what many players are used to, offering many more options for character creation than you’ll find in the popular game. Though, only the base game has been fully developed so far, it more than does its job of providing options for nearly any character concept you can think of.

The basic character building structure will be familiar to veteran D&D players—base attributes

such as strength, dexterity, constitution, charisma, and intelligence, but with a few

modifications, swapping out wisdom for willpower, and adding perception. The main difference that players of D20 systems will notice is the core mechanic. This game uses a D100 system, as opposed to the D20 system that most players are used to. Tyrant’s Conquest has players rolling percentile dice and adding modifiers based on their stats and skills to hit a target number that’s typically around 100 for a basic test. Naturally, your player’s stats such as attributes and skills are all scaled higher to reflect the scale of the system. You’ll find many of the standard fantasy races,

such as elves and dwarves, but also a things that many games don’t have standard out of the box—like green

saurons (lizard people).

Classes are treated very differently in this game than in basically any other gaming system out there, in that levels in each class are typically gained session to session, give small rewards at each increment, and are highly interchangeable with other classes. Instead of advancing in a single class, you’ll pick a base class (tier 0, as it’s called), which provides the initial path that your character will take. From there, you’re free to explore other options—and there’s a lot of them! Base classes include things like apprentices, channeler, neophytes, and rogues, and you pick one of these to get the base abilities that will make you into a melee-focused combatant, arcane caster, divine power channeller, or stealthy character. Gaining levels in a class works a bit differently than in most games, in that you have a tier that is tied to experience level, which determines what classes and power level you have access to. You typically advance in level session to session, gaining some small bonus to your character’s abilities. However, instead of picking a single class and sticking with it for the entire campaign, this game encourages you to mix classes to build the type of character you want. You can only advance until level 10 in each class—but the game doesn’t limit the number of classes you can take. You can even advance as far as possible in experience tiers, and still take new class levels and keep your campaign going.

Speaking of classes, Tyrant’s Conquest has a lot of them--81 in total! Those coming from other systems will be surprised by the variety of options. You can still play a character based on the standard fantasy tropes, like warriors, wizards, and druids and such, but they’re handled in a much more granular manner. Instead of having a catch-all class like “fighter” in Pathfinder or D&D, you have variations on the idea, such as duelist (focused on parrying), soldier (focused on weapon training), or even a shield adept (focused on defense). You have variations on wilderness-focused classes, such as trappers (trap experts), hunters (survivalists with an affinity for animals), and rangers (woodland archers). You even have the option of playing classes, such as captain or sergeant, that allow you to inspire your party in combat, and help guide them into tactical positions to gain a battlefield advantage.

Those who start off as a neophyte start on the path of being a spell caster, similar to wizards that you see in other systems, which you can follow as a straight up spell slinger, or branch out into more combat-oriented classes, such as arcane warrior. There’s also an option to be a channeler, who calls upon divine energy, or nature, leading to future character options similar to those of the clerics or druids that you see in other games.

The magic system is something new players of standard D20 systems. You will still pick spells from a list in the book, but you have the option of learning modifications to those spells, making them more potent, or increasing their range, for example. As mentioned above, there is a system of spellcasting that uses mana points, with spells having a pre-determined cost, and some varying in cost based on what you’re trying to do. This can make magic very exciting at lower levels—allowing you to blow your whole wad of mana on a spell that gives you a powerful effect, such as summoning a bunch of zombies to overwhelm your enemy (which was a LOT of fun when got to do it). As long as you have the mana to spend, you can do it. Combine this with the game’s system for modifying your spells by duration, range, cost, potency, etc—there’s a lot of potential builds to make interesting spellcaster characters.

As well, channelers have their own system that’s distinct from the magic system. Channelers have an amount of energy that they can allocate into using their powers. They can spend their channelling power points by allocating them to abilities as they see fit without worrying about mechanics like spell slots, like in D&D or Pathfinder. Your options as a channeler, of course vary by divine channelling, which includes things like healing, your allies, cursing your enemies, and turning your weapon into a font of holy energy. Nature channelers have abilities that are oriented around things like summoning creatures, manipulating plants, and tearing down walls.

Though, I haven’t had a chance to run this game yet, the core rules provide a lot of options for game masters. Right out of the core rules, there’s a bunch of stats for monsters—including those that players can summon through magic. On top of that, there’s also a very nice system for building monsters based on templates that can be easily be scaled up or down as needed.

After a few campaigns, the limited options in D&D often get played out—and many groups look for other options, or try to fit the game to their desire. This is a much more flexible system to try if you find yourself at that point in your gaming experience. Or if you’ve never even gotten to that point because you’re an old-school gamer who finds D&D too simplistic compared to other tabletop RPGs, then you’ll find this an interesting system to explore.

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