Jump to content

Chaosium Announces Rivers of London Roleplaying Game


Recommended Posts

1761118497_BenAAnnouncment.png.ca5f5dee2cc259fb3be5fa0134b8d9d1.png

Ann Arbor, MI, November 30, 2019—Chaosium Inc. and author Ben Aaronovitch are pleased to announce that Chaosium has acquired the rights to produce the Rivers of London Roleplaying Game, based on Aaronovitch’s best-selling urban fantasy fiction chronicling the world of the Folly. The game will use elements of the company’s Basic Roleplaying system, as well as original, customized rules to reflect the series’ inventive take on the fantastic—from Newtonian magic to the strange powers wielded by the rivers and other supernatural beings that inhabit the popular novels and comics.

Lynne Hardy, associate line editor for Call of Cthulhu and Rivers project lead, says, “I started reading Peter Grant’s adventures a few years ago and knew right away that the Folly would make a marvelous setting for an investigatory fantasy game. Ben was intrigued about the potential for a Rivers of London RPG when I broached the idea at a book signing late last year. After a meeting in London in April, we entered negotiations to secure the license.”

“I’ve been an RPG player since the original D&D so I’m terribly excited and honoured to have Rivers of London turned into a proper roleplaying game and especially because it’s with Chaosium, who produced Pendragon and Call of Cthulhu and such brilliant adaptations as Elric!” adds Aaronovitch.

Chaosium is currently assembling the creative team that will produce the game’s core rulebook. That team will be working closely with Aaronovitch on its development and presentation.

https://www.chaosium.com/blogchaosium-announces-rivers-of-london-roleplaying-game

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
24 minutes ago, rsanford said:

So I’m not familiar with Ben Aaronovitch’s story. Is it set in modern times? Can someone provide a one paragraph summary of what the books are about? Sounds very interesting!

not to sound mean but you could have googled this in two seconds. it's an entire series of best-selling books. Book 1: https://smile.amazon.com/Midnight-Riot-Rivers-London-Book-ebook/dp/B004C43F70/ref=sr_1_1?crid=24JZJKH67VFBC&keywords=aaronovich+ben&qid=1575138065&sprefix=aaronivich%2Caps%2C148&sr=8-1

"if Harry Potter grew up and joined the Fuzz"

Edited by Qizilbashwoman
Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, rsanford said:

So I’m not familiar with Ben Aaronovitch’s story. Is it set in modern times? Can someone provide a one paragraph summary of what the books are about? Sounds very interesting!

Basically, Sir Isaac Newton went on to write the definitive work on magic after having completed his work on physics. His successors became the guardians of the supernatural.

There was a huge magical conflict that used the Second World War to cover up their misdeeds, which wiped out most active mages in Britain (which apparently won).

Peter Grant is a modern day policeman, son of an English jazz musician and an African immigrant. He discovers his aptitude for the supranatural when dealing with a mystery case and perceiving transparent witnesses. As a result, he gets assigned to the Folly, Scotland Yard's magical division headed and staffed by the last active Newtonian mage in Britain and his not quite human household aide. Peter gets involved with the family of the new Goddess of River Thames (another African woman...) and starts an apprenticeship in magic.

There are a few common themes between this and the Dresden Files, like the neural deterioration that over-use of magic creates in the brains of its practitioners, and the ability to hex modern technology. But both Peter Grant (and his newly discovered German colleague) are policemen first and foremost, then heroic magical apprentices.

The books are mystery cases involving supernatural entities and evil mages. Often both in the same story.

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Joerg said:

Basically, Sir Isaac Newton went on to write the definitive work on magic after having completed his work on physics. His successors became the guardians of the supernatural.

There was a huge magical conflict that used the Second World War to cover up their misdeeds, which wiped out most active mages in Britain (which apparently won).

Peter Grant is a modern day policeman, son of an English jazz musician and an African immigrant. He discovers his aptitude for the supranatural when dealing with a mystery case and perceiving transparent witnesses. As a result, he gets assigned to the Folly, Scotland Yard's magical division headed and staffed by the last active Newtonian mage in Britain and his not quite human household aide. Peter gets involved with the family of the new Goddess of River Thames (another African woman...) and starts an apprenticeship in magic.

There are a few common themes between this and the Dresden Files, like the neural deterioration that over-use of magic creates in the brains of its practitioners, and the ability to hex modern technology. But both Peter Grant (and his newly discovered German colleague) are policemen first and foremost, then heroic magical apprentices.

The books are mystery cases involving supernatural entities and evil mages. Often both in the same story.

Wow! This sounds interesting. I will see if it's available on Audible and if so pick the first one up. I have listened to all the Dresden books and while very entertaining I thought the plots were too simple and for the most part came down to Dresden digging down deep to cast one more powerful spell...

 

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Congratulations! I did not know this book series, but it seems very interesting and exciting. Chaosium has a great tradition of literary based RPGS, with CoC, Stormbringer, Hawkmoon, Ringworld, Thieves World, and, of course, Pendragon itself, and then ElfQuest and Prince Valiant if you add the comic books. It is exciting seeing Chaosium  exploring a new literary property with a BRP based ruleset. I wish you a great success!

 

  

Edited by smiorgan
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Joerg said:

Basically, Sir Isaac Newton went on to write the definitive work on magic after having completed his work on physics. His successors became the guardians of the supernatural.

 

Now that sounds so friggin cool, I am sure I have heard this before though a few times, from the last century/millennium, perhaps. Thanks fo the response!

 

9 hours ago, rsanford said:

Wow! This sounds interesting. I will see if it's available on Audible and if so pick the first one up. I have listened to all the Dresden books and while very entertaining I thought the plots were too simple and for the most part came down to Dresden digging down deep to cast one more powerful spell...

 

Oh, well so Dresden is to be avoided? I hate desperation in matters of plot.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/30/2019 at 1:20 PM, Qizilbashwoman said:

not to sound mean but you could have googled this in two seconds.

Maybe, but  it bad marketing to expect people to have to do a google search to find out what a product is about. If you have to do a goggle  a search to find  out a Big Mac, Quarter Pounder or Happy Meal are it's not the consumer's fault but one of marketing. if  the potential customers  do not feel like researching the product and just give it a pass t he company looses out.

So rsanford reaction  is a valid one, and shows  interest and could lead to a sale. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/30/2019 at 12:20 PM, Qizilbashwoman said:

not to sound mean but you could have googled this in two seconds. it's an entire series of best-selling books. Book 1: https://smile.amazon.com/Midnight-Riot-Rivers-London-Book-ebook/dp/B004C43F70/ref=sr_1_1?crid=24JZJKH67VFBC&keywords=aaronovich+ben&qid=1575138065&sprefix=aaronivich%2Caps%2C148&sr=8-1

"if Harry Potter grew up and joined the Fuzz"

What an advertising blurb says about a book will rarely be as useful as a third party’s opinion. If I went purely by the advertising Dresden would be the best thing since the Lord of the Rings

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Given that this is a brand-new, just-announced product... with (looks above) exactly ONE person so far on-board...  Well, Chaosium getting the marketing materials ready seems just a tad premature.  Once there's a PRODUCT (like, at least a completed draft being playtested) I might expect them to think about the product-page.

Honestly, I agree with both @rsanford AND @Qizilbashwoman -- a little precis in the thread WOULD be good (thank you @Joerg!)... and the info IS available online, for someone to look it up themselves.

So, having done a bit of looking-up-myself... I see that it's essentially a modern-era Urban Fantasy (1st novel set in 2012), crossed with a police-procedural.

In the meantime, for interested parties...  A QUESTION (that I haven't been able to pin down from a cursory check of Wikipedia, Goodreads, etc) : 

  • is this a hidden-supernatural "masquerade" setting?
  • or is the reality of magic / etc a more or less well-known fact of everyday life?

 

Edited by g33k
Dunno HOW that sentence-fragment moved THREE PARAGRAPHS AWAY.
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, g33k said:

So, having done a bit of looking-up-myself... I see that it's essentially a modern-era Urban Fantasy (1st novel set in 2012), crossed with a police-procedural.

Yes, even the recent spin-off set in Germany is a police-procedural.

20 minutes ago, g33k said:

In the meantime, for interested parties...  A QUESTION (that I haven't been able to pin down from a cursory check of Wikipedia, Goodreads, etc) : 

  • is this a hidden-supernatural "masquerade" setting?

Yes. There is a fairly big number of magically or ethnically special people who aren't Newtonian mages, but are policed by them.

Normal police is aware of the unit for the crazy cases (the name "Folly" has several meanings...) and is happy to hand things off to the (very few) informed people on their staff.

While the setting is less grim and generally not cthulhuid, there are certain parallels to the Laundry novels.

20 minutes ago, g33k said:
  • or is the reality of magic / etc a more or less well-known fact of everyday life?

Not by your average muggle. Including New Age or occultist muggles whose activities may nevertheless contribute to feeding magical needs of some of the other supranaturals.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...
On 11/30/2019 at 10:09 PM, Bill the barbarian said:

...

Oh, well so Dresden is to be avoided? I hate desperation in matters of plot.

The Dresden Files is very much a matter of taste/preference.  It's a genre mashup of { modern urban fantasy X noir detective } but also action-adventure-comedy .  The first 2-3 are notably weaker than the rest; the author got a lot better (rather infamously:  as an (unpublished) writing student, his professor challenged him to write modern urban fantasy because she thought he'd be good at it; he wrote the first entire novel of the series in an effort to prove her wrong!) .

Our Hero (Harry Dresden) is a P.I. in Chicago, and a wizard.  In a "masquerade" style setting (where the mundanes mostly don't know of (and mostly don't believe in) magic, and most supernaturals LIKE it that way, and some take steps to KEEP it that way)  Harry has an ad in the Yellow Pages under "Wizard."  This... pretty much sums up his attitude toward "authority" in general.  He's got a mouth that runs snark on autopilot AND autofire, especially when he's snarking at someone who could mop the floor with him.  Harry has some go-to magical specialties, including fire; there's usually some collateral damage, such that the first line of one novel is, "The building was on fire, and it wasn't my fault."

Some people love The Dresden Files, some people hate 'em, some are meh.  Rather like most books, in fact.  🙂    Personally, I like 'em!  It's among my favorites... but then, I'm a bit simple at times.

I'm eagerly awaiting the next installment:  the author has announced he's done, but the publisher is oddly silent on announcing an actual publication date.  Fans are grumbling and speculating (the best theory I've seen is that the reader (James Marsters) for the Audible release has a scheduling conflict, so they're waiting on announcing a release until they can be sure they can release the Audible at the same time (the last time they got an alternate reader, the Audible edition bombed and they had to re-record the book with Marsters)).

There is more than a little of "Harry digs deep to cast one final (high powered) spell," but that's really not a summary of the books, just something that happens (in more books than it doesn't happen; but not at all reliably as the climax of the story).

But "desperation" -- yeah, by the end of the books, things are usually pretty desperate.  Very action-hero-y stuff.  I mean, he doesn't ALWAYS "save the world," sometimes he only saves a friend, or takes down a magic-fueled drug-dealer, or whatever.  They definitely lean toward the "rollicking story" rather than the "profoundly moving."

There's a prequel short story (Restoration of Faith) free online:   https://www.jim-butcher.com/books/dresden/side-jobs/restoration   

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 12/1/2019 at 12:09 AM, Bill the barbarian said:

Now that sounds so friggin cool, I am sure I have heard this before though a few times, from the last century/millennium, perhaps. Thanks fo the response!

 

Oh, well so Dresden is to be avoided? I hate desperation in matters of plot.

Don't avoid Dresden based upon one person's opinion.  The novels are excellently written and tell rousingly good tales.  Any story can sound unappealing if presented in a sufficiently simplistic manner.  Star Trek is just a series of idealistic sci fi stories.  See?

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 month later...
  • 6 months later...

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...