The next project: OtherSpace tabletop redux

Back in 1999, after the first year of OtherSpace MUSH, I first dreamed of developing a tabletop version of my online roleplaying game. I even created a module, called Charybdis Beckons, which I ran for players at DragonCon that year.

The session at the convention was a lot of fun, but the adventure in OtherSpace on tabletop didn’t go much farther. Instead, for the past 22 years, the original OtherSpace sourcebook and the adventure module have followed me from Florida to the Pacific Northwest to North Carolina, waiting for me to come back around to the idea.

And here I am.

It’s time. As we gear up for the 23rd birthday of OtherSpace on June 28, revitalizing the game on a new online platform, I’m ready to delve into the tabletop side again. I considered using Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition or D20 as the foundation for developing the tabletop rules. But an old internet pal, Donathin Frye, recommended that I look at a game engine called Powered by the Apocalypse.

Now, 5E and D20 might be more popular and have greater reach, but PbtA really does seem to fit the feel of OtherSpace. It allows us to amp up the space opera genre flavor and puts more power for the fate of the characters in the hands of the players.

So, I’ve been buying PbtA examples for research purposes, including Uncharted Worlds and Dungeon World. As I continue to absorb how those games approach the table, I’m dreaming up the stats and other character creation aspects that I’ll use for OtherSpace.

What does all of this mean to you? That depends!

  • If you’re a backer of this Patreon, you’ll have early access to the tabletop game PDF as it goes through iterations. Backers also get listed in the PDF in recognition of their support. (If you’re NOT yet a backer, please consider doing so. Proceeds are going to help fund development of this project, as well as the online game.)
  • If you’re an artist with a fondness for space opera, I invite you to reach out to wes@wesplattwrites.com so we can discuss the prospect of making this tabletop RPG look great with amazing illustrations.

Not sure yet about a timetable for finishing the project, but I’d love to aim for Christmas 2021. And then the farflung reaches of the Orion Arm can be found on your very own kitchen table, with you and your best friends exploring the alien stars.

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Wes Platt

Lead storyteller. Game designer and journalist. Recovering Floridian.

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