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  • Distemper is a sandbox, survival/horror TTRPG that combines robust, simple to learn game mechanics with collaborative storytelling elements that puts the focus firmly on building a compelling shared narrative without sacrificing any of the fun or the crunch

  • Players take on the role of survivors in a familiar but vastly changed reality as they deal with having to find food and shelter - to say nothing of staying safe - in a world where everything is in short supply, particularly trust​

  • Set less than a year since the apex of the dog flu, this is very much the here and now and players take on the role of survivors in a realistic, near post-apocalypse setting where there are no zombies, no mutants, no vampires, no alien invaders, no lasers, no magic potions, and no fantastic creatures. There is just the gnawing cold, constant hunger and, scariest of all, other humans to contend with

  • Players create characters using the Backstory Generation life-pathing system, which allows them to assign points to their 5 attributes and pick from a selection of 36 skills as they outline their character's development during the various stages of their life, allowing them to flesh out the precise concept they are going for

  • Distemper is a classless system but those wishing to jump right into the game can pick from one of 15 Paradigms that provide a thematic set of skills and equipment, requiring the player to just give the character a name, slap on an attitude and start rolling dice

  • Some groups may be content roaming endlessly and remaining insular, but for those wishing to create something greater than just their characters, there is the option of recruiting NPCs to start their own Community and establish a Homestead

  • In addition to recruiting NPCs, player characters can take an Apprentices and train them in specific skills or use them as a proxy

  • Perhaps the group intends to form their own militia, religious group, or even an army, as they establish control over and secure their own Territory

  • Although Distemper can be played at a grand scale involving conquest or rebuilding society, it also includes mechanisms to keep the characters grounded and real, including subsystems for Morality and how characters  deal with Stress and Panic and how to avoid reaching their Breaking Point

  • Although playing in what is essentially the real world, background and context are provided around the Dog Flu outbreak and life since, including breakdowns on the major subsets of NPCs and groups the players are likely to meet, including Survivors, Migrators, Militias, Survivalists, Nomads, Bandits, Cannibals, Warlords, Zealots​ and Government Remnants

  • Combat is fast, brutal and unforgiving, and players might want to find other mechanisms for resolving conflict, such as Negotiationto ensure they are alive long enough to thrive

  • Based on tried and true 2d6 rules, The XeroSum Engine comes with may predefined systems to speed up game play and help a GM and a group to improvise on the fly, such as Event and Encounter tables, Road-trip tables, and NPC Design and Motivation rules

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