Your people have lived in your Haven for a thousand years. It protected you. The experience changed you. Now the Haven's doors must open. What will you find up there on the surface? How has the damaged world healed? Do you have what it takes to survive?
When making a skill check, the player, not the GM, should decide which of their skills best applies to the situation at hand. The GM can then advise what consequences might be at stake. When making a skill check you always roll two dice. The first is your soul die and the second is your skill die. The situation can add or remove a die from the pool.
Your soul die is a d6, which you always roll when making a check. If you have checked off any of your Wounded Clock you are gravely injured, and your soul die is reduced to a d4 until healed.
Your skill die is a marker of training in a certain skill. An untrained individual always rolls a d4 for this. As you train skills, you roll the highest die available to you for your skill, which can be upgraded from a d4 to a d6, to a d8 etc.
For example, a seer starts with a d8 skill in channel. An uninjured seer rolling to channel magical energy would roll a d6 + a d8, using the highest of these two results to determine success or failure.
If another character is assisting you, add their soul die to the roll. If a character assists, they expose themselves to the potential consequences of failure.
If the players and the GM agree that a challenge is particularly difficult, the GM may remove a die, usually the lowest, from your pool.
Resolving a roll
After the dice pool has been built, roll whatever dice you have and take the highest result shown on one die.
If you rolled a 6 or above on 2 dice, the result is a critical success.
If you rolled 6 or above the result is a success, and the action is as intended.
If you rolled a 4 or 5 the result is a success with a consequence.
If you rolled a 3 or below the result is a failure with consequence.
3 or below, with one die showing a 1 is a failure with two consequences.
If a Consequence is rolled, the narrative dictates the most likely consequence.
If you are not sure, the default is harm (1 or 2 DMG) or time.
1. Take harm
2. Take time
3. Limited effectiveness
4. Narrative complication
5. Use up/break an item
6. Start/add to a problematic clock
Pushing your luck
If you fail a roll, you can push your luck to re-roll. If you fail a second time, you expose yourself to a severe consequence, so use it wisely!
When you fail a roll, mark experience in the resolve track which relates to the skill you rolled. There are three Resolve tracks, one for Mental, one for Physical and one for Technical Skills. Each has 8 segments.
When you fill that resolve track, you may upgrade one skill in that track to the next die size.
Upgrade from d4 to d6, d6 to d8, d8 to d10 or d10 to d12.
A severe consequence is usually imposed as a result of a failed attempt to push your luck. However, serious consequences can also be imposed narratively as a result of significant failure. In this circumstance it is usually appropriate for the GM to warn the players of increased risk. Your GM could warn you that the situation you are in is very dangerous and therefore consequences for failure are likely to be much more severe, or that a mission you have undertaken is critical and that failing will likely result in serious narrative consequences.
Severe consequences could involve:
♦ Choosing one or more conditions on your Wounded Clock
♦ Serious harm or death of your character or an NPC.
♦ Blowing the job, a data leak at a crucial moment, a tunnel collapse, or the destruction of whatever you were sent here to retrieve.
♦ Permanent loss of trust or damaged relationship.
♦ Lethal The situation becomes dire.
♦ Chaos The party’s situation goes completely out of control.
♦ Immediately completing a dangerous event clock.
Creating a character
Creating a character in Lost Eons begins with a series of steps which will help you determine your origin, stats, and starting abilities. Begin, however, by thinking of the kind of character you want to play: a reluctant hermit dragged along on adventures? A desperate salvager in the ruins of civilisation? A precocious child channeling legendary magical powers? These principles can inform your choices.
Choose an Archetype
In Lost Eons, character creation is based on Archetypes. You should begin by choosing a playbook (p.32-37), which functions as a template for your character moving forwards. It determines your starting abilities, starting resilience and stats, and the kinds of abilities you can take as you progress. You can choose between six different archetypes.
Personality and Experience
Choose one personality and one formative experience for skill bonuses.
In addition to your archetype’s starting statistics, you may add two more skill points anywhere you want (up to a maximum of a d10). Explain these stat increases by picking a personality trait and a formative experience. For example, a studious character who was raised by wolves might put one point in research and one point in muscle.
Choose Name and Pronouns
Choose your own, or roll on any suggested name table in the Societies.
Choose your Equipment
You begin with seven items of equipment, roll or choose one from each of the item tables
A resourceful forager and tinkerer. Begin with endure (d6), hack (d6), search (d8) research (d6), analyse (d6), channel (d6)
Talent Gifted, Gain a special Gadget.
A powerful caster attuned to the Matrix of Essence itself. Begin with endure (d6), research (d6), analyse (d6), channel (d8).
Talent Attuned, extra Aspect per day.
A battle-toughened fighter with an eye for trouble. Begin with muscle (d8), reflex (d6) endure (d8), persuade (d6)
Talent Natural Fighter deal 1 extra damage.
A social reject, thief, or criminal. Begin with reflex (d8), hack (d6), search (d6), analyse (d6), persuade (d8)
Talent Blend with Shadows If you are in the Shadows, you become invisible.
An insightful investigator and empath. Begin with search (d8), research (d8), analyse (d8), persuade (d6)
Talent Insight You always know when somebody is lying to you.
A sturdy shapeshifter who channels pure essence to transform their body into various beasts. Begin with muscle (d6) reflex (d6) endure (d8) channel (d8)
Talent Minor Shift Use an Aspect to Shift into a Small Creature.
Each skill represents an action the player is more or less good at. These skills are flexible and open to interpretation - players should decide which skill rating is most applicable to the action they are trying to take when they are making a skill check.
The skills are separated into three separate expertise, Physical, Technical and Mental. When you fail a roll, you can mark resolve in the track that corresponds to the skill you used to make the roll. Filling a resolve track allows you to upgrade your die for one of the skills within that track’s expertise.
Muscle physicality, strength
Reflex agility, poise, evasion
Endure fortitude, grit
Hack manual dexterity, nous
Search perception, guile
Research knowledge, facts
Analyse insight, discern
Persuade charm, intimidate
Channel magic, spirit
At some points, your characters will find danger and get hurt. Their vitality determines how much they can get hurt before it becomes a serious problem. Each archetype begins with different levels of vitality, but items, armour, or even experiences, if the GM and party decide it is appropriate, can boost this score.
Vitality is split up into three distinct clocks. These clocks have segments which are filled in whenever damage is dealt to a player. When one clock becomes completely filled, move to filling out the next clock.
Armour is determined by your current gear or natural protection, and this can be adjusted by changing out or upgrading equipment.
Resilience is your general fortitude and sturdiness. Resilience represents your remaining pool of physical and mental energy.
Wounded is a countdown to death. It has 4 stations on the clock. If you lose any Wounded, you choose your condition, from Dazed, Scarred, Down or Dead. Once Dead is checked, you are Dead. If scarred, check the scarred table.
Armour and Resilience can be repaired and restored by any character skilled in Hack with the relevant tools - a Repair Kit for Armour or a Healing Kit for Resilience. To heal or repair, test Hack. A successful Hack can cure 1 segment of Armour or Resilience. A consequence repairs or heals but uses up your supplies. A failure uses up your supplies to no effect - the repair is beyond you in this moment. If a character is bleeding out due to a scar, a Hack with a Healing kit can staunch the flow and stabilise.
A successful Hack with a Healing Kit can cure 1 segment of Wounded as long as Dead is not marked. Scars remain even once the condition is unchecked. Being Down does not count as a rest.
A short rest, half an hour sitting down in a clearing or looking at the landscape, can restore some Resilience. If the GM agrees you’re resting, roll Endure. Rolling a consequence restores 1 segment, success restores 2.
A long rest in a safe place, having a good night’s sleep, restores a segment of Resilience or removes a wounded condition. Additionally, roll Endure. Rolling a consequence restores 1 additional segment, success restores 2, critical success restores 3.
Magic in this game is freeform and improvisational, a result of negotiation with the GM. Every day, players draw cards to receive words known as aspects. These determine what magic they can use for that day.
Where does Magic come from?
Essence is all around you, the life force that flows through the universe. The existence of this Essence gives attuned individuals access to the ancient hidden words that define all matter, known as Aspects of the Elements, or Aspects. Aspects are delivered in dreams, hidden words whispered to all beings while they sleep that give arcane power.
Oracle of Aspects
Each game day, the GM draws cards from a standard 52 card deck known as the Oracle. Each player receives 1 card by default unless a Talent specifies that they receive more. The suit and number of the card combine to give you a word, or Aspect, based on the table below. You can discard any unwanted Aspects from the previous day before this process begins, and you can only remember seven Aspects at one time.
|Card||Blood & Bone||Space & Time||Chaos||Primal|
1. At the start of a new game day, all discarded cards are collected by the GM and returned to the deck.
2. The deck of cards is shuffled.
3. The GM deals one card to each player, then extra cards to those with relevant Talents.
4. The GM then flips the deck and searches for specific suits to deal to players with Talents that demand them.
Roll Channel to see how closely the effect matches the intention. Success and the Aspect is cast as intended. Roll Consequence and the Aspect is cast as intended but a consequence occurs, such as harm to the caster or an unintended additional effect. Failure results in Mishaps, the caster undergoing an additional Minor Detrimental Mutation as well as a consequence. Once cast, the card is discarded and returns to the GM’s deck.
Each time you cast an Aspect, roll for a Minor Detrimental Mutation, unless you have paid the cost to become a spellcaster. A spellcaster has made a sacrifice to be able to cast successfully without mutation, but will still experience mutations whenever their Channeling fails.
Aspects can be transferred between players when they are at rest, or powers combined in the moment. Multiple Aspects can be combined to enhance effect and potency. Royal cards count as two cards for potency.
When harming foes or curing wounds, a single standard card will produce an Aspect that deals or heals two measures of damage.
The surface world of Fain is suffused with Essence, in some places diffuse, in some places in high concentrations that can cause bodily mutations. Aligning with Essence can bring many benefits, but can also distort the body in unforeseen ways.
When instructed by the GM, roll on the following tables for your mutation, to discover its site, type, visible appearance and detriment or benefit. Discuss with the GM how this affects your character.
All characters have access to magic, but it comes at a cost. After a spell is cast, roll for a Minor Detrimental Mutation.
Pain for gain
If a character chooses to become a spellcaster, they sacrifice a part of themselves to become permanently attuned to Essence. In order to do this, they roll for a Major Detrimental Mutation. After undergoing this process, they can cast spells without rolling for Mutations.
Eight thousand years ago, during the course of the Climate Cataclysm, hundreds of thousands of vast Havens were built, deep underground, to save a fraction of humanity. All have been been affected by the arcane Essence bubbling up from the Earth’s mantle, mutating the populations in unique and various ways.
Haven inhabitants evolved together, taking on genetics from flora and fauna, largely unaware of the surface world. Havens have technological infrastructure that failed in the deep past,
sealed off from the outside world.
Create a Haven
To generate the Haven Society your character comes from roll on the these tables or choose.
1. This Haven is organised like a beehive. Everyone lives in hexagonal cells.
2. This Haven has expanded into a natural cave system. They are still finding new tunnels.
3. There are ancient standing stones in the middle of this Haven. Sometimes, if you touch them, you can see what the Stones are dreaming.
4. This Haven is a garden. Stepped pyramids of hydroponics rise to the ceiling, lit by an orange artificial sun.
5. This Haven is built inside the buried corpse of an enormous titanic machine.
6. This community was once nomadic, rotating through several Havens connected by underground tunnels. All but one of their Havens have now been taken over by outsiders.
1. A massive communal grain silo stands in the centre of this Haven. Everyone shares it, but after a poor harvest, stocks are running low. Who takes priority?
2. Communal singing is prized in this Haven. All decisions are made only after mass chanting sessions to centre the collective. What is their favourite song?
3. To be able to vote in this Haven, you must have retrieved a specific egg from the Deep Caves. What hatches from this egg?
4. Ritual combat is used to decide differences of opinion. What happens to the loser?
5. Strong taboos mean that this Haven has beliefs that many outsiders would think strange, what are they?
6. Teenagers come of age in this Haven by creating a piece of art in the Deep Caves. Why are the caves so dangerous?
1. Child prophet
2. Council of three, but one member just died
3. Old Seer who knows medicine
4. Dictator prone to rage
5. No leaders, vote of majority, but riven by massive factional dispute
6. Hereditary ruler, but current leader, much loved, has no children
7. Elected leader, but the person who was chosen doesn't want the job
8. Charismatic revolutionary who has just overturned a hereditary system
1. A lovingly tended windmill provides a small amount of electricity
2. Aqueducts bring sweet water to even the high fields
3. A chance discovery of an unsealed, empty vault gifted this community with advanced technology. Some devices are so advanced, no one knows what they do.
4. Incredibly meticulous record-keeping have preserved technological know-how in this community. The Library is kept secret from outsiders, it is of incalculable worth.
5. All knowledge of old traditions were lost in a terrible plague, a generation ago. The community has not recovered.
6. A visitor taught the members of this community a forbidden skill, what is it?
1. Unknown No one has been to the upside since the Haven was shut. What legends exist?
2. Mystery The last time people left the Haven was 100 years ago, but they never returned. What happened?
3. Monitored There are screens through which you monitor the outside world, but very few ever go upside. Why not?
4. Discovery You had forgotten that the upside world existed until someone found the door last week. How has the Haven reacted?
5. Taboo You are forbidden to leave the haven. Doing so will get you cast out from your community. What happens to outcasts?
6. Breach Your Haven was sealed, and no one would have considered leaving it, until the walls were breached and the outside entered in. What caused the breach?
Combat in Lost Eons is dangerous, and should be regarded as a last resort.
The players and their adversaries take turns, one at a time. Player one goes first, then an adversary, then player two, then an adversary. This continues until all players have had a turn and the adversary has had their final response. This ends the Round. The players decide which order they go.
Packs and Threats
Adversaries are either Packs (groups of individuals) or Threats (a single hardy individual).
A Pack is a group of individuals, such as five Antfolk working together, that counts as a single adversary. A Threat is one deadly being, and also counts as a single adversary. If there are multiple adversaries (many Packs or Packs and Threats), all adversaries take a turn after each player’s turn.
Adversaries have 3 stats, Damage, Defence and Difficulty, and a special attack that they can use once per Round. Damage is how much damage they deal. Defence is how much damage they can sustain before death. A Pack will shrink as damage is dealt until there is one desperate individual. Difficulty is both how high you have to roll to evade damage and how high you have to roll to hit.
At the start of combat the character closest to the adversary makes a Reflex roll against the Adversary’s Difficulty. This reflects the Adversary’s speed and the character’s shock. On Failure, the Adversary goes first.
All rolls are made by the players. They roll against the Adversary’s Difficulty to Attack, using their relevant skills. When the Adversary attacks, they roll against the Adversary’s Difficulty to Defend.
In general a melee attack will use Muscle/Reflex, a ranged attack will use Reflex and a magic attack will use Channel. However, it is ultimately the players/ decision which skill to roll. Creative play may grant opportunities to use different skills to attack.
In general, attacks can be defended against using Reflex, Endure, or Channel if defending against a magical attack. However the same qualifiers apply as above.
All characters and Adversaries can Move and perform one Action each round. They can choose to use an action to Analyse the opponent, rolling against their Difficulty. On full success, the next attack against the opponent will do double damage on Success.
A Success roll on Attack does 1 damage. Exceed the Difficulty of the Adversary on both dice and the Attack does 2 damage. Aspects (Spells in this game) do 2 damage for each level of power used to cast.
A Failed roll on Defence does Damage to the character, defined by the Adversary’s Damage rating. Fail while rolling a One and take double damage.
Damage applies first to Armour, then to Resilience, then to Wounded. Damage to critical induces various effects, such as injury or being knocked unconscious. Lose all your Wounded and your character is dead.
Ant Folk Pack 5 individuals
DEF 5 [as there are 5. If 3, this is 3]
Special Attack CryOrg Blaster DMG 4, DIF 5
Special Attack Deadly Stinger DMG 5, DEF 7, paralysis
♦ The Surface World has become known as the Intersection, and has returned to abundance and danger, flora and fauna growing to vast size and extent over the past 8000 years.
♦ The Ecosystem of the Intersection is intricately connected and abundant in scale, quantity, beauty and danger.
♦ The Deep Forest is full of wonder and difficulty.
♦ Dwellings include villages, camps, and vast burrows.
♦ Individuals are going missing.
♦ There are rumours of mines and hulking machines.
♦ There's a faint smell of sulphur on the wind.
♦ The surface dwellers have been joined and sometimes overrun and enslaved by newcomers from the Havens below and the Martian colony above.
♦ Martian colonists have just arrived from space to exploit the land and people.
♦ Post-humans are gradually emerging from their vast underground Havens, Societies and peoples evolved in discrete ways.
Lost Eons is an RPG for 3-5 Players and a GM, the Guide and Mentor. The role of the GM is to facilitate the game: creating problems and opportunities for the players to explore. The role of the players is to make their own way in this post humanity world. To play, the players must create characters in this world, and the GM must create a scene for the players to encounter. A typical starting point would be the player group seeing the surface world for the very first time. What does it look like? How does it make them feel? What do they meet? Is it dangerous? Play to find out.
Lost Eons is designed to make all involved see our climate reality and high fantasy afresh, experiencing and describing a new world for the first time.
You live in a Haven, deep underground with your community, descendents of surviours of a cataclysm in the deep past. Essence, a magic mutating force from the Earth's mantle, has changed you and your kin. You are about to see the surface world for the first time.
Take a set of gaming dice (d4, d6, d8, d10, d12). During the game, when an outcome is in doubt, you will roll a d6 and one of the other dice (your Skill Die) together, reading the highest number on either die. 1-3 is a Fail. 4-5 leads to a Complication. 6 or more and you Succeed.
If you ever suffer physical or mental pain, that diminishes your Resilience. You start with Four pieces of Resilience. Physical damage can be absorbed by Armour, if you have any. Once you lose all your Resilience your condition becomes Critical, adding the conditions Dazed, Down, Scarred and Dead in whichever order you choose.
Imagine three mutations from the human form. Scaled skin? Webbed fingers? Compound eyes? The Mutations page can help you. What do you look like? How do you act? What do you believe in?
You have Skills, represented by dice of differing sizes. Are they Physical; Muscle, Reflex, Endure? Technical; Hack, Search, Research? Or Mental; Analyse, Persuade, Channel? If you are unskilled in an area, your die is d4. Choose 7 upgrades, with a maximum of d8 in any one skill.
Now you have your character, you are ready to play. The GM will describe a scene. Imagine what your character would do in that place, in that situation. Is anything intruiging, beautiful or dangerous? Where is there to explore? Together you will all discover where your adventure leads.