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Chart the rise and fall of your civilisation with the Icarus RPG

Era today, gone today.

Wheels not only reviewed this weird, wonderful and utterly unique tabletop RPG for us, but also brought it the Dicebreaker editorial team for a playthrough. The Dicebreaker team’s civilisation fell to corruption, Sea-Gods and er, an influx of giant crabs.

In Icarus, you select a city - which can range from a sci-fi metropolis to a spired fantasy capital - and then set about role-playing its inevitable demise. Randomly drawn story cards spur events on. These get nastier as time goes on. You’ll work together to mete out the details of what’s happened, and what it means for your future.

Meanwhile a literal dice tower charts stability. When the dice fall, so does the civilisation. Character stats don’t matter here, instead you are given a job and a motivation - which can be both positive, or unbelievably terrible. In addition, you’ll be teaming together to not only build a monument, but also ascertain its purpose.

In Wheel’s playthrough, he created “found footage” tracking the tragedy of his own civilisation’s fall. He speaks of civil unrest, a climate crisis, and a desperate ploy to get out to the stars. Overall, he concludes that Icarus is not only a fine tabletop RPG game, but also a fantastic fiction writing prompt.

So if you’re looking for an excuse to get immersed into a fictional society of your own making, be sure to give Icarus a shot.

Have you tried to save a civilisation in Icarus? How did you annihilate yourselves? Let us know below.

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About the Author
Sara Elsam avatar

Sara Elsam


Sara has been writing since 2017, contributing news, features and more to outlets including Eurogamer, Rock Paper Shotgun, Variety, The Guardian, BBC and Tabletop Gaming magazine. An expert in Dungeons & Dragons, they’re also a fan of all things horror and psychedelia both on and off the table. They are happiest rolling big dice, raising mobs and rocking out with their Bard-Lock.