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Adventure Time RPG’s original ‘Yes And’ system still in the works, will be released after D&D 5E version

Cryptozoic claims the new system “needed more development time and licensor approvals.”

Official artwork for Adventure Time: The Roleplaying Game from Kickstarter video
Image credit: Cryptozoic Entertainment/Cartoon Network

Adventure Time’s official tabletop RPG launched its crowdfunding campaign on Tuesday and snuck an exciting confirmation in the Kickstarter FAQ: a version of the game using the original ‘Yes And’ system developed by Forever Stoked is still in active development, even if we don’t know when it will land.

If you haven’t been following this somewhat strange turn of events that started last year, there are currently two versions of Adventure Time: The Roleplaying Game kicking around. The initial public pitch promised an entirely new mechanical framework designed by Matt Fantastic and the team at Forever Stoked called the ‘Yes And’ system. Another version compatible with Dungeons & Dragons 5E’s rules would also be designed by publisher Cryptozoic in order to satisfy massive fan demand to explore the Land of Ooo using 20-sided dice and six core stats.

Cue a sneaky November 2023 update to the Adventure Time Card Wars Anniversary reprint Kickstarter campaign, explaining that the tabletop RPG crowdfunding in early 2024 would prioritise its 5E versions and shelve Forever Stoked’s more storytelling-focused romp, “due to player feedback.” Cryptozoic reiterated that claim on Tuesday, saying that they “received a LOT of feedback asking about a 5E experience.”

We played the Adventure Time RPG! Watch on YouTube

“The 5E game has been planned from the start because it goes back to the very roots of Adventure Time itself, which was inspired by Dungeons & Dragons, and lets you create your own characters in the Land of Ooo,” the FAQ reads. “We had planned for the Yes/And game to come first, but it needed more development time and licensor approvals. It will offer a very different experience; we'll make more announcements about it in the near future.”

Fans will attest to the inspiration Adventure Time’s weird world of zany wizards, mystical swords, and fabulist landscapes draws deeply from the same pulp fantasy well as the D&D of the 1970s and 1980s, but even that game is a far cry from the modern edition’s rules. An RPG focused on wargaming combat and violence also doesn’t match the narrative structure of the Cartoon Network sensation, which just as often resolved conflict through hear-to-heart talks between best buds.

Adventure Time: The RPG's Kickstarter trailer.Watch on YouTube

Chalk it up to licensors wanting the biggest piece of the hobby pie possible. Cyrptozoic is extending a bridge to Adventure Time fans curious about tabletop with Jake’s Shmowzow Guide to Roleplaying Games. This intentionally simple guide to rolling dice and dicing roles was written by Ray Winninger, a designer who once worked as D&D’s executive producer and co-designed the DC Heroes RPG. Like the recent LEGO D&D adventure, it will illustrate the core concepts of tabletop play and a simplified walkthrough to character creation.

Adventure Time: The Roleplaying Game’s Kickstarter campaign runs through May 15th and has passed its initial goal of funding a physical core, the intro guide included in every order and an adventure supplement called Quest of the Shadow Gems - Cyrptozoic claims the licensor has not approved digital versions of the sourcebooks.

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