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I Came Here to Win turns reality TV into a tabletop RPG

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A roleplaying game inspired by reality TV shows such as Top Chef and Project Runway has hit Kickstarter.

I Came Here to Win is a GM-less tabletop RPG that aims to recreate a season of reality television - shows such as Terrance House, Come Dine With Me and The Great British Bake Off - that features a number of contestants competing to win the favour of judges and/or the audience while playing out seemingly unscripted scenes.

Characters are created using three central traits: personality, experience and innovation. A character’s stats are determined by the die assigned to a particular trait, being either a d6, d8 or d10 - representing weak, normal and strong stats, respectively.

While no one player takes on the role of a GM, players take it in turns to temporarily represent the shows’ producer, drawing cards from four piles of playing cards divided into suits. Each card drawn signifies a segment or aspect of the current episode that the players’ characters must react and respond to, from a surprise team challenge or celebrity guest judge to having to deal with a new editor or the chance for a contestant to shine in the spotlight.

The players roll to see which character becomes the focus of the scene, with the lowest-rolling character eliminated during the episode. (The rulebook advises making several characters to fill out the show’s roster of contestants.) Once all of a player’s characters are eliminated, they become the producer, with the last remaining player/contestant declared the winner. A variant ruleset replaces elimination with a points system to keep everyone in the game until the end.

The RPG is described as being designed for one-shot sessions, and flexible enough to allow for your reality TV competition of choice - be it cooking, crafting, physical challenges, survival endurance or just being stuck in a house together.

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I Came Here to Win was released digitally on last summer by publisher Peach Garden Games - the collective made up of designers and creators Cat McDonald, Kersten Hegberg, Nick Acheff and Kathleen Childs - and has now made the jump to a Kickstarter campaign for a physical release featuring revised artwork and expanded rules, including the addition of a confessional mechanic.

If the Kickstarter hits its relatively modest goal of CA$2,400 (£1,400), the new edition of I Came Here to Win will see a physical release next January. At the time of writing, it’s currently sat on a little over CA$1,700 (£990). The campaign runs until July 13th.

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Matt Jarvis avatar

Matt Jarvis


After starting his career writing about music, films and video games for various places, Matt spent many years as a technology, PC and video game journalist before writing about tabletop games as the editor of Tabletop Gaming magazine. He joined Dicebreaker as editor-in-chief in 2019, and has been trying to convince the rest of the team to play Diplomacy since.