Faith No More have inspired an official tabletop RPG, the first in a planned series of five games inspired by the rock band’s music.
Named after the band’s influential third album - and the first featuring singer Mike Patton - The Real Thing is a standalone RPG that draws direct inspiration from the 1989 release known for songs such as Epic.
Gameplay is based on the Powered by the Apocalypse system used in games including Monster of the Week and Avatar Legends. Players roll two six-sided dice to resolve tests, adding their stat in traits such as awareness, intellect, might and subtlety to determine whether their character succeeds fully, succeeds partially or fails.
The Real Thing introduces a new gameplay element, Discoveries, on top of its Powered by the Apocalypse frame. Discoveries take the form of memories and realisations that drive player characters to better understand themselves through prompts from the Narrator - the RPG’s GM equivalent - and can also be triggered by a failed roll.
The game’s atmosphere is said to take inspiration from 1990s RPGs such as Vampire: The Masquerade and the World of Darkness series in offering up a grittier tone. Playable characters range from criminals and killers to artists and lovers, and occupy a 1990s setting with a focus on mystery and drama.
The upcoming RPG includes a five-part story based on The Real Thing, with each chapter titled after a song from the album. The campaign is estimated to take around eight to 12 hours to finish. The RPG’s story is built around the themes and concepts in the album, according to writer-designers Jason Ward and Jason Peercy, as well as those expressed in other Faith No More songs and albums.
The Real Thing will be the first release in a planned series of five Faith No More RPGs, each based on a different album. Subsequent zines adapting Angeldust, King for a Day Fool for a Lifetime, Album of the Year and Sol Invictus will follow on from the narrative threads and characters introduced in The Real Thing.
The Real Thing will release as a 110-page zine-style book including the game’s rules and campaign. A digital version is due for release this June if the game’s Kickstarter campaign is successful, with a print edition to follow in October.