Created by Dungeons on a Dime and the Society’s Dig It! project, and incorporating cutting-edge Pictish research, Carved in Stone will enable players to experience life in Scotland around AD 690 using a free-to-download setting guide, featuring exquisite original artwork.
TTRPGs are collaborative storytelling games in which players take on the role of characters in the story. Typically, one person—sometimes called the Game Master or Narrator—manages the world and the challenges while the players explore and problem-solve. One of the most famous and elaborate examples of a TTRPG is Dungeons & Dragons.
In most TTRPGs, all players need is dice and a system of game rules. Setting books such as Carved in Stone describe the world in which the adventure takes place and can be used with any TTRPG rules system, whether that is Dungeons & Dragons or systems created by independent game designers, many of which are available for free online.
The book provides historically accurate details about elements that could help or hinder players during their adventures, but that doesn’t include skirmishes with the stereotypical naked Pictish warriors covered in blue tattoos. Carved in Stone is designed to address these types of misconceptions about the past, encourage critical thinking, and spotlight contemporary archaeological research which highlights that the land that is now Scotland was just as multicultural, multilingual and socially diverse, as it is today.
Dan MacLean, Community Engagement and Finds Specialist at the Northern Picts Project and Carved in Stone consultant, said:
“We are currently experiencing an archaeological revolution in terms of understanding the 1st millennia CE, particularly the Pictish kingdoms. Excavations and project work by universities (especially Aberdeen and their Northern Picts project), commercial companies, community groups and museums are writing a new and exciting chapter in Scottish history. Carved in Stone lets you get in on the action—just in time for Scotland’s Year of Stories 2022”.
The campaign has reached its first benchmark and, thanks to the generosity of pledges, over 300 printed setting guides will be available in the project’s free-to-claim community box, available to heritage sector organisations, schools and libraries.
Now Carved in Stone has until Monday 13th of December to reach their next goal of £25,000 which will fund the project’s first expansion campaign, Celebration of Blades. Starting players in the village of Lair (in what is now Perthshire), it will be down to you and your friends to travel the wilds of Scotland in search of everything you’ll need to host a mighty and memorable wake. Stomp through the streets of Burghead, one of Fortriu’s busiest ports, rustle cows from pastoral herders, appease local rituals to bless a grave-offering for your dying smith and much more!
(Header Image © VER – @verface)
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