Tabletop Roleplaying in the Mythic New World
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Chapter 1
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 2
Chapter 6



Heirs to the Lost World
Design Goals

One way to think about RPGs is to consider three aspects: the setting, the system, and the way the setting and system interacts. Here are my design goals in these there areas:


  • Cinematic rather than gritty, like an action movie. (cool stunts, wild moves, PCs are heroes, wire-fu with jaguar knights, capoeiristas, and swashbucklers)
  • Tactical, but transparent system (not a collection of little bonuses, no need to look at the book during play, natural way to provide choice in combat) so that the combats are interesting on both a mechanical and narrative level. Players do not just say, "I swing again." Instead they can be creative with their descriptions (Stunts, critical hits, fumbles, and spells), and can be tactical with their decisions (deciding how much Effort to use).
  • Allow player narration with limits, and players must do something to gain control
  • System tools (Motivations and Complications) to direct role-playing (with mechanical significance), to tie the characters together, and to aid adventure creation.


  • Combine things that I thought were really cool when I was growing up. I loved Mayan and Aztec ruins, and was fascinated by pirates and voodoo. The alternate history was contrived to bring these elements together.
  • Have a reason for characters of all types to work together with a meta-plot (that could be ignored if desired).
  • Have Aztecs and Voodoo NOT be the evil bad guys


  • Simplified characters (Minor Characters and Extras) so both GD and players can control large numbers of characters without simplifying the Major Characters so much they become boring.
  • Special abilities for the cool character types in the setting so they feel unique and add to character variety.
Design Blog

Lost World Blog - Check out the design blog at


Power 19

The Power 19 are 19 questions that help describe what a role playing game is like.


Related Links

Setting Information

Rules Information




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