09 January 2017
Apocalypse-powered title focuses on academic side of sorcery
Have you ever found yourself thinking while reading Harry Potter: ‘Gee, I wish they’d stop getting distracted by all of these adventures and mishaps and just learn how to do magic properly already’? If you have, Pigsmoke may be the RPG for you.
Taking place at the eponymous School of Sorcery, which is essentially an American version of Hogwarts, Pigsmoke casts players as the teachers of magic – think Dumbledore, Lupin, Flitwick and Snap – rather than their mischievous students.
While filing reports, checking exam results, passing departmental observation and coming up with lesson plans may not be everybody’s magical cup of tea, the point is that academia is often filled with as many challenges and amusing adventures as those experienced by Potter and his crew. (Okay, so many not quite as many, but you get the point.)
Players create their tutor by choosing a role and a department to work in, mixing up traits such as ‘The Rockstar’, ‘The Slacker’, ‘The Git’ and ‘The Fake’ with departments covering Life and Death, Foresight, Elements, Alchemy, Mindbending or the combined responsibilities of Calling, Binding and Sealing Away.
From there, they work to research magical studies, achieve tenure and avoiding burning out – while also juggling their personal life in the background.
Pigsmoke is pitched as a tongue-in-cheek take on the magical education trope, offering both adults and kids an alternate perspective on the inner workings of a wizarding school.
The 130-page rulebook has been written by Gods and Monsters creator Chris Longhurst and illustrated by Jacqui Davis, and is powered by the Apocalypse Engine used in titles such as Monsterhearts, Apocalypse World and Dungeon World. A digital copy is £7 on the Pigsmoke Kickstarter page, with a softcover copy £7 and a hardcover version £12.