Announcement: Empyrean RPG to be ported to EP rules engine

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jackgraham jackgraham's picture
Announcement: Empyrean RPG to be ported to EP rules engine
Empyrean is a far future posthuman RPG authored by Jack Graham (Eclipse Phase core, Sunward) and Derek Swirsky. Written from 2003-2009 but never published, Empyrean will be ported to the Eclipse Phase rules engine in compliance with the EP Creative Commons license. Empyrean will offer playable alien races, a richly developed setting, and eventually, combat systems for spacecraft, all of which will be backward compatible with the EP rules. The default Empyrean campaign casts player characters as the crew of an FTL ship in a setting that draws on influences as various as Cowboy Bebop, the original Traveller RPG, Vernor Vinge, Peter Hamilton, and Alastair Reynolds. Empyrean material will be released online beginning in Autumn of 2009.

More information here.
J A C K   G R A H A M :: Hooray for Earth!   http://eclipsephase.com :: twitter @jackgraham @faketsr :: Google+Jack Graham
GregH GregH's picture
Cool! Could it be thought of
Cool! Could it be thought of in some aspects as a distant future to "Eclipse Phase", sort of like how the Steve Jackson creator-jam game kernal "Meridian" had elements that dovetailed it to being a possible future to "Transhuman Space"... or is this a game that is a wholly different vision of a transhuman future?
jackgraham jackgraham's picture
Completely different. The
Completely different. The Empyrean universe came into being (AFAIK) several years before Rob & Brian began developing EP, and although Brian did sit in on an Empyrean game once, it wasn't an influence on Eclipse Phase. However, Empyrean is a trans/posthuman setting, and EP's mechanics are a near-perfect fit for the game.
Some of the core concepts of Empyrean are nearly the opposite of what EP posits. Just to give two examples, singularity events in the Empyrean universe have been extremely rare, with humanity never having been through one (as far as anyone knows... it's far enough in the future that many cultures aren't even sure where Terra was anymore, or if it was real). As a second example, Empyrean has a lot of technological scarcity built into it, rather than the open source free for all of EP, such that the challenges and opportunities of interstellar trade have a great deal to do with local technology levels. (This will sound familiar if you've read Vinge's A Deepness in the Sky).
Derek & I hadn't planned to publish Empyrean, as we're both more focused on writing fiction. However, we had so much material written, we didn't want to let it languish. Porting it to EP is a relatively easy way to put it out there for people to use without embarking on the epic project of starting a company just so that we can develop an original RPG (which, as you probably know, is pretty much what you have to do to get an original game out there).
J A C K   G R A H A M :: Hooray for Earth!   http://eclipsephase.com :: twitter @jackgraham @faketsr :: Google+Jack Graham
LogosInvictus LogosInvictus's picture
Re: Announcement: Empyrean RPG to be ported to EP rules engine
Outstanding news. I think having this kind of port will, if nothing else, expand the kinds of games that you can run with EP, while giving us an entirely new setting and themes with which to play. Speaking of themes - I presume from the assumed premise that the game is more "adventure" oriented (as opposed to the horror elements in EP)?
"I've never understood that. Why does the universe give us puzzles with no answers?" "Pay back, maybe?"
Wednesday Wednesday's picture
Re: Announcement: Empyrean RPG to be ported to EP rules engine
The article mentioned that this would start being available in the autumn of 2009, but my internet queries have resulted in no such thing. Is there any word on this?
jackgraham jackgraham's picture
Re: Announcement: Empyrean RPG to be ported to EP rules engine
Wednesday wrote:
The article mentioned that this would start being available in the autumn of 2009, but my internet queries have resulted in no such thing. Is there any word on this?
Yeah, we're running late. I posted an update on Lonesome Robot a few days ago. Short answer: we hope to put something out in 2010, but I don't have a date yet. The initial material we put out will be setting material we already have written, plus EP mechanics conversions. The space combat system mentioned is not something we'll be releasing early on. I'll post again when I have something more tangible to say.
J A C K   G R A H A M :: Hooray for Earth!   http://eclipsephase.com :: twitter @jackgraham @faketsr :: Google+Jack Graham
Skogkatt Skogkatt's picture
Re: Announcement: Empyrean RPG to be ported to EP rules engine
Any news of this?
jackgraham jackgraham's picture
Re: Announcement: Empyrean RPG to be ported to EP rules engine
This project is on hold indefinitely. I've got a fairly intense day job, and between freelancing for EP and trying to get my fiction published, I haven't had time to work on it. I'll mostly likely revisit it at some point in the future, but I can't say when.
J A C K   G R A H A M :: Hooray for Earth!   http://eclipsephase.com :: twitter @jackgraham @faketsr :: Google+Jack Graham