RPPR Episode 86: Know Evil Post Mortem

News: If you’re a fan of Eclipse Phase, check out the Kickstarter for the next Eclipse Phase book, Transhuman. Don’t forget about the Know Evil Fan Creation Contest. The deadline for entries is May 10.

Synopsis: After the conclusion of Caleb’s epic Know Evil campaign, Tom and I wanted to hash out how the campaign came to be, what changed during play, and what lessons were learned from it. It’s not often a role playing campaign ends with such a satisfying conclusion, so we wanted to make sure you would have a ‘director’s commentary’ for Know Evil. We also have shout outs and anecdotes.

Shout Outs

  • Spaceteam: hilariously fun iOS game – command a spaceship with randomly generated controls and yell at your friends! A winning combination.
  • Elder Sign: New Cthulhu Mythos based dice and iOS game – like Arkham Horror but with more randomness and quicker pace.
  • Gloom – Edward Gorey meets card game strategy – the most miserable and dead family wins.
  • Rot and Ruin: YA horror novel series. It turns out life after the zombie apocalypse is not all that fun.
  • Prophet: Crazy ass science fiction comic. MEATPUNK.
  • Glory: Even Rob Liefeld original characters can be redeemed.
  • The Apple: A 1980 sci-fi musical biblical allegory. Hooray for Rifftrax!

Music: Eclipse by Perturbator

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  1. Prezi, Prezi! Also, thank you Caleb for the awesome.

  2. Caleb, thank you for this campaign. I enjoyed listening to it SO MUCH and it has really inspired my own GMing. You are a god.

  3. Two days ago (2013-04-29), I realized Know Evil was the first RPG campaign I’ve ever heard with a real ending. It was a shock. It gives me hope for my own games. It was also the first campaign that adopted “a Good Villain believes he is right, a Great Villain is.” Caleb, I have stolen so much from you, and I have become a better GM for it. Thank you.
    Now, I will join the chanting: Prezi, Prezi!

  4. Hey, guys, I really appreciated the post-mortem. It was such an excellent campaign that I was very interested in hearing how it all went together, and after having listened to it, I have a lot of ideas that’ll really help my own campaign writing.

  5. Yeah, this was pretty boss, though I’d have liked to hear Jason’s thoughts as well. I too have stolen much from Caleb, We’ll see if I’m a better GM for it but I can’t imagine it’d hurt.

    Also, what’s the deal with space whales? I keep hearing about them as some kind of in-joke?

  6. Thanks for this! It’s awesome to be able to learn from such a successful campaign. There is a lot here that I think can help me — for example, not being afraid to help my players keep track of their clues, and also giving the characters some opportunities to define themselves before opening up a sandbox.

    Seriously, though, I’m amazed that Caleb picked things up so fast. I did not realize that this was his first long-running campaign. The way he ran it, he sounded like a total veteran. Dude, you’re a natural.

  7. I liked the bit about Manjappa having supposed to be met far, far earlier – He seemed like such a distance villain for most of the game. The players foil all of his plans and get his backups before they even meet him. Also that Bartleby would have been white whaling him. I honestly believed the last session would involve Bartleby climbing atop some huge surface, possible the top of a ship, while breathtaking galactic suns set/rise in the distance, howling MANJAPPA

  8. God damn Know Evil was a great game. The post-mortium was really insightful, both from a sense of closure to the long awesome ride but also for looking behind the curtain.

    It is interesting that the team missed running into Manjapa early on but I personally think it was for the best. Bartleby probably would have gone even further off the rails than he already was.

    One thing that jumps out at me listening to the post-mortum is that people can take Calebs game and run any number of one-shots or campaigns based on the clean up/damage control/investigation of the trail of destruction left by the players. And there’s the whole idea of former PCs as patrons/proxies. Or Blind sending a FW team to hunt down and destroy Augastine or…well you get the idea.

    Caleb you are a golden story telling god. Pick up Changeling and Mage; you can paint another epic with those given your professional, imagination and gaming skills. Ross I think all of us thank you for getting your hands on Caleb. Tom, you’re a still a horrible flesh eating ghoul; stay classy.

  9. You guys should make a Release the Kraken T-shirt. I’d buy one.

  10. I’m watching Psycho-Pass based on your recommendation. Holy shit, this anime is amazing, love the “villain” character as well as the EP-like tecnology.

  11. The trials in Tokyo and Tom’s Pathfinder games mentioned in the podcast as well as the play-test of Caleb’s wild west game are these things that will exist on the AP podcast and Ross is an evil lazy monster or do they live somewhere else or were they not recorded.
    Also not in the episode but I listened to MOCT:Coronet the other day and there seems to be a massive narrative gap connecting the earlier eps done by Ross and the guys and this latest episode is this something to do with the kickstarter and I’m waiting for exclusivity to lapse or is the “road trip” that was mentioned something that wasn’t recorded.
    Been listening for the past few weeks steadily going through the New world, new Arcadia and Know evil and now working through some of the other material and just got to say love the game and frog snatch.

  12. Author

    Tribes of Tokyo and the Pathfinder campaign are being recorded and will eventually be posted to the AP site.

    Road Trip was published in 2010 so the playtests are on the AP site. Look at the MAOCT category to see them or get a PDF of Road Trip and read it πŸ˜€

  13. AH there I see it it’s one of the live games at one of the Con’s, ok I missed those since most of the live games look like different versions of either the manor or the park.
    Thanks Ross.

  14. “You guys should make a Release the Kraken T-shirt. I’d buy one.”


  15. So where is my release the Kraken T-shirt? I have money. Do you have shirt?

  16. Well, after re-listening to this episode, I decided to take a look at the comments too, and these comments got me into the jive to do a mock up of a t-shirt design for Release the Kraken!


  17. Aw… so there never was an all-SAIRAC game? πŸ™

    A t-shirt would be awesome.

  18. I’d like to listen to this episode, but there’s a Raillery video up here instead. Anyone care to see what happened? Just finished listening to the campaign and it was a great ride, so it’s be nice if i could find out what there was to say about it afterward.

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