I’ve been developing Breachworld for as long as I can remember, and I’m excited to finally bring it out into the light. I wanted to create a tabletop game that was expansive with possibilities to tell amazing stories, and began collecting elements of what that might look like. I ended up with a time-honored gaming setting: post-apocalyptic Earth. For great stories, I believe that you need interesting characters of great variety, so I utilized Perks, Complications, amazing powers, and alien races of all shapes and sizes. To maximize gaming fun, I think you need to maximize options, so there’s very little that your characters can’t do in Breachworld. The setting allows for anything and everything to be included.
Gates and Breaches
The Earth is an untamed wilderness, unrecognizable from centuries ago when humanity enjoyed a Golden Age of peace, abundance, science, and art. This era of enlightenment was brought about by the discovery of new global teleportation technology known as Gates. The end of human society was similarly brought on decades later by the sudden and catastrophic malfunction of this technology, when control of it was lost and the Gates opened random doorways through space-time. These permanent, uncontrolled rips in the fabric of the universe are known as Breaches. Through them pour alien beings, creatures, vegetation, plagues, and environments. The Earth was transformed in an instant, and human civilization collapsed in an event now known as The Fall. Very little verifiable information exists from the centuries that span from The Fall until only a few generations ago.
The Breaches are still open and active, but humans normally avoid them, preferring to steer clear of the dangers they present. For alien beings or creatures that pass through, it’s a one-way ticket; Breaches seem to all lead into our world, but not back out again. Anything that crosses into our world is permanently made a part of it, to live or die on our dimensional shores.
The Earth is now populated by roughly as many aliens as humans, and for every friendly otherworldly sentient, two are hostile. Feelings about aliens vary from one group of humans to another and the same can be said for aliens’ feelings toward mankind. Some groups actively hunt one another and some work in peaceful coexistence. Some humans enslave alien races while others are subjugated by them. Some aliens are invaders or travelers while some were displaced to Earth by forces they could not control.
Monsters lurk in the mountains, forests, plains, seas, and skies. Otherworldly beasts often defy description, while some resemble creatures of Earth’s history or legends. Some species have proven able to be broken to wear a saddle or yoke and others seem to have a cunning intelligence that belies their animal form. They are part of a transformed ecosystem, often bringing their habitats with them as vegetation has slowly grown through open Breaches and rests with roots in two worlds.
Some semblance of civilization has begun to crawl out of a Lost Age. Pockets of humanity exist either in isolated villages or fortified cities. Others survive by moving from place to place, scavenging or hunting or trading. The easiest way to survive is often through bushwhacking and banditry, taking by force what precious resources are to be had. There are rumors of huge metropolises, even whole nations that have survived The Fall, but it is difficult to find someone who claims to have seen these wonders firsthand.
A resurgence of technology has fueled humankind’s reestablishment. Fossil fuels are almost nonexistent, but there exist some scattered ancient power plants that are still operable. Some automated factories are still functional as well, particularly those with their own fusion reactors. Discovered caches of Golden Age wonders can make one’s fortune overnight. A handful of weapons and plenty of ammunition can make a simple man into a king. Even after a Lost Age, mankind has proven to be resilient and innovative as it rediscovers secrets once thought lost to the past.
Through generations of careful study and painstaking progress, one great discovery trumps all others. The Cooperative, a secretive group of researchers and scholars, has developed a device capable of permanently closing a Breach. For the first time in an age, there is more for mankind to hope for than simple survival. Now, there is a light on humanity’s horizon. The Breach Closure Device has made it possible to reclaim Earth’s dimensional borders, one sealed Breach at a time. All that is left is to use it.
Meanwhile, a network of humans dedicated to reclaiming the planet has grown strong. The Resistance wields significant political power in many communities, while it works from the shadows in others, all with the goal of repelling the alien invasion that nearly destroyed the planet. They fight with words and ideas, as well as with weapons.
Awaiting you are fortune and famine. High adventure and otherworldly horror. Epic heroics and the darkest depths of villainy. This is the world as it exists at this instant, wide open and filled with possibilities. What happens next, is up to you.