Tuesday, October 24, 2023

Kickstarter - Adventurer Conqueror King System Imperial Imprint (ACKS II)

Welcome to the new edition of the bestselling fantasy role-playing game. Adventure, conquer, and reign.

The first system I ran upon returning to the GM's table was AD&D 1e / OSRIC. The second system I ran was the Adventurer Conquerer King System, and it felt like B/X tuned up to 11, in all of the good ways. From what I've read of ACKS II, I'm eager to get behind the DM's screen and run some ACKS again :)

The Adventurer Conqueror King System Imperial Imprint (hereafter referred to as ACKS II) Kickstarter is going strong out of the gate. As I type this, it is less than 9 hours after launch and it has already raised over $180K. Phew! The OSR is still going strong.

ACKS II is being released in a total of three books, the Revised Rulebook (the core rules and player-facing), the Judges Journal, and the Monstrous Manual. The core three books in PDF come in at $50, the Revised Rulebook in Print & PDF is $75, and the Revised Rulebook in Print & PDF with the Judges Journal & Monstrous Manual in PDF is $100. I'm in at $175, with the three books in Print plus PDF, along with a Referee Screen. The $175 price point is good through 10/26 before the price goes up to $200.

Since the inception of the Old School Renaissance in 2008, there have been countless retro-clones of D20 fantasy games.  Any gamer seeking an old-school RPG has a thousand options. But ACKS II isn't like any of those games. Because with ACKS II you get:

Endgame action that's more than just a treadmill of higher HD foes. Build and run domains, conquer your enemies in grand wars, break the laws of magic with ritual experiments,  run a criminal syndicate, even anoint yourself a god and empower yourself with the worship of your loyal subjects. The experience point mechanics integrate campaign activities into the core gameplay loop, enabling your character to level up in new ways as his temporal power grows!

Epic pitched battles as grand as any in fiction or history. Don't settle for so-called "mass combat" rules that can't handle battles bigger than a few hundred combatants. With ACKS II you can field armies that measure in the hundreds of thousands and fight hordes that make the earth shiver.

Integrated in-game economics that make sense. Naysayers will claim that fantasy adventure worlds can never have plausible in-game economies. ACKS II proves them wrong with a robust economic system that's easy to use because we've done all the heavy lifting for you.

Sandbox setting design that emphasizes player agency. Our clear,  comprehensive  (and comprehensible!) guidelines, based on the top down zoom-in method in our book Arbiter of Worlds, help your world come to life.

Fractal design with modular rules. ACKS II is designed to let you focus on what matters to your campaign, diving as deeply as you want into any area of the game knowing that it just works at every level. 

Scaling complexity with an easy-to-learn new player experience.  ACKS II is structured such that the players only need to learn a narrow slice of the rules to start playing, and then incrementally scales up the mechanical crunch as the players improve their mastery of their game.  

Customizable and transparent construction tools. We open up the hood and let you see how the ACKS II engine runs. Build your own custom classes, spells, magic types, monsters, and more, knowing that anything you create will mesh well and balance properly with the canon material. 

Fearsome fighters that can change the course of a pitched battle.  Say goodbye to "quadratic mages and linear fighters" and embrace epic heroism. Combat mechanics for cleaves, sweep attacks, and special maneuvers allow your fighters to conduct a symphony of slaughter on the battlefield.

Thrilling thieves that lead the way in dungeon delves and urban adventures.  In ACKS II, thieves are skilled experts from level one. With special mechanics for shadowy senses, hasty searching, hijinks, and more, thieves can finally steal the spotlight.

Whatever you've ever wanted to do in a fantasy world -- ACKS II already does that.


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