Pretty much as soon as we announced Everyday Heroes as a spiritual successor to d20 Modern, people began asking, “When are you doing Urban Arcana?” And we’ve been listening and planning, and now the promised time approaches! We’re getting started on Everyday Arcana, our own urban fantasy ruleset. Here is what you can expect, at least in broad terms.
We recently put out a call for contest entries for what will become our core setting for these rules, and we put the finalists to a public vote. We’ve got our finalist in “Shadows Surrounding“, a world where the secret of magic has recently been revealed.
This will be our default world, with examples throughout the text referencing it, adventures published for it, and a whole lot of lore supporting it. But there will also be plenty of advice, options, and examples for creating your own worlds! We want you to be able to play any sort of urban fantasy you like by picking and choosing the pieces you like, and deciding for yourself how they all fit together.
To this end, we’re planning to have hero options that allow you to be magical in a wide variety of ways, and that let GMs zero in on the types of magic they want to use in their own worlds. Magic can be learned, practiced, inherited, or accidentally acquired. Smart Heroes can use plans to retroactively prepare the perfect spell, Wise and Charming Heroes can cast spells through focus points and influence dice, and there will be plenty of spellcasters like the ones we’re all familiar with from more traditional fantasy games.
But there’s a lot more to find here as well. You might also be an Agile Hero pyrokinetic who shoots bolts of fire and punches with flaming fists, a Strong Hero who’s strong due to telekinetic magic that can be extended at a range, or a Tough Hero who can use their life force for magical effects like healing their allies. With these superpower-like classes, anyone can be magical!
Players will also be able to choose from a wide variety of fantasy species, from elves and goblins to vampires and werewolves: enough to fill up your own world, whatever the genre.
For the GMs, there will be hordes of monsters to throw at your players, piles of magic items to reward them with, world-building advice to help you craft your own setting, pre-written adventures to get you started right away, and all manner of other tools, tips, and tricks for you to use.
We will be launching Everyday Arcana with four books, which will be available in 2024. These books are:
The Everyday Arcana Player’s Guide
This book will be full to the brim with new player options, including rules for playing a variety of non-human species, all sorts of magical backgrounds, professions, and classes, and a full set of spells.
The Everyday Arcana GM’s Guide
In this tome, you will find tools and advice for running modern fantasy games, the deeper secrets of the “Shadows Surrounding” setting, and a full guide to creating your own Everyday Arcana world. It will also contain magical items and other goodies to give to your heroes as rewards.
The Everyday Arcana Bestiary
The Bestiary will present you with a massive array of creatures, monsters, and magical beings to include in your games. Here, you will find opponents to challenge your heroes at every level, whether you are playing in the “Shadows Surrounding” setting or one of your own making.
Shadows Surrounding World of Adventure
This book will introduce players to our official Everyday Arcana game setting: “Shadows Surrounding” In a world like our own, there is a hidden society of magical practitioners and creatures that keep themselves hidden. But in 2014, that secret was revealed and, since that time, magical practitioners have been coming out of hiding. As a result, magic is a growing force in the world and society, but many secrets still remain to be discovered.
I’m super excited to get started on this project. It’s been one that I’ve been looking forward to since the start of Everyday Heroes, and seeing it start to solidify has been a delight. I hope you’re all ready for Everyday Arcana!
Chris “Goober” Ramsley