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One of Raine's biggest hobbies has always been gaming. It all started with an Atari and spread out to Yu-Gi-Oh!, Magic: the Gathering, and Dungeons & Dragons. As an artist, Raine takes pride in painting models for games as well as making his own terrain. He's also been a writer for many years, working both in the journalism industry and writing pieces of fiction. He decided to create Initiative : Tabletop as a platform to talk about all things gaming that he simply thought were cool, and reviewing games became a part of it!

Shadows of Esteren: Occultism On Kickstarter, Blowing Through Stretch Goals

Shadows of Esteren

Shadows of Esteren, one of the most successful projects on Kickstarter, is back again with a new project that’s already funded many times over. This time the creators are seeking to fund a brand new book, entitled “Occultism” along with a brand new soundtrack to accompany the game. If you haven’t had the time to check out Shadows of Esteren, now is your chance. As a big fan of this game and RPGs in general I can safely say that Esteren has something for every RPG player out there.

Taking place in a gothic setting, Shadows of Esteren draws more on the storytelling aspect of role-playing games rather than the action and combat that most others do. It’s got a rich world filled with lore that’s based off of Celtic mythology and folklore. Shadows go bump in the night as your party struggles through many different trials and tribulations and there’s something out there that’s darker than the dark. There’s something unseen, and the horrors it possesses can – and will – drive you mad.

A brand new supplement to the game, Occultism adds to the already dripping theme and world created within Shadows of Esteren. Here’s a bit about the new project:

Occultism is the new book of the Shadows of Esteren series. Started in 2012, spanning about 120 pages, this supplement is a “thema.” Each thema explores one of the strong themes of the universe. After The Monastery of Tuath, centered on the order of the monks of the Temple, Occultism details professions related to esotericism and mysticism. It includes many game aids and additional rules, as well as a long scenario, “A Tidy Room.”
This thema comes with a music album, Rise. In development for several years, Rise is the third album in the universe of Shadows, following Of Men and Obscurities and Dearg. The two composers of Rise have accomplished a hybrid work of art, sometimes reminiscent of Ennio Morricone, but flirting with darker, more electric tones similar to Radiohead. It numbers fifteen songs.

I have the first soundtrack and it’s fantastic. The creators of SoE have brilliantly wrapped the game up in a style that doesn’t leave the players without thought for one moment. The GM has a lot of tools at his/her disposal to make game sessions have the ability to transport players into another realm upon a whim.

This particular campaign has already funded and it’s busting through stretch goals like a freight train. There are plenty of levels for both veterans and newcomers to hop on to get acquainted with the game, and you can even pick up The Black Rose – a different sort of game set within the SoE universe – by backing the campaign at certain levels. We’ll have reviews for both Shadows of Esteren and The Black Rose coming soon, so stay on the lookout and don’t forget to check out the latest campaign on Kickstarter!


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