A few days ago, we wrote an article about La Notte Eterna, an adventure for D&D 5e. We were in love with this amazing adventure, and now we are pleased to share with you, more about his creator, Jason R. Forbus. Below, you will find a quick interview that we enjoyed a lot, but before starting, we’d like to invite you to pre-follow his project. If you haven’t done so already on Kickstarter here.
Tell us about yourself
I was born and raised in Italy, where I currently live happily surrounded by hundreds of books and close to the sea. I’ve written novels, fairy tales, poetry and essays but the great love of my life remains the Fantasy genre. The idea of walking into a tavern and meet fellow wayfarers with whom to embark on a great adventure, you just can’t beat that.
What is your gaming experience?
I’ve been playing TTRPG for over 23 years. Like most, I too started with playing a chaotic neutral human barbarian to eventually try interpreting ever more complex characters (not to say a CN human barbarian is not complex, eh). I’ve been drawn into GMing from my early roleplaying days thanks to my knack for telling stories. I tried dozens of TTRPG, from the renown to the obscure, and there was not a single time that I didn’t enjoy creating credible and exciting settings to immerse myself and the players into.
What inspired you to create this game?
The inspiration for La Notte Eterna came from a heavy metal song, it was instrumental and somehow evocative of a dark place torn by conflict. The song inspired me to create the Loy’ach, a powerful and evil aberration that in the lore of La Notte Eterna caused the destruction of a vast and powerful league of cities. From there, writing about the histories of Neir became a pleasant obsession. I’d spend days and nights writing chronicles about heroes and villains from a distant past. It felt like they were standing before me, whenever I described a city I pictured myself walking its roads, visiting its temples and castles, greeting guards and townsfolk I met in the street… La Notte Eterna escapes the definition of «campaign setting» because it carries in itself several possible campaigns, it is so vast and detailed that a GM can easily draw inspiration for literally years of adventure. And we have more stories to tell and big plans for the project, plans that will involve the community of players and GMs out there.
For how long, you’ve been working on this game?
It took me about 12 years, with breaks in-between, to write the 1000+ page-multi campaign setting of La Notte Eterna. During the past three years, together with a motivated team of developers, I focused on creating game mechanics, scores of monsters – including new dragon species! – dozens of magic items, spells, and more to add even more flavor to the project.
What is the biggest challenge you have had in this project?
The biggest challenge was presenting the project in a way that could be quickly understood by the community. Being such a vast and detailed setting, it is hard for me to focus on a single thing. After some thinking, I released the Quick Start Guide (available for free at this link: https://www.aliribelli.com/la-notte-eterna/
) with the aim of presenting its two key elements: the eternal darkness that fell upon the whole of Nebvarasa, and the Celestial War – the century-old conflict that sees the gods fighting for dominance over the divine world of Rengaria. I’m satisfied with the result and really can’t wait to present the full books.
What makes this game different from the others?
In addition to the new game mechanics we are presenting (Meteors, True Magic, Sphere Magic, Divine Inspiration) and scores of new monsters, 16 new subclasses, 4 backgrounds, 50+ spells and more, what really sets La Notte Eterna apart from other campaign settings is its level of detail. Each nation is described through a multi-standpoint approach: their legends, history, customs, society, religion, law, army… The history of one nation connects to those of others, to the point that you could also read and enjoy La Notte Eterna as fantasy books in their own right. It is an «old school» approach that requires a lot of work but in the end, the goal was always that of equipping GMs with all the necessary tools to tell great and unforgettable stories.
Adventuring with 5e in a time of changes, I want to ask, in DND What’s your favorite class
La Notte Eterna is designed for 5e and yes, we are aware of all that is going on with the OGL and are looking into how the situation develops. Rest assured, fellow meteor seeker, we will keep all we designed and more while adopting the best OGL/ORC available. This said, my favorite subclass for La Notte Eterna is the Spiritualist: the result of powerful necromantic magic tested on involuntary guinea pigs and degenerated into experiments that defy every law and morality. Sometimes the guinea pigs “survive” by transforming into beings with supernatural powers and skills from the dark realm of the dead where Krea (the goddess of death) sails on the endless ocean of necrotic energy. Spiritualists are warlocks to the extent that the pact has been imposed on them. Sometimes they learn to master it, more rarely to live with it, never to love it. I like the fact they can pick and choose different powers and skills based on the spirits they have absorbed.
What are the 3 main factors that players should support this project?
First, we are in this because we love TTRPG and great stories just like you do. When our Kickstarter campaign will launch, you will see our passion reflecting in each physical item and digital token presented. The commitment we put into this was never intended as a means to make money, when all is said and done what we really aim to accomplish is a set of core books that will become a cornerstone in the recent history of TTRPG.
Second, while this is our first campaign on Kickstarter we are no noobs in the publishing industry. We are supported by Ali Ribelli Edizioni, a well-known publishing house in Italy with over 800 titles published in several languages and formats that are distributed in Italy and abroad. We know what we’re doing and where we’re headed to.
Third, La Notte Eterna’s high quality illustrations and graphics, detailed narrative and exciting new game mechanics.
What is the future plans you see for the game? Is there any plan for different languages?
If this campaign on Kickstarter goes as planned, we’re aiming at launching our next campaign for the Spanish and French-speaking audience. Every support that you, fellow meteor seeker, can offer to the February 2023 campaign will be key to such a near future endeavor.
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La Notte Eterna an adventure setting for D&D 5e / soon in Kickstarter
Amante de los juegos de mesa y de cartas coleccionables, del cine y del anime. Editor reciente de la revista.