Polaris: Chivalric Tragedy At Utmost North

Rollspel: Regler: OSR - Old School Revival

| 2020
Polaris: Chivalric Tragedy At Utmost North
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Once upon a time, as far north as north can go, there lived the greatest people that this world will ever see. They are gone now, destroyed just as the world destroys all beautiful things. All that remains are these moments we call memories, moments frozen from the flow of time.
Polaris: Chivalric Tragedy at Utmost North is a game for three to five players set during the final years of the Northernmost People, just before the remnants of their civilization were swallowed up by their own Mistake.

The protagonists of the story are Knights of the Order of the Stars, beholden by ancient oaths to serve the stars and protect their people. The antagonists facing the knights are multitudinous -- demons from the mistake, doubters from the people, and even betrayers within the brotherhood of Knights.

Polaris uses a set of simple and easy-to-learn mechanics to help guide your game's storyline to an appropriate tragic ending. Each player at the table guides the protagonist in a different capacity, and the central points of the story are further shaped by the twelve Key Phrases.

This is no longer a history; this is not yet a story. This is all that remains. Whatever else is what you make of it.

Polaris is a role-playing game about the dying days of the people, about how their bravest knights struggled against the Mistaken and their sun while the very people that they defended choked themselves in in their own self-indulgence. Polaris has several innovative game mechanics that have often been imitated by never repeated. The entire game is framed and played through use of specific key phrases, used where other games use cards, dice, or ability scores. It requires no GM or central planning player, instead relying on each player to provide those services for each other. In all, the game takes about 12-40 hours to play to conclusion, split up in 3-8 nights of play.

Why you should play this game?
I wrote Polaris to give myself the horrible beauty that I wanted to get from in Nobilis; to give myself the smooth GMless play that I wanted to get out of Universalis; the moral decline that I wanted from Sorcerer but it wasn’t geared to produce; the fairyland magic of Dunsany’s stories that I had never thought possible in a role-playing game. If you like Nobilis, or Universalis, or Sorcerer, or Lord Dunsany, or if you wanted to like any of them, you should try Polaris. I finished Polaris because I wanted to show that death in a role-playing game is not a bad thing. If you like it when your characters suffer and die, you should play Polaris. Polaris debuted at GenCon 2005. By the second day of the con, people were coming up to me and saying “I want to try the game where you say what you want, and then it happens.” You should play Polaris if you want to play a role-playing game where you say what you want, and as long as you’re willing to pay the price, it happens.

Why you shouldn’t play this game?
In Polaris, your knight will betray his people and die forgotten and alone. If you don’t like losing you won’t like Polaris. Polaris is powerful. In Polaris, you will wield the greatest powers of the cosmos against the greatest powers of hell. If you don’t like powerful protagonists, you won’t like Polaris. Polaris is deadly. If you don’t like games where a favorite character can be killed with a dependent clause and the flick of a sword, don’t play Polaris. In Polaris, a player who can improvise well will have an advantage over a player who does not like to improvise (although you are never required to improvise). If you don’t like games that reward snap creative thinking, you won’t like Polaris.