Lost Citadel Talent Search Winners

When CA Suleiman and I discussed running a talent search in the lead-up to this project, we had high hopes for the number and quality of the submissions we would get and even though reading and evaluating those submissions in the couple of weeks between the submissions period and the Kickstarter itself was no small amount of extra work it was totally worth it!

As I said to everyone who submitted to our search: It was an absolute honor to be on the receiving end of such creative and lovingly crafted submissions. I was thrilled to see submissions coming in from around the world, from people with writing experience as journalists, novelists, comics writers, and narrative designers. We saw submissions from students of game design, hobbyists, GMs, LARPer, and roleplayers. It was a rich and competitive field and making the choice for who would be finalists was truly difficult.

After stripping the submissions and doing blind readings of the material, we narrowed the list down to five finalists before we moved on to choosing our winner. Or, in this case, WINNERS because when we got down to the final two our judges literally could not choose one over the other… which is what led us to choose TWO winners to put on the Lost Citadel project: Kate Baker and Anna Landin.

When we asked Kate what her reaction to the announcement was, she said, “I couldn’t believe it when the results were announced; I had to keep refreshing the page to make sure my name was really on there! With the first few people I messaged about it, all that I could manage to say was, ‘Eeeeee!’ I have since regained the ability to put coherent words together, but I am still incredibly excited to get to be a part of this project.”

Anna’s response was similar. “I was overwhelmed—and overjoyed!—to find out that I’d won. It’s an incredible honour to be chosen, knowing how much greatness there is to be found in the tabletop community. I’m thankful for the opportunity, and I mean to do my best to rise to the challenge.”

Make no mistake, folks, the fact that you have backed this project with so much enthusiasm from day one is the factor that allows us to make this move, to have this property we’re launching that in turn requires an adventure (and the authors to design it). I look forward to seeing how far we can take The Lost Citadel and I doubly look forward to getting down to work with Anna and Kate.

Kate Baker played her first tabletop RPG about five years ago, and immediately fell in love with the hobby. Now she loves introducing new people to gaming! She got interested in writing her own RPG content about a year and a half ago. By day, she’s a mild-mannered engineer. She lives with her husband and a very silly hound dog.

Anna Landin is a Swedish comic artist, illustrator, storyteller, and builder of imaginary worlds. Currently engaged as the artist for the Rusty Quill Gaming Podcast, her work has also been published in the Enough Space for Everyone Else anthology, and can be found on covers for the horror-fantasy webcomic I, Necromancer. When not day-dreaming about the imaginary geography of unreal worlds and drinking more tea than any one person rightly should, she can be found collecting dice, drawing witches, or working on her own webcomic, Grassblades.

Now Kickstarting: The Lost Citadel Post-Apocalyptic RPG

Please back The Lost Citadel on Kickstarter

Now funding on Kickstarter, The Lost Citadel is a roleplaying game of post-apocalyptic fantasy, with rules adapted from the Fifth Edition of the World’s Most Popular Roleplaying Game. We would appreciate it if you’d check out the campaign and back it if you’re so inclined, and we’d love it if you were to share the above image, and a link to the campaign, on your social media pages.


One Week to Kickstarter Launch!

People of Redoubt!

First and foremost: A hearty thanks to all those who submitted to the Lost Citadel Talent Search! We received so many good entries, from women of so many different backgrounds and walks of life. Seeing them all filled us not merely with hope for the future, but also with confidence that we were doing the right thing by hosting this contest, and we really couldn’t be happier with the outcome. Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t do it, ladies, because you can.

The contest finalists are now set, and we’ll be announcing the winner a week from today on our Kickstarter page for the Lost Citadel game. And speaking of which…

The crowdfunding campaign for The Lost Citadel launches next Tuesday!

We’ll be back next week with updates on the contest and the campaign, but in the meantime we hope you’ll join us in congratulating the finalists of the talent search. They’ve earned our recognition and appreciation.

LC Talent Search: Final Week!

Greetings, fans of dark fantasy.

To those of you who have already taken part in our Lost Citadel Talent Search, thank you for sharing your writing samples with us, and beyond that, thank you for supporting our diversity initiative in the very best of ways: through participation.

Next week, we’ll get back to teasing the project itself ahead of our launch on Kickstarter next month, but for today, let this serve as a general reminder that we’re in the last week for the open submission period on the Lost Citadel Talent Search. If you identify as a woman and are interested in working on a cool dark fantasty property, we would love to see what you can do.

In order to be considered for the contest, your submission must be in before May 16th, but we’ll be keeping the sub box open thereafter to encourage women writers to get their work in front of us; we’re always looking for strong talent, and future opportunities for writing work are a given. The winner will be announced to the public as part of our Lost Citadel Kickstarter project next month. Guidelines are as follows:

  • Submissions should be no longer than 3,000 total words.
  • Submissions should be sent with an introductory email that includes your name and contact information; during the evaluation stage we will be stripping the submissions of identifying information and assigning each a code number as part of a blind reading so they can be judged without regard to name, existing reputation (or lack thereof), or anything other than the quality of the work.
  • Submissions should be saved as a document file and sent as an email attachment to lostcitadelrpg@greenronin.com. Don’t worry about heavy formatting, tone-appropriate font choices, or other stylistic flourishes.

While the setting is dark fantasy and its core expression will be in 5E, you are NOT required to adhere to those specifics in your submissions. We welcome submissions featuring mechanics from any edition, or those for our in-house system (AGE), or even those featuring other popular systems you feel might be dark fantasy-appropriate.

Keep in mind that this is not a math test disguised as a talent search. While submitting a well constructed Pathfinder stat block may be acceptable, it doesn’t go very far toward showcasing one’s talent and/or ability as a writer, only one’s ability to do math. Remember, the idea is to make a strong impression with your writing.

By submitting your work for evaluation, you represent that you are the sole author of the material being submitted, agree that Green Ronin and its agents have the right to read your submissions for the purposes of this search, and acknowledge that Green Ronin is under no obligation to use, buy, license, or adapt your talent search submission for any other use.

Good luck, everyone!

Lost Citadel Story Teaser

Greetings, dark fantasy fans.

Now that we’re one week out from the launch of our Lost Citadel Talent Search, we’ve been getting queries about what sort of vibe the setting has and what stories set in the world of Redoubt tend to read like and to focus on.

While submissions to our talent search won’t require deep knowledge of either the setting or the default game system in which it will debut in RPG form, we’re thinking it might be helpful for prospective contributors to read some of the fiction from the first anthology, Tales of the Lost Citadel, and that’s what this blog post is all about.

We on the Lost Citadel team are delighted to see the long-awaited announcement that Green Ronin will be handling the printing and distribution of that anthology as part of their new fiction imprint, but as the release of that new edition is still a ways off yet, we’re offering a look at one of the stories appearing in that anthology today, as a freebie to fans and prospective contributors alike.

It’s called “The Bone-Shaker’s Daughter” and it was written by Bram Stoker Award-winning dark fantasist Mercedes M. Yardley. It’s just one of many fine tales in the collection, but it illustrates some of the central themes of the setting in some deliciously chilling ways, and we hope it inspires both your creativity and your enthusiasm to contribute to our world.

Enjoy:  “The Bone-Shaker’s Daughter” by Mercedes M. Yardley.

The Lost Citadel Talent Search

Greetings, fans of dark fantasy.

As some of you may have heard, yesterday Green Ronin announced that a new talent search will be going live in a couple weeks. Rather than tease a bit from the Lost Citadel Roleplaying project or its setting, as usual for this blog, I’d like to take this chance to talk a bit about that outreach effort.

Nicole (Lindroos, of GR) and I discussed the whys and wherefores of the concept at length before we decided to go ahead with it. We don’t enjoy the idea of exclusion, and we know that feeling excluded from things can hurt, but that is exactly in part why we are doing this talent search.

The tabletop gaming world has come a long way from its humble origins, and this includes the participation of people who identify as women. Nicole and I are proud to have been a part of that development, but we also know that there’s more that we and others can do. History shows us that women often feel apprehensive about trying to make their way in arenas that are traditionally male-dominated, even when the talent and willingness to contribute are there, and being proactive about including them is one of the best ways to address that concern.

And for clarity’s sake: Tabletop gaming is one of those largely male-dominated arenas.

As a concept, the Lost Citadel has been and will continue to be designed in an expressly women-inclusive way. One of the core team, Jaym Gates, is a woman, and half the contributors to the table of contents of the first anthology (Tales of the Lost Citadel) were women. The setting/property does not shy away from telling stories by women, about women, or for women, even as it endeavors to provide a context for telling stories that are gender-neutral. To us, that is genuine inclusivity, which is part of why non-binary-identifiying folks are welcome to submit to this talent search, too.

Both men and women were on that first anthology, and the same will be true of the LCRPG, but Nicole and I observed that if there was ever a situation in which it was clearly the right thing to do to reach out to women specifically, to let them know that there’s a place where their efforts and ideas aren’t just welcome but desired, that situation could involve the Lost Citadel.

Specific guidelines on submissions will follow in a separate announcement, but we thank everyone for their interest and for recognizing the positive effect that efforts like this can have.


The Dead

Greetings, people of Redoubt!

In this week’s Lost Citadel RPG blog post, we’re talking a bit about the most omnipresent facet of life in the world’s last city of the living: the Dead.

Ultimately, the Dead are the proverbial barbarians at the gates. The rising tide. The outside. The other. The reason Redoubt is what it is, and why escaping or changing it is no easy feat.

Across Redoubt, the prevalent general term for corpses that rise beyond death is simply “the Dead.” The most common street/nickname for the most numerous category of undead (those that continue to decompose after rising) is “rotters.” Other terms for these creatures exist, of course—different cultures, religions, and people have contributed different epithets over time. Some of the most common include:
The Restless
The Fallen
The Damned

Some are fresh corpses, almost mistakable for living beings (however briefly). Others are little more than skeletons, strung together with fraying tendons and leathery strips of flesh. Most fall somewhere in between; the traditional ragged, rotting, often wounded, shambling corpse.

Or possibly shambling.

Which brings us to one of the most important traits to keep in mind about the undead of Redoubt: They vary. Some are slow, stumbling; some are surprisingly fast and agile. Some are strangely weak, dangerous only in numbers (or to the unprepared), while others display the strength of many men.

Some variation applies to their level of sentience, too, albeit to a much lesser extent. Some are completely mindless; they know absolutely nothing but “move forward and consume,” utterly unaware of outside stimuli unless it provides a target or an obstacle. Most seem to have roughly the sentience of a small predatory animal; they’re capable of very basic decision making, and can recognize obvious threats. Some can form very basic plans, proving cunning enough to use tricks such as playing dead, or to use/improvise basic tools and weapons. And some have just enough sentience to be actively cruel and malevolent.

What seems certain is that all the undead are driven to kill and to consume, by their nature, but it’s equally certain that some seem to enjoy causing fear and agony before the end comes.

The Accord of Last Redoubt

For this week’s Lost Citadel RPG blog post, we take a take a look at the historic treaty and piece of legislation that established the realities of life inside the walls of mankind’s last remaining city.

The city wasn’t always called Redoubt. The dwarves who built it and inhabited it alone for centuries called it Elldimek, meaning “saints’ refuge” in their tongue. After humanity’s remaining ranks swelled the city to teeming, and the native inhabitants were made increasingly small minority, humanity pressed its advantage, betraying its hosts at every turn. The dwarves revolted in a bid to reclaim their sovereignty over their home.

Under the leadership and strategies of the Angat warmasters, the dwarven revolt was soon put down, and humanity gathered to discuss and then sign into law a new world order. They called this the Accord of Last Redoubt.  Among its highlights were as follows:

  • The name of the city changed from Elldimek to Redoubt.
  • The spearheads of the revolt were drawn and quartered in the city square; most of the dwarf nobility were exiled from the city; and the remaining dwarves lost their right to assumed freedom, becoming slaves in their friends’ and neighbors’ homes.
  • The nobilities and interests of each of humanity’s major human cultures — the Angat, Menhada, Ouazi, Surinzan, and Venmir— were granted guarantees of holdings and representation under the new system of government.
  • It established two special orders to see to the city’s needs: The Foresters, who brave the wilds beyond the walls; and the Takers, who handle treatment and disposal of the dead.



Welcome to Redoubt!

Greetings, and welcome to the inaugural post for the Lost Citadel RPG blog!

We’ll be using this space to tease some of the concepts and art for the Lost Citadel as we roll along towards the launching of our crowdfunding project on Kickstarter (currently slated for late May/early June, but don’t hold us to that quite yet). For those who’ve been following our transmedia experiment from the get-go, much of this will seem familiar, but not all of it, as we’ll also be using this space to reveal some things about the game as it develops!

To start with, we should probably say a bit about what created the city of Redoubt in the first place: A horrible period that the last remaining people alive refer to as the Fall.

Around the city of Redoubt, if you ask what caused the Fall you’ll likely hear a variety of explanations. Some will say the doors to the Underworld flew from their hinges. Others will swear up and down that the vaunted elf kingdom could only grow as powerful as it had on the strength of dark magic, and that it’s all their doing and fault.

But the answer you’re likely to hear most is, “The god of the dead went mad.”

By the end of the Second Ascension, most of the world’s human population was monotheistic, thanks to the spread of Venmir word and the establishment of the powerful Angat Church of Man. Among the polytheistic elves, however, there was indeed a god of the dead, for the near-immortal elf feared death like he feared nothing else, and whatsoever a people fears, that people deifies.

While none can say for sure, it remains true that after the en-masse sacrifice of the elven race, the world’s few remaining elves carried Amarset, their monstrous aspect of death, to Redoubt when they arrived in the company of the Menhada. Obviously, prayers and offerings to Amarset are met with mixed reactions today, as some believe it was he who went mad in the waning days of the last Ascension, and in so doing brought the dead to restless life.

It is not an irony that goes unnoticed that almost all that remains of the elves’ lost pantheon is the one deity who just might be responsible for all of this.



Rob Wieland of Geek & Sundry interviewed our own General Manger, Nicole Lindroos, about The Lost Citadel RPG.