Icon Options: Learning from Organized Play

13th Age BannerAt my FLGS, I’m GMing 13th Age Organized Play, second season, set in the Dragon Empire of the core book. My home campaign is 13th Age with my own setting. For my day job, I’m working on Gods and Icons. 13th Age immersion therapy!

If you’re a 13th Age GM, I encourage you to sign up for this program. I’m finding a lot of cool things in the Organized Play, including Icon Options. (Have you heard the rumors of Organized Play for Numenera? I have, and I want to believe!)

Icon Options are bits of background that only come into play if some of the players have a relationship with that icon. They don’t have to roll a 5 or a 6, they just need a relationship.

For example, in the first adventure, Night of Deadly Stars, the players are hired by Hosford Merrywife. She changes based on what relationships the players have with the icons. Relationship with the Archmage? Hosford’s a failed wizard who can give +1 to skill checks that use magical solutions. Elfqueen? Hosford’s part elf. Not half, just a bit, but she can give the party +1 to spot things.

When the party runs into bandits, if they have a relationship with the Empeor, the bandits are imperial deserters. Knowing imperial tactics gives the PCs +1 to attacks. If the Diabolist is important (defined by having PCs have a relationship with her), then the bandits are planning a sacrifice to appease a demon. The PCs would do fine…

The adventure never lists options for all 13 icons, but moves around, so most will be hit. After listing a few with interesting ideas, it’s often followed by “Icon Option: Other Icons.” Back to the bandit example, the bandits have looted a caravan that belonged to servants of the other icon. They might have fine elven threads, dwarven ale, and so on.

I love this concept. The players are adventuring in a world where the icons they picked are the important ones. And not just on a 5 or a 6.

I am so stealing this.

3 thoughts on “Icon Options: Learning from Organized Play

  1. I’ve just started with 13th Age organized play. How does it handle players coming and going? I don’t find much information on out of game management. Pathfinder has a ton of information on handling characters between games.

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    1. I always bring some pre-gens in case a new player shows up, or a player who is out of sync shows up. You might want to ask over on G+ in the 13th Age Community. Ash Law is on there a lot, and if anyone knows, it’s Ash.

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