Incarna
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News & Updates - latest version is 6.x

Incarna ("Inifinite Incarnations") is a set of free role-playing game system rules for RPG gamers which can be adapted to any literary or campaign setting on many platforms. Built around character envisioning with dynamic action, and strong plot-driven scenarios.
  • Incarna 6 is a condensation of the core approach and rule set into tighter presentation. Mystic powers (Divine, Occult and Psychic) still need work. Incarna 4.x is cancelled and 5.8 (before full powers set were posted) is pre-empted; Sparks will be continued.
  • Business: Business platform development, license, and relationship opportunities exist in many forms.
  • Development: Material developers use Google Groups to discuss Incarna game issues. This is currently publicly viewable.
  • Testing: Material testers use Google Groups to discuss Incarna game issues. This is currently publicly viewable.
  • See Infinite Incarnations - The latest publications for updates & follow on Facebook (primary) and Google+ and Twitter.
Creative Commons License Incarna Game System by Kelly Berger is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. Based on a work at http://www.incarna.net. Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://www.incarna.net/biz.
Incarna is organized out of Seattle WA, USA (98126).
Thanks to everyone for their support - [Berger]

What can I Expect of the Gaming Experience?

We believe gaming should be a social event. If all you want to use is your imagination, you can read any number of books. However, when people get together and share the gaming experience, it is often far more rich, memorable, and interesting than any single person's imagination. The gaming experience is going to be different for everyone. Expectations will vary as well as different reactions to situations that come up during the play. The nature of most people is to be competitive and to want to succeed at their endeavors. Most gaming scenarios reflect a principle of collaboration - in order for one to succeed, all must work to achieve a common goal. If a group works together, their ends are (most often) to everyone's advantage and the experience is positive. Ultimately, the purpose of the game is the same as any other - to have fun. While different players will have different expectations, we have found that players who challenge themselves - choosing to play within limitations, who see risk and character death seriously, will have the most fulfilling time. Knowing your character cannot die tends to promote power-gaming and cheapens the satisfaction of solving puzzles and surviving the scenarios the GM provides.

Character Experience

Characters controlled by players are called "Player Characters" (PC's - also called 'toons' or 'avatars'); Game Masters control "Non-Player Character" (NPC's) actions through narration. Characters are the vehicles for interaction in these settings. Characters are created and developed using Character Points (CP). All characters have a set amount of CP at the time of creation (suggested average is 30, plus your starting CHA rating; a 4 CHA = +4 CP), after which development is done using CP awarded by the GM. The GM rewards each character a certain number of CP for each game session. How much reward should be in relation to the frequency of play, the duration of the game, and any criteria set out ahead of time. These are used to increase or gain various facets reflecting the goals and drives of the character - attributes, traits, powers, etc. - just like experience and learning allows real individuals to grow and survive. Ultimately, CP may be used in any way that the game rules and GM allow. Some CP costs are noted as "deferred". This means they are to be paid for with CP gained later; half of each reward thereafter must go towards paying off the deferred cost. Ultimately, Action Points will also be given for rewards, which will allow characters to improve their chances of success at critical junture or take risks they would not normally take - enhancing the gaming experience.

These materials are Core Incarna concepts. It is considered important that gamers understnad these fundamanetal concepts to play the game effectively. Core materials may reference non-core attributed materials; these rely on mastering the core concepts to use them.

Core While not necessary, you may want to start with the core Multiverse to understand the larger context of Incarna.

Make a Character! - New players should check out the Quickstart guide, while more experienced ones may want to know about the full range of character creation options.

What is Roleplaying?

Game Masters and Players both participate in roleplaying through character interaction. The best way to describe roleplaying is to imagine yourself as an actor in a play. Your purpose is to enact the part of another person, to play the role of a character. This character may be like you or not - a hero, villain or other more mundane role. The set can be an ancient fantasy land or the distant future on another planet. It is a chance to experience something you would not or could not normally. The possibilities are as endless as your imagination. A roleplaying game like Incarna offers a set of rules and guidelines that allow players to interact within this shared experience.

Player Experience

The Players Guide is the best reference work for players, otherwise use the linked paged content reference materials - many sections have specific callouts for helping players roleplay and use the rules to their advantage. Also, check out the periodic Infinite Incarnations publication for updates and musings.

For select players, some content is hosted on the web site.

Optimize the Group! - Player/adventuring groups should check out the group options for cooperative bonuses and incentives.

Review - What do You Need to Play?

Basic Roles: There must be a Game Master (GM) and one or more players. As the players decide their character's actions in response to the scenarios the GM places them in, the GM will determine how the campaign (an instance of a setting and timeline controlled by the GM) changes and other characters react to them. Each role uses the same set of rules to resolve outcomes. The core rules are the only necessary elements for you to create characters and resolve actions as a GM and a player. The most important requirement for the gaming experience is is your imagination and the ability to visualize your character in an in-game situation. More than just checks and rules is the drama of a good tale, a drama is best developed with multiple players.

Character Record: In order to keep track of your character, and their progress, you will also need a method of recording all the information about your character. This allows you to track their history, changes and status as it changes through game play. Tools for this vary between Platforms. An example of this for tabletop games is Obsidian Portal for character storage.

Resolution Means: You will need some means of generating a result check. In tabletop games this is done through dice rolling [d100] [d10], while console and computer games do this for you. Consider a tool like Dice Stream (easy Google+ plugin) for making witnessed checks together online. For a simple password based session, try Catch /Your Hare!

Game Master Experience

Game Masters (GM's) create and/or use settings, building encounters with creatures, and decide the outcome of actions within the game, describing them through narration. They must also decide what rewards are appropriate for the character (based on player interaction). The job of game master can be a complex and difficult task, depending on the story, style, and expectations of the gaming group. If you have ever been in the role of game master and/or are already comfortable with the responsibilities involved, then you probably do not need to be advised on how to handle game play or group issues. Good GMing is more than just a mastery of the mechanics. It involves aspects of human behavior, creativity, storytelling, material knowledge and many other things. You must be able to both plan well, and adapt to any situation. Incarna offers a set of GM Guidelines for assisting in building encounters and resolving actions, as well as advisory materials on running groups and building group dynamics.

[Obsidian Portal Logo]

Any Advice for A New Group Starting a Game? This is as varied an experience as there are players in the world. The best advice is to be above-board in all things, communicate clearly the expectations of time and contributions, and document a little of the races, flavor, current events, and physical elements of the setting so everyone knows what to expect. Check out Pen and Paper Games for a variety of information on the forums.

We strongly encourage publishing online as much of your material as possible using tools such as Obsidian Portal. Both play scenario details and camapign notes. The usual restrictions apply for commercial use of the Incarna system.

Plan an Encounter! - Resolve a scripted or published play encounter, or plan your own!

Review - What do You Need to Play?

Basic Roles: There must be a Game Master (GM) and one or more players. As the players decide their character's actions in response to the scenarios the GM places them in, the GM will determine how the campaign (an instance of a setting and timeline controlled by the GM) changes and other characters react to them. Each role uses the same set of rules to resolve outcomes. The core rules are the only necessary elements for you to create characters and resolve actions as a GM and a player. The most important requirement for the gaming experience is is your imagination and the ability to visualize your character in an in-game situation. More than just checks and rules is the drama of a good tale, a drama is best developed with multiple players.

Character Record: In order to keep track of your character, and their progress, you will also need a method of recording all the information about your character. This allows you to track their history, changes and status as it changes through game play. Tools for this vary between Platforms. An example of this for tabletop games is Obsidian Portal for character storage.

Resolution Means: You will need some means of generating a result check. In tabletop games this is done through dice rolling [d100] [d10], while console and computer games do this for you. Consider a tool like Dice Stream (easy Google+ plugin) for making witnessed checks together online. For a simple password based session, try Catch /Your Hare!

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