I’ve written dozens of blog posts about my thoughts on the future of Shadow World and now with Terry’s passing, it’s unclear if there is even a future for the setting. Of course, there are many RM users that have no interest in Shadow World and there are other settings that might not fit quite neatly into the world. But that’s true for any setting; I have no interest in the Forgotten Realms or Tekumel (although that setting is intriguing for it’s “alienness”!
But now we are at a crossroads. RMU is being rolled out without any supporting setting or adventures; Terry won’t be writing anymore material; and yet, TTRPG’s are more popular than ever AND building a new world setting for any game system has a high barrier to entry for anyone.
Look at the cover art for EMER. Wow. Look at the material Terry has written over 30 years. Again
How might Shadow World survive or even prosper now?
- An aggressive re-statting for RMU.
- A d20 version.
- A flexible game license for writers to place their adventures in the Shadow World setting.
- An editorial schedule of micro-adventures, modules and regional books over a 5 year horizon.
While some resources would need to be deployed (art, page layout and editing) much of this framework is already in place. I wrote about this HERE in early 2021….
I’m not a big believer in “production by committee”, but we already have a core group of productive resources that could be deployed. Rolemasterblog has proven consistent material for over 8 years, over 70 adventure hooks and multiple publications. I’ve written extensively about Shadow World and have posted up quite a bit of SW material here and on the RMForums. My brother Matt (Vroomfogle) is the Shadow World moderator at the RMForums, was the architect and project manager for the SW Players Guide, was the early primary author for RMU Core, ran the Nomikos library, and was a participant in many RM products in the 2000s.
There is a roadmap of ideas, products, role-out and support–what do you think?