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Cinematic Alchemy RPG may compete with DnD’s virtual tabletop

Alchemy RPG, a VTT focused on providing a cinematic experience, may be one the best new competitors to DnD’s upcoming virtual tabletop.

DnD Alchemy - a blue cave with a large winding stone staircase in the centre

A virtual tabletop for DnD 5e and basically every other major tabletop RPG under the sun is making a splash, after launching on Kickstarter on Tuesday. Alchemy RPG is a virtual tabletop, currently in early access, that boasts a cinematic experience, with animated environments, ambient sound, music, and custom UIs. It launched on Kickstarter on April 25, and has raised $250,000 at time of publication, one day into its crowdfunding campaign.

Alchemy RPG features licensed support for 12 RPG systems, with content from 50 publishers and creators. These include Morkborg, Pathfinder 2e, Free Leagues’ Dragonbane and Vaesen, Modiphius’ Fallout RPG, Chaosium’s Call of Cthulhu, and 5e content from Kobold Press.

It features tools for making characters, adventures and worlds, and its battle map includes tools like customisable fog of war, tokens, and token scaling. Its unique selling point, though, is how attractive and cinematic it’ll apparently be: “We still have the map and grid, but we don’t think that’s the only thing players want to look at for hours during a session,” the project’s FAQ explains.

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Of course it’s notable that DnD publisher Wizards of the Coast has its own virtual tabletop coming out “in some form” in 2023, which is also going for a highly visual, cinematic appeal. Of course, as it uses Unreal Engine 5 and looks every bit like a video game, Wizards’ tool will be more big budget than Alchemy, but the latter virtual tabletop could still be a viable competitor to the upcoming DnD tool. While it features lots of books from other RPGs, it can’t use Wizards’ DnD content, only what’s covered by the (now-unchanging) OGL.

The Alchemy VTT has been in early access for one year, and the finalised ‘version one’ is expected to be out in August. Apparently, it’s almost finished, and the Kickstarter project is mainly to recoup its costs, and “provide continuous development support to the Alchemy platform”.

The base product of Alchemy will be free, allowing players to create three games, characters and one ‘content universe’ without paying anything. But unlimited access will be provided for an $8 per month subscription.

Backers of the Kickstarter will receive one of these subscriptions, with higher tiers unlocking digital content from Alchemy’s partner creators. You can find many of them on our best tabletop RPGs list.