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Modiphius to release first new Discworld RPG for 26 years

The firm behind the Dune roleplaying game is making an official Terry Pratchett's Discworld tabletop RPG, heading to Kickstarter this year.

Terry Pratchett Discworld RPG - Josh Kidby artwork showing a huge crowd of Discworld characters including the Librarian, Sam Vimes, Rincewind, and Twoflower

Wordsmiths though we are, it’s impossible to express our excitement over this one: at long last, we’re finally getting a brand new tabletop Discworld RPG for the first time since 1998.

UK-based tabletop RPG creator and miniature wargame maker Modiphius – famous for other officially licenced tabletop adaptations like the Dune: Adventures in the Imperium RPG and Bethesda-licenced mini skirmisher Fallout: Wasteland Warfare – announced on Thursday it had “secured the rights to produce tabletop games for Terry Pratchett’s internationally bestselling Discworld series”

The firm said in a press release it “intends to publish a tabletop roleplaying game around the city of Ankh-Morpork and the wider Disc, with a Kickstarter for the tabletop roleplaying game planned for late 2024.”

The working title is Terry Pratchett’s Discworld: Adventures in Ankh-Morpork, reflecting Modiphius’ plans to center its game (at launch) on the Disc’s infamous, sprawling, multi-species metropolis – the primary setting for many of Pratchett’s most beloved fantasy novels and home to some of its most iconic characters, including the City Watch and its curmudgeonly commander, Captain Sam Vimes.

Terry Pratchett Discworld RPG - Pratchett Estate and Modiphius image showing the first logo for the new game Adventures in Ankh-Morpork

It’s clear the game is very early in development, and Modiphius hasn’t given out many details about its plans – we don’t yet know if it’ll use the publisher’s proprietary 2D20 RPG dice system, for example, or some new, custom designed ruleset to represent the Discworld’s uniquely bizarre, humor-driven fantasy setting.

As such, the firm’s announcement comes paired with a callout to fans to participate in a survey about what they’d like to see in the new Discworld RPG.

For many fans, the news will be joyous but fundamentally unsurprising, the larger surprise being rather that it has taken 26 entire earth years for another fully fledged Discworld RPG to appear; the last being Steve Jackson Games’ 1998 Discworld Roleplaying Game, based on the eye-wateringly crunchy GURPS system.

Representing the Pratchett Estate in Thursday’s press release, Pratchett’s long-standing personal assistant, business manager, and personal friend Rob Wilkins says the rights deal was a natural fit.

“Terry had a lifelong affection with roleplaying games and it’s an entirely logical path along which you can follow his career from Dungeon Master to him becoming one of our most celebrated and beloved fantasy authors of all time,” Wilkins explains.

“We are delighted to be partnering with Modiphius. We love their work and we love their ethos and we entirely trust them to get things right,” he adds.

Terry Pratchett Discworld RPG - Pratchett Estate and Modiphius image showing a promotional graphic for the fortieth anniversary of Discworld, featuring the world turtle A'Tuin

The Discworld is a gigantic series of over 40 novels, written and published right up to author Terry Pratchett’s untimely death from Alzheimer’s Disease in 2015, and some posthumously.

It’s a huge and compelling corpus of fantasy world-building, storytelling, complex characters, politics, philosophy, and art for tabletop RPG designers, game masters, and players to work with.

We at Wargamer cannot wait to see what we can get up to in Adventures in Ankh-Morpork! Exciting, then, that we’ll be interviewing Modiphius founder and boss Chris Birch about the deal and the planned tabletop RPG very soon, and mining him for information with the ruthlessness of an adept of the Assassin’s Guild. Watch that space!

In the meantime, if you want a taste of Birch’s tabletop chops, read our earlier interview with him on adventure wargames. Or, for more tabletop RPG inspiration, check out our guides to the best tabletop roleplaying games and the best horror tabletop RPGs to spook out your players. Offler knows there’s enough to be scared of on the Disc…