Story Setting

The Great Age of Man has ended. Cities lay in ruin. Ruling bodies are limited to local enforcement agencies. Raiders, cut throats, and mercenaries flourish in the absence of order. Alien ecosystems, strange civilizations and twisted ruins dot the landscape of all continents.

The cause? Ruptures in space-time have allowed alien realities to bleed into our own. With these ruptures, small segments of alternate Earths exchange with our own. A single car may be replaced with a boulder, or a town replaced with an unknown ecosystem. The only indication a transfer is occurring is an odd atmospheric disturbance known as The Mist.

The occurrence of The Mist strikes fear in the hearts of all witnessing the phenomenon. Diseases previously unknown to our world spread like wildfire. Species and technology from across the multiverse appear at random intervals to wreak havoc on struggling populations. Individuals caught within The Mists either disappear from their native reality or emerge horribly transformed.

Forty years of Mist incursions have altered individuals surviving on Tortured Earth to exhibit unusual psychic abilities. Magic, once the fluff of stories, forms a new tangible force. The powerful new alterations in psychic and magical abilities lead some down a darker path – raising the need for heroes.

The world has reduced to scavenging the glory of its former age and bartering the technology deposited by The Mist. Trade persists, although currency has long since vanished. Item value falls to ‘as needed’ indicators. Scavenging crews mine abandoned suburbia for processed metals and supplies. Trade routes follow abandoned highway systems, often composed of animal drawn vehicles.

Strange races, new predators, ancient and futuristic civilizations mingle to produce the madness in which heroes are forged.

Welcome to Tortured Earth.

Tortured Earth

Tortured Earth is a classless, level-less game system offering benefits to both players and storytellers.

Players have the option to custom-build characters having a multitude of skills. Due to a universal system, the mechanics governing the operation of magic skills are the same mechanics used to operate general skills, weapon skills, and psychic abilities. Once a player learns the mechanics of one skill set, they immediately understand the mechanics of all other skill sets. Points awarded during gameplay are applied directly to skills, enabling characters to quickly increase the use and/or potency of those skills.

Storytellers are free to develop stories using modern resources: internet maps of their hometown, downloadable imagery, and current events to produce stories. Due to the modular nature of the game, the storyteller may eliminate all modern components (guns, computers, advanced technology) to produce a medieval fantasy storyline. To produce a science fiction feel to the game, fantasy elements are reduced while technological aspects are reinforced. Other storytellers may wish to produce horror-based stories while allowing varying components of magic and psychic. Regardless of the combination of skills, the characters easily transfer from one setting to another without loss of skills, points, or abilities.

Tortured Earth was designed to easily allow players to shift storylines and maintain the same characters.

For the Player: The lack of classes enables Tortured Earth fans to customize characters with a broader range of skill sets without having to manipulate or modify class-specific rule sets. Skill Points awarded during gameplay are applied directly to skills. Players are in charge of character development and advancement in session. Characters do not have to be abandoned when switching game settings – all abilities, skills, and points transfer from setting to setting.

For the GM: GMs have the option to utilize online maps to produce local adventures making use of familiar landmarks. The Skill Point system offers players an immediate reward for story-related goals and may be applied to the advancement of skills relating to the mission at hand. Creature Cards are designed for quick reference and may be copied for in-house gameplay. Encounters are scalable to Party Milestones, enabling basic encounters to be become as challenging as elite encounters.

Tortured Earth has achieved a balance between GM design issues and Player customization wishes. In designing and writing Tortured Earth, it was our goal to produce a system both adaptable to player wishes and balanced for GM direction. We hope you find the system as fun to play as we did to develop!

Welcome to a world where all things are possible.

For more information, please refer to our one-page fact sheet by clicking the link.