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Oh Wow- Skyrealms of Jorune

SJE

Bibliomancer
Validated User
So I finally read my copy of the 1992 Chessex version of Skyrealms of Jorune. And what a trip it is!

The first striking thing about it is some of the incredible artwork by Miles Teves - and since he does nearly every picture, it's a really unified, detailed look and illustrates wonderfully the incredible fauna and races of Jorune.

Secondly, this is a game packed with wonderful weirdness, with a dozen really alien races, but plenty of recognisably human variants for players to hook into.

Thirdly, this game has some great advice and hints to GM - how to steer away players from the 80's style hack and slash play of D&D by giving them the Drenn system of noble privileges to acquire- essentially travelling and doing odd jobs for powerful citizens with the carrot of access to the rare and powerful energy blasters if they achieve the Drenn social status with enough social support.

Finally, this game reminds me of a essentially focused and coherent Numenera campaign, with our long lost descendants exploring the alien and incomprehensible ultra tech of the past (including the wonderfully biological recos and floating landscapes) and using it in strange and alien environment touched by weird energy and aliens and thousands of years of neglect.

I can see the game had issues- the info dump on new players for such an alien environment rivals Tekumel, and the system is kludgy, but I'm surprised at how wonderful such an old game is- very much a game decades before it's time.


Does anyone still play this game regularly?
 

Epengar

of the Clan of the Sweet Singers of Nakome
Validated User
For what it's worth, there is a yahoogroup for Jorune fans that still gets some traffic and has some interesting fan material in its Files section:
http://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/jorune/info

Also, there's a guy who has been putting lots of the old Jorune publications up on Issuu:
Link redacted -Random Nerd

And to anticipate the obvious question: apparently the intellectual property rights for the Jorune setting are shared among several people. Rumor has it that there have been no new Jorune publications because the owners were not willing to work together and/or they have charged an unreasonably high price for a license. That's just rumor, but that's all there is to go on.

Also, the company that distributed the 3rd edition book may still have new copies of some of the last publications, including the 3rd edition core book. At least they still have them on their website:
http://chessex.com/Games/Games2.htm
The Sholari Pack is a "must buy" -- it has lots more setting info, and a very valuable collection of errata for the 3rd edition book.
 
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Dulahan

Active member
Validated User
Jorune is fun. If I have any complaint it's the amount of "Furry" races - in setting genetic engineering explanation or no.

But yeah, very cool book and setting.
 

magafish

New member
Validated User
I love Jorune. I love Jorune so much that when I just left Chicago after 17 years to move to a remote island (no, really remote, they fly pregnant women to Honolulu at month 7) I took all of my Jorune books and Reign to convert it to. I left everything else behind and have no reason to believe I will ever play it... it is just too original and evocative to leave.
 

Vagabond

Whoah, um, like, you know
Validated User
So I finally read my copy of the 1992 Chessex version of Skyrealms of Jorune. And what a trip it is!

The first striking thing about it is some of the incredible artwork by Miles Teves - and since he does nearly every picture, it's a really unified, detailed look and illustrates wonderfully the incredible fauna and races of Jorune.

Secondly, this is a game packed with wonderful weirdness, with a dozen really alien races, but plenty of recognisably human variants for players to hook into.

Thirdly, this game has some great advice and hints to GM - how to steer away players from the 80's style hack and slash play of D&D by giving them the Drenn system of noble privileges to acquire- essentially travelling and doing odd jobs for powerful citizens with the carrot of access to the rare and powerful energy blasters if they achieve the Drenn social status with enough social support.

Finally, this game reminds me of a essentially focused and coherent Numenera campaign, with our long lost descendants exploring the alien and incomprehensible ultra tech of the past (including the wonderfully biological recos and floating landscapes) and using it in strange and alien environment touched by weird energy and aliens and thousands of years of neglect.

I can see the game had issues- the info dump on new players for such an alien environment rivals Tekumel, and the system is kludgy, but I'm surprised at how wonderful such an old game is- very much a game decades before it's time.


Does anyone still play this game regularly?
I am working on a conversion to BRP/RQ6. I also have an artist working whom I am working with, who loves the setting and is creating a portfolio of re-imagined stuff that still holds true to the originals by Miles. I also have permission form Miles to reuse his art so long as I do not try to sell anything, and attribute all of his work properly should I choose to do include it. I also am working on more setting material, slight changes and clarifications to canon, and some campaign material. Most setting/canon stays the same, but, I have some aces up my sleeve.

"Sholari Joe" worked extensively on 3rd edition.

There is a Facebook group called "Shambo in the Shenters" where we discuss Jorune related stuff - it has been more active than the Yahoo group, though there has been a slight lull. I also occasionally post here, on the Basic Roleplaying forum, and should also start posting at the Design Mechanism forum.

There is also an awesome "Let's Read" thread for 3rd edition by Grymbok here:

http://forum.rpg.net/showthread.php?452575-Let-s-Read-Skyrealms-of-Jorune-3rd-Edition

Ian
 

PeterAmthor

Truly Rural
Validated User
I've only managed to play Skyrealms for a few sessions. One of the most memorable games that I have ever played, absolutely loved it. A year or so later I picked up the game myself with the intention of running it. Sadly none of the players I approached were interested in taking a dive into something so different from what they were used to. Even so I still bought up most of the supplements for it over the years, one day I will find the right group and the right time to run it.

It is sad that the owners can't seem to work something, anything, out in order to at least get the game back in circulation at least in the forms of pdfs or something.
 

Pnick

Registered User
Validated User
Often see threads with 'if you could resurrect any game?' or 'what would be your ideal Kickstarter?' as titles.

Hands down mine would be a Jorune hardback book, collating all the material published, but based on BRP or, ideally, RQ6. With Miles Teves art throughout.... It HAS to be with Miles Teves art throughout.

That would be my dream RPG release.

Vagabond - is there no way of trying to convince Miles? I mean, if a Kickstarter was put up and enough cash was generated surely this could convince Miles of a. what love and support there is for his incredible game and b. that, with enough backing, having him provide illustrations could actually be financed...

Moreover, it is clear that Jorune was a real labour of love on his part. I suspect that he might have enough understanding of fan's appreciation of the game that he might consider, despite it not being as high profile as the work he now undertakes.... I know that it is hardly likely to be as lucrative as his current work, but he might consider revisiting his wonderful creation for the love of it himself...

And the Kickstarter could be framed in such a way that it would be clear to Miles that it wasn't simply an exercise in you making money from the material he already created.

Yes, I'm clutching at straws but there's always the possibility.

A Kickstarter could also help you raise the funds to get the conversion out there.

Like I said, just wishing.....
 
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Vagabond

Whoah, um, like, you know
Validated User
Regardless, pass on one fan's appreciation.
I will do so.

But, it isn't Miles that is the roadblock per se. Andrew Leker is the primary creator, but there are a number of people with a say in what goes down with Jorune. In the past, Andrew has given his OK for people to carry Jorune on as long as no profit is to be made (Joe Coleman published two journals via Lulu to cover printing costs), one of whom is the artist I am in contact with. And, again, as long as it is not for profit and he gets proper credit, Miles is not adverse to something getting pushed out on the net (I would have to verify if actual print copies would be OK, again, as long as no profit is to be made).

But, yes, I would dearly love to see Jorune back in print with a vengeance ...
 
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