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The CONTINUUM RPG Just Does Not Cease To Kick My Ass....

Andy K

I Like Games
Validated User
So last week I had me some surgery, and in recovering I did a lot of laying down and reading of various books, mostly RPGs.

I hit up Continuum again. Geez, I had that book, sold it (cause I knew that I'd never play it again), bought it back up, and am now going through it again.

It is compelling on so many levels, it's fucking sick:

1) First off, I love Time Travel ideas. This book is just one giant Time Travel fic novel series (not really, but each page seems to have a chapter or novel behind it) deconstructed into one sterile RPG layout.

2) Great, or at least better than average, Gaming Fiction. Whereas most gaming fiction is A) Too long or B) Sucks, Continuum's fic is compelling, seldom strained (save the intro gaming fic, which did feel a tiny bit strained. Just too long, probably), and really REALLY interesting. It covers all levels of the Continuum universe, from "1st level characters" to "high level characters".

3) A jillion plot points, adventure ideas. The GMs section, where the "timeline" of the Continuum universe is laid out, there are these compelling, unexplained events that are just dying to be explored (especially Antedesertium).

4) A smooth, understandable game background. Time travel explained in detail in a way that's like, "OK, I can see that". While I may have problems with the setup of the game, mechanics, etc, at least the "social" ideas behind the game are tight.

5) Glimpses of the enemy/future supplements. Narcissists get covered in brief details, in a way that really leaves you hungry for more. A bit in the fan fiction refers to "A spiraling form of frag" that blows one of the cahracters away, getting him interested in Narcissists. And damn if I'm not interested in them, after reading the above, and the history bits involving The Seven and Antedesertum.

6) "Fanfic Handbook"-like elements: "What's Time Travel FEEL Like?" "What are the Maxims?" "What Should I Say if a Narcissist Argues with Me"? etc. These parts really pull you into the game.

So, while I probably will never play the game as-is (still a little too complicated for me: I wish each copy came with a clone of the author to play a demo session with), I can't help but to reread sections of this compelling work, spin off about a half dozen "what if" ideas in my head, fuel spinoff ideas for my own time travel RPG adventures, etc. While I find some flaws in the background and the game itself, it doesn't stop it from being the most compelling game on my shelf: When I'm looking for a good fic read, I often pull it down before Blue Planet, Nobilis, Tribe 8, Aberrant, etc.

This game is absolutely compelling, if you're into Time Travel. If you're reading this post and haven't given this game a once-through, you owe it to yourself to hunt this game out. It's really that damn cool.

Finally, looks like Narcissist is still on the Horizon. RPGs are not a big money-maker, so bless the authors if they actually decide to go through with it and publish Narcissist... But I'll be the first one in line for this game: It looks like a version of Continuum that I can really get my brain around, and can actually consider playing. :)

This has been a shout out to the RPG Continuum and the crew that made it. You may now return to your normally scheduled reading.

-Andy Kitkowski

Vox Orbis

I've Always Been Here
Validated User
Hey, I Know How You Feel...

I too have been ensnared by Aetherco's fine work.

I generally take CoNTINUUM along with me on every long trip I take, simply because this one book is good for hours of boring travel on the bus, train, or plane... plenty to read, plenty to think about.

I am also the happy owner of the NaRCISSIST Pre-Release 0.7, which even though it's much shorter, also gives a lot of food for thought. I did run it once or twice, and just the discussions on the morality of altering someone's history were fascinating, to say the least.

The other time I ran it, the players were terrified of the Swarm... that single floating figure in the distance, like one of the Strangers of Dark City.

Seriously good stuff. Permanently altered how I look at Time Travel!

Elvish Lore

Validated User
Andy K said:

3) A jillion plot points, adventure ideas. The GMs section, where the "timeline" of the Continuum universe is laid out, there are these compelling, unexplained events that are just dying to be explored (especially Antedesertium).

Can you provide more info as to what Antedesertium is? I'd read it myself by buying the game but I've heard enough negative comments about it that I can't justify a purchase -- yet.

- Ian

The Adventurer

Registered User
Validated User
Link me the the Publisher please? This sounds cool

EDIT: NM I got it. Really this site should provide links to publishers in the reviews and save me going to the reviews finding the publisher name then Googling it.
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New member
Continuum is one of those games that struck me as a brilliant work of sheer genius - unfortunately, trying to find a group of players that could wrap their heads around it proved to be a futile task for me. I sold my copy.

I hasten to agree with everything that Andy K said - it's a great game and if you're interested in time travel done right, this is your game (provided that you can understand it - the learning threshold is pretty steep).

old hat

i think it's an extremely clever game.

i think it's so extremely clever that i am not sure i could ever run it or find players willing to play it.


GAMMA Clearance
RPGnet Member
Validated User
Seconded on all counts. I have no idea how to run Continuum, but the book was well worth it for the ideas, the writing, and the wonderful, wonderful timeline...

What Aetherco really need to do is write a demo scenario...


Active member
Validated User
As a matter of fact, playing Continuum is easy once the GM understands the setting.... and there in lies the difficulty.

I also was someone who bought the game, loved it, sold it and then bought it back.

When I read the book a second time - it all fell into place. I totally grokked the entire setting and concept to the point where I could answer every time-travel paradox thrown at me from a CoNTINUUM view.

Once the GM knows the setting - it becomes easier to explain it to the players during play.

However there is the case of paperwork - CoNTINUUM requires a lot of record keeping. But it is once of the most thought-provoking games on the market... and a great read. :D



Validated User
Has anyone out there who isn't affiliated with the publisher actually run the damn thing? While it's a fun read, and fun to bat around the concepts with friends, I'm not convinced it can be done as a campaign -- and frankly I'm not convinced that it would be fun, either, as it seems like there'd be a lot of time spent on record-keeping to the detriment of actually doing things and having fun. But I'm willing to be persuaded otherwise.

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