Numinous Brutality (Abridged Rules and The Clash of Croak Adventure)
Numinous Brutality is a TTRPG that embraces both grimdark gameplay and mythic battles. Leveling up and healing is fueled through cannibalism. Unlocking new abilities is achieved through fulfilling prophecy. Wars can be fought, ruins can be delved, and countries can be conquered and devoured to power your growing divinity. All paths lead back to Numinous Brutality.
These abridged rules were created to introduce players to the game and collect feedback as we press forward in making the full product. It includes 4 Sub-Dominions (classes), countless adventure ideas, a territory of the world to explore, and a guided two-part adventure featuring our unique War Mechanic and a micro-dungeon.
Designed by Splatterpunk Nominated author John Baltisberger, Wonderland Award-winning author Garrett Cook, and designers Ian SerVaas, Joel Clark, and Lemons Clemons.
There was a war in heaven. A civil war of lesser gods no longer wishing to be shackled by the moral grandstanding of their more powerful lords and masters. The ethical foibles of the so-called ‘good’ gods prevented them from doing what must be done against savage and ruthless beings who would do anything to attain superiority. Their position had made them soft, weak and ill prepared for the coming violence. And so, one after another, the gods who refused the path of war and violence were drowned in the blood of their kin, and were slaughtered, butchered, and devoured by those who not only accepted such action, but reveled in it.
Life for mortals continued normally, unaware of the brooding conflict in the heavens. Humanity plunged headfirst into an age of industrialization and technological expanse. The dark ages were done and now humankind discovered ways to merge magic and science, crafting wondrous cities and massive skyscrapers.
This age of peace and progress withered as the debauchery of dark deities spilled into the world. The old gods were dead and the heavens raged as the new gods refused to share dominion or bend the knee in fealty to any other. Mortal cults and armies rose, all expendable pawns in the struggle for divine supremacy.
The cruel reign and bitter conflict of these gods washed the world in blood anew. Technology was lost, progress swallowed by the flames of zealots who put scientists and inventors to the torch. Skyscrapers became hollow monoliths, shrines the likewise hollow promises of power given by gods with no intention of sharing. The trains still run but on misery and magic rather than electricity and power. The world stretched to its breaking point and humanity has been plunged into a new era of war, pain, disease, and famine.
The world itself bears the scars of this divine warfare, landscapes twisted into strange and nightmarish vistas by unfathomable powers. Weaponized life forms, remnants of long-lost battles and now purposeless with their masters slain, roam, without purpose they turn to violence, or to the command of whatever demigod carries the lineage of their former masters. Beyond these Leviathans, Deific blacksmiths obsessed with victory and chaos litter the secret places of the world with arms, armor and wondrous items, keening a corrupting siren song for new victims to wield them.
To gather worship and strengthen their cause, the gods descended to the Earth and began begetting. From this spawn, Demigods rose. Conduits of the gods’ awesome might and power, the Demigods waged war, weakened their enemies’ power, and sought out artifacts of the dead gods adding that power to their own. They stand astride broken humanity with all of mankind’s fate in their hands.
They are heroes and villains, angels to some, demons to others. But ultimately, each is self-serving, a tool and an heir to the gods of Numinous Brutality.