RPG Review: Unknown Armies

Cynthia: The third edition of Unknown Armies appeared in May of this year and got my attention with this pitch: “An occult game about broken people conspiring to fix the world.”

Alright, I thought, I’m hungry for games set in the actual dumpster fire world we live in, and I enjoy creepy, occult things, and I always want to investigate characters with secrets, traumas, and unsolvable problems. So I gathered a small cabal and led them into a morally ambiguous underworld of deadly rituals, paramilitary organizations, ancient crypts that appear only at midnight, young women without tongues, and murder. I plunged them into an international struggle for the future of the TransCanada oil pipeline, of Vancouver real estate, of the White House, and the world.

If you’re ready for a game of of vast conspiracies and sleepless nights, a game in which your obsessions give you strength and great power comes with great corruption, in which you’ll be haunted by invisible demons with ten-inch claws and compelled to do bloody deeds, where heroes are less Captain America and much more Jessica Jones… then read on. Just be warned: in case you haven’t figured it out yet, this game is not family-friendly. Nor is it for the faint of heart.

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Unknown Armies (3rd edition)

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It’s about getting what you want.

Unknown Armies presents magick as it might exist in a world informed by crime fiction and secret histories, as twisting wrinkles in reality created by greater and greater risk, sacrifice, and obsession. As a player, you are confronted by the consequences of your character’s actions, and challenged by the implicit threat of a world shaped by the will of those who want something more than you do.

It’s about being relentlessly, hopelessly human.

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