Tribe 8

I’m going to get lazy and make a Tribe 8 post for today’s A-to-Z Blogging Challenge post, but it is actually rather timely so it’s not that bad.

For those who don’t know what I’m talking about when I mention Tribe 8, it is a roleplaying game published by Dream Pod 9 in the late 1990s. It is best described as a “spiritual post-apocalyptic dark fantasy” setting, with elements of body horror (the Z’bri), social upheaval (the Fallen), clockwork goddesses (the Fatimas) and a healthy dose of a New Agey vibe.  It is my favorite roleplaying game ever as it has a perfect mixture of horror, dark fantasy and post apocalyptic elements

Which one is the clockwork demi-diety?It isn’t the bear

The line had about 25 books or so and a second edition, which isn’t a sorry run by any measure. The second edition signaled the end of the line, although it had the grace to outline the remainder of the metaplot in very broad brushstrokes and detail a number of big reveals regarding the bigger picture.

That’s right, I said metaplot. Coming on the coattails of the White Wolf pioneered splat book and metaplot business model, Tribe 8 had it in spades. The implementation was great in many respects and abysmal in others. A number of the metaplot books were well-written and were good at handling some of the sticky points with regard to players coming into contact with the plot. Others, not so much. In addition, many important pieces of information were dribbled out here and there, sometimes buried in in-character narrative (which, for better or worse, was a defining feature of the line). I’ve already opined about the lack of a Keepers sourcebook, which was the last thing the line needed to be complete. I’ve also posted about the metaplot in more detail.

So, the point of this post is to highlight some of the fan works I’ve created for Tribe 8.

  • The newest is my completion of my Fate of Vimary draft, which consolidates the various rules modifications I’ve made to support Tribe 8 in Fate Core.
  • Next, I’m going to be doing a quick Spark setting write-up. This is actually for the eventuality that I run a dual Fate Core/Spark Tribe 8 game. I’m thinking two parallel games, but I’m not sure yet.
  • Previously, I had worked on an adaptation of Tribe 8 to Strands of Fate called Strands of Flesh and Spirit. Since reading Fate Core, I’ve stopped developing that branch but it’s reasonably complete.
  • I have a blog dedicated solely to Tribe 8 called Dreams of Flesh and Spirit. It is the spiritual descendant (no pun intended) of my long-gone Tribe 8 website of the same name.
  • I also have a pretty much empty Wikia wiki called The Hundred Books. This will be an eventual rebuild of the wiki I once hosted on my website (which was sadly lost).
If you think Tribe 8 sounds the least bit interesting, I highly suggest picking up the first edition core book and the Vimary sourcebook. They’re really the only things you need to run a good Tribe 8 game. Get the core book in hardback, if you can find one. If you want even more, the Tribe 8 Companion (which can be hard to find), Horrors of the Z’bri, Into the Outlands, and Adrift on the River of Dream round out the additional “must haves”. After that, if you want additional detail on the Tribes you can pick up the “Word” books – Word of the Dancers, Word of the Fates, Word of the Pillars. Finally, there are the Cycle books themselves if you want to run the metaplot. The set is rounded out by the non-metaplot books – Book of Legends, Harvest of Thorns, Word of the North and the Capal Book of Days.
Finally, Blood and Sacrifice is one of the best Tribe 8 fan sites out there, hosting material by some of the people who worked on latter Tribe 8 books. It includes the write-ups of the Destiny Deck cards, which are kind of like the Tribe 8 tarot (and, if it were up to me, an automatic stretch goal if a Tribe 8 Kickstarter ever happened).

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