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Subject: Serpents Tongue - Finally a REAL Spell-Casting Game!! rss

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Brian Gabrielson
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A New Genre of Card Game

Become a Magi, by actually learning your incantations in the language of Serpent's Tongue, then casting them out of hardbound Codex's in fast 1-8 player Competitive battles and story-driven Cooperative campaigns.Find out more gameplay concepts at http://www.becomemagi.com/

We are currently launched on Kickstarter http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/500894669/serpents-tongu...

The hardbound faux-leather Codex represents the heart of the game, as it holds your Incantations, the cipher to cast them and provides the lore, secrets, maps and methodology used in the Cooperative Campaigns.


Each Incantation embodies a powerful encoded inscription, or Glyph. In the game world, the dweomers encoded in a Magi's Codex are necessary for holding more than one inscription at a time. A Master Magi's codex contains a maximum of 33 attuned inscriptions. Magi players have access to every inscription in their codex at any given time, no shuffling, no randomization. So they must choose their incantations well.

With many generous reward levels for all types of players,see details at http://www.becomemagi.com/kickstarter-rewards/

(Core Set shown is a playtesting prototype. Not shown: Hourglasses, Final Chip Set, 4 Sided Dice.)

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Aaron Gabrielson
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This game completely redefines the genre. A game that actually requires learning a mystical language? And your skill at that language determines your power in the game? Total game changer!
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Arthur O'Dwyer
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I just want to point out that "magi" is a plural noun (as in "The Gifts of the Magi"). The singular noun is "magus" or "mage".

I suppose "The Magi's Journey" and "The Gentleman Magi" could still parse as correct, but my kneejerk reaction to those titles was :cringe:.

No comment on the actual game mechanics, which I haven't looked at yet.

EDIT: Yep, they're spelling mistakes; the KS page contains more. For example, the plural of "codex" is "codices", not "codex's"; "numbers heretofore never before permitted" is kind of redundant; etc. PM me; I'd love to proofread/edit the relevant stuff for you!
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Brad Miller
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aarong1972 wrote:
This game completely redefines the genre. A game that actually requires learning a mystical language? And your skill at that language determines your power in the game? Total game changer!


Says the friend brother/father/son of the Designer! laugh

EDIT: More than just friends I guess...shake
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Chih-Hsien Wang
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Is there an official manual to download ?
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Pandasaurus Games
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Windopaene wrote:
aarong1972 wrote:
This game completely redefines the genre. A game that actually requires learning a mystical language? And your skill at that language determines your power in the game? Total game changer!


Says the friend brother/father/son of the Designer! laugh

EDIT: More than just friends I guess...shake


Yeah, I found it odd that someone from the same geographical region jumped in right after the original post to proclaim the game as game changing and genre bending.
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Jason Cookingham
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You should put up a game-play video. I am curious to see this in play.

When I consider how people in the hobby mangle pronunciation on a regular basis, how does the game handle a disagreement on how a spell is pronounced?

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Ian Toltz
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stooge wrote:
Windopaene wrote:
aarong1972 wrote:
This game completely redefines the genre. A game that actually requires learning a mystical language? And your skill at that language determines your power in the game? Total game changer!


Says the friend brother/father/son of the Designer! laugh

EDIT: More than just friends I guess...shake


Yeah, I found it odd that someone from the same geographical region jumped in right after the original post to proclaim the game as game changing and genre bending.


And same surname.
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Tim Mirkes
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You're going to teach my child how to cast spells? And in an unholy, anything-but-God's-English language? What's your first expansion? "Human Sacrifice for Fun and Profit"? This is an affront to good, wholesome American values, and I'll fight this game the same way I've done so in the past: burned those copies of Harry Potter, chastised my fellow students in high school for playing Dungeons and Dragons, and went back in time to kill that tool of Satan, Buddy Holly.

Seriously, though, this game looks pretty awesome. I'd love to read the rules if you have them handy... (:
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George Carlin
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Agreed, I like the idea of the game but I really have to see a demo of it played to get an idea of whether it's actually something I'd want to buy.
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David Boeren
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Agreed. Without posted rules and a video, all I know at this point is that you play a game by going "ooga booga jubjub froofoo" at each other. While somewhat amusing, I'm not sure this is enough to compel my wallet to open.

Also, I hope they take the feedback about fixing the spelling mistakes.

As an aside, I remember playing one of the early versions of Wizardry on the PC and they had spell names/incantations.

Each spell had a basic word, then one or more prefixes that could alter it - the most common ones being an intensifier (for the higher level version of the same spell) or a negative version (say to turn a healing spell into a harming one).

http://www.tk421.net/wizardry/wiz15spells.shtml
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Ryan Full
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Agree as well.

I like the premise but it doesn't sound like a game yet. It sounds like an RPG supplement.

Video and rules would be helpful and could easily sell me on the idea. Right now I envision it like LARPing rules for magic.
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Aaron Gabrielson
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Yes, we are related :-) Check it out though, I have never seen anything like this before. Let me know if you have.
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B C Z
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aarong1972 wrote:
Yes, we are related :-) Check it out though, I have never seen anything like this before. Let me know if you have.


Steve Jackson Games: Sorcery

As seen here: http://www.amazon.com/Spell-Book-Sorcery-Steve-Jackson/dp/01...

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Alejandro Rascon
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aarong1972 wrote:
Yes, we are related :-) Check it out though, I have never seen anything like this before. Let me know if you have.


Just every time me and my group play D&D.
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John Drake
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They should do a game like this.... in Spanish.

That way I can learn something useful
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Erik Racer
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BaBang wrote:
They should do a game like this.... in Spanish.

That way I can learn something useful


Actually, I think that is brilliant. They could offer versions in French, Spanish, English, etc.
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K.Y. Wong
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eracer68 wrote:
BaBang wrote:
They should do a game like this.... in Spanish.

That way I can learn something useful


Actually, I think that is brilliant. They could offer versions in French, Spanish, English, etc.

Japanese please!
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christopher gabrielson
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Quuxplusone wrote:
I just want to point out that "magi" is a plural noun (as in "The Gifts of the Magi"). The singular noun is "magus" or "mage".


Greetings Arthur, nice attention to detail. I thought about this quite a bit actually when designing Serpent's Tongue. I chose the word Magi to be simultaneously singular and plural in the game world. In THAT world its become a slang term for the truth behind the legends of Mages, Magicians, Druids, Fakirs, Sorcerors and others claiming mystical powers. Somewhere along the line Magi became one of the most common terms used to refer to Speakers of Serpent's Tongue and its particular form (plural in the singular) denotes that you are talking about someone real, someone with true power, rather than the charlatans of fantasy stories. The grammar surrounding its use is different as well, rather than saying he is a Magi (that probably really hurts your ears huh lol) in the game world one would say he IS Magi. Possibly a shortened form of He is OF the Magi.


I remember we made a similar choice for our plural form of Codex as well. It was quite deliberate but now its foggy to me why exactly we went that route. Accessibility and pronunciation I think, codices looked hard to pronounce for our 14 year olds or something. Anyway now that you raise your points, I really like Codices a lot better, and you're right, it also happens to be more correct in the current version of this barbarian English we speak ; ) Thanks for noticing it, we're going to change it.

We actually have quite a bit of checking/editing we need to do, particularly in the game's cooperative campaign story which uses a lot of ancient terminology. If you're really volunteering, and you apparently have the right mind-set, we would love to have another set of eyes on it. In exchange we could work out some free versions of the game for you perhaps?

Christopher Gabrielson
Lead Designer
Serpent's Tongue

BTW Our video gal is working on snatching one of our playtesting groups on camera - so we should have a gameplay video up soon. For now there IS a very general tutorial video explaining the most basic functions of the game at BecomeMagi.com but I will upload one to the BGG here if I can.

Thanks for the comments. Its interesting to read people talking about your own game.

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christopher gabrielson
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LOL I tried Russian at first actually! Then a Japanese mix with some Hawaiian. I was thinking the same as you two; if Im going to have players learning a real language why not have them learn... a REAL language. Unfortunately the only language that felt even remotely powerful while casting was the pidgin Sumerian we could scrape together.

So no Spanish, we had to create a more magickal language - plus it had to be perfectly consistent in grammar, declension and pronunciation to create a universal base for players to work from. This helps cut down the mis-communications and claims of mis-pronunciation tremendously.

But at the very least you will have Serpent's Tongue to speak amongst your friends lol. My nephew and his friends speak it constantly now (Ages 14 - 15)
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christopher gabrielson
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tlmirkes wrote:
I'll fight this game the same way I've done so in the past: burned those copies of Harry Potter, chastised my fellow students in high school for playing Dungeons and Dragons, and went back in time to kill that tool of Satan, Buddy Holly.


LOL Dang man, you had my hopes up. I was like 'YES! Finally my first Christian fundamentalist protesting the game!' Just think of the press! But sadly, no. Oh well, maybe after a more blasphemous marketing campaign. jk
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Red Devil
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Windopaene wrote:
aarong1972 wrote:
This game completely redefines the genre. A game that actually requires learning a mystical language? And your skill at that language determines your power in the game? Total game changer!


Says the friend brother/father/son of the Designer! laugh

EDIT: More than just friends I guess...shake


This alone has stopped me backing the project.
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Marc Mistiaen
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Geez, how many Gabrielsons are there on this forum?

By the way, codexes is also a correct plural form of codex.
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B C Z
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I still am not sure how this isn't much more than a bunch of people yelling at each other in parceltongue.
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Ryan Full
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byronczimmer wrote:
I still am not sure how this isn't much more than a bunch of people yelling at each other in parceltongue.


From the videos it appears to be a game of attack/defend/counterattack where each player takes a turn playing a card to either: defend themselves, attack their opponent, or... presumably do something else?

The twist looks to be that instead of tapping mana (a la Magic) or using some in-game currency to pay for the card the player has to memorize a secret phrase for the card (or decode it from the symbol in 15 seconds). They screw up the phrase then the card is discarded and they pass their turn.

At least that is how it looks to me.

Oddly, I find the idea really appealing since I like getting into character in games and the social silliness sounds fun. I do wonder though if I would ever be able to get it to the table.

My wife has already said no way she is playing it. The dark sort of art and theme put her off. It also gives her superstitious heebie-jeebies.

No way I am bringing this to my scholastic game club. I can only imagine the fires I would have to put out if one of the parents or administrators heard we played a game using "magic" phrases and one of the kids was playing the character class of a demonic fleshcrafter. :lol:

So that just leaves me. And if I entice some of my adult friends to play it seems like I would have a huge advantage since I would presumably have many of the phrases memorized.

But I still want it.

Also the website said something about online matchmaking. I have no idea how that would work either.
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