Sunless Sea Pen & Paper project

This might be something out of the ordinary, or someone might have done it already, I don’t know. I’m in love with the world and the lore of Sunless Sea, and I’d like to know if some other people would like to partake in a project like this as well.

Basically, I’d absolutely love to play a pen & paper style RPG set in the world of Sunless Sea. Something along the lines of Dungeons and Dragons, Pathfinder etc. I don’t have experience with games like this yet, so if anyone who has worked as a DM before would like to organize a Sunless Sea campaing based on the ruleset of whatever P&P works, it might turn out great. I have a single friend who’d also be interested but we can’t do it by ourselves. So if people would be interested in playing online, maybe with the help of Tabletop Simulator, we might get a thing going. The characters we play could be the captain and the officers of a ship, and the storyline could be based on the game.

Just probing the water with this, I’ve never played with strangers through the internet before so I’m not sure how it would work out but I’m willing to try, since a Sunless Sea P&P would be pretty darn amazing.

I’m trying to find a game system that could be tweaked to fit the lore and mechanics of Sunless Sea, but nothing comes to mind.
However, if you simply want to RP without thinking about rules and dices, there is a nice RP community centerend around Fallen London - some of us roleplay on the forums, others on tumblr, and other ones directly on the game.
Look here for more informations!

Thanks for the tip, I’ll look into that. I’ll have to flesh out this idea more…

I’ve considered this before–an Apocalypse World hack where the five stats were replaced by, of course, Pages, Hearts, Irons, Mirrors and Veils. I never got much farther than that. Someone on tumblr was developing a 7th Sea-like system, which didn’t get too far either but had some beautiful character sheets.
edited by aegisaglow on 5/29/2016

I hadn’t worked on Sunless Sea itself, but I was making a Fallen London system Borrowing heavily from “A Dirty World.”

I backed the new edition of 7th Sea, so I may flip through the rulebook and see how well it looks like it might suit Sunless Sea.

Hey, I know I’m pretty late to the thread but did you get anything moving? I always wanted to play a Sunless Sea Pen&Paper.

Actually, i already sketched something along the lines of an apocalypse world hack for sunless sea.

The main difference is that there is some sort of madness track, and every character has a special section that &quotadds something&quot to the ship.
I thought to add also some sort of &quotdebit&quot mechanic as in Urban Shadows.

The main booklets would be:

  • The Captain
    The Captain knows better than the others how to command the crew and move the ships and it is the one which travelled most: she knows about places, treasures, and peoples of all the zee. Moreover, she tends to be the most level-headed in case of madness.

  • The Zee Priest
    The Priest is able to see the terrible desires of the gods of the Zee, and he’s able to appease them.
    Moreover, he’s the one you may burden with your secrets and fears. Of course, he’ll know them, but you’ll feel better.
    It’s not a D&D cleric, but more some sort of terrible gloomy prophet.

  • The Academic
    Master of knowledge, of course. She’s able to gain info from unexpected places, and she’s rewarded to go in such unexpected (and, of course, dangerous) places in order to do so.

  • The Ungentlemanly Gentlebeing
    It’s a sort of diplomat/spy/thief. Hides stuff, searches for info, craft poisons and does this sort shadowy things. It’s probably a Great Game player, but it may also be some emissary from hell, or a lone criminal with a good plan.

  • The Monster-Hunter
    A terrific fighter, of course, but he’s also really capable to know better his enemies, to track them and scare them.

  • The Drownie
    She’s dead of course. She knows the dark depth of the sea better than anyone else, and she is able to command its creatures.
    The sing of the drownies is one of the most beautiful or terrible things you may hear.

  • The Ship Husband
    While the captain is able to command the crew and navigate, and the Academic masters knowledge, the Ship Husband is an ingeneer. He knows HOW TO DO THINGS (in particular, how to improve the ship).

  • The Dilettante.
    The dilettante is an affluent person, a passenger on the ship. Maybe a merchant, or someone which decided to get away because of scandal, her name is known - as it is her tongue. The dilettante is encouraged to act and appear - she’s a good confidant and a person really able to make a deal - but she may also be a sharp duelist.

  • The Burning One
    He has a dream. An ambitious, terrible dream for which they’d be able to burn themselves and the world.
    The burning one is able to self-destroy, or destroy that which he holds dear in order to reach its dream.

This is something that I have been pondering for a while.

I think it would be a bit of work, but the warhammer fantasy rpg system (2nd ed, of course) could be adapted. You would replace the stats like balistics, agility etc with paper, iron etc, and you would probably have to design new careers and a ship combat system, but it’s feasable.

Ive been running a campaign set in the sunless sea universe for 6 months with weekly meetings. I’m just using 5th Edition D&D with heavily modified rules mostly around damage + death. But i also drew heavily from the game module Unhollowed Metropolis, which if anyone is looking to run a high-stakes type of game i would recommend it. Its one of the few modules besides actual D&D that keeps me coming back to it. One thing i wished i had done differently upon starting the campaign was not give them a ship initially too, finding passage and getting from place to place is definitely a ton of the actual game in fallen london
edited by NoGimmickz on 11/3/2017

I’ve been playing a Blades in the Dark campaign for a bit and it seems like a perfect fit for Fallen London, if not as adaptable to Sunless Sea. It would certainly be possible to set a game in non-London ports though, maybe even to use multiple for one game.

I had the same Idea, but working the other way around: take the already existing ruleset, then add maps for the various ports, appropriate events/encounters and some additional mechanics for land interaction.
I am already planning a campaign which would be basically identical to the &quotDeath Hath no more dominion&quot one from the main game, in which three players would assume the roles of Capitan, Gunner and Chief Engineer of their own steamer.

Since there are several people with this idea in mind, I figured we could use each other’s help regarding the busywork intrinsic in homebrewing the setting. I opened a bespoke thread here: