7th Sea Misconceptions

Last week I started visiting various 7th Sea fan sites, forums, subreddits, and forums. I signed up and started chatting with fans, doing my best to start engaging with the community and hearing some of their hopes and dreams. Hopefully, I’ve been very clear that I’m just an Assistant Developer and I’m not making any promises. Still, I’ve been baffled by the amount of conjecture and misinformation out there.

Disclaimer: I’m just an Assistant Developer and everything I’m saying here is from my personal perspective. Like any team project things could (and likely will) change. Don’t take any of this as Truth™.

Let me start with the weirdest one.

There is no dice.

Not true. Not even for a minute. The game has had dice from the moment we started writing.

John Wick is completely changing sword schools into abominations.

Sword Schools are changing, but I hardly think they are abominations. Because we’re updating the core system, the sword schools had to change to keep up. Two of the cool things about the new system is: 1) being a swordsman is a lot cheaper than 1st edition, and 2) anyone can jump into a duel, not just swordsmen.

John Wick is completely re-writing all of the countries.

John is not re-writing all the countries. We’re using text from the original game plus new text. Some of the Nations are exactly the same while others are undergoing minor changes. Castille, for example, always felt more like Mexico than Spain, and John is re-writing it to make it feel more like the country that inspired it.

It’s just John Wick writing all of it.

Nope. Michael Curry and I have written since the start and we have many others giving advice. In fact, John is mostly doing Lore work while Mike hammers away at the Mechanics and I fill in blanks.

The new game will be compatible with the old game.

Nope, sorry. John has compared what we’ve done to the Battlestar Galactica version of game design. All the old characters are still there, the premise is the same, the world seems familiar, but a lot is being updated and changed. That said, John has tried to find a way to release some of the old books. Unfortunately, all the original art is gone, which creates a technical problem with reprints. I personally hope it’s something we might be able to pull off.

[Non-English Word] is spelled wrong! Fix it!

We’re consulting with native speakers to “fix” all the strange American versions of native languages.

The new combat system so does not accurately portray combat.

The 1st Edition system didn’t do that, either. We’re more interested in combat being dramatic than accurate.

WHERE THE [expletive deleted] IS AMERICA?!

In the New World sourcebook.


Yeah. There are plans to do a bunch of other continents too. Theah isn’t the center of the world, people.

The Sarmatian Commonwealth is the new Vendel.

What? No. Not even close. The Sarmatian Commonwealth is the first true democracy in Theah. Golden Liberty, people!

Will this Sarmatian Commonwealth actually add anything to the game?

Yes! Golden Liberty! Also, an entire new region to explore and fall in love with. And a new sorcery. And new Hero creation options, new Advantages and other stuff. It’s a full new Nation.

If they’re adding a new Nation it should be [Real World Nation].

Personally, I’m really pushing for us to ditch the thinly veiled analogy to the real world and make Theah a unique setting. But rest assured some other real world nations are being used as inspiration in other places. (John keeps telling me history is a compass, not a map.)

What makes [Real World Nation] stand out so much it deserves to be added as its own nation, while others which arguably had more of an impact on History have to be subsumed into the nations that already exist?

Why does anything get added to anything? We had an idea for it. European History is not the yardstick we’re measuring Thean history with. We respect and appreciate the contributions of other nations to the world we live in, but Theah isn’t Europe and the sooner we stop treating it like it is the quicker we can all start having fun with it.

Kickstarter?! Why would John purchase 7th Sea if he didn’t have the funds to invest in it?

In hopes that he could raise the funds and actually do something with the brand. John isn’t a millionaire. Turns out winning a few RPG Awards doesn’t give you a Brinks Truck.

The [Place] equivalent was going to be called something like [Crazy Name] or something like that.

You’re most likely wrong. Sorry.

John is trying justify a slew of 7th Sea 2.0 books.

We plan on doing a slew of new 7th Sea books, yeah. That’s why John bought the rights back. Is this a bad thing?

I have other things I’ve heard or want to know about!

Ask me in the comments here. I might be able to answer. Or wait for the Kickstarter. I’m sure all your questions will be answered sooner than you think. 😉

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  1. I actually like the ‘thinly veiled analogy’ between Europe and Theah to some extent. I think the familiarity helps fill in the blanks while it being clear that this is not Earth’s history and there is plenty of room to make the world your own.

    • Personally, I find it too restrictive. I hear “That’s not what REALLY happened!” or “Well… Historically it went down differently.” way too much. I feel that distancing Theah from Europe will loosen those chains. Others on the design team feel differently and, in the end, hopefully we’ll be in a nice middle ground.

  2. Are you at liberty to say anything about the economy?

    As it currently stands, having a single PC noble makes money no object in nearly all circumstances, while only Vendel are allowed to invest money, and patrons have a mathematically superior option…

    • I can’t say much but I will say that how money is handled in the game is completely different from 1st Edition. Our mantra has been: “Is this Heroic?” and early in we decided that making change, figuring exchange rates, and balancing a check book are pretty non-Heroic activities.

  3. I love myself a good game, but at the end of the day, it’s just a game. If you don’t like it, play the one you already have and that hasn’t been supported in years anyway. Oh, and, when was the last time you played it? Let’s all stop pretending that these things get played as often as we really want to and focus on what this really is. This is John Wick getting a second shot at his favorite thing. He loves this world. He’s talked about it for years. He gets to live out a dream. Let’s all be happy for him and recognize what a rare thing it is. Invest your love in the future, not the past. The only inevitability is forward, and if you don’t want to go, we’ll happily leave you behind with the other grognards.

  4. I love all the things you just posted. My big issues with swordsman schools were the cost. 25 HP just didn’t seem justified. We house ruled a discount to 20, and they still felt expensive.

    Heroic driven mechanics is the way to go. Not starting with any dots in swinging due to the prohibitive cost of advanced knacks again was a weird disconnect.

    The big thing that I haven’t heard anything about is the skill system: has that changed much?

    Do drama dice still exist? Are they still linked to XP? That wasn’t heroic. It promoted hoarding rather than attempting awesome things.

    Are languages still a significant cost at character creation? Again, a wide ranging campaign where you can’t interact with half the characters as you don’t share a language was another disconnect.

    Has the history been rewritten? Are we picking up where the story left off? Or is it a complete reboot?

    So many more questions, but those are the burning ones.

  5. Is the Samatian Commonwealth sourcebook pdf likely to appear as a stretch goal in the kickstarter, a la New World?

    • The Samatian Commonwealth will be appearing in the Nations of Theah supplements, it’s not getting it’s own personal book.

  6. Are the Kanu (and opah) still in the game? Not read any reference to them yet in 2nd ed apologies if this has been asked elsewhere.

    Other than that congratulations and keep up the great work.

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