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Eternal • 2017 rpg finalist

David Fono •

(To be played on a quiet beach.)

You’ve been alive for millennia. You can’t be sure exactly how long, because memories fade along the way. A handful of others like you have found each over the years. Mostly, you keep to yourselves. Every 100 years, you return to this beach, and discuss the tectonic shifts of the human world.

Each player: Collect 5 small stones. Think of important, recent memories for your character—person, place, thing, activity—and assign each to one stone. 

To start: One player observes a defining world crisis. Taking turns adding observations. Any player ends the discussion by saying: “Time will tell.” 

Secretly bid, then simultaneously reveal some (or none) of your stones. The winner proclaims how the crisis will resolve over the next century, for good or ill. In a tie, the winner is whoever spoke last.

If you bid any stones, throw them into the water. These memories are lost.

Separate, and walk the beach alone. Consider how lost memories will affect your character. Consider how their century unfolds. Pick up one new rock—a new memory.

Regroup. A century has passed. Discuss your stories. Then, present a new crisis. Repeat for 400 more years.

Author Comments

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Judge Comments

Stones as a mechanic for bidding and memories isn’t more unique than tokens, but I do like that this game includes the characters walking away after discussing a world crisis to recall new memories by picking up more stones. Unlike a lot of other games about “gods” this isn’t about what they’ve created or destroyed, it’s just recollection and discussing of crises, and the fact that they continually lose memory as they age. It’s quietly reminiscent of an aging population discussing the world as they see it change and shift. And the ability of people to endure tragedy, with memories beng how those stories are lost. - Kate Bullock

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