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Whispers in the Dark • 2018 rpg

Steven Ma •

1 "Blasphemer"
2+ "Whispers"
1 "The Dark"

You, the Blasphemer, awaken in the drowned corpse-city. Slowly, The Dark crawls away from you, and into the corners of your mind. Shutting your eyes, you hear them: The Whispers.

Below, an eldritch corpse waits dreaming.

Beginning each turn, The Dark rolls 3d6 to release three details to the Blasphemer, each beginning with:

1 - "see..."
2 - "hear..."
3 - "smell..."
4 - "taste..."
5 - "feel..."
6 - "know..."

Each Whisper rolls a d12, adding the result to their "Presence". Whispers with more Presence sit closer to the Blasphemer. Whispers must always sit behind those with more Presence.

Then, the Blasphemer closes their eyes, and the Whispers each whisper commands continuously, until the Blasphemer chooses one. The Blasphemer describes their actions.

If success is uncertain, the Blasphemer closes their eyes and a die is rolled. The Blasphemer must call whether the result is "Odd" or "Even". The Whispers may whisper the result. The Blasphemer succeeds on a correct call.

The Whisper whose command was chosen has their Presence set to zero, then becomes "The Dark", and the old one becomes a Whisper. The Dark describes the result of the action.

The turn begins anew.

Author Comments

I put a lot of work into trying to convey a feeling through mechanics. The Dark gives random details, implying it veils more than just sight, but also frequently doesn’t share the whole picture, hopefully adding a sense of mystery and danger.

I designed the core mechanic around the trope of maddening whispers (e.g. I figured it’d be really cool to be the person receiving these whispers from all around.

This was fun to make. My only regret was not being able to fit in some mechanics to make each player feel unique, but alas cuts had to be made.

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