RPG Reading Club: Glitch

Please note: this session does not include playing a game!

Glitch is a story of the Not: a story of the subtle fields and hills and forests that lie beyond the world. It is a story of the silvered flowers and dusty roads that can be found beyond existence, beyond perception—dreams that dream themselves in the endless darkness, “things” instantiated neither in substance or in skandha but in the structure of them alone…

In this vibrant and uncertain world, amidst the colors and the mysteries of this place, you will tell the stories of the lost tyrants of Nınuan—of humans, or other sorts of people, who are broken by the world; who arise from that brokenness, to discover themselves Excrucians, leaders of the host—and in particular, of those few who have pulled themselves out of the fugue of that awareness enough to turn against the remainder of their kind.

In this session we’ll be talking about Glitch: A Story of the Not by Jenna Katerin Moran, which you can find here. It’s a diceless game about—well, this is kind of hard to describe, but sort of about unbelievably powerful immortals who have retired from trying to destroy creation and now are just hanging out or maybe solving mysteries.

I have been interested in this game since first seeing it crowdfunding a while ago, and find the lore and mechanics fascinating and the writing style really enjoyable—but the text is also, at 400+ pages, a bit daunting and impenetrable. This reading group is meant to help motivate participants to digest the text, and I’m hoping one or more games will emerge from our discussion. I will facilitate the discussion.

The game includes the following content warnings: “This book contains existential horror; missing eyes; references to or supernatural analogues to depression, anxiety, PTSD, executive function issues, dissociation, and arguably self-harm; fantasy violence; some pseudo- Christian and some pseudo-pagan theology; blurring of the definition of reality; a content warning; and short and non-graphic descriptions of a large number of very horrible fates.”

Although that sounds quite heavy, in the parts I’ve read I’ve found these themes are dealt with fairly lightly; the tone is generally positive. I don’t think we’ll use formal safety tools for the reading group, but the session will still run under the Gauntlet Community Code of Conduct.

If you’re interested enough to do some reading but not the whole text, some choices could be to focus on the lore section (roughly pp. 9-94), the rules (95-377, but with some sections you’d probably skim), the ‘example of play’ chapters spread throughout, or the introductory ‘A Cup Of Flame’ (15-24). You are also welcome to just skip around the chapters that interest you most. If you haven’t read the game at all and you just want to watch, I guess that’s fine, although I don’t know how much you’ll get out of it. But I’d encourage you to try reading the whole thing - a good time!

The discussion will take place over Zoom. I’ve set our session length for an hour and won’t take a scheduled break, although participants are welcome to step away if they need to.

I’ll email participants a week before the session with a reminder and some more details about the session.

Open access time for sign ups is 5:30pm 9 August AEST.

Session link: https://gauntlet-hangouts.firebaseapp.com/event-detail/-N8h0SkY7sjIrBtn33og