Trophy Writing Contest - Read the Entries!

word! I do my Conditions & Moments first as well, or at least half of them. my usual approach is:

  • Theme
  • 5-6 Moments
  • 5-6 Conditions
  • Ring 4
  • Ring 5
  • Few more Moments & Conditions
  • Rings 1
  • Ring 2
  • Finish Moments & Conditions
  • Introduction

HR Typo and Yhp-Ört is outstanding. I had a shot at doing something similar but couldn’t get it anywhere near my liking. Glad I didn’t submit that one because HR Typo and Yhp-Ört would’ve made me look horrible. The office section in particular owns.


I wrote No Man’s Land, it was my first incursion and I think it shows. I feel like I fell too much in love with my setting over the theme.

Working my way through all the entries, loving everything.

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Reflecting again on the writing process based on @JimLikesGames comment about where he started… My 13yo son (who wrote City of the Forgotten) said he started with the genre (steampunk) and the setting (lost city), coming to the theme later. I definitely started with theme (fame). I’m not even sure where the setting (modern party) came from, but I also wrote the introduction first.

It would be pretty interesting to run a contest where every entry had to use the same theme.


I would be HELLA down for that. contest, jam, whatever.

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I just wrote mine the way I would the outline of a location based adventure - but stated the themes and goals of play out loud in a way that I’d normally have to work into the text to avoid overt railroading and left in a lot of the stuff I’d usually cut as being useless at the table for that style of play. Then I wrote up a list of images in the way one would create a random table for say dungeon dressing or wilderness travel landmarks for the random events.

Since there was no keying, faction design or NPC creation necessary I just dropped a few images I thought were nice into the Temptations and Threats sections and bam - done.

I just got back from GMing Barrow of the Reading King.

It ran like a dream. All the things I tossed in to spur suspicion and betrayal worked like a charm. And the Ruin Reduction mechanic really pulls its weight.


Hello everyone. I wrote The Promethean Crown. I too am piling through these am really love seeing all the effort put into these entries.
The exercise in writing incursions forces you to cut to the chase and I was surprised at how useful it was to look back on Jason’s blog post and “Hard frame like a motherfucker” to make things work.
Maybe most surprised that Ring 1 was singularly the most difficult part to nail down :grimacing:
I can’t wait to finish all of these!


I wrote Mort’s Will and Testament. It was fun to get some ideas I’ve kicked around in my head finally on paper. One thing that I loved was a the challenge of keeping everything based on a theme. Going back to that one word helped to direct all of the acts, and my acts helped drive what conditions I wanted to use. I’m super pumped to read through the other entries. Great job everyone!


Going to have to have a good look over all of these, I started putting together a space themed incursion but just couldn’t get it to work (largely due to not having had a chance to run/play the base game yet). Hopefully can get a better feel for it from these.


So glad to see these! Looking forward to running this game more often and it’s wonderful to have such a plethora of options to choose from!


Still many to read but so far I’m really into Southern Holler (beautifully written and evocative theme - and that encounter table!), The Plantation (just… horrific, great theme and well done), The Promethean Crown (really impressive world-building and descriptions), The Station (evokes a truly alien feeling of dread) and Clever Fingers (interesting theme and use of items).


Hello MrTrollhands!
I haven’t gotten through everything, yet, but Gift of the Sea is absolutely incredible. It’s truly inspired. Hats off to you, sir.


Thanks so much! I enjoyed writing it a lot. A big inspiration for the effigy and ritual was Greenwitch by Susan Cooper.


I wrote “Ascension Rebound.” I planned it as both an incursion but also a celebration of what to me was the core that defines Trophy: recursions, repetition, cycles. Echoes.

And an exercise in asking the question: “How much can one push the Ring-system by abandoning all pretenses of linear progression?”


My friend and I collaborated on The Gallery of Castien DeRont. We’ve been working on RPG adventures for our home groups together for 7 years, but this is the first time we’ve written something public others can run. Hope others check it out. It’d mean a lot to us. :slight_smile:


If anyone hasn’t seen it yet, Jason started a Twitter thread commenting on each of the entries here - pretty cool considering how many submissions there are:


Me patiently waiting for him to get to my entry:"


I finished reading all the incursions last week and have been sitting around thinking about what to say.

I mean, obviously there is a huge amount of talent rolled up in this competition. I do not envy Jason and Jesse’s task.
I came into this as a Trophy amateur (and I think that’s being rather generous). I have not had a chance to actually run Trophy and I have not seen the other incursions in the codex ( aside from the one I just received this month * squeals of joy*) and was basing (incorrectly perhaps haha)my submission only off of the basic rules found in Dark2, alone.
With that caveat I can see some of my own misconceptions in what I created which were definitely just assumptions on my part, but lead me to questions about incursion formation.

I see a wide range of specificity in the entries and I’m curious if this suggests a comfortability with improvisation.
I personally love improvising at the table. this, and the grim-dark horror elements are what drew me to Trophy in the first place. But have those of you who have run Trophy seen a lot of buy-in from non improv enthusiasts? I’ll say, people accustomed to gridded play and miniatures.

Another interesting thing about all of the entries is how there are several themes that are the same, but the expression of those themes is so unique. do you think that narrowing the context of the theme hampering to building an incursion? does Trophy shine when spoken in broader brush strokes?

I feel like my knee-jerk reaction to these questions I have is to shrug and go " eh … it’s complicated man", but I do find value in pondering these ideas. There is wealth in seeing these incursions built. THARS GOLD IN DEM HILLS!
sorry ^_^;

The entries themselves, boy to I have so biased opinions here, haha. there are just certain things in horror that turn my gears. So I just made some vague categories and started shuffling things here and there.
I am no impartial judge and, I reiterate, I do not envy Jason and Jesse’s task.

My favorite title for these entries.
The Moon That Breathes
I am definitely the guy that will buy a book based off of its cover. I’m a sucker for evocative images and evocative words and this title ALONE gives me the heebee jeebies and I love it. This incursion is solid and I really enjoyed reading it, but when I first opened up the folder and skimmed through the entries, This is the one I wanted to read first.

Favorite Theme(s)
A Warm and Pleasant Hum
I was surprised by how effective this themes was, and how true it was to a very specific thematic element through and through. I mistakenly thought it would be silly, like Nicholas Cage screaming about bees in the wickerman. Oh how I was wrong. From the moment of the envenomed horse in ring one I was astounded and chilled. I like it very much.

The Gallery of Castien DeRont
Another surprisingly chilling theme to me. As a paranid artist I felt a lot of these images hit close to home and did not expect to feel such dread out of things like statues and paintings. The final ring where players describe what happens to the other hunters in the paintings makes me REALLY want to run this, haha.

Super biased favorite
My justification is really just that I have an affinity for stories about oil barons and pipelines. I really enjoyed this from that kind of setting, and the imagery of the earth’s flesh under the dirt will stick with me whenever I think about the topic, I think

both of these entries give me a sort of Cautionary-tale-Aesop-fable vibe and I dig it. there’s something primordial in their fear.
Plantation is like an R rated animal farm
We’re Going On a Bear Hunt is like one of those dreams where you see the nightmare coming but you’re caught on rails.
Both of these have a stalking sense of dread throughout them. one is more visceral, the other more intangibly frightening and I want to make pictures of them both, haha

There’s more. oh boy is there more. but I think I’ll let this lay here for now.

Splendid work everyone!


If you mean the incursion in codex childhood (Rosenwald), that’s mine! :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:
I’m also a “trophy amateur” in that I’ve yet to run/play it.
My writing so far has been highly based on the rules in dark 2, and on the Flocculent cathedral and the Oz themed incursion from codex emerald. I listened to a number of the YouTube videos of folks running the various incursions to get a better feel for play as well.

I think trophy is a hard sell for a direct transition from grid & miniature play unless they were already leaning hard in to the role-play aspects of them vs the simulationist aspects.

That was something really interesting to see to me as well. I have no idea how it’s going to work in play for those with an extremely narrow focus. I could see it being intense and awesome, but I could also see it potentially choking due to limited available actions. I sincerely hope for the former. I think the Diving Bell incursion was my favorite example of narrower focus of the ones I’ve read so far.

That’s my 2 cents :grin:

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