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It's Christmas in July! From now through July 31st, Santa has marked down this digital title by 25%! For more values, visit our Christmas in July sale page.

Cryptomancer is a tabletop role-playing game made for hackers, by hackers. It features an original  fantasy setting and gameplay informed by diverse security disciplines: information security, physical security, intelligence analysis, clandestine tradecraft, and risk management. Players assume the role of characters on the run from a shadowy organization that rules the world through mass surveillance, propaganda, and political coercion.

  • Explore a rich fantasy setting connected by the Shardscape, the magical equivalent of the Internet 
  • Attack and defend fantasy networks built upon real networking and cryptography principles
  • Build up your safehouse and manage covert cells of spies, scouts, political agitators, and assassins
  • Customize your character with dozens of talents and spells emphasizing stealth, deception, and creative problem-solving

Kill all the orcs, hack all the things!
 Customers who bought this title also purchased
Reviews (11)
Discussions (8)
Customer avatar
January 29, 2017 8:40 pm UTC
I'm truly puzzled as to why the game's description isn't more transparent about being a death spiral, or at least why it doesn't take some pains to emphasize the inherent hopelessness of the setting. If I hadn't read multiple reviews both on and off this site I'd have assumed it was a more neutral, or even player empowering game, would likely have bought it, and been left a very unhappy customer. That's simply not my game.
There IS a very solid market for those who enjoy a doomed struggle, and thus no need to conceal or obfuscate the setting's nature. I'm disappointed that I had discover this via third party commentary.

Edit: I am aware of the free expansion as mentioned in the publisher's reply to Carsten H.'s review of the game, but I still maintain that this product would better serve itself and its buyers by being upfront with the game's nature.
Customer avatar
Sascha W February 15, 2017 5:54 pm UTC
Agreed. I read of the downward spiral and instantly knew: I can't play it with my players like that.
They know the risk of character death, of course, but they want to be able to be victorious in the end.
Customer avatar
February 24, 2017 12:57 am UTC
Hi Sascha! Thanks for supporting the game!

An easy hack to make the game more heroic for the table is to replace Risk Eater assassinations with "Big Campaign Events"... the arch-duke gets assassinated, a zombie pandemic happens, orcs invade, etc.
Customer avatar
Gyurics G January 26, 2017 8:18 pm UTC
As someomne who's enthusiastic about cryptography, I'm so happy you guys did this book. I surprised myself with the pdf to commemorate the raise I just got. I do wonder if you guys plan to come up with cryptographic themes in a more modern environment - like a cyberpunk setting in the near future, or in a fictional scifi world. Playing out the themes of a survailence state vs. anarcho-cryptographic movements, the now so important dilemma between security and privacy, would be tons of fun. AND educational on both cryptography and modern problems as well. I can imagine a Snowden-style whistleblowing story as a quickstart adventure. I bet it would sell great, and would start important discussions around players.

Well, I'm most certain I will have tons of fun with Cryptomancer as well!
Customer avatar
January 26, 2017 9:05 pm UTC
Thanks Gyurics! We're pleased you dig the game. The chapter called "The Father of Space and Time," and the game's Outro, are basically a fantasy retelling of the Snowden story. I hope you enjoy.

We're working on something modern, high budget, and totally outrageous, and hope to launch by end of 2017. Stay tuned.

Customer avatar
Peter C January 22, 2017 9:20 pm UTC
As someone who knows a reasonable amount about security I found this a bizarre fusion of ideas. The book starts with the idea that information security has been underserved by traditional fantasy. Which if you dissect the statement, it verges on the ridiculous. I might as well have said that cellular communications have been underserved by 1930s film noir. So the background bolts on a pseudo-networking concept, and then proceeds to expound on issues such as asymmetric and symmetric encryption with the ruthless efficiency of an introduction to security textbook. It seems to be selling well, and I salute the writers for taking the bold step of bringing together two completely unconnected niches. However while I bought it I found the whole thing an unsatisfying, and frankly tedious exercise. There's a reason that the fantasy trope exists, and while there's nothing wrong with pushing the boundaries in this direction (say as in Numenera with its datasphere) this one felt cobbled together. I'd also add that it felt...See more
Customer avatar
January 26, 2017 3:19 am UTC
Bummer! Sorry you didn't dig, but thank you for taking a chance on an indie title.
Customer avatar
Peter C February 01, 2017 7:30 pm UTC
Hey. You guys did the work - I know many people will derive enjoyment from it. Regardless of my thoughts I only wish you the best.
Customer avatar
Aaron M December 30, 2016 10:04 am UTC
As someone who has been content to borrow game books from friends in the past, I'm very happy to be able to buy a copy of this for myself (pdf, there's not much room in my flat for dead trees).

I work on a project called CryptPad (, and I greatly appreciate the work the authors have done to make Cryptography more accessible to a wider audience. I'll be sure to spread the word about this!
Customer avatar
January 07, 2017 3:48 pm UTC
That's fantastic to hear. Thank you for supporting the game, and doing your own work to protect privacy and personal liberty.
Customer avatar
Casey F August 17, 2016 3:05 pm UTC
So it says that you've got the orc killing covered, but I'm finding little or nothing about how physical combat works in the game. Maybe I just missed it? This game looks amazing otherwise!
Customer avatar
August 18, 2016 12:08 am UTC
Thank you for buying a copy and I'm glad you like what you see! There is a chapter called Combat covering the basics. There is a chapter called Threats cover various adversaries, including orcs. There is a chapter called Talents, covering many, many things that make characters unique, including a handful of fun combat perks. There is a chapter called Magic, which includes a handful of traditional fantasy spells (fireball, etc.), though most have an emphasis on espionage/stealth. All those together = all the fantasy violence you can stomach.
Customer avatar
Casey F August 18, 2016 1:29 am UTC
Haven't actually purchased the game. I wasn't clear in my original comment... I was looking for previews that might explain those systems a little. Not that it matters much, as the game looks cool enough to buy regardless. Thanks for the reply!
Customer avatar
Matthew J August 18, 2016 3:23 pm UTC
Check out my review to go over the mechanics including a limited combat scenario.
Customer avatar
August 06, 2016 7:33 pm UTC
I see two files with the same name. Is there a difference between them?
Customer avatar
August 08, 2016 4:45 am UTC
One has bookmarks, the other doesn't. Sorry for the confusion, I will remove the non-bookmark copy soon.
Customer avatar
July 31, 2016 4:14 pm UTC
Added Bookmarks to the PDF.

Also, if you are a customer who accidentally ordered the Hardcover instead of the Hardcover/PDF combo, contact us at cryptomancer.actual [AT] gmail [dot] com.
Customer avatar
Jeremy W July 31, 2016 9:54 am UTC
Please please please add bookmarks to your PDF.
Customer avatar
July 31, 2016 12:15 pm UTC
That's fair! We'll start working on that. Pretty sure that when we push changes to the PDF, there is an option to notify folks who bought it already to re-download the new version.
Customer avatar
Jeremy W August 01, 2016 9:47 am UTC
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File Last Updated:
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This title was added to our catalog on July 27, 2016.
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