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The Yellow King Roleplaying Game


The book has been written.
The book has been read.
Now it rewrites you.
Across time it spreads, creating dread new realities.
And you’re in all of them.

The Yellow King RPG is an innovative new GUMSHOE core game written and designed by GUMSHOE creator Robin D. Laws. YKRPG takes you on a brain-bending spiral through multiple selves and timelines.

YKRPG Paris spread

Inspired by Robert W. Chambers’ influential cycle of short stories, The Yellow King RPG pits the characters against the reality-altering horror of The King in Yellow. This suppressed play, once read, invites madness. Or a visit from its titular character, an alien ruler intent on invading and remolding our world into a colony of their planet, Carcosa.

Four books confront your players with an epic journey into reality horror: 

  • Belle Époque Paris, where a printed version of the dread play is first published. Players portray American art students in its absinthe-soaked world, navigating the Parisian demimonde and investigating mysteries involving gargoyles, vampires, and decadent alien royalty. Includes the core rules.
  • The Wars, an alternate reality in which the players take on the role of soldiers bogged down in the great European conflict of 1947. While trying to stay alive on an eerie, shifting battlefield, they investigate supernatural mysteries generated by the occult machinations of the Yellow King and his rebellious daughters.
  • Aftermath, set later in the same reality, in 2017 North America. A bloody insurrection has toppled a dictatorial regime loyal to Carcosa. Players become former partisans adjusting to ordinary life, trying to build a just society from the ashes of civil war. But not all of the monsters have been thoroughly banished—and like it or not, they’re the ones with the skills to hunt them and finish them off.
  • This is Normal Now. In the 2017 we know, albeit one subtly permeated by supernatural beings and maddening reality shifts, ordinary people band together, slowly realizing that they are the key to ending a menace spanning eras and realities.
All four covers

New GUMSHOE features include: 

  • A completely new player-facing combat system. 
  • A fresh, evocative approach to wounds, physical and psychic, inspired by the innovations of GUMSHOE One-2-One
  • Linked character creation across multiple settings.
The Yellow King RPG contains everything you need to start playing each of the four settings, and a number of bonus downloads:
  • Book 1: Paris (192 pages) which includes the basic rules, character generation and setting details for the Belle Époque, and an introductory adventure
  • Book 2: The Wars (176 pages) which includes character generation, new technology and setting details for the European War, as well as an introductory adventure
  • Book 3: Aftermath (168 pages) which includes character generation, factions and NPCs, setting details for the post-Carcosan present, and an introductory adventure
  • Book 4: This Is Normal Now (176 pages) which includes character generation, new organizations and terrifying monsters for the weird now, plus an introductory adventure
  • GM Screen PDF
  • Slipcase GM Screen PDF
  • Bonus The Yellow King RPG adventure, "The Doors to Heaven", written by Sarah Saltiel for the Paris setting
  • Shock card deck PDF
  • Injury card deck PDF
  • The Yellow King RPG Suite - music for all four YKRPG settings

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Discussions (2)
Customer avatar
Scott T January 25, 2023 11:01 am UTC
I am currently moving countries but once it's finalised this is going to be my first purchase. The King in Yellow is one of my all time favourite horror books. I can't wait to inflict more King in Yellow content upon my friends. I'll be sure to review it once I've got it
Customer avatar
Evan L August 17, 2021 6:08 pm UTC
$55 for a PDF?? Wow
Customer avatar
Pelgrane P August 17, 2021 7:33 pm UTC
Hi Evan. I'm sorry to hear you're unhappy with the cost of The Yellow King PDF. The box set includes four books, and so the price reflects this. Thanks, Becky.
Customer avatar
Phil M June 21, 2022 1:05 pm UTC
Hi Becky, do you know when there will be a new print run of the set?
Customer avatar
Pelgrane P June 22, 2022 12:43 am UTC
Hey Dylath, the new print run is on its way to our warehouses in the USA and UK at the moment, and it's back in stock and available to purchase on our website.

Regards, Cat
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Product Information
Silver seller
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File Size:
318.92 MB
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File Last Updated:
April 13, 2020
This title was added to our catalog on April 13, 2020.