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Winner Most Innovative New Product, 2011 Gaming Genius Awards

Finalist RPG of the Year, 2011 Golden Geek Awards

What is Microscope?

Humanity spreads to the stars and forges a galactic civilization...

Fledgling nations arise from the ruins of the empire...

An ancient line of dragon-kings dies out as magic fades from the realm...

These are all examples of Microscope games. Want to explore an epic history of your own creation, hundreds or thousands of years long, all in an afternoon? That's Microscope.

You won't play the game in chronological order. You can defy the limits of time and space, jumping backward or forward to explore the parts of the history that interest you. Want to leap a thousand years into the future and see how an institution shaped society? Want to jump back to the childhood of the king you just saw assassinated and find out what made him such a hated ruler? That’s normal in Microscope.

You have vast power to create... and to destroy. Build beautiful, tranquil jewels of civilization and then consume them with nuclear fire. Zoom out to watch the majestic tide of history wash across empires, then zoom in and explore the lives of the people who endured it.

Mock chronological order.
Defy time and space.
Build worlds and destroy them.

A role-playing game for two to four players. No GM. No prep. Microscope was playtested for two years by over 150 awesome gamers.

"Microscope is incredible! A truly brilliant design. Also, the book is extremely well done. Highly recommended."
—John Harper, designer of Agon & Danger Patrol

"Ben Robbins' Microscope may be the clearest-written game text I've ever read - which is helpful, because it is also one of the most innovative games I've come across in a long time. Microscope engagingly challenges assumptions and upends long-held conventions of play while delivering a singular and satisfying evening of gaming. And "fractal role playing" is no joke - the minute you finish, you'll want to dive back in and explore some interesting sliver of the vast history you just built."
—Jason Morningstar, designer of Fiasco

"It's been a long time that a game captures my attention like Microscope. Bypass the hype, it's a truly remarkable well-instruction'd game"
—Andy Kitkowski, founder of

 Customers Who Bought this Title also Purchased
Reviews (13)
Discussions (3)
Customer avatar
Benjamin O April 08, 2019 2:29 pm UTC
This game is great, but finding people to play with online is hard.

I've created a discord link for people who might want to connect online to other community members or talk about the game. The link is below.

The advantage of discord is that you can hop into a voice chat room immediately once there.

I hope to see many of you there!
Customer avatar
Ronald C May 22, 2019 1:03 pm UTC
I just found Microscope and am very much looking forward to reading and playing it. I intend on joining the Discord server soon!
Customer avatar
Heath B January 23, 2018 2:44 pm UTC
When are Explorer, Kingdoms, and Follow going to be available on DriveThru?
Customer avatar
Ben R January 30, 2018 1:39 am UTC
Sorry Heath, no plans to release them on DriveThru.
Customer avatar
Jye K February 05, 2018 4:40 am UTC
Can I ask why this is? As someone who likes to keep purchases in as few different places as possible, it is highly discouraging.
Customer avatar
Bradley E February 20, 2018 1:09 pm UTC
I agree, I came here to buy all three, but they aren't here.
Customer avatar
Ben R February 21, 2018 1:31 am UTC
I don't sell more games here because Drivethru takes a much larger cut than my other storefronts. I kept Microscope available because it was from before I got set up elsewhere, but adding more games would not make much sense. Sorry, folks.
Customer avatar
Bradley E February 21, 2018 2:21 am UTC
No problem, I respect your right to do what you want with your product. I just find that I appreciate the sevices this storefront offers me, and so I buy it here or do without.
Customer avatar
Jon X October 20, 2016 1:38 am UTC
Does anyone know what was changed when this game was updated last?
Customer avatar
Ben R October 20, 2016 10:03 pm UTC
A reference to the new Microscope Explorer supplement was added in the back. The main Microscope text wasn't changed at all.
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Product Information
Mithral seller
Publisher Stock #
File Size:
2.98 MB
Original electronic
Scanned image
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Watermarked PDF
Watermarked PDF

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File Last Updated:
May 31, 2016
This title was added to our catalog on May 03, 2011.