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The Bell

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You wake up with your memories fracturing around you. You're going somewhere, and there's something wrong, and you know these people here with you, or maybe you only think you do. All you really know for sure is that you can hear this Bell.

This is a science fiction suspense live roleplaying game inspired by The Fountain (Darren Aronofsky), Five-Twelfths of Heaven (Melissa Scott), Vacuum Flowers (Michael Swanwick) and the works of Cordwainer Smith.  The Bell is intended to be an emotionally intense game that pushes moral dilemmas.  (It isn’t recommended for novice roleplayers.)  It can be run for 12 to 20 players with a play duration of two hours.

The premise of The Bell is that the players are the crew and passengers of a space ship called The Soul which is travelling to a planet called Castilia and experiencing technical problems.  People are normally put to sleep for the journey, with the crew waking for short periods from time to time to make repairs that the ship cannot handle by itself.  In this case, the ship is damaged with problems with critical systems.  The players wake as amnesiacs with only partial memories about who they are and why they are there.  At several points in the game they will hear a tolling bell indicating that they have to return to their sleeper pods for the next phase of the journey.  In these bell interludes they will be able to recover more memories about themselves and other people. 

The Bell draws on a trope of science fiction which treats space travel as a spiritual journey.  It doesn't make assertions about any particular religion, but it does examine metaphysical themes and ethical issues.


Twenty character sheets

Guide to running the game and the game setting


Handouts required for the game

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44.51 MB
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File Last Updated:
August 28, 2013
This title was added to our catalog on February 01, 2012.