A Role Playing Game
Total Eclipse is a role-playing game where a GM, or game master, creates an alternate fantasy world for a group of players to explore. Each player takes on the persona of adventurer in a way similar to an actor taking on a stage roll. The players form a group which combines together to overcome obstacles the game master puts in front of them, in the process exploring the world the game master has created.
Total Eclipse is a cooperative game. This means instead of playing in an attempt to “win,” defeating all of the other players, Total Eclipse is intended to be played as a group. The game master will challenge the players with puzzles, unusual situations, and fantasy danger, but this is not intended to create an adversarial setting. Instead, the game master’s goal is to create a level of realism in the game that allows for a suspension of disbelief, that point that happens in a good movie or play where you forget the outside world and are living and are able to see the world being described to you in your imagination. Likewise, players are not suppose to be adversarial in their playing as a team, but instead are suppose to act as comrades trying to overcome the problems and achieve goals placed before them.
The basic rules of the game are designed to be generic. That means you can play Total Eclipse in a wide number of situations, from swords and sorcery to science fiction to cyberpunk. They are also designed to be easy to play, while providing enough realism to enable the player to have a wide range of options for developing their adventurer.
Total Eclipse is a traditional table-top role-playing game, but it is designed for the modern player. The rule books are iPad and smart phone friendly, searchable PDF files. The documents include links that allow you to manuever around them, and are searchable in most PDF viewers. In addition, each document links to the Internet to provide the player with updates and errata for the game.
I hope you have fun with Total Eclipse and the world of Virdea.
Steve N. Jackson, Fall 2011
My students made this video on Youtube, check it out.