Coyote & Crow the Role Playing Game

Created by Coyote & Crow RPG

A science fiction and fantasy tabletop RPG set in a near-future where the Americas were never colonized, created by a team of Natives.

Latest Updates from Our Project:

Update #15
about 1 year ago – Fri, Sep 03, 2021 at 11:25:28 PM

Well, here we are again. Another month gone by! I hope you’re all safe and healthy. Things are becoming a bit of a blur for me personally. Between Covid skyrocketing once again and Hurricane Ida, my nerves are shot. But we’re still marching on over here at C&C.

So let’s get to the updates!

Core Rule Book

We’re down to just eight pieces of unfinished art work for the book as of the time of this writing and all eight are currently being worked on! Collecting the art for this book has been one of our biggest challenges and has been a two year journey for me personally. But we’re seeing the end of the tunnel. We ended with 24 total artists, 17 of them Indigenous. I’m really proud of that.

Our layout designer and our editor are hard at work assembling and finalizing the book. We’re hoping to have final files completed by around the middle of October. That’s great news for getting you the full PDF of the game in November. The bad news is that based on print time estimates, it means that physical books probably won’t arrive to our warehouse until the end of the year. That means it may realistically be February before backers receive their physical copies and March before the book reaches retailers. We’ll update these timelines as we go.

I guess overall, March is really only three months after when we originally wanted to get books to you, so that’s not too bad. In the world we’re all living in, I’m going to call that a win.

Other Rewards and Goals

Yesterday I picked up the limited prints that are going to be included with the Seeker Pledge level. They look beautiful! Other things are coming along as well!

  • The Character name generator is finished and it’s amazing
  • The forums are built
  • The Wiki is being built out and is looking good
  • Our fillable PDF character sheet is finished and is really cool
  • The mobile app is coming along nicely and I’m looking forward to the next build

As mentioned above, we’re also currently on track to deliver our digital rewards in November. This will include:

  • The full PDF of the game
  • All website upgrades (including forums, Wiki and more)
  • The mobile app
  • The character name generator
  • Our official Discord server
  • YouTube channel with ‘how to’ videos
  • The “Rules Light” PDF RPG intro game
  • An Actual Play series

Other products

  • Writer Shay Snow is working on the Roll20 Exclusive Story
  • Writer Derek Pounds is working on a new digital Story release that will hopefully be available in November after the full game PDF launches
  • We are officially working on the first Coyote & Crow novel! We’ll have a more formal announcement soon.
  • Two other games set in Coyote & Crow are currently in development
  • We’ve started a POD merch shop on RedBubble for now. The selection will expand over time and move to our own webstore eventually. In the meantime, you can shop here:
  • We’re about to dive into the initial steps of organizing our next Kickstarter. We don’t have a timeline yet, but we’re hoping we can launch it soon. We’ll have more information on that as it develops.
Average multi-generational home life in Cahokia. Art by Mackenzie Neal (Quapaw Nation)

Game Design

This month, I’d like to talk about Character progression in Coyote & Crow and what we call the Legendary system. We’re just going to cover it broadly here and leave the details for the book, but I thought it was important to cover a few aspects because they tie in closely with some of the overall themes of the game. Character progression is built around some core conceits:

  • We didn’t want it to be too mathy or point based
  • We didn’t want to reward violence or murder
  • We didn’t want to reward material gain or greed
  • We wanted progression to be easy to keep track of
  • We wanted it to be tied in with the concept that your characters aren’t just heroes but heroes whose legends will be told for generations to come

The whole process is measured in Sessions, where a Session is simply an instance where your play group gets together to play Coyote & Crow. Your Character can advance current Skills or gain new ones, they can increase, reduce, gain or lose Gifts and Burdens, increase their Stats, or obtain items outside of their normal financial means. A Character can pursue two Short Term Goals and one Long Term Goal all at the same time. After an appropriate number of Sessions, your Character simply makes the change to their Character and then they can give themselves a new goal.

But there’s also a Story Guide aspect to this. They get to create a secret Long Term Goal for the whole group. Normally, it’s the culmination of the Story arc that the Guide has the Characters on. We’ll have advice in the book for the average number of Sessions and how to craft a meaningful Long Term Goal.

The difference between the group Long Term Goal and the individual Character Long Term Goals is that when the Characters complete this goal, they gain a Legendary Rank and get to create a Tale. Each Legendary Rank allows Players to manipulate a single die value by 1, changing any one die roll during a Check, up or down by one.

But even better, in my humble opinion, is that each Player is encouraged to craft a Tale, a summary of the events of the Story that got them the Rank. Players write them in isolation and are encouraged to embellish, enhance and straight up fabricate the actual events of the Story and can make them a short story, poem, song lyrics, whatever they’d like. The idea is that these Tales are the events retold generations later around a late night fire with the Player’s Character as the central hero of the Story. The next time you all get together to play your next Session, players can then share their Tales with each other.

And as much as I’m looking forward to hearing about your actual Stories and Characters and Sagas, I’m really excited to hear your individual Tales. In fact, let’s lay stake to the hashtag now:  #CoyoteAndCrowTales. When you’re at that point, share your Tales with all of us on social media. Let out your inner storyteller!

That’s it for now folks!

Update #14 - and a big announcement!
about 1 year ago – Tue, Aug 03, 2021 at 12:32:48 AM

It’s been a busy month! I hope you’re all well, safe, and vaccinated. There are a ton of things going on over here at Coyote & Crow. Let’s jump into news about the core rule book development first, then we’ll talk about other C&C products, drop a big announcement, and lastly get into some details on Gifts and Burdens, my favorite game mechanic within Coyote & Crow.

Coyote & Crow Development

I’m really pleased to report that our core writing is done! We’re also mostly wrapped on our sensitivity edit and our copy edit is well underway. As chapters are finished and we collect art assets, those chapters are being passed along to our layout designer. We’re also in the process of incorporating the last bits of feedback from our play testing processes. Things are coming into sharper focus every day.

Our one hang up is, of course, art. However, we have made good strides. As I write this we have only sixteen pieces of art left that are unassigned to an artist. We also have 77(!) pieces of completed art from more than 20 artists. I’m so proud of the work they’re doing.

Overall, things are coming along smashingly and I’m so excited for you all to see the thing of beauty we’re assembling. There is however, one big blot on all of this and it’s definitely something I want to explain to everyone. It concerns the price of the game. Before anyone gets their hackles up, no, we aren’t going to be asking backers for more money. Your games are fine and locked in.

However, we’ve officially made the decision to change the retail price of the game from $50 to $60. It was tough to do, but there was some really sound logic behind it and I want folks to understand all of the reasons and how it may affect things going forward.

When I was a naïve young man back in March of 2021, I priced Coyote & Crow’s core rule book at $50 and set up our shipping costs for the Kickstarter based on a few assumptions. First, it was an ‘average’ price of a hardback RPG core book. I assumed our book would come in at about 350 pages and had gotten manufacturing quotes based around that. I also expected to do no more than about about $25,000 total on our Kickstarter if it went well. Meaning I expected to be shipping around 500 books. We subsidized our shipping costs into part of the price in order to make shipping an easier calculation for everyone, even though it was going to potentially eat into our margins if shipping costs increased at all. What’s the worst that could happen, I thought?

So here we are in July and we’re facing a huge materials shortage, world wide, including paper. We’re dealing with huge increases in shipping and freight costs. Instead of 500 books, I’m delivering 17000. Instead of 350 pages, we’re coming in at over 400.

Things have changed. And likely the game industry as a whole, will never go back to the way it was. I may talk more about the overall situation on our development blog, but the point is, changing Coyote & Crow from $50 to $60 at retail isn’t an outlier situation. Instead, it’s likely indicative of an industry wide shift to an increase in prices for games. Again, if you backed Coyote & Crow, or did a late pledge, your games are locked in and you’re good. We’re not asking you for more money.

But starting on August 15th, we’ll be raising the prices of the book on the late pledge page of our BackerKit to $60 and investigating an increase to our shipping rates.  So if you haven’t backed and are thinking about it, you may want to do that soon if money is an issue for you. It’s also likely that we’ll be looking at an increase in prices in all future Coyote & Crow products too, especially if they contain plastic or have to come from overseas.

Upcoming Products

Okay, with that out of the way, let’s talk about other upcoming products!

  • We’re in discussion with a Native author to write a novel set in the world of Coyote & Crow! We're already excitedly discussing basic character concepts and an overall theme and plot.
  • We have an up and coming Native game designer working with a well known hobby game designer and they’re developing a tabletop game set in Coyote & Crow. That's likely something for 2023.
  • We’re almost finished with development on a dice based game set in Coyote & Crow. Hoping that's something for 2022 but a lot of that depends on the freight and manufacturing situation.
  • We’re organizing ourselves to be ready for our next Kickstarter for the RPG, which will likely happen right around the time we’re delivering digital rewards to folks and we think you’re going to love what we have planned. Timing is TBD still as we want to make sure people feel like they aren’t backing another Kickstarter before they’ve gotten their first one.
  • We’re going to have our first POD merch available very soon! Keep an eye on our social media for that announcement and link
  • Work is proceeding on our mobile app, our website upgrades and our name generator and Wiki.
  • We have a few other digital products that are in the wings that we’re working to release at the same time as our other digital rewards. More soon!

Our Big Announcement

Coyote & Crow is overjoyed to announce that we’ve entered into a partnership with Pe Metawe Consulting! Pe Metawe is an Edmonton based, Indigenous owned and operated firm that offers a large array of consulting services and workshops. They also own a retail game shop!

As Coyote & Crow began to grow, we realized that we didn’t really have either the expertise or the bandwidth needed to handle some of our social media challenges. The folks at Pe Metawe have enthusiastically stepped up to help us plan and organize some incredible tools and services for all of you. I’m so excited to see everything they’ll be doing to help grow the Coyote & Crow community.

So what is it that Pe Metawe will be doing for us? This is just a brief outline of the things they’ll be bringing to you all in the coming months:

  • A series of videos on a dedicated Coyote & Crow YouTube channel, including things like ‘how to run an encounter’, ‘how our dice mechanics work’, ‘how to build a character’ and more.
  • Hosting and moderating our official Discord Channel, coming soon
  • Helping to moderate our official website forums at, also coming soon
  • Organizing and producing an ongoing actual play series with an original Coyote & Crow Saga.

You  can find out more about Pe Metawe Consulting and Pe Metawe Games at:

Pe Metawe Games and Consulting
Art Interlude - A Character using the Far Sight Ability By Mackenzie Neal (Quapaw Nation)

Gifts and Burdens

This mechanic might be my favorite thing we developed for the game. While Stats and Skills and Abilities are all well and good and add a ton of mechanical value, Gifts and Burdens are what really make a Character feel realized. At least, that’s my strongly held belief. They make Characters feel more like real people and give them ways to shine and struggle that make them relatable.

The concept for Gifts and Burdens was certainly inspired by Merits & Flaws from Vampire the Masquerade. One of the things that I never really liked about that system though was that values were objectively attached to each of the merits and flaws. The overall idea is still fantastic but its implementation hasn’t aged well. Revamping it required some key changes. Foremost among those is the concept that whether any particular thing is a Gift or a Burden is decided by how your Character views it.

But before we jump into further explanations and examples, let’s define what a Gift or Burden is. These are things that a Player chooses for their Character or can be assigned by Story Guides that add flavor or distinction to your Character and also have a mechanical effect on game play. That last part is key and I’ll explain why in just a second. Gifts and Burdens are also Ranked, from Level 1 to Level 3. Level 1 is minor or trivial while Level 3 is pervasive or critical. Often, each Level equates to a modification to a Character’s Success Number on a Skill Check.

So how does it all work? Let’s use an example that we use in the core book as well. Let’s say you are building your Character and you decide that you want them to have a sister. Great! You can just include that in your Background section. Done. But wait, you decide that the relationship with the sister is important enough to your Character that you want it to have a mechanical effect in the game. That’s where your Character’s point of view comes into play. Do they see their sister as a positive or negative effect on their life? Or both? Maybe they’re a little sister who is always getting into trouble, causing you to divert time and energy to get her out of situations. Maybe she’s a scientist who is always there to help you solve technical challenges that your Character isn’t skilled at. Maybe she’s someone who is always causing you problems, but is also there whenever you really need her. You’ll decide whether your sister is a Gift, Burden, or both as well as what Level.

You might be asking why you’d ever give your Character a Burden. Besides the fun of it and the depth it brings to your Characters, it also supplies you with a few extra points to play with during your Character creation process, allowing you more points for Skills and Stats. In addition, there are other ways that your Character may receive Burdens during game play from the Story Guide (we’ll get into that another time).

So let’s say you’ve chosen to give your Character a little sister. You’ve written her down as a Level 2 Burden, which is pretty involved. Maybe she needs to be with you often and you struggle to find ways to leave her at home instead of bringing her along on your adventures. You’ll work with your Story Guide to set up the exact situation. From there, the Story Guide will decide when this Burden comes into play. A standard effect might be a modification to your needed Success Numbers on Checks. And any time you need to make Dice Checks and your little sister is involved, you’ll receive a +2 penalty to your Success Number. Meaning that if you’d normally need to roll a 6 or higher for a Success, you’d now need an 8. There could be other ways to define the mechanical effect as well and you the Story Guide are encouraged to do so.

Keep in mind that your sister being a Burden, doesn’t automatically mean she’s annoying or cruel or careless, etc. It may mean that your Character cares deeply about her well-being and is often distracted by her presence or puts her above your Character’s own needs.

You’re also welcome to take a Gift or Burden more than once. Or the same thing is both a Gift and Burden. Maybe that same sister is a resource or source of strength for your Character. Or maybe you have two sisters that are important enough to your Character to have a mechanical effect on the game. The combinations are vast and the point is that you and your Story Guide should collaborate to ensure that you’re taking Gifts and Burdens that not only help round out your Character, but are able to be integrated into your Saga and don’t overburden your Story Guide.

There are a number of basic categories we list out in the core book to help you get started on creating your Gifts and Burdens, but you aren’t restricted to them. Some can only be taken as Burdens. Some have special rules or qualifications. You’re also encouraged to work with your Story Guide to create new categories if you have ideas. Here are the categories we offer in the core book:

  • Family
  • Allies and Opponents
  • Financial
  • Spirit World Connection
  • Animal Connection
  • Fears
  • Secrets
  • Quirks
  • Curses and Blessings
  • Addictions
  • Notoriety
  • Companions

As you can see, there’s a lot to choose from and within each category, a multitude of possibilities. The goal is to give you a wide variety of ways to shape and refine your Character to anything you can imagine. And as your game evolves and your Character progresses, you’ll gain Gifts and Burdens, lose them, and change them.

In our next update, we’ll discuss the Legendary System, which is our answer to experience and Character progression. Part of this includes the evolution of Gifts and Burdens.

That’s all for now. I hope you have a great week. Please be careful and kind. Get vaccinated, mask up. Oh, and if you haven’t filled out your backer survey yet(I’m looking at all 908 of you), get it done, please!

Connor Alexander

Update #13
about 1 year ago – Sun, Jul 04, 2021 at 02:17:26 AM

We’re marching ever forward, folks. Let’s jump right into all of the news.

First, based on the overwhelmingly supportive comments from our last update, we’re taking our foot off of the gas a bit and adjusting our timelines. While we still technically might get physical books to people by December, that’s looking less likely every day. Our biggest slow down at this point is art. Currently, we have about two thirds of our art either complete or in progress and about one third to go. We’ve currently got art from 18 different artists and likely at least three more coming on board. If you’re an experienced artist, and you’d like to contribute, it’s not too late if you can work on a clock. See our job listing for more (

Our writing is about 96% done and we’ll hopefully be wrapping the last of it in the next week or so. Our editor has already started tuning up our finished chapters. Play testing is under way and we’re going to be working on final tweaks in the development process over the next month.

We also have a special treat for you. While this isn’t 100% locked in yet, this should give you a really clear sample of how our layouts are going to look. And oh my, do I love them. I hope you do as well.

Sample Layout

These pages come from the chapter, “Waya’s Lesson”, which is a short story at the start of the book that helps sets the tone for the game and is a soft introduction to this really big world.

All in all, everything we need for the PDF and physical book are not that far off of our original timeline. However, assuming we wrap everything and have files ready for the printer by September, we’re still looking at least 13 weeks for the printing process, plus shipping time to our warehouse. Then, allowing for time for backers to get their individual books shipped out, we’re looking at the end of the year already. This puts us in a situation where what will likely happen will be a late 2021 delivery for digital rewards, early 2022 (January or February) for the physical book and a month or two after that for a retail release of the game.

The mobile app development and website are coming along and we’re going to be able to release those alongside all of our digital rewards, as planned, in November.

We have some pre-news to share. This information is subject to change and isn’t official yet, but I want to keep everyone as up to date as I can.

  • We’re currently working on TWO tabletop games that are set in the Coyote & Crow universe. I’ll have more to say about those as they become more “official”.
  • We have an opportunity for an Ojibwe game designer. This would be a co-design role for a tabletop game that C&C LLC would publish but is NOT set in the Coyote & Crow universe. Please see this post for more:
  • We’re developing our next Kickstarter for Coyote & Crow which will have a TON of cool stuff to add to your Coyote & Crow TTRPG experience.
  • We’re also taking applications for a Native writer with publishing experience to write a novel set in the world of Coyote & Crow. For more, go here:

So, that’s where everything is at as far as production and timelines.

Now, let’s talk about the game! In this update, I’d like to transition from Paths, which we discussed last time, over to Abilities. Abilities in Coyote & Crow are the true leap from science fiction to fantasy for your characters, allowing them to do things that normal human beings can’t do. All humans who undergo the Adahnehdi choose a Path, but only 20% of people gain an Ability. In the case of Player Characters, all of them fall into that 20% and get an Ability. But that means that one in five people walking down the street has an Ability as well.

These Abilities can be very potent, but none of them are so powerful, rare, or encompassing that they turn the person who possesses them into a god or a superhero. And as utilitarian and cool as they can be, they can also be sources of social concern and societal friction.

Abilities are tied to Stats. Each Stat has three related Abilities. There are nine Stats, so in the core book there are 27 Abilities. The ones listed in this core book are only the most common ones found in Cahokia. There are plenty of other Abilities that will be discussed in future. Every Player Character gets one Ability to start and can gain further Abilities as part of Character progression. Players can choose from any of the Abilities that are tied to the Stat related to their Path. So for example, if you’ve chosen the Path of the Snake, which is tied to Spirit and Endurance. The Player can choose any of the Abilities that are tied to Spirit and Endurance.

Abilities have costs to activate as well, so that that can’t be used endlessly.  Additionally, some take a full action, while others take a secondary action to use, leaving the Character free to do something else.  Some require a Dice Check, others are simply on or off. Almost all Abilities though have some sort of cost paid by either Mind or Soul, which are limited point pools that have other uses as well. Spending these to activate your Abilities means that your Character needs to be smart about when they use them or they may end up exhausted at an inopportune time!

So what are some examples of these Abilities? I’m so glad you asked. Each Ability ties thematically and mechanically into the Stat it is connected to. There is also a mix of defensive, offensive and utilitarian flavored Abilities.

Eagle’s Insight, linked to Intelligence, allows players to substitute their Intelligence for any other Stat during a Skill check. It displays itself as a sudden and sharp intuitive understanding of a situation, allowing the Character to adapt quickly. During Encounters, Characters can use this Ability to suss out the weaknesses and vulnerabilities of foes.

Chameleon’s Shine allows Characters to become semi-invisible to natural eye sight, only able to be seen by others in their peripheral vision or with technological assists. This is an example of a power that costs a point of Soul to activate and an additional one every hour the Character keeps it active.

Ancestor’s Storm gives the Ability for a Character to give points of Mind and Soul to their allies during an Encounter at a lesser cost to themselves. The Character trills, shouts, chants, sings, or prays, empowering their friends, lifting their spirits and renewing their focus.

These are just shortened descriptions to give you a little bit of flavor and feel. Again, there are 27 of these Abilities in the core book and they cover a wide range of effects and concepts.

To recap a bit, this means that you pick your Archetype, which is more of a general job or role description than a ‘character class’, a Path, which determines your Stat bonus and animal connection, and your Abilities, based on your Path which give you a superhuman power. These all give you a decent idea (along with Skills) of what your Character can do. But it doesn’t really tell you who they are, which I think is far more important.

In our next update, I’m going to discuss Gifts and Burdens, which is one of my favorite aspects of Characters in Coyote & Crow and is a big part of crafting out who your character is and what drives them.

And I’ll leave you with a great piece of art from Kameron White!

Art from Kameron White

Update #12
over 1 year ago – Wed, Jun 02, 2021 at 02:30:32 AM

Things are moving at a break neck pace, folks. There’s so much happening that it’s hard for me to summarize it all while also conveying how cool and exciting each of these things is. So, I’m splitting this update into two parts. We’ll talk about the where we’re at with production of everything related to the Kickstarter as well as other news. Then we’ll jump in to more game development discussion.

But first! A quick note! We’ve locked down current orders. Don’t worry, you can still pre-order or make late pledges through BackerKit and we haven’t locked down addresses yet. We’ll do that much later. So if you’re moving or not sure yet where you need your personal book shipped to, you have plenty of time. Also, please fill out your surveys if you haven’t yet. There are still around 1500 of you out there. Don’t make me wag my finger.

The good news on the Kickstarter is that most aspects are running on time or ahead of schedule. There’s one wrinkle in there that I’ll get to a minute, but for the most part, I’ve got nothing but good news.

  • We currently have eight Native writers and a copy editor working hard on finalizing the written copy.
  • We’ve got more than two dozen play testers digging into the mechanics and game play
  • We’ve brought on a layout designer to start assembling the pages of the book and they’ve hit the ground running
  • We currently have ten artists working on pieces for the game (eight of them Native)
  • We’ve signed on with an app developer to create our mobile app (which includes the dice app) and they are going to be including some fantastic touches that we hadn’t originally planned on
  • Our web designer and conlanger are deep into the work for our online name generator, language wiki and game forums
  • We’ve just signed with a fantastic publisher who will be doing our first localized version of Coyote & Crow outside of North America in a foreign language.

We’re also working on some...stuff. I can’t be too specific yet as deals are not in place. But here’s what I can say:

  • We’re in talks with an established board game designer about pairing with a Native game designer who wants to break into the industry and the two of them designing a Coyote & Crow tabletop board/card game together.
  • We’re working out the elements for our next Kickstarter. Including signing on an artist that I’ve wanted to work with for awhile now.
  • ...and other really cool stuff that is going to have to stay in the shadows for now.

Speaking of shadows, let’s talk about the one dark spot amongst all of this light. I’ve spoken about this in previous posts going back more than two years and the issue is rearing its head again. While it hasn’t broken our timeline, it’s a looming threat. That issue is getting all of the art assets we need in time to hit our production deadlines.

If this is all more detail than you need, feel free to skip down a few paragraphs after the image, where I’ll get to more fun stuff. But in the interest of overall transparency, I’d like to fill you all in on this process.

Any book with a lot of art – comics, rpgs, etc – often has its schedule dictated by the artists involved. Each artist has their own pace and process. Some of them have backed up schedules. Others have day jobs. This situation is magnified in Coyote & Crow because unlike some other games, we’re trying to work with as many Native artists as we can. Many of these who are amateur have day jobs or other responsibilities. The ones who are professional often have long leads.  Compounding things even further is the fact that our budget changed radically last month.

So when the Kickstarter launched and we were looking at a tiny amount of art with a fraction of our current budget, December seemed pretty reasonable. You’d think with more money, there would be fewer issues. And trust me when I say I have an inbox FULL of artists from all over the world looking to work on Coyote & Crow. But there’s the rub. I don’t want artists from all over the world. I want Native artists. And I want good art. And I want it fast. And sometimes we don’t get everything we want. It's like that classic pyramid. You've got fast, cheap, and quality. You can only pick two.

Which brings us to now. Realistically, we don’t have much longer to get the art we need to finish the book if we still want to get you the physical books by December. And I really want that to happen. I’m pulling out all the stops to get it done, but I want you all to be prepared that we may not hit our original deadline. And look, I get it. How many Kickstarters actually hit their planned date? Most of them, awesome as they may be, hit snags. Especially in our current global environment where shipping, freight, and logistics are absolutely all in chaos right now. There’s probably a good chunk of our supporters who wouldn’t be shocked if this took two years to get to you.

But it’s important to me to convey to you that while we still aren’t going to sacrifice quality, we’re doing our damnedest to get it to you on time as well. I believe we’ve settled on a new lead illustrator who is going to pick up the bulk of the work between now and when we go to print. I’m excited about having them on board and hopefully I’ll be able to tease some of his work soon.

Lastly, I want to mention the roles we’re still hiring for. First, as I just mentioned, artists, especially Native artists are welcome to apply. If you think your art style is a fit for a science fantasy RPG, please do contact us, following the instructions in the link below. At this point, any artists we bring on will be for future Stories, expansions or materials beyond the core book.

We’re also hiring for a community leader. More than just monitoring forums, this role is about making how-to videos, leading streaming game plays, being a know-it-all on the rules and generally being the face of the Coyote & Crow RPG. We strongly prefer a Native candidate, but if none steps forward, well then, we’ll consider our options. Again, please refer to the link below for details.

Creative Opportunities with Coyote & Crow:

And with that, just for fun, here’s an art tease for you of a Character using the Art Skill to create a mask. This is just a slice of the full piece. Art by Charles Utting.

Creating a mask with the Art Skill.

Let’s talk about the game now! Last time I discussed the six Archetypes. This time around we’re going to talk about Paths. Paths are really exciting to me and one of my favorite parts of both the in-world game play as well as character creation. They’re somewhat like the traditional concept of clans, given a fantasy spin and turned up to eleven.

From both a Player perspective (while you’re creating your character) and from the character perspective (as they’re transitioning into adulthood), Paths are something that are chosen. There are many, many Paths in Coyote & Crow. They’re a social construct combined with a specific biochemical product introduced to the character at a key moment in their adolescence in a ceremony. The biochemical product is produced from the cells of the Adahnehdi taken from various animals. We’ll get more into what the Adahnehdi is and the details of this ceremony and its cultural relevance in later updates.

For now though, what you need to know is that when the time is right, people in this world choose a path based on an animal. It’s a permanent, one time choice. In the core book, we focus on the city of Cahokia. In that region there are fifteen common Paths that people regularly choose from and that your character will have access to. Each Path has two effects. The first is a bonus to two specified Stats. For example, the Path of the Stag gives a character a +1 to Wisdom and Charisma during Character creation.

The second effect is the granting of an Ability, which we’ll also talk about in detail in a further update. While only 20% of people who go through the Adahnehdi gain an Ability, all Player Characters do. Abilities can be thought of as mild version of a super power. They don’t allow anyone to be god-like or flying around with a cape, but they do let your character do things that a normal human couldn’t.

These Stat bonuses and Abilities are often tied thematically to the animal named in the character's chosen Path. When combined with Archetype, you can start to get a very rough sketch of what your character can do, but it can also give you some insight into who they are, which is far more important.

Paths aren’t just mechanical. Yes, they dictate a couple of Stat bonuses and an Ability. But they also say something about who your character is in the world, how they view themselves and how others see them.

As a social construct and a choice made going into adulthood, many people proudly display tattoos, jewelry or other adornments that announce their Path. Some families strongly pressure their children to go down one Path or another, either the same as them or intentionally deviating from them. Some Paths are looked upon more favorably or more suspiciously, depending on the kinds of Abilities that are commonly associated with those Paths. Some people want to socialize with others of their Path, even more so than members of their family or tribe. Others want nothing to do with other members of their own Path. Some cults, clubs and militant organizations require their members to be from specific Paths. While Archetypes are out-of-game mechanical labels to help build your character, Paths have in-game social significance and are often an important part of a person’s identity.

Currently, here are the Paths offered in the core book:

  • Path of the Eagle
  • Path of the Bison
  • Path of the Beaver
  • Path of the Coyote
  • Path of the Fox
  • Path of the Owl
  • Path of the Stag
  • Path of the Spider
  • Path of the Falcon
  • Path of the Snake
  • Path of the Crow
  • Path of the Salmon
  • Path of the Bear
  • Path of the Raccoon

In expansions, we’ll offer new Paths and Abilities based on geographical regions and cultures. There are also icons associated with the Paths that are also commonly seen around Cahokia in jewelry, tattoos, clothing, and on some business signs. However there’s no such thing as an ‘official’ in-world symbol of a Path and lots of folks don’t display their Path at all or find their own unique ways of conveying it.

A few Path icons

That's all for now. I hope you're having a lovely Memorial Day if that's something you celebrate. 

All my best,

Connor Alexander

(this post will also appear on our website as a development blog post)

Update #11 - Surveys!
over 1 year ago – Mon, May 03, 2021 at 09:51:19 PM

Folks, they are here!

A few of you may have already received them and for the rest of you, they'll be sent out in waves over the next few days. If you're new to Kickstarter, you'll be receiving an email from BackerKit, the pledge manager we're working with.  Here's what's in it and what you need to know.

  • If you pledged extra money over an amount for a pledge for an extra book, it should show as a credit in BackerKit. You'll be able to specify where you want that extra spent.
  • We'll be asking you a few questions, including: What products would you like to see from Coyote & Crow next, details on where you'd like donated copies sent to, questions about your retail stores, etc. Questions should only be relevant to your pledge.
  • We'll also confirm your shipping address, but don't worry, you'll have plenty of time to change this later as we'll look confirm and lock that information down shortly before shipping.
  • If you have issues or concerns, please email us (and considering how many backers we have, please be patient, thank you!)

That's it!

We're also going to have our next development blog up on our website, hopefully this weekend. So if you haven't signed up for our newsletter yet, now is a great time. Head over to our website:

Have a great weekend folks!