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WILD - Wake Initiated Lucid Dreaming - a Tarot powered RPG

edited July 2023 in General

WILD is a thematically wonderful RPG that sings at the table. Published by UK based "we evolve"

I've run it once with a single player and once at the Hastings D&D Festival with 4 players. I recorded a video about it back in January.

To keep things clean, I'm going to post some of how I ran and what I ran at the con in a follow-up comment.

You can get your own copies of the cards and RPG book here

For those who may want to read roughly the "script" of the video, here it is:

The "Script"​
WILD (Wake Initiated Lucid Dreaming) is a dreamshare RPG that can be played as a solo journaling game or by a small group of friends with one taking on the roll of DreamMaster.
In WILD, you might explore the dreams of a coma patient, search for secrets in the mind of a criminal or a troubled youth, or lose yourself in the depths of the collective unconscious.

WILD was created by UK based we evolve , designed by David F. Chapman.

In the setting of WILD, there has been a breakthrough in dreamshare technology. PALIS (Portable accelerated Lucidity Induction System) allows the sharing of curated dream experiences as well as allowing the delving into the dreams of any individual “primary dreamer.”

WILD uses a custom Tarot deck to inspire scenes, obstacles and challenges (situation, obstacle, aid, resolution). The Tarot cards are also used to resolve actions and to create two important parts of your character: their Persona [mostly positive parts of your nature] and their Shadow [the more negative parts]. These primarily inform roleplaying and the rest of your character build but do have special rules if either your Shadow card or Persona card are drawn during action resolution.

4 Attributes are rated from 1 - 6 from 12 points as you chose. Control [physical precision], Strength [physical power endurance], Focus [mental precision], Passion [mental power endurance]. -- Each corresponds to a suit.
5 Abilities are rated 4, 3, 2, 2, 1. They are: Scholar, Rogue, Guardian, Diplomat, and Visionary -- Each corresponds to a court cards.
You create ~3 aspects which are best when they are both positive+negative based on the situation. “Cautious” will be helpful in some circumstances and a hindrance in others.

For an action requiring resolution you choose one Attribute and one Ability. You draw three cards, + or - 1 card for any relevant aspects.
Any card equal or below the sum of Attribute + Ability generates a success. If a card matches an attribute (suit) or the ability (court card) this also generates a success. It is possible for a single card to generate 3 successes . . .
Major Arcana drawn indicate that some sort of dreamlike effect has occurred. Major Arcana do not contribute successes, they indicate that something unplanned, interesting and dreamlike has transpired. You should pause, look at all the drawn cards for that task and interpret a twist based on their standard or reversed meaning, the text, or imagery on the card.

I recently ran a short game 1 on 1 and the cards do a wonderful job inspiring a dreamlike quality. Simply looking at the cards is very helpful, but the book also lists many suggestions particularly for the situation, obstacle, aid, and resolution in crafting a new scene or location.

The last 42 pages of the 100 page hardcover book is dedicated to the cards, and since this acts as a big random generator of ideas it is space well used. It also allows you to play the game event without picking up a WILD Tarot deck. The book is otherwise broken into a brief introduction, the rules, character generation, a fairly detailed adventure (a training program devised by the creators of the dreamshare PALIS device, where you are delving into the dreams of a coma patient) and a final chapter covering other dream scenarios.

The book positions itself as a bit of a “starter version” and this shows in a lack of rules for character advancement, but there is a ton of playability here.

The cards are gorgeous surreal feeling black and white, with just a hint of color for each of the suit symbols. The finish on them give the cards a bit of a shimmering glitter.

In my 1 on 1 play through our “hero” played a disgraced hedge-fund manager, who had jacked into the dreams of one of his co-founders who had ousted him from their company. He delved into the dreams trying to get dirt on his rival so he could have revenge in the “real world.” He was almost ejected from the dream when they confronted each other in the board-room on the day he’d been ousted. An they both awoke after he became his rivals dog and attacked him. Since PALIS dreams are so real, his rival went to the hospital in the real world.
We basically had our PC draw for everything, though important NPCs could make their own draws. Instead I mostly opted to shift the difficulty (a single success normally generates "Yes, but" result, 2 success a clear win-win, but this can be stepped up one or down one) or required multiple draws.

Hopefully that has peaked your interest in WILD RPG. You can get both the core rulebook and the WILD Tarot deck from the Compose Dream Games RPG Marketplace in either print/physical or PDF/digital versions.
Good gaming!

Have you played or read WILD? What other information would be helpful?
In the videos I display the book, and in cases like this the cards, and sometimes read a short passage to get a "tone" of the book. Usually stop on some key pages like character sheet, etc.
I've often done my videos a little more "off the cuff" than the above but it varies a little. Here's to trying something new!

I usually don't state pricepoint in videos, the rulebook is $40 CAD ($31.41 USD), the tarot deck $25 CAD ($19.47 USD) with pdfs at $26 and $16 respectively (~20.24 USD and ~12.45 USD).



  • edited July 2023

    Ran at Hastings D&D Festival in 2023-07-08
    Session lasted about 2 hours including character generation. For a full session an additional twist seems necessary.

    Here's the description I used for the session:
    Lost in the Dream
    Dreamshare technology is wonderful, but on rare occasions and incautious dreamer gets lost. So they have called on you due to your connection with the lost individual and your training to delve into deeper layers of dreams to try and find them. Draw cards from a custom tarot deck to inspire you in building your character, to inspire changes in the dream, and manipulate the dream yourself.

    Here were my pencil notes for the session.

    WILD: Lost in the Dream
    An oneironaut artist know for forging therapeutic dreamscapes has become lost in the deeper levels of dreaming. 
    Their Name is: 
    You know them best for: 
    One of their Flaws is: 
    Locations in the Dream - 
    Visionary (Ace): Harlech Castle
    2: Caribean Beach/Snorkeling
    3: Subway Train
    4: A forest
    5: Falling (skydiving)
    6: Burger Joint (Baron Burger) – working
    7: Grandma’s House/Garden
    8: Bonfire Party
    9: Impossibly Large Hotel
    10: Battlefield
    Scholar: Library
    Rogue: Tent City
    Guardian: Hall of Mirrors
    Diplomat: Alien Starship

    That was it really, and the result was absolutely fantastic. It played like a dream (pun intended.)

    Twist ideas for a longer running:

    • the fire follows them up deeper dream
    • you rescued the “shadow” version – time to find the real him – kid version hiding out?
    • Take ~3 scenes before finding the PALIS devices, allowing going deeper into the dream. Require a scene tests to find safety to use them?

    Here’s a session synopsis.

    We went around the table and had players add details to these prompts
    Their Name is: Castor Grey
    You know them best for: Cabin on the Mountain 4
    One of their Flaws is: Perfectionist, workaholic

    We had one player create their harried subordinate employee, one their friendly business rival, one their grandson, and one a fan of their “calming” dreamscapes who became the experience Oneironaut troubleshooter sent by ClarIT.

    We started with wanting to discover what he had been working on; I pulled a card and got a 10 – battlefield and let them know he was working on a therapy involving recovery from the rigors of war. This also became the first location – the Plains of Abram 1759.

    This moved on to Albany NY and a victory parade. They were able to go deeper in the dream here, donning dream ALIS devices.

    Where I pulled Library. I mashed this up with mirrors to make the dream a little weirder. A threat/obstacle I pulled here about fire became fire alarm. Fire became a recurring threat in the scenario.

    We then went on to 4 A forest -- the Black Forest in Germany and a hunting party by the "Baron" who was Castor Grey or an aspect of him that they were searching for.
    One of the players encountered their Shadow here.

    This morphed to Harlech Castle on fire, then Falling/skydiving with Castor finally recognizing them.

    They returned up a level to Albany NY, but then all needed to succeed to wake up before the Fire.

    Firemen in the Library turned into Guards in the forest. They were resummoned at Harlech castle (character trying to get them to put out the fire by manipulating the dream) -- however they failed terribly. The Major arcane here made me decide that serene singing monks grabbed two of the players and dragged them through the fire taking damage and gaining negative aspects.

    I'm going to pause here, but may add more later.

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