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a campaign setting for Risus: The Anything RPG

created by David Masad


 I have always loved conspiracy theories, especially ones about the Illuminati. The concept of numerous 'illuminated' conspiracies fighting amongst themselves, as popularized in the ILLUMINATUS! trilogy by Robert Shea and Robert Anton Wilson and in the Illuminati and INWO card games by Steve Jackson Games  has everything needed for a good RPG campaign. To the best of my knowledge (apologies etc. if I'm wrong) this is the first such campaign for Risus (You can get Risus itself Here). This is the first time I'm trying to write something for Risus, to please forgive anything in it that sucks.


 Characters in Illuminati should be built with 10 dice, plus dice for Hooks & Tales (which should be mandatory). Pumping and Double-Pumping should also be allowed. Funky Dice are not recommended (but hey, it's your game).
 Characters can be many things - an enforcer for the Society Of Assassins, a police detective tracking a mysterious cult, or a journalist investigating hints of a strange conspiracy.

Some Sample Cliches:



 Characters will undoubtedly want to perform special moves and actions during the course of an adventure. In general, whether they can or not is up to the GM. If the campaign is being played in a setting in which magic is allowed, characters should be allowed to cast spells. If not, not. The GM should make sure all the players understand the setting before play begins. Note that all characters are assumed to be Illuminated (whatever that means), and with above average abilities. Thus, players in a Call Of Cthulhu campaign should be able to cast spells (once they learn how), and characters in a Matrix campaign should be able to do all the cool running-up-walls moves. Whether a special action requires a specific Cliche or not is up to the GM. A good idea is to require one specific Cliche in order to carry out any special actions (i.e. Unplugged for a Matrix campaign, Blessed for a religious campaign, etc.)


 The basic concept of the conspiracy campaign can have many different styles of settings. Here are some samples to get you started. Take as many as you want, and combine them for your own personal conspiracy campaign.

Call Of Cthulhu
 Strange cults and the policemen struggling to surpress them. Students of ancient lore rushing to prevent the spawn of Cthulhu and a mortal woman being born. An ancient island harboring untold riches...and untellable horrors. Secret societies loyal to rival Great Old Ones fighting for souls to sacrifice to their masters. The stories of H. P. Lovecraft at their finest.

Order Vs. Chaos
 The Discordians trying to topple the governments of the world and set the people free. The Illuminati trying to stop them and enslave the people. Or are they...

 The ancient sunken continent of Atlantis is the resting place of riches beyond imagination. Agents of two (or more) secret societies are attempting to capture them for their own ends.

The Manchurian Candidates
 Brainwashed assassins trying to free themselves from the shadowy masters who control their minds. But first they must discover who these masters are...

The Matrix Has You...
 Reality is not what it seems to be. The human forces of freedom face off against the machines with cool combat moves and ass-kicking special effects.

Aliens Ate The Second Amendment!
 Aliens from outer space have already taken control of the government, and are using it to prepare the ground for an all-out invasion. They must be stopped!

Ave, Lucifer, Morituri Te Salutant...
 A cult of satanists is attempting to bring about armageddon. Only the brave emissaries of the one true church can stop them and prevent the end the world. But are the satanists the evil ones?

Banana Republic
 In a remote, resource rich third world country the president has just died, and the agents of numerous conspiracies and governments intrigue and scheme to get their ally "elected" as the next president.

They Came From Outer Space
 We are not alone in the universe. The aliens have found us, and they are already here. Two rival extraterrestrial races wage a secret war here on earth with one another and with Majestic 12, the human organization dedicated to keeping their presence secret and driving them off.

High Tech Trouble
 Conspiracies face off using weapons and equipment that are more advanced by decades compared to today's current technology. What moral issues face agents using this new technology, and what happens if some of it is accidentally discovered?

Spy Vs. Spy
 'Intelligence assets' of rival countries compete for information and influence on neutral territory. Blackmail, extortion, theft and assassination are all acceptable tactics.
 Alternatively, agents with diplomatic immunity stationed in a foreign capital play a delicate game of cat and mouse with the local counterintelligence department, attempting to get as much information as possible without getting caught.

Corporate Wars
 Multinational megacorporations wage clandestine wars using hired guns. There are no set territories, and no rules of engagement. However, caution must be used in order to hide the illegal activities from the authorities.

Magic Powers
 Conspiracies battle each other using spells and enchantments learned from ancient tomes. But how safe is the magic, and how much do those who use it truly understand it...

 Some humans are born with bizarre psyonic talents. Forced to keep their powers secret from the rest of the world, they band together and attempt to use their powers to gain dominion over the less advanced majority of the human race. But some regular humans will stop at nothing to stop the psychic takeover, and are aided by Talented individuals who wish for the old and new humans to coexist peacefully.

The Adventures Of Harold Porter
 Under our very noses exists a parallel society composed of witches, wizards, warlocks, and other miscellaneous magic users who have placed themselves apart from the rest of the world in order to hide their magical gift. But their magical world is, as our own, full of conflict, treachery and strife.

Illuminati: New World Order
 Multiple conspiracies battle to dominate the world by taking control of real organizations, and using them as pawns and tools in a proxy war between them. Based on the Steve Jackson card game.

 A combination of all of the above settings, and more! The craziest (and most fun) setting of all. Inspired by the Illuminatus! trilogy.

Does this rock? Does it suck?  Do you know how to make it better? Send comments, complaints, flames (well no, not flames please) to
ICQ: 53914418

Legal Stuff:   All trademarked names and copyrighted materials are the property of their respective owners. What is not copyrighted by anyone else is copyrighted by me :->. Permission given to freely distribute, copy, modify, etc.  provided you give me credit for it (i.e. don't call it your own work). If you will be posting it anywhere else online, please tell me.