Threadbare RPG

Created by Stephanie Bryant

Threadbare RPG
Thumb uploads 2ff031c63ee81717c5018a9894608e9fb1 2fcover6x9 2
549 backers pledged $11,919.00 on Kickstarter

"Plushie or plastic, mate?" In Threadbare RPG, you play a jury-rigged toy in a broken, stitched-together world.

Raised in Kickstarter
$11,919.00 / 549 backers
Raised in BackerKit
$975.00 / 563 backers

Latest Updates from Our Project:

We're Off to See a Clockmaker, Doll Dice Bags, and More!
over 1 year ago – Mon, May 23, 2016 at 09:45:17 PM

$7500 - Stretch Goal Unlocked!

This weekend, we blew right through the $7500 stretch goal, which means we've unlocked the Off to See the Clockmaker stretch goal by Bryanna Hitchcock!

$9000 Stretch Goal

In honor of Maker Week (and Maker Faire), I decided it's time to put a little more "makercraft" into the project! There's a sly little rule in Threadbare called the Threadbare Avatar rule. In longer campaigns, if you bring your own "avatar" (a toy that looks like your character), you get one reroll per session. Threadbare has always had a direct, mechanical reward for out-of-game creativity, and there will always be some kind of Avatar Rule in this game. So let's give you some tools and suggestions for making those avatars!

At $9000, we have two exciting tutorials for you! The Doll's Head Dice Bag by Liz Chaipraditkul and a Mekka Castaway tutorial by Brian Dirk.

The Doll's Head Dice Bag is a dice bag made from a doll's head, either plastic or crocheted. Here's one creepy-cute project you can take to any game session!

Liz Chaipraditkul is a game developer and writer who lives in the Netherlands. She owns Angry Hamster Publishing - a tabletop role play company and writes articles for her own personal blog on gaming. Liz’s first solo game WITCH: Fated Souls, was successfully funded on Kickstarter in 2015. When not in her own imaginary world, Liz keeps busy with crafting and walking her dog. You can find more information about her games at and follow her developer exploits @angryhamsterrpg. 

Mekka Castaway: This tutorial shows you how to make a Threadbare Mekka character using cast off toys found in the Local Thrift stores. Along the way, I'll share insights into how you can work with the parts that you have scrounged to achieve a character that looks artful, believable: an most importantly as unique as your creativity requires.

Brian Dirk never grew up, his toys just got more powerful, creepy, and unique. His alter-ego is a mild-mannered Network Guru by day, and a Maker, Artist, Storyteller, and general weirdo: also by day. He forgets what he does at night.

Softies and socks: don't despair! I have plans for softie and sock patterns, and am already lining up contributors for those tutorials as well!

Conventions, Print Quality, and Shout Outs/APs!
over 1 year ago – Sat, May 21, 2016 at 07:29:34 PM

Memorial Day Weekend in Los Angeles

I will be at Strategicon's Gamex on May 27-30th in Los Angeles, California! I'm running a new adventure for Threadbare on Saturday at 2 PM and again at 8 PM. The 2 PM session is specifically targeted to be family-friendly. Pre-registration is full, but the convention only allows 1/2 the available spaces to be pre-registered, so each of my tables has 3 seats left. The new adventure is called "Flight of the Bumblebee," and is about an entire community on the move.

I'll also be bringing Toynado! the demo adventure about riding out a storm, which plays in under an hour. I don't know if I'll have time to run it, but check the sign up binders in the RPG area for a late-add sheet. I have the most time free on Friday night, Saturday morning, and Sunday night, so check the binders for those times. Late-add sheets are usually towards the backs of the binders.

Demo Kit Updated

I also updated the Demo Kit document (now 1.1). It's in the Playtest Dropbox folder linked from Backer-only Update #1. I replaced the personality Parts on the pre-gens-- those should really be an option in play, and pre-gens don't allow players to opt-out easily. If you run it, please drop me an email and let me know how long your demo took!

Print Quality and Book Length

I had a few questions over in the Comments section for the project, which I've answered in the FAQ and in the comments, but it's probably good to send it out to you all as well. As a backer, I know you don't get notified of comments or FAQs like you do for updates.

How long is the final book? I'm anticipating about 100-120 pages for the final book, with stretch goals possibly pushing that out to 150. One of the reasons for this is personal preference as well as perception: I want Threadbare to be the kind of game you can bring to the table with very little prep. When I'm looking for that kind of pickup game, 120 pages is about the point where I think I should look for a different game in my PDF library.

What else is going in the book? The playtest document is thin on setting and world-building, so that's the area that's being fleshed out the most as I continue to write Threadbare and evolve it. That means locations, adventure ideas, NPCs to populate the setting, challenges to overcome, etc. 

I'm also working on more device and upgrade moves that GMs can pull from when they need inspiration.  

Will there be more combat rules? Unless something drastic changes, there won't be combat rules added to the game-- just the combat montage. The majority of the 4 years I've spent on this game have been with combat rules and being frustrated that they just didn't make the game more fun. My advice, if someone really wants to play with a lot more combat, is to take everything from Threadbare and add the combat mechanics from Dungeon World. Keep in mind that every 6- is already a lost limb in this game, so combat will literally tear your toys apart, and fast.

That said, I may flesh out the "playfight" options and moves a bit more, to give better options for players who want to play more physical characters.

What kind of paper/color printing are you using? DriveThruRPG offers two color options: Standard Color Heavyweight and Premium Color. We will be using the Premium Color for all Threadbare books-- that was always planned and budgeted. I want you to feel good about bringing this book to the table. DriveThruRPG also recently (in the past month or so) started using heavier paper exclusively for color books, which will hopefully help with the color quality going forward for other DTRPG products.

Shout Outs and Coverage

The Jank Cast posted their Actual Play recording and it's awesome! They used the previous version of the game, so there are a few things that have changed (like Loose Screws). But it's a great way to get a sense of how the game goes, if you haven't had a chance to play yet.

We also got a great shout-out on Tabletop Gaming News.

$6500: Dancing and More!
over 1 year ago – Sat, May 21, 2016 at 02:12:35 PM

We hit the $6500 threshold over the weekend-- woo hoo!!! That means Alex Roberts will write Boogie Fever, about building a dance troupe to win the biggest dance-off competition the Threadbare world has seen!

And now for some bonus content: Toby Strauss will be writing a (to-be-named) music themed setting to accompany Boogie Fever! Toby is an avid gamer, story teller, and self-proclaimed "Lord of the Dance." He was a finalist in the 200 Word RPG challenge this year with his seminal work, "Is the Space Pope A Lizard?"

New Stretch Goal: $7500!

Which leads to our next Stretch Goal! At $7500, we'll get a new adventure starter: Off to See the Clockmaker by Bryanna Hitchcock!

Every toy needs something that only the Clockmaker can give them. Will you be brave enough to find the Clockmaker and ask? In this adventure, Threadbare players explore how they had what they needed within themselves all along... or get something dangerous with which to make their dreams come true!

Bryanna Hitchcock loves roleplaying games, playing music, her wife, and her cat, but not necessarily in that order. She is very lucky to have many sweet, creative friends in her life.

Coming Up

The next couple of stretch goals are hopefully coming down the pipe soon, but here's a sneak peek at some stuff I want to do!

  • Craft Tutorials! The previously-hinted doll's head dice bag, as well as tutorials for making your own sock, softie, and mekka.
  • A Very Threadbare Christmas: I had so many pitches for holiday-themed stories, this may end up as a fairly significant supplement with setting, adventures, and a collection of adversaries for you to use!
  • Open License: With so many amazing pitches and ideas for Threadbare, at a certain point, it makes sense to just open the system and the world to anyone to create and publish their own adventures! Still working out the details for this, but I hope we hit a threshold that makes it a reality.

Closing in on $6500! Poll Results!
over 1 year ago – Sat, May 14, 2016 at 08:32:50 PM


We sailed over $6000 last night, and are closing in on Alex Roberts' awesome dance adventure Boogie Fever! I'm super excited about this one, and look forward to seeing where it goes!

Poll Results!

The poll results were pretty conclusive: the doll's head dice bag was chosen as one of the crafting stretch goals. 

Don't fret too much if you wanted a doll, though-- there are already plans for some cool tutorials and patterns that might sneak into the book without even being stretch goals. Ssshhh!

Shout Outs and "Buzz"

Meanwhile, I just wrapped up a  Q&A with the #rpgnet IRC channel, which is archived here. It was a great chat about the game and how it plays. Good stuff, lots of great questions brought up during the session.

The project also got a great shout-out over on the Bluestockings blog (salty language, just in case you're surfing at work). Thank you, Bluestocking!

In the "unrelated, but so cool" category, someone forwarded this link to me today, and I just thought it was too cool and cute not to share with you all!