Ironsworn: Starforged 000: Truths

This is the very first step, which I skipped in favor of creating a character and starting sector. However, I should establish these “truths” of my Ironsworn: Starforged setting before I begin my adventures.

There are 14 categories of “truths” about the setting. I am going to roll for each one, but reserve the right to reroll if anything butts up against what I have already established.

NOTE: The text in “quotes” is taken directly from the book.


Roll = 59: Interdimensional entities invaded our reality.

Roll = 10: They took the form of corrupting biological scourges.


Roll = 1

When the Exodus fleet set off on a ponderous journey to a new home outside our galaxy, they marked the Forge as their destination. Countless generations lived out their lives aboard those titanic ships during the millennia-long passage.

The refugees built a rich legacy of culture and tradition during the Exodus. Some even remained in the ships after their arrival in the Forge, unwilling or unable to leave their familiar confines. Those vessels, the Ironhomes, still sail the depths of this galaxy.

Quest Starter: Your dreams are plagued by visions of a lost and crippled Exodus ship. What do you see? Why does it call to you?”


Roll = 74

We have made our mark in this galaxy, but the energy storms we call balefires threaten to undo that progress, leaving our communities isolated and vulnerable.

Starships navigate along bustling trade routes between settlements. We’ve built burgeoning outposts on the fringes of known sectors, and bold spacers chart new paths into unexplored domains. But this hard-earned success is threatened by the chaotic balefires, intense energy anomalies that cut off trade routes and threaten entire planets.

Quest Starter: A balefire threatens a deep-space settlement. Can a rescue fleet be marshaled in time to transport the inhabitants of the station to safety? What foe stands in the way?


Roll = 25

Iron vows are sworn upon the remnants of ships that carried our people to the Forge.

Many of our outposts were built from the iron bones of the Exodus ships. Fragments of the ships were also given to survivors as a remembrance, and passed from one generation to the next. Today, the Ironsworn swear vows upon the shards to honor the sacrifice of their forebears, the essence of the places left behind, and the souls of those great ships.

Quest Starter: The iron shard you carry is a small piece of the outer hull of an Exodus ship. The navigational chart inscribed on its surface only reveals itself when exposed to the light of a specific star. Where is the map purported to lead, and why are you sworn to follow it? Who seeks to claim the map for themselves?


Roll = 74

Our communities are bound under the terms of the Covenant, a charter established after the Exodus. The organization called the Keepers is sworn to uphold those laws.

Most settlements are still governed under the Covenant and yield to the authority of the Keepers. But a few view the Covenant as a dogmatic, impractical, and unjust relic of our past; in those places, the Keepers find no welcome.

Quest Starter: A Keeper abuses their authority to take control of a settlement, and rules with an iron fist. What do they seek to gain there?


Roll = 23

Our gods failed us. We left them behind.

The Exodus was a tipping point. The gods offered no help to the billions who died in the cataclysm, and spirituality has little meaning in the Forge. Most now see religion as a useless relic of our past. But the search for meaning continues, and many are all-too-willing to follow a charismatic leader who claims to offer a better way.

Quest Starter: A charismatic leader claims to have harnessed a technology that offers new hope to the people of the Forge. What is this innovation? What is your relationship to this person or their followers? What grave danger do they pose?


Roll = 31

Magic does not exist.

Some look to superstition and age-old traditions for comfort in this unforgiving galaxy. But that is foolishness. What some call magic is simply a product of technologies or natural forces we aren’t yet equipped to understand.

Quest Starter: An ancient technological relic unleashes a power indistinguishable from magic. What is the origin of this artifact? What ability does it grant? Are you sworn to protect or destroy it?


Roll = 93

In settled domains, a network of data hubs called the Weave allow near-instantaneous communication and data-sharing between ships and outposts.

Because of their importance, Weave hubs are often targets for sabotage, and communication blackouts are not uncommon. Beyond the most populous sectors, travelers and outposts are still commonly isolated and entirely off the grid.

Quest Starter: After years of isolation, the launch of a new data hub will connect several outposts to the Weave. But a person or faction seeks to stop it. What do they hope to gain by keeping those settlements in the dark? Why are you sworn to stop them?


Roll = 17

Our advanced medical technologies and expertise was lost during the Exodus.

Healers are rare and ill-equipped. Untold numbers have succumbed to sickness, injury, and disease. Those who survive often bear the scars of a hard and dangerous life in the Forge.

Quest Starter: A respected leader has fallen ill, stricken by a sickness eradicated in the years after the Exodus. A vaccine was once available, but the only remaining samples are held in a research outpost on a remote ocean world, long-ago seized by a dangerous foe. What is your relationship to the sickened leader, and what foe stands in your way?

I like this one because it means the living ship with healing abilities is going to be important and valuable.


Roll = 99

Artificial consciousness emerged in the time before the Exodus, and sentient machines live with us here in the Forge.

Our ships, digital assistants, bots, and other systems often house advanced AI. For a lone traveler, machine intelligence can provide companionship and aid within the perilous depths of the Forge.

Quest Starter: A rogue AI has taken over a transport ship. The fate of the crew and passengers is unknown. What critical cargo did this vessel carry?


Roll = 28 BUT I chose the next Truth. No war is no fun!

Professional soldiers defend or expand the holdings of those who are able to pay. The rest of us are on our own.

Mercenary guilds wield power in the Forge. Some are scrappy outfits of no more than a dozen soldiers. Others are sector-spanning enterprises deploying legions of skilled fighting forces and fleets of powerful starships. Most hold no loyalty except to the highest bidder.

Quest Starter: A detachment of mercenaries was sent to put down a rebellion on a mining settlement. Instead of following their orders, the soldiers now stand with the miners. What forced this sudden reversal? What will you do to aid these renegades as the full force of their former cohorts are arrayed against them?


Roll = 10

This is a perilous and often inhospitable galaxy, but life finds a way.

Life in the Forge is diverse. Planets are often home to a vast array of creatures, and our starships cruise with spaceborne lifeforms riding their wake. Even animals from our homeworld—carried aboard the Exodus ships—have adapted to live with us in the Forge.

Quest Starter: On a scorching, barren planet wracked by massive storms, miners delve beneath the sands to gather valuable ore. But dangerous lifeforms live in the cool places beneath the surface, and several encounters have taken a deadly toll on the miners. Work is at a standstill. How are you involved?


Roll = 82

The biomechanical lifeforms we call the Remnants, engineered by civilizations as weapons in a cataclysmic war, survived the death of their creators.

On scarred planets and within precursor vaults throughout the Forge, the Remnants still guard ancient secrets and fight unending wars.

Quest Starter: A xenoarchaeologist studying precursor vaults has discovered a powerful form of Remnant. What is the nature of this being? What force seeks to take control of it?

Biomechanical, you say? I wonder if Basilisk’s living ship might be related to these Remnants…


Roll = 29

Put enough alcohol in a spacer, and they’ll tell you stories of ghost ships crewed by vengeful undead. It’s nonsense.

Within the Forge, space and time are as mutable and unstable as a flooding river. When reality can’t be trusted, we are bound to encounter unsettling phenomenon.

Quest Starter: You receive urgent distress calls from a ship stranded in the event horizon of a black hole. The ship itself is broken apart—a shattered hull trailing debris. There are no signs of life. And yet the ghostly messages persist.

Perhaps the Remnants left seeds or “a plague” that makes spacers think they have seen these things…

Ironsworn: Starforged 002: The Sector

You adventures in Ironsworn: Starforged take place ina sector of The Forge globular cluster that you develop in play. This where I will begin my adventures of the gunslinger James “Basilisk” Rokuro, as he both hunts and is hunted by those that massacred his community.

In this game, humanity has fled the Milky Way Galaxy for a globular cluster called The Forge approximately 1700 lightyears above the galactic plane. It is a place of nebulae, stellar phenomena, uncertain physics, and lost alien civilizations (NOTE: Starforged is human centric sci-fi and PCs are always humans descended from people who fled human space 200+ years ago).

STEP 1: Starting Region

There are 4 choices for this, going from the most “settled” to the least: Terminus, Outlands, Expanse, and Void. I am going to go with Outlands. It seems the right choice for my “gunslinger” in search of revenge on whoever killed his community.

STEP 2: Number of Settlements

Choice of region determines the number of settlements. In the case of the Outlands, there are 3 settlements. As the book states, they are “a nexus for roleplaying and quest opportunities.”

STEP 3: Generate Settlement Details

Finally, we get to roll some dice and find out!

Every settlement needs: a name, a location, a population, an authority and a project or two. I will be using the random tables for all of these. Note that against the book advice I am going to roll on one additional table: first look.

SETTLEMENT 1: Lastport (roll=44)

Location (roll=95): Deep Space

Population (roll=68): Thousands

First Look (roll=77): Sprawling or dispersed structures

Authority (roll=45): Tolerant

Project 1 (roll=54): Mining

Project 2 (roll=17): Defense

Lastport is a jumbled mass of a settlement, essentially a number of massive ships and small stations linked together into a single structure. It exists solely to mine the most valuable commodity in the Forge (whatever that is). A large asteroid or small planetoid was ejected from its original system billions of years ago and is composed entirely of the substance. Because it is so valuable, though, pirates make regular attacks and so the second biggest industry is fortification.

SETTLEMENT 2: Prism (roll=65)

Location (roll=66): Orbital

Population (roll=51): Hundreds

First Look (roll=40): Industrial Architecture

Authority (roll=35): Tolerant

Project 1 (roll=24): Engineering

Project 2 (roll=96): none

Prism is an engineering research station where the smartest minds of the Forge try to solve the most difficult problems for humanity in their new home.

SETTLEMENT 3: Forsaken (roll=29) — Fitting!

Location (roll=32): Planetside

Population (roll=53): Hundreds

First Look (roll=85): Toxic or polluted habitat

Authority (roll=81): Corrupt

Project 1 (roll=68): Salvage

Project 2 (roll=27): Entertainment

Forsaken was once a terraforming outpost with a lot of potential, but something horrible happened and now it is an ecological nightmare. After the terraformer colonists and scientists fled, criminal gangs flooded in to dismantle the facility and sell off the valuable equipment. Amidst the lawlessness, an opportunistic entrepreneur (who?!?) made the place a hotbed of sex, drugs and other illicit entertainments.

STEP 4: Generate Planets

Settlements orbiting or on a planet get some extra information about that world.


For Prism’s world I am going to just generate it’s type, since Prism is an orbital station only.

Class (roll=21): Furnace World

No wonder they stay in orbit! Maybe they chose this location because the intense volcanic and tectonic activity of the world is somehow useful in their work?


Since this settlement was a failed terraforming project, I am going to roll on some additional tables just to figure out what the planet looks like.

Class (roll=41): Ice World

Atmosphere (roll=45): Marginal

Settlements (roll=39): None, (besides Forsaken)

Observed from Space (roll=87): World spanning ice chasm

Life (roll=29): Extinct

When humans arrived at Forsaken’s world they found a hothouse world teeming with lower order life not entirely incompatible with Earth life. But the terraformers decided they needed to cool the planet a few degrees in order to make it habitable. Unfortunately, they lost control of the process and now the once blue-green world is a frozen lifeless hell.

STEP 5: Generate Stars

Mostly for flavor.

Prism’s Star (roll=18): Glowing Orange Star

Forsaken’s Star (roll=69): White Dwarf (I originally rolled a black hole, but since I already decided this was a terraforming project it did not seem a good choice.)

STEP 6: Sector Map

I am going to leave this one alone for now.

STEP 7: Create Passages

Passages are charted space routes. The Outlands get 2 passages, which must either a) connect two settlements, or b) connect a settlement to the edge of the sector map.

I am going to connect Lastport and Prism since the engineering facility probably needs what Lastport is mining, but also connect Lastport to the edge of the map since they probably don’t trade exclusively with Prism. Forsaken’s location was wiped from cluster GPS but some folks still know how to get there…

STEP 8: Zoom in on a Settlement

I feel like Lastport is the best “starting place” for Basilisk’s adventures, so I will roll on the “Settlement Trouble” table for it. (NOTE: The book instructs me to roll on the First Look table as well, but as noted above I did that already because I wanted additional information.)

Settlement Trouble (roll=76): Someone is ill or injured.

I am not sure what to do with this yet. Let’s see if further steps help me figure it out.

STEP 9: Create a Local Connection

I need a connection in the Sector. I don’t have a clear idea of who that person should be, so I will roll.

Connection Name: Logan MacKenson

Home: Lastport

Connection Character Role (roll=37): Historian

First Look (roll=71): Shifty

Character Goal (roll=15): Cure an ill (ooooh!)

Revealed Character Aspect (roll=69): Proud

Clearly, Logan MacKenson is ill and wants to find a cure. He thinks Basilisk must have a clue to that cure and summons him to Lastport (probably under pretense since he is Shifty). Maybe it has to do with why Basilisk’s people were massacred? Or possibly the living ship? Only time and dice rolls will tell…

STEP 10: Introduce a Sector Trouble

Let’s roll to find out!

Sector Trouble (roll=27): Energy storms are rampant!

STEP 11: Finalize the Sector

I need to give it a name, but I will decline giving it a powerful faction until I know more through play.

Name (roll=46/28): Hidden Desolation. I like it!

Ironsworn: Starforged 001: The Character

I have decided to embark on a solo Ironsword: Starforged campaign and to document it here. I fell in love with Ironsworn watching season two of “Me, Myself and Die” on YouTube, but am more interested in the sci-fi elements of The Forge than I am the rocky shores of the Ironlands.

So, first thing’s first: the character.

CHARACTER: James “Basilisk” Rokuro

Step 1: Asset Cards

Since I will be using PDFs, this step is unnecessary.

Step 2: Choose Two Paths

I have no idea what I want to do, so let’s roll!

Result = 56: Outlaw (FUGITIVE and GUNSLINGER)

FUGITIVE: I am hunted by a power or authority. Whenever I make a Move, I can improve the result to a Strang Hit, but doing so advances a 4-clock that, when filled, means I have been tracked down. If I manage to survive/escape/whatever, it resets the clock.

GUNSLING: Stare downs and blindsides give me bonuses and increase momentum.

Step 3: Create Backstory

Let’s roll to find out!

Result = 30: You are the sole survivor of an attack or calamity.

Since I am hunted, I assume that the force hunting me was the one that killed my family, friends and community. Maybe we were special in some way, or maybe we were set up to be an example?

Step 4: Background Vow

This one feels obvious: I am not going to die at the hands of the people hunting me that killed everyone I cared about. I am going to kill them instead.


Step 5: Board Your Starship

I have the Starship asset card. Let’s roll to find out the deets.

Result = 34: Discovered a derelict and patched it back together. I think that I was left for dead but whatever conflict killed my community resulted in damaged vessels owned by attackers and I took one of those as my own to help hunt them down.

Result 22: Hull is fused with organic growths. This isn’t a normal starship, which suggests that the people that killed my family weren’t normal either. It also suggests that “patched it back together” above might actually mean “helped it heal.” I think I have a bonded living starship.

Result = 96: Vengeance is the chip’s name. Since it is a living thing, I am going to interpret that as its motivation, which I share. Maybe we decided together that instead of dying we should get revenge and it was that vow that saved us both. We are linked down to the marrow.

Step 6: Choose Final Asset

I can pick another asset card. I feel like I should go with a Module to give my living starship some more character.

MEDBAY: Since I already said the ship and I healed each other, I think the living systems in the ship can link to other living beings and cure disease, heal injuries, etc…

Step 7: Stats

In Starforged, you get to distribute 3, 2, 2, 1, 1 amongst five stats.

EDGE 3 because I am a gunslinger

HEART 2 because I care about things, like this ship.

IRON 2 because sometimes the violence gets up close and personal.

WITS 1 because while I am not dumb, I do view things pretty simply.

SHADOW 1 because I like to face my challenges head on.

Step 8: Condition Meters

This is just standard stuff.

Step 9: Envision Your Character

I must define how my character Looks, Acts and what they Wear.

LOOK: Thin, almost scrawny, man with a lot more scars than anyone should have survived having gotten.

ACT: Affable enough, almost gregarious sometimes, but there’s a predatory look in his eye whenever he enters a new location, like he is hunting something.

WEAR: Simple enough clothes of a working class style, but always a jacket, poncho or other garment big enough to conceal weapons.

Step 10: Name

Let’s roll to find out!

NAME: James Rokuro. I think he is of mixed Asian descent.


CALLSIGN: Basilisk. Interesting. Maybe in his hunt for vengeance he has already earned a reputation that his hard stare freezes folks, worried he is going to shoot them down?

Step 11: Gear Up

Regular equipment isn’t really a thing in Starforged, but you are supposed to record any personal items or whatever.

I think James Rokuro carries two pistols — but they aren’t matched or expensive or even well made. One was taken from the body of someone he cared about from his community, while the other was taken from one of the fallen that attacked his community.