I did it, I made a Carta game about being noir detective who's stuck in a shifting city, Labyrinth of Night. Much love for this system!
A downloadable toolkit
Welcome to Carta!
Think of this as a basic set of rules that you can use as a framework to build a solo TTRPG. We supply the rules and you supply the ideas!
Carta games, like our Into the Glacier and Apex Predator, are exploration games, but we're curious to see what else they can be! If you make a game using this system, please link it in the comments below or tag @CatlingGun on twitter so we can see what you've made!
The base idea is that players lay cards out in a grid , and then turn them over one at a time, exploring prompts and mechanics as they do. The game is a sort of boardgame / storygame hybrid, where players explore journaling prompts by physically moving their marker from card to card and looking up the results. It can have a definite goal, making it more boardgame-like, or it can be more nebulous and story-focused.
Carta was inspired by:
- The Wretched and Alone SRD by Matt Sanders & Chris Bissette
- The Estate of Baron Archambaud, an Ingrate, by Galazor
- Board games like Zombies! and Betrayal at House on the Hill
This SRD was built for stories about solitary discovery. GMless Multiplayer rules can definitely be added, but the default ruleset is a single-player one. You might want to tell stories about:
- Exploring a classic-style dungeon in search of treasure
- Wandering around a city and seeing the sights
- Being pursued through a haunted mansion
- Searching an alien planet for survivors
- Just playing Monster Hunter, I guess. That's what I did.
Click download now to get access to the following files:
- Carta Jam is live!Mar 02, 2021
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Hello! I am creating my own TTRPG with your system! It will be published in Brazillian Portuguese, but an English version will be done ASAP. Thank you so much for creating this system and disponibilizing it as open-source!
That's so exciting! Please let me know when it's available - I know some Portugese-speakers I'd love to share it with!
Hi! Im in love with your system, Im actually creating my own ttrpg with the CartaSRD. Hope to get it finished soon and showing it to you ^^
I'm a big fan of your system, especially the physical exploration feature. Among all the journaling game mechanics I've experimented with, this really distinguishes itself, in addition to being super fun!
I've recently released Heart's Haunt, using your framework, and had a great time tweaking the numbers to achieve the desired difficulty level. A huge thanks for all the resources and guidance you provided! I'm already conceptualizing another game inspired by carta, with a focus on interdimensional travel, bearing a distinct Cronenberg-esque vibe. I hope that's alright with you?
I just finished it, it's called Warp-Morph. Thank you for sharing such a fun system!
Why wouldn't it be?
I'm delighted that Carta is a stepping stone to the games you want to write!
I'm having trouble downloading your RTF files for both your SRD files... what's going on?
Not sure - I just tested and it works fine on my end!
I'm using the itch.io app to download the things... I'm not seeing the items I thought I would download. Is that the problem?
Probably. Downloading books or other texts through the Itch.io app puts them in the same location as video games installed through the app, which is kind of awkward to access. You can still find them, but I prefer to download books from my browser so the files go into my normal Downloads folder instead.
Lovely system, though I’m curious as to the specifics of how you played Monster Hunter
That's in my game Apex Predator!
This SRD is giving me a lot of inspiration, to say the least.
Just one question though, in both the definition of Survival Mode and Collect mode you mentioned when we should reduce or increase a resource.
You mention, "10 of the card", "15 of the cart" etc. but I don't know what that actually means. Can you explain or give examples?
Ah, sorry to be late replying!
What I mean is, of the prompts you've written, 10 of them should reduce the resource. They can be any cards you choose, but mathematically there should be around 10 cards chosen to do this.
I absolutely love that this SRD has prompts for your prompts! They're fantastic for brainstorming.
This is such a fun, flexible system!
I absolutely love this system and this srd, and I'm so excited to get started on my first game using it.
Hi, I am developping a game based on CORE micro but using a story/mission/planet map made of cards as well.
I developped the game with a french deck in mind, and with other differences, before I found Carta, but your formalization was helpful in the redaction process, so it’s a bit of a grey zone.
What do you think about me linking to both Core micro and Carta SRD, with logo and all? The game is not ready, maybe you’d like to see a draft before you decide ?
You tell me what’s best for you.
I'm not picky about these things! I'm glad Carta helped you make your game.
If you feel like it, a link would be lovely, but it's completely your call. Also I'd love to see it either way!
Glad to see we’re on the same wavelength. Here’s the game version from 6 months ago, warts and all. I hope I’ll have something to show within two weeks or so, if Chomsky wants it. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1s7QlEuS0Gn8eo_j37VkNT4dZl0FzALnY/edit?usp=sharing&ouid=106453917561198488775&rtpof=true&sd=true
making a space themed game with it rn, will release soon!
This is an amazing SRD and it allows to boost your creativity to make something your own!
A really solid SRD with a great system that helped me make a game I'm really proud of! Give it a look and make your own super cool Carta game!