About Burning Wheel
We are Burning Wheel Headquarters. We publish the Burning Wheel Fantasy Roleplaying System and Burning Empires. We have also designed and written other games like Mouse Guard and FreeMarket.
Burning Wheel is a fantasy roleplaying game first published in 2002. Since then, the game and its supplements have gone on to win critical notoriety, a handful of awards and respect from the RPG community. Revised in 2005, there are now 8000 copies of the current edition of Burning Wheel in print. There are two supplements for Burning Wheel: the Monster Burner and the Magic Burner. There are also two setting books, Jihad — an homage to Dune — and The Blossoms Are Falling — an historic setting for Heian Era Japan.
Burning Wheel uses a simple D6 die pool system at its core. Grab a handful of dice equal to your skill or stat. Roll the dice. Any 4s, 5s or 6s that result are considered successes. You need a certain number of successes to pass tests. The system builds on that simple core to create deep, dynamic results.
During play, the GM challenges a player’s Beliefs. The player overcomes these challenges and drives the story by testing his character’s abilities. A test can be resolved in a single roll or decided in an extended conflict, social or martial. The GM doles out the consequences for failure based on what the player was trying to accomplish. You want to find a woodsman to guide you through the forest — make a Circles test. If you fail he’s suspicious of thieves so he’s shooting first and asking questions later. You want to get some gear — make a Resources test. If you fail you can’t afford it but your rival comes forward with the offer of a loan and a suppressed smirk. You want to convince your enemy to let your friends go — engage him in a Duel of Wits. Structure your argument well, because if you fail, he might just convince you to take the place of your friends in exchange for their freedom. You want that bastard dead? Draw your sword and take him out in a blow-by-blow melee — Fight! Don’t fail this time, though, because it might be your last. You the player decide how far to take it. You reap the rewards and weather the consequences.
In this game, the consequences for failure lead to the next conflict. There are no dead-ends in Burning Wheel, unless it’s a dead-end alley with your enemies lying in wait. The story told is about the path that gets you to your goals. Whether the game is political, military, or a classic sword and sorcery adventure, you decide. You write your own Beliefs about what you want and Instincts that describe how you react. You advance your skills to help you get there and you earn traits that describe how you come out on the other side. One way or another, when you play Burning Wheel, you’re playing with fire.