This page is for our successfully Kickstarted 1-2 player version of Dead Belt.
If you own the ashcan, the biggest differences in this edition are: double the number of prompts, co-op and rivalry rules, new shop items, and tier four ships to scavenge.
Physical copies are expected to be available for wider distribution in Spring 2023.
Not everyone’s got the temperament to be a Belter. Plenty of folks crack when the grav cuts out and the lights go off. Plenty more jump at shadows when their flash starts to flicker. Others are too busy watching their O2 to see opportunities.
But that isn’t you. If you can only rely on your gear, your smarts, and your grit, you’re going to make a stack of cred out here among these hulks. Or you’re going to die trying. Either way, you’re going to do it alone.
No one’s coming looking. No one knows you’re here.
Dead Belt is played by building a Belter and taking them out into the Belt to scavenge randomly-generated starships, using things you already have laying around: a six-sided die, a deck of common playing cards, and a few tokens of whatever sort happen to be close at hand.
With a dozen unique ship deck plans, over 100 flavorful prompts, and plenty of character stats to help you avert certain death, no two ships will ever feel the same. You’ll board these derelict starships, navigate barriers, dodge threats, monitor your air-supply, and salvage as you go.
You’ll deal with all the dangers lurking onboard these starships, push your luck, and finally return to spend your hard-won booty to secure better equipment, improve your skills, pay down your crippling debt, and hopefully, maybe, eventually set yourself up to live out your dreams far from the Belt.
There are three ways to play Dead Belt: Solo, Co-Op, and Rivalry.
Solo is the classic experience, you're truly all alone out there and no one is coming to help you.
In Co-Op, you and a friend join forces, allowing you to push your luck a little further, knowing they'll be there to have your back when things go sideways. Don't make the mistake of thinking this makes the game easy. Start pulling wild stunts and you're just as like to take your partner down with you.
In Rivalry, you and a friend dial the difficulty level up to 12, actively sabotaging each other as you race for the juicy payday hiding on every ship. This mode is not for the faint of heart.
(Above) See it Played: Don't miss the actual play video below to see how a few gamer-household staples and a big pile of interesting and evocative prompts make for the most fun you'll ever have dying in space.
"DeadBelt is the solo RPG for anyone who thought they would never play one. Instead of making you write a novel, it’s edge-of-your-seat tension with every flip of a card. You will believe you’re out there and space wants you dead." - Third Floor Wars Craig
”Dead Beltperfectly rides the line between sci-fi survival and folk horror in an easily understood, cleverly built solo game.” - Roleplaying Grenade Gregg
"Remember it's a mighty vast, mighty cold world out there. And if you ain't got the grit, you ain't got the determination. Well, you know, some of you folks ain't going to make it, but for those of us, Belters, I mean, there ain't nothing sweeter than cracking into a ship and finding that payday. See ya space cowboy." - Black Dragon Dungeon Company
It's rough out here. Regardless, I appreciate you.
re: the payday... if I roll a 1-3... Oracles say "the Payday you came for is junked. Reminder: The oppposite of every choice you don’t take happens". Core says I could "spend Grit to salvage the payday by using it as normal"... what's normal out here? sounds like on a 1-3 I can spend a Grit to salvage, or not, and the opposite of every pick list item happens either way.
ok, per Core, if i don't salvage then i ignore the pick list. so that stuff just doesn't happen. so my question really is, if i do salvage, does the opposite of every pick list item happen? (including spending another Grit)
Chariot copies all Lima-Charlie, Belter. Let's have a walk through the Payday move right quick and see if we can't get you back to scrappin' and salvagin' without any undue brain-frizz.
So when you roll for a Payday, like rolling for any other prompt or move in the game, you will roll a d6 (unless you decide to spend some Gear before you roll, in which case you'll be rolling 2d6). On a 1-3, as usual, the worst happens--you've come all this way for a stripped or busted payday. But you're a Belter with luck and grit. Just like any other bit of bad news, you can spend Grit after the fact to boost your failure into a mixed success, the 4-5 result on this prompt. IE, you choose two of the bulleted options on the Payday move picklist which are true, and the others are false. So if you don't spend one of your choices on "You don't need to spend Grit to remove it," you do indeed need to spend a Grit to remove it, in addition to the Grit you've already spent to boost your 1-3 to a 4-5.
Hopefully that scrubs the signal and makes it a little clearer for you, Belter. But if it's all still broken/unreadable for you, send another wave and we'll hook and jab our way through a payday together step by step and see if we can't make the weird make some sense, square?
Gonna loiter on this station a while, Belter. Pulse the crackle and hum button if'n you need. Chariot, out.
Hey Drakes! I'm really enjoying the game but I'm unclear about Spacewalk move. It says what happens when I draw only red cards, or two black cards, or one black and one red. What if I got a mixed success, drew only one card and it's black? Does this mean "no success, but also no resources spent"? That's what made sense to me, but it's unclear in the rules. Help?
Also, unless I'm misreading things, there's a bit of a loophole with Spares Bank? Once I have it installed, I can buy Spare Bits for 1 cred and it makes no sense to buy any Grit or Gear for 2 cred. I can just enter the Airlock on a new Bird and take the stuff I bought for cheap from the Bank. Is this on purpose? Or am I misunderstanding how Gear and Grit work?
Having to walk back to the airlock for your spares is a hassle. Expanding your "On You" Grit, Gear, and Glow means cutting down on trips and minimizing the risk of a bad run of gas-checks cutting your trip (or career) short.
Sure, but I'm starting in the Airlock. So if I have no Gear left after previous run, I can just spend 3 cred, put 3 Gear in my Spares Bank, and as soon as I get to the new Bird, I load that 3 Gear into my pack and start exploring?
Or does Gear, Grit and Glow actually reset before each run, and paying full price permanently increases the reset value?
The 2 cred upgrades increase the max grit or gear you can carry. After each run, you'll need to refill both your personal inventory and your spares bank with "Spare Bits." Whichever track you fill--bay, carryall, both, or neither-- the price is the same. 1 cred for three bits. Mix and match.
Hey Drakes, wonderful game! Question: In the Albatross description it says it can accommodate a 7 slot spare bank upgrade... should it say 8 slot? And just to be clear, spare bank upgrade is the same as spare bank expansion, right?
Howdy, Belter! Glad to hear you're getting on well enough to have questions about the biggest Beltin' Bird going. The Albatross can mount the largest Spares Bank available on the Belt, the 7-Slot Spares Bank (available at all reputable and less than reputable refit stations for 7 Cred).
Looking at the sheet, I'm seeing the confusion though. Each upgrade is indeed a mark on the Spare Bank Expansion category on the sheet. And we are looking at a weird number of bubbles on the bank itself. We'll get that sorted and polished once we're clear of space-plague. Play it as it lies for now, and we'll get it all ironed out.
Thanks for the extra eyes, Belter. This is why we're lucky to have y'all out there.
Thanks, good to know. Another point of confusion is that under goods and services the spares bank expansion 2 provides 8 slots for gear, grit and gas for 8 cred. I'll just go with 7 for now! Again, super cool game.
Yeah, Belter, turns out that Void Rat doesnt mean you get to walk in space for free. If the ships come apart and your rolled destination is drifting into the great beyond, you're not getting there without a spacewalk. Feel free to give the dice another shake and see where you end up otherwise.
Sorry to hear we missed you for the campaign! As it stands we'll be taking care of printing and distribution for the Kickstarter. When that process is done and settled, we'll most likely be left with an overage of the physical zines to cover shipping mishaps and suchlike. Any of those leftover copies of the physical edition will be posted up here on Itch as available. Short answer is currently "no." But come fulfillment time, 'round May 2023? Resounding Yes.
Good to know! Just finally got to really get into the game and I absolutely adore it. Haven’t had solo rpg experiences this tense since Ironsworn was in early access! Will be keeping an eye out to snag one of the physical copies :D
Still waiting on the email from Itch.io Admin, unfortunately. Glaring at our inbox like it owes us something is so far proving ineffective. I'm holding out hope that it's going to be rectified before too much longer, but on the off chance that there's no word, shoot us an email at ACoupleofDrakes (at) Outlook and we'll at least get you the ashcan version to tide you over.
Because this is frankly ridiculous, and y'all have been patient enough.