A downloadable a game of travels

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The traveller is blessed with the chance to know the world beyond their door. The wanderer is given opportunity to cultivate wisdom beyond themselves, to learn that which they never knew they were ignorant of.

They are granted the chance to see the colours of all they observe and asked to accept that they will never see every pigment and shade the ever-expanding world has to offer.

 The wayfaring pilgrim is a flickering candle against the starlight tapestry of night. Easy to lose among the twinkling glimmer of the Heavenly black, but to those in need of a kindly hand to guide the way; they are worth more than all the gold in a king’s coffer.

Home is far behind you now, even should you stand at the threshold of your own front door. Accept this boon and the finite place you hold in creation. Observe, wander, and seek that which will bring you inner peace and truemost comfort.

YATRA is a game in the works by Brian Yaksha, an evolution of many previous projects and theories into a representational piece meant to portray a gleaning glimpse of South Asian cultures. In YATRA, you play as travellers; wanderers upon the path going from place to place for reasons entirely up to you. It is not a game meant for high warfare or plundering tombs. 

As an ashcan, YATRA currently displays most of its core rules (save for tweaks on combat and currently developing ideas on how to make travel interesting), 6 of its 36 character backgrounds, each complete with two additional sets of randomizers so as to make the traveller feel as emergent from a lived in world. 

As a full product, YATRA shall include far more as well as explorations into the evolution of this current iteration and the reasons and difficulties of portraying a culture one is of but disconnected from by time and colonialism. And also many many more randomizers, for I know what it is that brings me joy and makes me of use.

The ashcan elements herein are compatible with Troika, and are placed here for virtue of posterity. 

CategoryPhysical game
Rated 5.0 out of 5 stars
(8 total ratings)
AuthorGoatman's Goblet
GenreRole Playing
Tagsashcan, indian, poc, preview, south-asian, Troika


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Yatra - Ashcan Test.pdf 729 kB


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(1 edit) (+1)

Hi, I like finding nuggets like your game. I had to open it because the description doesn’t tell (enough?much?) about the system. I’m glad I did because I found Expression tokens. Is it your idea or have you seen it in another game ? It looks like a distillation of BoB. Anyway. The game is clear, content astonishing and the Expression mechanic is excellent.

Hey! Yeah, I literally just threw it up last night before going to bed; so it is a bit unpolished---especially as an ashcan. 

For Expression; its not something I've seen in another game specifically (though I do read a lot and osmosis can occur without notice.) The designed intent was to use a meta-currency to supplement the big action currency (Karma) in a way that allows players to get a sense of agency over how they interact with one another. The ideal way of gathering Expression is part of how I intend to handle travel, wherein travel is a means of:

  • Moving through an environment, in weather; which determines mood.
  • Rolling on a topic that the conversation of the party has reached after hours of travel through said mood/with said mood.
  • Allowing the party to determine how they are engaging with the topic, allowing them to speak to a backstory, or to lie, or to not feel like commenting.
  • And then, encounter something on the path or a destination, where this expression might be further utilized.

The hope and goal is to make travel a means of introspection: how much do you trust your fellows to tell the truth, how much do you wish to keep intimate of yourself, does it matter to tell exaggerated/tall tales to people you may never see again? 

Backstories and deciding what other characters know about you is always something I'd like to see explored more; so this was the general idea.

I'm glad you enjoyed it, I'm certainly looking to finishing it as a project.

- Brian