Magnum Opus Press

Alas Vegas

You come back to consciousness. Your mouth is full of dirt. Your body is covered with it, the weight pressing you down into the earth. As your mind claws back to the surface your arms are instinctively doing the same, digging frantically through the soil to the air above you.

You break through, exploding into the cold night like a body reborn, your lungs burning for oxygen, pulling yourself out of the shallow grave beneath you.

You’re in the desert. The soulless moon gives faint light to the scene. There are other people here. Naked like you, dirt-stained, silently watching. Behind you in the grave another body lurches upright, another one returning to life.

Who buried you for dead here, in the wilderness? How did you get here? Why can’t you remember? Why can’t you remember anything?

On the horizon there is a glow of colours, pulsing like some great city ablaze, and a red beam stretches between the land and the infinity of the night sky, reaching to the stars. Sometimes it flickers.

There will be answers there.

Magnum Opus Press is proud to announce that its next release will be the role-playing game Alas Vegas by James Wallis, the award-winning creator of Once Upon a Time and The Extraordinary Adventures of Baron Munchausen, and progenitor of the ‘Story Game’ genre.

Alas Vegas is Wallis’s first new RPG design since 1998’s Baron Munchausen, which was translated into five languages and nominated for two Origins Awards and an Ennie Award.

Set in a hyper-real casino city ruled by a secretive ‘Rat Pack’, the player-characters have a set time to work out why they were left for dead in the desert, who did this to them, and how to set things right. If they fail, much more then their lives is at stake. Alas Vegas is a story of memory, self, sin, redemption and gambling that plays out over four game-sessions, each with a different games-master (‘Dealer’). The games mechanics are simple, fast-moving and, says Wallis, ‘possibly the best thing I’ve ever designed. I am ridiculously proud of how well this game has come together.’

At present Alas Vegas has no fixed release date or page-length. The cover illustration is being created by 2000AD artist Graeme Neil Reid.

The game will be available as an ebook or softcover release, a ‘Minor Arcana’ signed hardcover in an edition of 56 copies, a ‘Major Arcana’ hyper-limited hardcover edition of 22 copies, and a one-off  ‘art release’ of the first printed copy of the game transformed into a unique piece of themed sculpture, priced at US$999/UK£666.

More details and information on how to preorder will be released as soon as they are confirmed.


  • Jiminy says:

    …? Is this for real, James?

  • admin says:

    Completely for real. It’s not a full new RPG line, it’s a one-off indie RPG, but I knew the only way to get it out of my head was to write it down and publish it.

  • Jiminy says:

    Cool. Sounds like Fiasco on steroids, so it should be popular!

  • Gunnar says:

    Any news on Alas Vegas?

  • admin says:

    We’re into the last stages. The main manuscript is complete, and I’m waiting for the last of the other authors and artists to finish their bits (a major part arrived yesterday from France). And I’ve finally got a logo I like. So: not long now.

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