Tokyo Nova: The Revolution

A lot of the newer Japanese RPGs use something called the scene system. The best way to learn about it is to read the Japanese Wikipedia article, which Google Translate does a passable job at translating to English. According to the article, the scene system was introduced by トーキョーN◎VA The Revolution “Tokyo Nova: The Revolution” (1998), which is the 3rd iteration of the Tokyo Nova rules.

In the scene system, all gameplay happens in a scene. Periodically there is a cut to a new scene. In TNTR, a cut happens when the cast (i.e. the players and NPCs) travel to a new location. The appearance of a new character also results in a cut to a new scene, and cuts can be used by the referee to simply skip time.

At the start of a new scene, the referee draws a card from the tarot deck and places it on the table for everyone to see. This is the scene card. Incidentally, characters are generated by drawing three cards from the tarot deck, a feature inherited from the 1st edition of the game. It is good for the character if the scene card is one of those three cards, because he or she is allowed to perform the feat specified by the card at some time during the course of the scene. The scene card is also used by the referee, who looks up the card in the “scene chart” and get the “style”, “key word”, and “events” associated with the card. These are hints for deciding what transpires during the course of the scene.

Whereas the 1st edition of the game was a box set, TNTR is a perfect bound book. They still managed to include the tarot cards by putting them in an envelope attached to the back cover. However a deck of playing cards is also needed and you have to provide that yourself. If you compare the tarot cards with those in the 1st edition, you’ll see that some of them got new artwork.

B5 perfect bound softcover with dust jacket, 304 pp.

2 thoughts on “Tokyo Nova: The Revolution

  1. Hello!
    I’m writing here on behalf of an Italian GdR-based forum, called Dragons’Lair (you can find it as because I’ve read some of your articles and I’ve found them very interesting. The other member of the staff and I wanted to ask you if it could be possible to translate some of your articles into Italian. The site is no-profit and we will always add a link to the source. Sorry for using the comment section inappropriately, but we haven’t found any other way to contact you.



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