The core rule book is 194 pages and goes over what you, the player, and the game master need to know to play a successful Veil of Void Game. It is broken up into eight chapters each focusing on one to two specific things.
The Core Rule Book does an excellent job on easing character creation. You can find the actual character sheets online at www.sdgcreatives.com and as of 4/30/22 there is an updated form (both fillable and unfillable pdf boxes) available for download. Chapter one of the core rule book is all about the 5 steps to character creation. This character will be the individual that you (or the players at the table) are role playing as.
Pick a Species: The Core Rule Book has 9 species to select from. Humans are a playable option in Veil of the Void but in this ttrpg there is a clever twist where humans are the newcomers and “aliens” of the Galaxy. Chapter 4 goes into each of the species into more depth.
Class: There are 10 classes to customize the character’s profession. From scrap collecting architects to spell wielding Thaumatechs there are a variety of things to pick from to make each individual at your table special. More details on each class will be found in Chapter 5 and what happens with each class at leveling. Each class starts with the same amount of hit points but as you level your character gains different hit points from other party members along with abilities and proficiencies specific to those class.
Putting Points in your Virtues: These are the 6 stat blocks for your character. The 6 virtues you will have in Veil of the Void include: Power (strength based), Finesse (dexterity based), Vitality (constitution based), Mentality (intelligence based), Judgement (wisdom based) and Charm (charisma based). As an avid D&D player it was refreshing to see something familiar but with new names and a bigger coverage of what each player can do with each virtue. I feel that charm including eloquence and leadership into the stat is a great boon to players. Each class has a primary virtue which is listed clearly on the box on the bottom of page 9. A big difference I noticed with this particular ttrpg is there is no rolling of dice to figure out your virtues. Each statistic starts at 3 for new characters in Veil of the Void. At character creation, a player has a pool of 5 extra points to spread into the different virtues. There is also a rule that limits putting no more than 2 points of that pool into a single virtue, making it a max of 5 to any virtue at level 1.
Skills and Expertise for your Character: I love that skills in Veil of the Void are not complicated! You, the player, are given 5 skill points to invest at level one and you can use them to customize your character how you want to. Want magic but not wanting to devote your entire class to it? Bam! One skill point into the Arcanting skill gives you access to magic. I love that the player gets to decide what is most important to them and build someone that they can make a story with. You may not add more than 2 points into one skill at lvl 1 character creation but as you level your species/class may bump your skills. Expertise is a field or specialty that your character gains benefits from. There is a wide range from blade master to lip reading, or even choosing “resurrected”.
The final step will be writing a background for your story. This is a great time to work one on one with your GM to come up with a history or lore build in the universe that you will be exploring.
I really appreciated how well laid out, and how there were page numbers provided to every piece of the character building process to help make this process as painless as possible. As someone who is usually in the GM/DM seat helping players through character building, this was one of the easier character creations to go through.
Chapter Two: General Rules
As a game that is mostly role play, there are still a bunch of rules that were written in chapter two for general play. There is a chapter break down on page 12, along with a color coding reference and quick key guide to help navigate the text within. I will admit that it took me a few read throughs of this particular chapter to understand all that was explained. It is my recommendation that this chapter is read by all players and the GM, at least twice before play. This chapter was left open/bookmarked on my own table for reference while playing. There is a lot of information to unpack in this 11 page chapter.
Veil of the Void is a d6 system where the dice are pooled together. Based on the numbers rolled, the results give you a hit (6&5), neutral (4&3) or miss (2&1) result. The numbers 6 and 1 on the dice (face failure, with no modifications) are considered to be powerful in the sense that a natural 6 is unable to be affected by negative effects and a natural 1 is unable to be affected by positive effects. Unlike other table top games, the highest/lowest number on the die is not referred to as a critical hit or miss. That is a seperate rule that can be found on page 15.
The number of d6’s that you roll is based on your virtues (stats) and if you have any skill bonuses. Skill points can also add additional dice or pips to your rolls as well to affect your rolls. The number you roll will never be more than 16 dice total. The way Veil of the Void works is you roll you pool of dice you are looking for the number of successful dice rolls vs. a difficulty (box in page 14 for Galaxy masters and players alike to reference) or you need to have more successes than the thing/person you are contesting against. My best recommendation is after you roll the dice separate them into fails, neutrals and successes. This makes it easiest to see what you have rolled, and if you have any 6’s or 1’s.
Something to knots is that if you roll 5 or more natural hits or misses something dramatic happens (in Veil of the Void you do not automatically fail or succeed a check). I personally like that there is an advantageous failure check rule where other options might present themselves if you roll a critical hit but still fail the roll. That and the unfortunate success rule makes it easier to do a “yes…and” / “no…but” type of role play table.
Health and your Characters
I like that all classes start with 12 hit points in addition to their vitality. There is also a secondary pool of health points in the form of energy shields that can help protect your space adventurer. Page 17 goes through the list of conditions that can affect your player or their weapons in different situations. Something I found interesting was the Death/Resurrection rules (pages 17 and 18). In the chance that your player goes down (reaches 0 hit points) your player goes into a downed state instead of full on dying. The downed state goes until your character reaches -8 hp where your character dies. You roll a single d6 at a time to gain either one death hit (4 are needed to make it up to 1 health point) or take negative HP. I find it interesting as it seems that your character is not unconscious when it goes into the state of being downed.
Veil of the Void has its own resting system as well where you can get ½ your missing HP back on a short rest or all on a long rest. There are class features and points that require a rest reset so it’s important to read over your character sheet to know what your character gains after certain rests.
Oh yes you can. There are some great features that I like about Veil of the Void. Like many other ttrpgs you get a movement, action and reaction phase to your turn. What I particularly like about Veil of the Void is there is a nice blue box on page 20 of all the things you can do on your character’s movement instead of move. I particularly like aim which allows you to get a +1 auto-hit die and that rearming/reloading is part of your movement as it takes concentration to do that (you try running around and putting your ammo into your stuff appropriately). There is also the ability to channel with items, spells or actions that are attracted to a certain amount of rounds that uses half of your max movement.
Another rule that I thought was unique was the cooldown/duration times when it comes to some of the abilities, spells, items, etc that you will find in Veil of the Void. This brings some more realism into a fantasy role play game. If you cast a big spell it is supposed to take a lot out of your character, it wouldn’t make sense to cast big heated spells over and over again to the point of your character’s exhaustion.
Veil of the Void also has lots of different ways that you can engage in combat from dual wielding, ranged and throwing to a variety of damage types that you can customize your weapons with (such as elemental or shadow damage).
Chapter Three: Skills/Expertise/Arcana
Skills with different weapons or armor is brought to a new level in ttrpgs as the Veil of the Void rule book states that your character can gain proficiency or mastery on a weapon, armor, item, or spell by real time use of these things in game (determined by a set number of uses, such as 7 clast of a spell) or a specific number of sessions. As a GM I absolutely love this concept as it brings a unique role play aspect of doing common actions and the idea of gaming in bonuses by mastering something through dedication in game. This is just another great piece I enjoyed from Veil of the Void. There is now a purpose to training, practicing an instrument, etc. This rule also allows for characters to build their skills outside of the weapons/armor/abilities specific to a class. The detriments that affect your character when using tools or gear that you are not proficient in seem fair and have a certain amount of realism (thinking back to someone learning an instrument for a first time and how it sounds for the first few months of learning) and makes the progress of proficiency worth the 3-5 sessions of “pain.”
Let’s talk skills in Veil of the Void. There are a great many natural and learned skill abilities to choose from. At character creation you get 5 skill points to spend and as your character levels up you get another point to invest. Each skill is related to a specific character virtue (trait) and there are 22 to pick from. The more skill points you invest in a specific skill the more things that your character can do. If you invest 6 points, your 7th skill point must be gained/unlocked through rolls that happen by your character using the skills in game (marked by 5-10 successful/failed rolls for each level of skill points). As a GM I like that your players gain benefits by using their skills in game and it encourages players to role play and think creatively.
Expertise, the fields and specialties that bring some unique pieces to your character. At character creation you get 5 points to spend. There are 63 unique expertise that you can choose from. A majority are 1 point to spend, and eleven are considered 2 points or unique expertise. As you level up you get to add another expertise. When I first went through this ttrpg I didn’t fully appreciate expertise for what they are. This is a chance for you to add abilities to your character that can either add onto what your class/race do or help balance out the character’s abilities in regards to the party. These expertise are not limited to a class and make things accessible to all players if they want to have these traits. It opens up flying/piloting checks to players who may not be your captain for those just in case moments your pilot goes down. There is also awareness that gives multiple bonuses, or lip reading if your party wants to communicate without speaking/ sneak in on others conversations.
Magic in the realm of the Veil of the Void is more wild magic that is unstable instead of space wizards. All spells have a difficulty range in the size of squares on the map, the duration and the cooldown time. The idea that a spell has a cooldown and needs to recharge is a fun rule for me. This on top of needing to roll, hitting a certain difficulty number made magic something that is more chaotic and what I feel to be more natural than expanding spell slots in other types of TTRPGs. A note on magic rules- a cone or line spell cannot be used diagonally. The other thing that I love is that anyone with an Arcanting class or using the Arcanting skill can use magic as long as the casting requirements are met. There are also some great lore about the four magic realms where the magic of Veil of the Void is drawn from and The Charge State. If you are considering playing a magic user I highly recommend reading through and bookmarking pages 35-39 and reading through Thaumatech (pgs 144-157). You can also find more magic under the Naturalist class (111-121).
This entire chapter is dedicated to the 9 different species that are playable in Veil of the Void. Each is filled with lore and history that is unique to each type of character. There is also a lovely piece of headshot art for each of the species to give an idea of what they look like. With each species you get to see the traits and ancestry paths that can give boons/banes that can affect you or a party member of that species. No matter the species that you pick there are many traits that will set you apart from the other players at your table and even the other players that choose the same species. For me I enjoyed Celestia where they are formless beings that require no oxygen, food, water and are immune to the effects of space along with the many types of Reapers (shadow and Arcane are my two favorite) or even the nature based Topikins.
Though there are only 10 classes to pick from, there are many more studies and specializations to the classes that a wide variety of characters could be made. Pages 71-157 hold the keys to each of the different classes available and the details of level advancement, abilities, starting proficiencies and the more specialized pieces of the class. There is a helpful box for each class that goes through the ability progression from level 1- level 20 with page numbers where you can find more information in detail. As a GM I liked the bit of storytelling that graced the beginning of each of the class options.
There is also the ability to do your own custom classing as well. The beautiful thing about Veil of the Void is its ability to make it what ever you and your players want. You can also use Chapter 8 to come up with your own custom class or build your own version of any of the classes to make it special to your game.
Chapter 6: General Equipment
Within this chapter you will find information on Solar Credits, the armor, weapons and items each in alphabetical informational grids with all the things needed to know about each item including price. It was user friendly with it easy to find the exact things you are looking for. There are even Role-Playing Baubles available as well.
As for vehicles in Chapter 7 there are different stats, an explanation of the different rules of combat, roles and travel. Whether you are using a starship, tank or mech, all vehicles use Power, Vitality and Finesse as their statistics. There are 8 standard bases for space ships and a variety of general/mech based expertise. Remember to always work with your GM when shopping or even customizing your vehicles and space crafts.
Chapter 8: The Ultimate Gm’s guide to the Void
This chapter (180-193) is all about the rules and mechanics of Vail of the Void in the sense of customization and creation within the game. Personally I feel like the title of this chapter is misleading as there are many rules and features that all players should read (such as the “All 6’s Rule,” the detailed Story Creation Guide and for players who are creative there are ways to customize many other aspects of the game), but the pages do hold information that pertains to the building and creation of your Veil of the Void world. Here you will find valuable charts, texts and pieces about building a business, NPC or items within the game. There are also guides on building and customizing everything from species, classes to spells.
Two things of note that Veil of the Void has done well include the crafting guide and the building adversary guides. These guides give GM’s (or crafty players) the basis of what should go into a crafted item or portion with the freedom of customization in a way that makes sense. Items and potions are given an average number of pieces/parts/ingredients that should be included for a successful creation, but leaves what those pieces are to the imagination and whim of the players/GM. The Adversary Guides give the GM really great tips on how to run, build and interact as the adversaries. Veil of the Void has a better system on naming adversary levels than D&D 5e where there is a clear break down of what goes into the challenge rating of the things you create. I even will consider looking at pages 191 & 192 when creating foes for other ttrpg systems.