The Fifth World

Roleplaying Game


Places constantly generate moments of awareness. Your character can visit those places and, by acting in accordance with the particular spirit of that place, gather those moments. She can then spend moments of awareness to avoid danger, accomplish difficult tasks, and ask questions to learn the truth about the world around her.

Moments of awareness form the primary currency in the game. Each place begins with a moment of awareness, and they generate more after each encounter. Places occur in sets of three, like otherworldly places, unquiet places, or creative places, each of which has a different criterion that you’ll have to meet to gather awareness there. At a storied place, for instance, you can gather awareness when you hear a story told.

When you gather awareness you can take as much or as little as you like, with the exception of your home. There, you gather awareness by sharing a meal with others, and everyone present can take awareness — if you can all agree on how to split it. If you can’t, then no one gets anything.

You can normally have up to five moments of awareness, until you take scars, each of which will reduce your limit by one.

You spend moments of awareness to ask questions during encounters and in response to certain ritual phrases, like “That sounds difficult” and “That sounds dangerous.” Since you need awareness to protect yourself and to accomplish your goals, you’ll need to consider going to some places to gather awareness (and then encountering whoever you might find there).

You can help another player’s character if you’ve come to the same place by spending your own moments of awareness on her behalf.