People seem to be saying some good things about Matt Machell’s Covenant. I’d already read about the guidance that it provides on scene-framing, which states that every scene should have:
an emotional connection between a protagonist and the events
a conflict to be resolved
And then I found Graham Walmsley’s review over at RPGnet. In particular I found the following excerpt intriguing:
The best is Conventions and Motifs: your gaming group defines four things about the cult (e.g. “Punishments are swift and final”) and four things they want to see in the game (e.g. “Crumbling architecture”, “Fighting on rooftops”). There’s a bonus every time you bring these in.
This works beautifully in play: if you want senseless property destruction in the game, make “senseless property destruction” a motif, and everyone gets a bonus for senseless property destruction. It’s simple and fun.
Then there’s Truisms: three things your character believes (e.g. “Family will take care of you”). Later in the game, you’ll either confirm that belief or have it shattered. It’s a clever mechanic, which puts questioning your beliefs at the heart of the game.
These mechanics sound pretty neat.