# Overview

# "I grew up making mods for my favorite video games. The Zone itself wouldn't exist without its influences, most of all Archipelago and Love In The Time of Seið—everything is a remix! 💿 (opens new window))

# So I would dig it if you had a chance to do the same. That's what these tools are all about!"

# — Raph

# What is this?

You can now make your own Mods for The Zone just by editing a spreadsheet, from small tweaks to changing pretty much every piece of content in the game.

To make a Mod, you'll need:


This way of making an online RPG moddable (and even some of the code at the heart of The Zone!) is inspired by Randy Lubin's Story Synth (opens new window), a delicious way to build an entire storytelling game using just a spreadsheet.

🏗 This is just a first release

I'll keep adding new ways to customize The Zone as y'all ask for them! Please report bugs and feature requests in the Discord (opens new window) or contact me directly raph.damico@gmail.com

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What can I do with this?

The Zone is a very opinionated set of rules and content designed to create a Play To Lose experience with certain principles. However, there's a lot of room within that to experiment.

# Control your game experience

  • Want to have a game that's just Character scenes? Just remove the Scene cards you don't to have show up.
  • Want a game with a particular set of locations? You can do that too! (You can change whethere they are random or ordered in a particular way by changing the value of locationOrder)

# Make "house" tweaks

  • Minor content tweaks: what if the village was actually your hometown? What if the apartments were in your neighborhood? Or perhaps you just want to make slight changes to one of the character's backstories

# Theme the game

You may want to tweak the game colors for variety, or add your own backgrounds to better match the theme of your table.

# Make it a campaign

Maybe recurring characters return in scene cards of a next game, all set up with a custom briefing for your table.

# Total conversions

The minimum amount of content to completely make The Zone your own is:

  • 6 Locations
  • 10-15 Scenes and Not So Easy cards
  • In the Setup change the zoneName, campfireName, and centerName
  • In the Locations, customize The Zone Observation Facility and The Boundary (Without changing anything in the key column; they must remain as zoneObservationFacility and boundary)

# License

I'm hoping to give you as much freedom as possible, but there are a few restrictions.

First and most important: I'm releasing this Rules Reference and Base Content specifically to enable you to make Mods as a spreadsheet that can be loaded and played at play.TheZoneRpg.com (opens new window), and not as standalone games. This license is heavily inspired by the way Agon frames its playsets as "supplementary content—sort of like DLC or re-skins for a video game" (opens new window).


  1. If you are making a Mod as a spreadsheet to be loaded into play.TheZoneRpg.com (opens new window) you are free to reuse, remix, and distribute everything in the Base Content spreadsheet or SRD, whether you change a single word or the whole thing, as long as you keep the attribution in the README tab unchanged

  2. You retain ownership of any original material you write for your mod, and you assume no ownership of any material in THE ZONE RPG

  3. If you publish your Module (in spreadsheet form), for example on your website or with an Itch.io store page, please credit it as a Module for The Zone RPG, ©2021 Raph D'Amico (www.TheZoneRpg.com) when describing it

  4. You are absolutely welcome to charge for your supplement or offer it for free. Up to you.

  5. You may not reproduce, distribute any material from The Zone Rules Reference, The Zone Base Content, and any image assets used in the game at play.thezonerpg.com, or publish them in any other formats than as a spreadsheet that can be loaded into play.TheZoneRpg.com (opens new window)

A note about this last one: many of you are excited for the physical version (I am too, trust me!) and may want to use this to make your own print & play version. But I would prefer it if you were able to play it as intended! The Kickstarter is coming soon...

Feel free to hack any of the mechanics, of course, just as I did from Archipelago (💿 Everything Is A Remix! 💽), just without using content from The Zone as it currently is. I plan to release an SRD closer to when I've finished the physical edition of the game, to enable easy remixing of a whole Zonelike ("Mutated By The Zone?").