I decided to quench your thirst and provide an overview of the game. Please note, that I tried to translate things as accurately (not literally!) as possible. However, if something seems weirdly formed, it's probably because I tried to keep the spirit (the difficult, pseudo-historical/scientific/poetic language) of the original.
The name of the system comes from a myth within the game world. It is believed that somewhere within the game universe powerful objects (or even entities), known as the Time Crystals, exist. They are said to be more powerful than magic, gods, or the world itself (that's pretty fucking powerful, if you ask me). Those who will come into possession of the Time Crystals will have an almost unlimited control over reality.
The origins or the reason for the existence of Time Crystals remain unknown and many, often clashing theories circulate. Some say they are artifacts from a different universe/dimension, others claim they were made in "time before time", or that they are the remains of the first matter known as the Monolith. Finally some believe they are beings secretly plotting and controlling the world...
The world in which the game takes place is known as Orchia. It's inhabited by typical fantasy races: elves, dwarfs, hobbits [because the game was published in the early nineties, when polish law of intellectual property was liquid, Time Crystals often "borrow" from the fantasy classics] reptilians and orcs.
Orchia is probably bigger than Earth, but the game takes place only on a 4th. part of it's surface, where the Lands of 10 Archipelagos are located. There is 9 so called "close" archipelagos and one "scattered" among them... Some of the islands are very small, others are the size of whole countries or subcontinents. Each of the archipelagos is meant to have a different climate and culture.
It is said that long ago all known lands were parts of a huge super-continent, but due to some events, perhaps a divine intervention, it was scattered.
Adventures usually take place on Orchia's Central Archipelago, most often on it's biggest island - The Great Orcus. It's the homeland of orcs [duh!] and is believed to also be the cradle of all intelligent life.
The game takes place in the time when the orcish empire rules throughout most of the known lands. Though no country can match it's economical and military power, the empire's reign is becoming weaker and it's aristocracy (originally named Uruk'hai) grows more and more decadent.
I don't go into any other details, because there are no interesting ideas concerning culture or the different states. It's the usual, all over the place medieval-fantasy vibe.
Mechanics and Character Creation
The game is based on percentile tests made using a d100.
Each character has 10 primary attributes:
- Physical strength
- Magical Abilities
• to illusions
• to psychology (!!!)
• to curses
• to shock (meaning psychological shock)
• to unnatural effects (my personal favorite)
• to diseases
• to exhalations (or reek, in polish it's the same word)
• to temperature
• to electricity
• to polymorphism
As you can see, the authors were not resistant to stupidity.
Apart from those (20!) attributes, there are some additional ones, which are based on two or
more of the above attributes, each with equally fabulous names. Among them are: LifeEnergy,
Magical Potential, Spotting and (the best character attribute ever) Normality.
Of course there are also lists of skills, languages, weapon proficiencies, jobs, special abilities one might be born with, special abilities one might learn, etc...
Finally we come to character classes. They are divided into castes, but characteristically for this systems treatment of language, meaning of the word "caste" is reduced to "group". Of course additionally characters belong to different social classes and shit, but I won't go into it, since
there is nothing useful or amusing to be found.
Warriors Caste: fighter, ranger, guard,barbarian, mercenary
Knights Caste: knight, paladin, black knight
Rouges Caste: thief, assassin, merchant, bard
Priests Caste: priest, druid, astrologer, half-god
Wizards Caste: mage, warlock, illusionist, alchemist
So here you are! Now imagine many, many unofficial or semi-offcial supplements, articels, rules and stuff like that. When the company publishing Magia i Miecz (the magazine in which this game was first published) decided to make a book edition in 1998, no one knew what to take, what to change and what to throw out the window. The end product was very poor (not that there was much to start out with) and literally killed the system.
Now few crazy hermits still uphold the tradition and publish unofficial materials (so called 3 edition) on the internet. They are...
art by Jarosław Musiał