Koriko: A Magical Year (Boxed Edition)

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A tarot-driven story game of novice witches, urban exploration and teenage drama for solo & shared-world play.


This is a game for one player, designed for contemplative solo play. It’s a bubbling cauldron of simple rules and writing prompts, stirred together to produce the story of a teenage witch spending a year away from home in an unfamiliar city called Koriko. 

The game’s primary inspiration is Kiki’s Delivery Service, both the Studio Ghibli film and the Eiko Kadono novel. I’ve watched the film countless times as it’s one of my son’s favourites, and its story and themes have burrowed their way deep into my soul.

You don't need to have played a roleplaying game before—this isn’t much like most of them anyway. A passing familiarity with witches, urban exploration and teenage drama is all the background you’ll need. 

A witch on a motorcycle races along a cliffside road, surrounded by birds and letters. In the distance, a hillside town is framed by trees and clouds.

Cover art, by Deb JJ Lee

Seasons of play

Your witch’s story is told in six sections, or volumes, each taking an hour or two of your time. To play, you'll need this book, a deck of tarot cards and a stack of dice. You’ll also need a journal to write your story in.

We’ll start by helping you to create your witch and their home village, then we’ll whisk them away on their journey to Koriko. This city is a place of your own invention. It might be a charming seaside resort, a smog-choked metropolis, a palace in the clouds—whatever you can imagine. We’ll make this place together, asking questions to inspire your creativity.

Then, with your version of Koriko established, your witch can explore and meet its weird and wonderful residents. To do this you’ll draw cards, each relating to a prompt that introduces a new event to your story. These prompts are a chance to exercise your creative writing muscles—and when things get risky, we'll add dice to an increasingly-precarious stack!

A witch gazes out of a window at sunset, flanked by dried flowers and herbs above them. A washing line is hung nearby, with a witches hat and other clothes drying upon it. A cat rests upon the window's shutters.
Interior art, by Deb JJ Lee

At the end of each volume you’ll pause to reflect, spending time resting before writing a letter home to your witch’s mentor. Then, perhaps after a break, we’ll move on to the next volume of events and ephemera. In this way you’ll be guided through the gentle rhythms of the year.

Then, as winter draws to a close at the end of your witch’s year in the city, you'll make their biggest decision yet: will they stay in Koriko to remain the city’s resident witch, or leave—back home, or off to pastures new?

What's in the box?

The book

The book contains find all the rules to get you set up and playing, plus all of the content you'll need to play—the prompts, seven chapters to guide you through your witch's year, and the 22 different friends (confidants) you can meet in your story.

The book has beautiful gold foiling on the cover, and two ribbon bookmarks. It also comes with two sheets of stickers for your journal, and a printed bookmark.

The dice

21 screen-printed wooden dice, with a lovely little cotton bag to keep them in. The dice also do double-duty as coloured tokens if you'd like to play the game using the alternative rules, as described in the main book.

The cards

Custom-printed cards for each of the 56 prompts and 22 confidants in the game, plus a couple of reference cards, all in a cute little tuckbox.  

If you already have a tarot deck and lots of dice, you could always just get the book instead!

What do I need to play?

In addition to the book, you'll need:

  • A tarot deck, with the minor and major arcana.
  • 21 standard six-sided dice, all roughly the same size, to stack into a tower.
  • A journal or somewhere else to write your story.

You'll also get access to all the game's digital files, including accessible PDFs and an (upcoming!) soundtrack. These files also include a digital tabletop, which will let you play without needing a tarot deck.