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View, browse and sort the ever-growing list of sessions by day, pass type, topic, and format. With this Session Viewer, you can view GDC 2023 session details and speakers, and share your favorites via social media. You will be able to build your schedule and access it during the show via export or Mobile App, once live. Sessions do fill up and seating is first come, first serve, so arrive early to sessions that you would like to attend.

'Expeditions: Rome' vs. History

Fasih Sayin  (Narrative Director, Campfire Cabal)

Location: Room 2016, West Hall

Date: Wednesday, March 22

Time: 3:30 pm - 4:30 pm

Pass Type: All Access Pass, Core Pass

Topic: Design

Format: Lecture

Vault Recording: Video

Audience Level: All

RPG can mean a lot of things—but perhaps, due to the undeniable influence of Dungeons & Dragons, there seems to be a certain expectation of dragons and, well, dungeons. When fantasy is the preferred format, fireball is the weapon of choice. But against all odds, the developers of the Expeditions series have been creating historical RPGs for more than a decade now.

This session will focus on the challenges of creating a roleplaying game set in the real world, and how developers can overcome the problems created by such a proposition and potentially turn them into opportunities and advantages. Most of this information is based on the experience of developing Expeditions: Rome, an RPG set roughly in the year 50 BC in ancient Rome.

A variety of topics will be tackled, including but not limited to: representation of history, restrictions of realism, morality, the role of female characters and the handling of contemporary morality.


Attendees will gain new insight into overcoming difficulties of creating a historical game that is set in the real world—such as ensuring cast diversity, or enabling player agency without compromising authenticity—as well as differentiating their product by defying genre conventions and audience expectations.

Intended Audience

This is for designers or writers of all levels of experience who are interested in drawing upon historical settings, or setting their work in the real world whilst limiting their use of supernatural elements or speculative fiction.