After the Bomb (game)

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After the Bomb
Designer(s) Erick Wujcik
Publisher(s) Palladium Books
Years active 1986–present
Genre(s) Post-apocalyptic science fiction
System(s) Megaversal
After the Bomb (1st edition)
After The Bomb, first edition, 1986.jpg
Front cover of After the Bomb
first edition TMNT supplement
Author Erick Wujcik, Matthew Balent
Illustrator Peter Laird
Cover artist Peter Laird
Publication date
January 1986 (1986-01)
Media type Print (paperback)
Pages 48
ISBN 0-916211-15-0
Followed by Road Hogs 
After the Bomb (2nd edition)
After The Bomb, second edition, 2001.jpg
Front cover of After the Bomb
second edition core rulebook
Author Erick Wujcik, Kevin Siembieda
Illustrator Wayne Breaux, Jr., Kent Burles, Ramón Pérez, Tyler Walpole, Freddie E. Williams II, Michael Wilson
Cover artist Scott Johnson
Publication date
December 2001 (2001-12)
Media type Print (paperback)
Pages 224
ISBN 978-0-916211-15-8
Preceded by Mutants in Orbit 

After the Bomb is a role-playing game originally published by Palladium Books in January 1986. It uses Palladium's Megaversal system and features mutant animals – anthropomorphic and otherwise – in a post-apocalyptic setting.


The storyline of After the Bomb introduces a post-apocalyptic setting centered on the Eastern United States, where most of the area is populated by the mutated animals that form the majority of society.

The apocalypse

Advancements in genetics brought the cost of genetic manipulation down to the point where it became consumer technology. Extensive, widespread experimentation in the creation of transgenic species resulted in the creation of mutated animals, possessing traits from other animals. Although the creation of transgenic humans was technically illegal, everybody possessed a complete human genome; thus, the law was largely unenforceable, and a small population of humanoid mutant animals slowly accumulated.

The same technology led to both the elimination of viral disease as a major problem, and the introduction of diseases as pranks. Kids would come to school with a vial of "homebrew" and infect the class as a joke. Because such diseases were easily cured, these pranks were regarded as "harmless".

Eventually, someone came up with a way to concoct an incurable disease. A virus was created which possessed an entire copy of a human genome; any cure that targeted the disease would also target the host.

This disease wiped out seventy-five percent of the world's human population. It infected most animals as well, and the animals that survived had human genes spliced in by the virus. These semi-human offspring displayed human characteristics in varying degrees. This would have merely resulted in a population mostly dominated by mutants if the leaders of the world's governments had not made the assumption that the disease was a bio-weapon sent by their enemies. The response from all sides was all-out nuclear warfare that devastated the entire planet.

The game can be assumed to take place a generation or two after this apocalyptic event, which is referred to as "The Crash" or "The Death".


Though the second edition of After the Bomb is a standalone with many updated rules and an entirely updated back-story, it remains compatible with the following previously released expansions:

Changes since the first edition

The original edition of After the Bomb was a supplement to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles & Other Strangeness, a game released in September 1985. The changes between the two editions reflect two principles. First, by the year 2000, Palladium Books no longer held the rights to publish games based on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series, so an edition that included a completely new rule set had to be published. Second, the original back-story was updated to reflect over fifteen years of advances in genetics.

Included are expanded rules for the creation of mutants, including the ability to take animal disadvantages (vestigial traits) that enable one to purchase additional powers and/or human features. In addition, a new kind of mutant, the "purebred", has been introduced. Purebreds include creatures from well-established, stable bloodlines (as opposed to the essentially random mutations of most characters) and "chimeras", which are generally based upon transgenic creatures in existence today, such as spider goats.


After the Bomb was reviewed in the "Open Box" column in White Dwarf Issue 79 - Jul 1986, Different Worlds #46 (May/June, 1987), and Games Unplugged #17 (June, 2002).

See also


External links

  • Official After the Bomb discussion board at Palladium Books Forums of the Megaverse
  • After the Bomb at RPG Geek Database
  • After the Bomb at RPGnet Game Index
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