Thursday, March 22, 2012

Design Thoughts - Worst Enemy and Templates

How do people feel about templates? I guess it depends on how we define templates because that's kind of a wide ranging word. The most obvious answer are things like classes, because that's probably the most encompassing example of a template

I kinda hate classes though. They're extremely confining, in a YOU MUST ALL BE LIKE THIS, kind of way. I know there are ways around it, but if your reaction to a class is to try to find a way to circumvent it, maybe the best thing to do is do away with them all together.

However, maybe a template is less like a class and more like a race. Think of the race you are in Bulldogs and it gives you a some typical Aspects of each race. You don't have to pick them all, in fact you're encouraged to pick a couple out of all of them. It makes sense that you should have somethings in common with others of your kind, I just don't want it to have it be the be all and end all.

Right now I'm leaning towards that kind of idea. Where you have some traits in common, and some things that make you, you that are stricktly something that's your characters.

I was also thinking that as you play you should uncover your personal history, since a lot of these types of characters are immortal, or Damn near close to it. Atrocities committed, enemies made. Sure it's kind of like a plot path but why not? I mean these are old being, I think they should have a bit of that world weariness to them. Maybe this change is how they're trying to break free?


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Critical!: Go Westerly - Soft Proofs

I've just got the soft proofs from the printers.

I'm excited, excited, excited.

There's a random T there, which people are going to have to tell me if they're in the PDFs. I can check myself but I'm lazy.

Book printing soon!

Breaking the Rules of Game Design ... because I wanna

There's a couple of in-jokes around making RPGs. The first is, don't make a Fantasy RPG. Why? Because you're going to have to deal with the Juggernaut that is D&D (or as other people might put it, Pathfinder). Well, broke that rule with Critical! because I think Critical! does something the other two don't, which is be funny.

I've got my Indie Beef Games going, which I just think are a fun thing to name a series of games, so why do I want to think of a new game that I want to do?

Inspiration, perhaps. Maybe a fit of self destruction, which is ironic considering the game. I don't know. But I now want to break unofficial rule number two of making RPGs. I'm going to make a Vampire RPG.

Why? I think I kind of reached an epiphany about why I'm not a huge fan of the WW series of games. There's some great writing in it, some really good idea but I think the idea kinda gets lost in there somewhere. You pick up the books, and you get this great feeling that you're going to be dealing with the fact that you're playing people who are dealing with this monster within them and trying to latch on to some semblance of humanity before they're consumed by the animal within them.

I love that idea, I really do.

Then you get the list of cool powers that you can do, and look at all the invisible, super strength, jumping, flying, mind control, yippee awesome powers you get. Okay, it's written in a more sedate manner than that, but that's kinda what stick with me when I read those book. "Here is our thesis ... look at our shiny toys!" and it becomes about big power players, and large gigantic arcs, and city spanning plots!

This is cool. As I get older I start to understand what people like in games rather than just hating the game because I don't get something out of it. My problem is that ... I really like that thesis. I just don't like the path they took.

So I want to make a Vampire game. A Monster game really, you can be a werewolf, or a ghost, or a whatever but it's going to be something not human. It's now, and you're not running about looking at people like they're some kind of treat, or obstacle but as something you're striving to be. The biggest problem is you, you are your own worst enemy and the more you push towards the other side the more you're going to mess up your own life.

It isn't a beast that you become, but a broken down shell of a thing. It's not the horror of the destroyer, but the horror of nothingness.

Now, I don't have a die mechanic, I really don't have how things are set up yet but what I really want to do is this.

You have a Wyrd. A good a working title as any. If you're a Vampire it might be, "I will eventually kill and eat those that love me." If you're a Ghost it could be, "I push people away, for their own good." I werewolf might have, "I can't stay, I just can't."

Everytime you use a supernatural ability, you get closer to having your Wyrd take effect. Once you cross that threshold, you have a moment in the game where you deal with the effects of that. To whatever detail you want to use, but you will kill someone who loves you, you will push someone away, you'll leave and go somewhere else because you *have* to.

That is what I think would make for a fun Vampire game.

I'll keep you posted, but apparently I just decided that my working title is going to be Worst Enemies. Very working title.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Previously Generated - How to Destroy your Hometown

The folks over at (or more specifically Rob) have come up with a fun little rolling system to mess up your home town. It needs a map, and some crayong and the fun little list.

You should check it out on The thread is here.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Kudos Moment - Drivethru RPG made my day

Remember last year when Drivethrurpg posted that lovely ad, you know the one where the copy said, "No Gm, No Dice, Better Get Him Something Nice?" No? Well, here's the link to the blog post I made about it.

This year, what did they do? Well, they changed it. The new ad says, "No GM, No Dice, Better Get Something Nice."

And voila, by just removing the him they haven't cut out half of the population.

Kudos Drivethru, Kudos.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Critical!: Creative Commons

Hey Folks,

For all those looking for the Creative Commons version of Critical! it's up on Drivethru RPG. The link is here.

I didn't really learn my lesson from Rob over at the free rpg blog. It's a cut and paste job from the rules, hopefully though they will still make sense.

Check it out, tell your friends, let the world know!

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