Saturday, November 3, 2018

Almost a Year to the Day

That's how long I've gone between posts. It's an impressive feat, really. Then again, that's how I've always dealt with this poor blog. I will go through active bursts of content and then get out of the habit for an age.

I won't bore you with the details of the last year. Personal stuff, health stuff. Some ups. Some down. Life goes on. Very little of it would be of interest to anyone who wasn't part of it, and none of it is relevant to this blog's stated purpose. Instead, I'll update you on the one thing that is:

What began as an attempt to make a streamlined "quick play" style rules set for NaGaDeMon last year turned into an overhaul of the system itself. Seventy-three thousand words later, Sword & Scoundrel is preparing for its most complete release to date. Higgins is off doing bigger and better things, but I've wrangled a couple volunteer editors to pour over prose on my behalf. With luck, they will have that back to me in relatively short order and  I can get the layout done.

This is the first version of the game that is "complete." All of the absolute core material is there. The core mechanic, character creation, combat, social stuff, gear and equipment. You can make characters and play the game. It's shocking that it's taken me years to have all of that together in a single document, but it's unbelievably relieving to have the bulk of it behind me.

The only parts of the game now missing from the original vision are the GM section and magic. Both of these are fairly massive things in their own right, but neither are absolute requirements for using the core material. The GM section is my next project, but anyone with significant GM experience can likely run the game as-is. This is doubly true if you've been a Burning Wheel, Riddle of Steel, or Apocalypse World GM in the past.

The magic system isn't strictly necessary at all (the very first version of the game in ye ancient Song of Steel days didn't intend to have one). It's useful for a lot of fantasy stuff, but you can play without it. Much of the Sword & Sorcery genre sort of works on the premise that sorcery is for the antagonists, not the heroes. I'll get to work on that after the core system and GM stuff is all settled. My ambitions for it are as such that it isn't something I would want to rush.

In the meantime, I'll keep you posted.


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