Saturday, 20 July 2013

Game Times & Learning Curves

Think, think, think, think.
I am the Warden!!

For a few weeks now, I've been pondering the difficulties of introducing a new game to the masses, particularly when those masses have a massive pile of games from which to choose. There's no disputing the flexibility of a group depends on its age - younger players with fewer mandatory responsibilities can invest more time into learning a new RPG versus their older counterparts with many obligations to fulfill before fun time can even begin. Back in my high school heyday, tackling Advanced Dungeons & Dragons wasn't an issue because we were playing at least 30 hours of roleplaying games in a single week. Today, it's nowhere close to that amount (and that's with fewer responsibilities than most other players and GMs my age - no kids and no job.)

Is it really that simple? While it makes sense in one degree, something about "older players don't have as much time to learn new games" sounds like a scapegoat because if there's one thing social media has also taught us, it's that older players still make time to read new games. On bus rides to work and during frequent downtimes set aside to catch up on casual reading, learning a game from its core rulebook doesn't carry the same demands as actually running a new game for the first time.

Reading a game and playing it can be two dramatically different things, something I learned when I first starting running the Marvel Heroic RPG. Scouring through the book, I was floored by what I was reading and made three passes through the core rulebook just to ensure I had it down. When it came time to drop dice with players, I had a hard time keeping up with certain aspects (but that's a reflection on my limitations, not the rules). And that's why games have house rules.

Thursday, 18 July 2013

The Bringer of Doom

I am the Warden!!

Yesterday was an offline day for one specific reason. I had a giant stack of loose papers - legal documents, old projects, assorted receipts, and more junk than I thought I could hoard - in an old filing cabinet. What I needed was just one and since I had to tear through the cabinet looking for it, seemed only fitting to sort and collate them once and for all.

While I found what I was looking for, I also found a lot more. Old projects and adventures never intended for publication. Not only that, but there were typed. On a typewriter. (Now that I think about it, they were probably written on the typewriter secured down in the basement. Whoa! Maybe I am a hoarder.)

Titled "The Bringer of Doom," it's an introductory AD&D quest for the Planescape setting. The heroes gather themselves in the town of Clearsky for an annual tournament when suddenly there is an explosion in the sky and a horde of demons and planar monsters stumble out to ransack the town. Complicating matters is a giant force field surrounding Clearsky, trapping everyone inside until the heroes can hack-and-slash their way to the culprit and save what remains of the town.

Monday, 15 July 2013

Kill... No, Wait. PAY What You Want

I am the Warden!!

To mark the ENnie Awards nominations and Judges' Spotlight awards announced today, I'm moving ahead with a new pricing plan for Killshot through all OneBookShelf sites. Effectively immediately, Killshot: The Director's Cut and Killshot Files #1: Blaze of Glory are both Pay What You Want. It means exactly that: you can pay as much or as little as you want, including free.

There's never been a better time to pick up this now award-winning RPG of action, investigation, and strategy. Now there are no excuses.

UPDATE: It has been brought to my attention that the original link for The Director's Cut would not work with the PWYW model because of the POD option. It has since been fixed and there is now a separate PWYW version of The Director's Cut. The original is still available for traditional PDF and POD purchases. 

Killshot Gets the Nod

I am the Warden and Killshot: The Director's Cut will be receiving one of five Judges' Spotlight Awards at this year's ENnies!!

I just finished posting about it on the BRG site, so you can read the formal reaction there. Right now, I'm about to give my personal reaction to this nomination... I mean, award.


I'm stunned and keep clicking back to the nomination page to make sure there isn't something I'm missing. More importantly, that this isn't another nomination. It's an actual award, a point of recognition specifically set aside for Killshot and four other exceptional products by an individual judge who felt it deserved merit.

So here are the thoughts racing through my head this morning, all of them trumping my original work schedule for today.

1. I cannot give enough thanks to everyone for their support with Killshot since it all began on January 2, 2011. From the very first crack at the Optional System with my good friend, Kieron, to today, all of you have been incredibly supportive and eager to find out what's next for Killshot. I think it's safe to say this award means she's not done yet. Not by a long shot.

2. I need to get to Indianapolis. Holy shit, I need to get to Indianapolis. Double holy shit, I don't have a passport.

3. You know when actors are nominated for Oscars and at least one of them tells the story about how they found out when other people started calling to congratulate them? Yeah, that's what happened here. I slept in past announcement time (hard time sleeping upstairs in such extreme heat) and when I turned on my phone just before 10AM, it started beeping and whistling that I thought my phone pulled a fire alarm. Most mornings, I take the dogs outside for business, brew coffee, feed everyone, and take my phone and coffee on the back step to read and go over my plans for the day. Right now, I'm sitting with a luke warm and completely full cup of joe and my laptop on my lap (how ironic) because there's far too much typing required from a phone.

Once again, incredible thanks and praise to everyone who's supported Killshot, BRG, and my work over the past couple of years, to all the nominees who have helped the indie RPG industry shine, and to my darling wife-to-be how sat up in a half-dazed sleep trying to figure out what I was saying when I jumped on the bed to tell her the news.

Think I'll start with a fresh cup of coffee. There's lots to do today.