Shout From Over the Wall

Hello. It's been... well, a very long time since the last post. As a general filler, I've been hellishly busy, and my life has been doing one of those "aaaaaaand everything changes" modes. Some creative projects have been put on back burners. Others are moved up. On the whole, I haven't had enough time or energy for any of them, though, so progress has been... slow.

Factions 2nd Edition

Is still crawling along. Playtesting has entered a "summer schedule," so feedback is not forthcoming on any regular or prompt basis. I have been working on the macro mechanics sets on things like Domain Prestige (getting in good with the Elements and earning supernatural goodies), and Ritual Magic is getting tweaked here and there. Still, I had to accept the fact that it wasn't going to be in anywhere near a ready condition for Gen Con this year. Ah well. That's what 2011 will be for.

Agent Hunting

Still no movement here. I've gotten a bit ambitious on this front, and have a new list of 15 I'm going to hit up. I'm telling myself I will do so in a rapid fashion, but we'll see.

New Fiction

Actually got some important work done on the new book idea. It is set in the same world as Kingdom of Ashes, but is not part of that series. Mostly just character sketch work and structure outlines, but important stuff nonetheless. I am going to enjoy actually diving into this; looking forward to it.

Board Games

On the distant back burner. Again, nothing will be ready until Gen Con 2011, or perhaps a late spring Con next year.

That's all, really. I'm trying to get my head back on straight, but between working 50+ hour weeks on a "flexible" schedule, personal chaos, and the like, it's been a bit of a trip. On the other hand, I am still going to Gen Con this year, even if only as a fringe "industry" person, to hit the parties, socialize, rub elbows, and, you know, actually have a bit of a vacation for once.



Factions 2nd Edition Progress

Players are now in process of making Characters under the 2nd Ed rules. All in all, no major hiccups, and it at least appears to be going faster and smoother than before. Will know more about this particular aspect of the rewrite in a week or two.

I have been expanding the Astral Plane for the setting, including a large build-up of different Spirit Courts. Collapse )

Factions 2nd Edition: Motivations, Character Creation

The project for the next version of the RPG is moving along. I've temporarily put the Ritual Magic revamp on hold to attack two other, interrelated areas: Motivations, and Character Creation.

I'm very excited about Motivations. Integrating the new Motivations suite of rules will lead the way to both slimming the game down and, in GNS game theory terms, make it more "pervy"... that is, make it more of a hybrid of Simulation and Narrativist in game play. Instead of discussing the theorycraft, I think it's easier to simply explain what I want to do with Motivations.

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More Factions 2nd Ed

I've been quite busy working the day job, covering for a guy who was eliminated and PTO as well. On the bright side, this gives me regular (although sporadic) time to work on Factions. The revamped Ritual Magic system appears to be locked in. There is still a good deal of work to be done in converting the existing Rituals to the new system, but it's just a matter of time.
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Factions 2nd Edition, Post Skyfall, Convention Decisions

Factions 2nd Edition

The work on 2nd Ed is picking up steam. I have made several major decisions as to the reworking of Special Abilities, and am now up to my eyeballs in the Ritual Magic section. I am taking a very serious look at expanding the Ritual Schools in the "main book" to include Christian, Scicery, and Voodoo Schools, and to include the Pure Chaos School from 1st Ed Player's Guide.
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Order of Battle, Post Skyfall, Thinking Toward Factions 2nd Edition

Order of Battle

The playtest went pretty well, all in all. Rules changes which we implemented from last time look like keepers. The game keeps getting smoother and easier to play, yet is still retaining the strategic/tactical elements that make it what it is. Still, it's not a done deal. There are changes yet to be made to get it into true fighting shape. Looking at removing about half of the obstacle types for simplicity's sake, and there's a tweak to one of the Captain Specials to be made. Also, adding 2 mission types, and locking down pre-made maps for ease-of-play. Then there's some design changes to the playing pieces and the board, to tighten up wasted space and to make the pieces slightly easier to grab and move around.
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Order of Battle, Post Skyfall, Magic Use as Debt, Playtesting Resumes

It's been a busy pile of days. Getting acclimated to a very early shift at the new job, working on ideas as they come. Sent out another Query Letter in the hunt for a Literary Agent, and thinking about doubling up and sending out another while one is still out there.

Order of Battle

Reworked the last tweaks to be ready for the next Playtest. I still have some printing/papercraft to do before its ready to be seen. Most of the rule changes either are aimed at game simplification or game balance. Also, there was a bit of graphics adjusting to do. Lastly, I've touched base with a local artist about possibly doing some black and white art pieces for the rule book.
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Gamer's Reunion 2009

Gamer's Reunion is a small local convention held in Rochester, MN. This was its second year. As with all startups, it's difficult to predict if this is going to be a long-running convention that takes off, a convention that struggles year after year, or a convention that doesn't make it past the five year mark. Still, like all startups, the best time to join is early. So, with this in mind, I packed the car the night before and went over the weekend plans.

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Gen Con 2009


I packed the car the night before, so I wouldn't feel as rushed in the morning. There wasn't much free space in there. Got rolling out of the cities at 6:15 am. It was decent weather and traffic flowed well enough. I hit up the Tomah truck stop at 8:40 am for an hour-long breakfast break, as per usual. Stopped in Madison at 11:00 am for gas and more coffee, and crossed the Wisconsin-Illinois border at 12:10 pm. Rolled long through the tolls around Chicago, then broke free and got into Indiana, headed south. Landed in Indianapolis and checked into the hotel at 5:30 pm (6:30 local time). 603 miles driven in 11 hours and 15 minutes.

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Survived Gen Con

Realized that I have been neglecting this little corner of the Internets.

Just wanted to report that I survived Gen Con. Then, got home and hurt my back hauling boxes around (though I'm on the mend now). Also, started a new job, and have a schedule that is taking some getting used to. Will have my "official" Post-Gen Con post up in a few days. Not quite as many pictures as last year, but with better stories to tell.