So let's talk about B/X-related nonsense. And, no, not superheroes.
Waaaaaay back in January, I mentioned I was going to get in on this whole B/X Campaign Challenge thing, set up by Mr. James V. West. I also said I figured I could knock-out a 64 page supplement in about 64 days, giving myself (approximately) till the end of March to get it done. Seeing as how it's been seven days since the last time I worked on the thing (just checked...March 4th) people may be wondering how is the project progressing?
Pretty good. I'm at 53 pages (formatted)...a bit more than 36,000 words without counting headers and page numbers. Since I'm aiming for about 58-60 (to make room for illustrations, a cover leaf, and table of contents), I'm pretty close to completion.
It's always that last bit that's the bitch, ain't it?
Actually, that's NOT why I've stalled. For a "campaign book," I started to find there was surprisingly little campaign to the thing...mainly a collection of rules and notes about how to inject a little crazy into one's standard B/X game. I started to think maybe I needed a bit more setting, a bit less system. And then, of course, I got distracted with other brainstorms...
But I'm digressing. As I wrote back on the 22nd (when I was first considering the challenge), the idea I had was an incredibly derivative one, and it still is....specifically, I am adapting the old Warhammer Realm of Chaos books (Slaves to Darkness and The Lost and the Damned) to the B/X game system, an idea that I once thought was pretty ridiculous. Also, not a terribly original idea, considering folks like Steven A. Cook have already done similar work (his Hordes of Chaos is a nice little "monster manual" designed for use with Labyrinth Lord).
But whatever...it's only a 64 page book. It's specifically designed for use with B/X (which everyone loves and now has access to, thanks to the release of the PDFs). It files all the serial numbers off anything that might be considered IP by other game companies. And it's written for a B/X system...for a game of exploration and treasure hunting...not a war-game.
And it does have a setting...one that could easily be expanded with additional books, if I was so inclined.
|Slaves to Darkness. |
So good, I own two copies.
They are also fairly unplayable as they are. While the fluff from the books have penetrated the Warhammer universe for nearly three decades (Slaves was written in 1988 and last time I checked a 40K Chaos Codex they were STILL recycling quotes from its most excellent pages), the Warhammer game long ago dropped the systems found within their pages, keeping only the themes. Mordheim's chaos war band was a pretty poor substitute for a champion-led retinue of miscreants and mutants.
SO, because I love these books...their themes (which simply emphasize the dark spaces in the human heart to terrible extremes) and their mutants and their monsters and their madness...because I do love them, I've adapted them to a system that I love (B/X) so that they can see play at the table. They deserve to see play at the table.
And I find the setting I've designed (that I'm thinking I might want to detail in greater depth) so intriguing that I'd really like to run a campaign set in it, despite having voiced (only a few months ago) a longing to try a Holmes-style campaign. B/X...sucking me back in! Seducing me to the darkest of dark sides!
Anyhoo, it's almost done and my intention is to do my own artwork for it (not sure how that's going to go...) and sell it for a pittance in electronic form. That's my intention; we'll see what happens. But regardless, I've got to finish the writing first.
Hopefully by the end of the month.