Monday, December 13, 2010

My Star Wars is Better Than Yours

(or rather, it WILL be...)

Yes, yes, yes...I have been terribly neglectful of my blog for the last week or so (and then the first thing I post is something about the NFL and Blood Bowl which I know goes over like a led zeppelin around here).

Well, I'm sorry. Kind of, anyway. I've actually written two or three posts that went on-and-on for pages and then...well, kind of fizzled before they actually got around to saying anything. Or perhaps I just wasn't in the mood for shaping them into anything coherent. I'll see about cleaning 'em up and getting 'em up this week.

But I've been busy with stuff and NOT Christmas shopping (Lord knows I don't have the extra scratch for that!). Right now, it looks like I'll be canceling this Thurday's Baranof game due to other commitments of a holiday nature...and just when everyone rolled up new characters, ready to go! (yes, we had some...*ahem*...deaths this last session) I'm such a bastard....

What I have been doing is working out the workings of my space opera RPG. No, it's not even close to being published...the bulk of the book still needs to be written, for goodness sake! However, it turns out that I had quite a bit of, well, game design that needed to be done. You know, rules and mechanics and such?

So, well, it looks like I've gotten nearly all of the hash settled, so-to-speak. Not to be too cryptic or whatever, but I've been working on a new experience system for about...oh...the last year or so. And I finally, FINALLY got all of that settled up today. Finally. Sheesh.

Now if I can just get it written in a coherent text fashion, this thing will be money.

So having gotten that out-o-the-way, I'm early done with the "rules" stuff. Chargen, check. Psychic powers, check. Basic game mechanics (including combat rules), check. "Monsters"...well, I got a list with some basic stats typed up. Still need costs for equipment (which is kind of funny since my game doesn't have any kind of money in it...long story). And then tighten down adventure creation.

Man, that last part is (after "advancement mechanics") probably the ugliest part of the game design stew. So many games skimp on this section which (for me personally) has often led to frustration with trying to figure how to run a game. It is NOT enough to just make assumptions about that kind of thing...and yet this is often what designers do.

And because of that, I'm having to pull from a bunch of different games for info/ideas on "adventure creation." Both editions of WEG Star Wars as well as Saga Edition. Star Frontiers. The Dying Earth RPG. And I should probably take a gander at Maelstrom and Albedo (more the former than the latter for what I want).

Actually, just reading the source material is yielding good stuff. Picked up copies of Dark Empire I and II (the Dark Horse graphic novels) as well as some other Dark Horse Star Wars Compilations (a Sith "omnibus" and some big pile of goodness starring my man Count Dooku). Also picked up Children of the Lens, and am rooting around for some of my brother's old Dreadstar comics...all very excellent sources of inspiration. It's remarkable just how inspiring comic books can be. Even if the stories are bad or contrived or cheesy, the artwork can still give you plenty of ideas and fire the imagination. Really wish I could find a copy of the old Harlan Ellison Night and the Enemy graphic novel...

Anyhoo, the game is coming along, and it shouldn't be too long before I have a solid outline of the book (64 pages, one more time) and a fistful of pages. I'll try to provide more progress reports (as well as examples and excerpts) as the project continues. And I will try to blog more.

Jeez...I even lost a follower this week. It has been slow around here!
; )


  1. posting about bloodbowl is never wrong. ;)

    and i believe those 2nd edition elves would now be pro elves.

  2. @ Shlo: Yes, I believe you're right about the "pro elves"...though I hate most of the LBB rules, and continue to use 3E Blood Bowl with a few notable exceptions (*ahem* Nurgle's Rotters *ahem*).

  3. really?!

    i only have to think about dirty player being +2/+2 and i need to lie down for a bit. :D

    but, to be honest, the changes are not that great. some stuff has been tweaked a bit and a few races and skills have been added. but the game still plays almost competlely the same way.

    bloodbowl is such a great game in any incarnation (i also started with 2nd edition), but i guess it would be quite hard to find opponents to play with the older rules.

    it's not like there is anything like the osr in bloodbowl. ;)

    i believe gw did the right thing when they gave the game into the hands of dedicated players with the rules-commitee and the lrbs. i think it shows, in my mind the rules are almost perfect atm.

    are you playing in a league or just the occasional one-off game? there are so many leagues and tournaments in europe, is it the same in the us?

  4. Would you mind naming some of the Dark Horse Omnibus editions that feature Count Dooku? I have been meaning to check those comics out but haven't known where to start.

    Looking forward to your space opera rules.

  5. @ Carter: I was reading the "Star Wars 30th Anniversary Collection," Volume 4 "Light and Dark." I believe there Dooku stories are also in a Clone Wars Omnibus (Dark Horse Comics) also titled "Light and Dark."