Friday, September 30, 2016

Some Things Just Stick in Your Mind

A short update, but one I wanted to jot down for posterity.  ;)
So, I wanted to expand playtesting by converting the game I'm currently running, to the new one I'm developing.  Sure, it's nowhere near finished and rules aren't streamlined, but hey, gotta start somewhere.  In the midst of converting player characters, I accidentally discovered the mechanic for wound recovery.  This then segued into powers/magic, and finally into some special properties of gear.

Pretty amazing what a simple exercise can accomplish.

I've also come up with a target number mechanic that fits in very nicely with the core mechanic.  It works well with on-the-fly challenges, and is adjustable to represent varying levels of difficulty.
I'm looking forward to testing it out, and seeing how well it performs at the table.

In the meantime, I'm writing down everything that I can, no matter how trivial.  What's really odd is that I'm internalizing the brainstorming process; I have a broad idea, and when I go to make a note, I already have a solid concept.  I'm trying to pace myself right now, because I don't want to burn out before I get started.  I'm familiar with the creation process of RPGs - from concept to completion - and it's a marathon, not a sprint.  Still, I want to strike while the iron is hot, and develop as much as I can.

That's all I have for now, hopefully I'll have a more cohesive update this weekend.  Later!

Monday, September 26, 2016

Little by Little

The things you learn from a simple playtest.
As I mentioned previously, I ran a playtest this past weekend of the core mechanic.  Nothing too complex, just a few sample characters with very little variations between them.  The scenario was simple; determine initiative, attack and/or defend, determine the outcome.  The players were briefed how the core mechanic worked (I handed out a one page reference guide), and we were ready to go.
I lost count of the number of questions after the second round.
This was not a failure by any stretch of the imagination.  As a matter of fact, it was quite encouraging to see so much enthusiasm.  The testers had very good observations, which forced me to further define certain mechanics that I had thought were explained previously.  There was a potential issue that's now been resolved, a few interesting recommendations, and I've had to reassess character creation parameters.  This may seem like a lot, but it's not as extensive as you may think.
I've already made the necessary changes, as well as incorporate a few new mechanics here and there.  I was so focused on opposed rolls, that I failed to address non-opposed ones.  As a result, I created a simple mechanic that should address those instances when a character needs to accomplish such tasks.  Pretty rudimentary when you think about it, but I guess I had the blinders on and totally missed the obvious.  Doi!
All in all, I would say that it was a successful first outing.  I was able to put the core mechanic thought some test runs, and although there's some fine-tuning to do, it worked very well.  The players picked up the mechanic very quick, and play was at a good pace.  I'm still very excited about the system, and I'm looking forward to further development.  We'll see if I feel the same a month or two from now.  ;)

Update #3

  • Further development of core mechanic
  • Opposed rolls vs. non-opposed rolls defined
  • Resolution of multiple actions, movement, and defense
  • Attacking actions vs. Defensive actions
  • Non-combat mechanic better defined
  • Added limits to character creation
  • Added penalties to non-trained skill usage
Still haven't broached the topic of creating an LLC, which I REALLY need to do.  I also need to start looking at reserving a domain name for down the road, and a few other items on the business side of things.  Boring and mind-numbing, but very necessary,  I'm open to any and all recommendations and advice of others that have blazed the trail before me.
Until then...

Monday, September 19, 2016

Tumbling Dice

I managed to do some pre-alpha testing of the dice mechanic this past weekend, and lo and behold, inspiration struck!  The core dice mechanic works fairly well, but I found a way to expand it a little further.  I still need to determine resolution speed, but I have some ideas on how to tackle that as well.  All in all, it was a good round of testing, and I'm looking forward to implementing the changes I'm working on.  I plan on doing some more testing this weekend, and getting some more feedback on the game mechanic as a whole.
Not much of an update this time around, although I'm sure I'll make up for it when I do post one.  ;)

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Questions Answered

First off, thanks to all who contributed to my previous ramblings on copyrights, trademarks, and IPs.  You provided some great information, and I really do appreciate it!  The smart thing is for me to form an LLC, so I can protect myself and stay sane at the same time.  That's always a bonus in my book.  Feel free to add to the discussion, or share any of your personal experiences.
In the meantime...

Update #2

  • Testing of the stripped down mechanic this weekend.  I'm eager to see how it holds up, and how testers react to the system.
  • Further development of Ads and Disads.  Removed the redundant, boring entries.
  • Started race creation mechanic.  Includes racial ads/disads, building your own race from the ground up, and existing races.
  • Added more combat actions, table for success levels, and added in some optional rules.  
  • A note on optional rules - some of these may end up being incorporated into the core mechanic.  Need to do some more testing to see.
  • Need to determine starting character points, and beginning max.  Also need to determine different character point builds for different starting levels of play (Beginner, Veteran, Advanced).
I've started on some background setting stuff, but nothing worth mentioning (yet!).  It's a different experience for me, since I usually start on fluff and fiction first.  I'd be lying if I said I didn't have an idea of what I was going for, but I haven't been focusing on that yet.  Once I have a better grip on the business side of things, I'll share more setting and mechanics information with you. 
Until then, l8r 0n...

Friday, September 9, 2016

Promises, Promises

I'm big on promises.  Promises mean a lot to me; I don't make or take them lightly, and I make damn sure I do everything in my power to follow through.  If I it's something I know I can't do right away, or it will take some time, I make sure I inform the person(s) and keep them abreast of the situation.
I keep my promises, and I expect people to keep their promises to me.
Why the diatribe?  Well, I wanted you to know how serious I am when I say the following:

I promise to get this game out to the public.

Granted, it may be a simple PDF, free download, or even a Kickstarter, but I will get it out in the wild.  There's a lot to do, and I plan on documenting the process as I move forward.  Speaking of which...

Update #1

  • Core mechanic is ready for preliminary testing.  I ran some simulations, and the numbers look good.  I plan on running a couple of combat scenarios next week, and taking notes on what works and what doesn't.
  • Skill list is pretty much complete (for now).  
  • Starting to work on Advantages and Disadvantages, although they won't be called that.  I've started a list, but some of them seem either redundant, or a bit vanilla.  
  • Combat, damage, and action examples are being fleshed out.
  • Character creation is close to completion.
  • Race creation needs to be addressed, i.e. needs to start.
That's it for now, folks!  Feel free to comment, and I'll post more when I can.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

September 7th, 2016
I recently declared my intentions here about developing an RPG.  As promised, I've created this very sparse blog to record the day-to-day, ho-hum activities that are involved with developing this project.  So what have I done so far?
Well, I've developed a preliminary game mechanic for starters.  It utilizes D6 pools, but in a unique sort of way.  I've run a few trials with it, and so far, so good.  I really need to get my hands on a simulator that can be adjusted to specific parameters, and run it through a couple hundred times for results.
The core mechanic came together pretty quick, and all of the other bits and bobs have followed suit.  I'm shooting for simplistic, with room to modify as needed.  Character creation will include rule options for race creation, as well as archetypes. All in all, it's coming together quite nicely.
One thing that may strike people as odd is the fact that I'm developing system mechanics first, and setting after.  I do have experience with developing both game mechanics, and setting (check it out) previously, with emphasis on setting.  This time around, I wanted to focus on game mechanics first; I'm hoping that it develops into its own thing, but I don't want to get ahead of myself.
Douglas Cole was nice enough to share his own dealings with game development, and I've found the information very valuable.  I do need to look into an LLC, just for the sake of sanity alone.  There's also the question of registering a system mechanic, which I have very little experience with.
I have a long road ahead of me, but I'm looking forward to the journey.