I must create a system, or be enslaved by another man's. I will not reason and compare: my business is to create.

- William Blake

Monday, January 01, 2018

Some ideas for 2018

Happy new year!

2017 has been a good year for this blog - it seems I've reached a decent pace - and hopefully 2018 will be even better.

I hope you have an awesome 2018 too!

I've made a few new year's resolutions, but as far as RPGs are concerned, they are pretty simple:

1) Play more RPGs.
2) Write more stuff in this blog.
3) Publish more stuff.

I haven't played much in 2017, and I miss it. So, there are plenty of options out there, and I intend to make the best use of them: hangouts, play by post, gathering some friends at my house, we will see what works. Something has to fit the schedule.

I am very happy with the one book I published in 2017, the Dark Fantasy Basic Player's Guide. Now, I've a few ideas on what to do next, but no fixed plans or schedules.

In any case, resolutions #2 and #3 are basically the same - whatever I choose to publish in the future, I'll probably write about it here first (DFB, for example, is the sum of lots of ideas that started here).

Whatever I do, it will probably be using 5e D&D rules, OSR / Dark Fantasy Basic, or both. My Days of the Damned RPG is coming, but it might take a while (it is a big book with lots of original art being produced) - and to be honest I'm already considering doing a 5e version.

I have a few projects in different stages of completion, but not one "main" project, or anything that is near finished. Most of these are small, some will probably be free, and may will never become a book, but a series of blog posts instead.

I want to finish at least ONE project in 2018 - less than that would be disappointing. If I finish TWO or THREE projects, I'll be very glad. If I finish more than that, it will be AWESOME!

Here is what I've got so far:

The Wretched Hive (adventure) - an expansion of my One Page Dungeon into a full module with 10-20 pages. This is half written already.

A monster generator for 5e - I've been writing about 5e monsters in this blog for a while, and I'd like to turn it into a short monster generator - basically random tables to give you not only ideas but also stats for various creatures. I've also got some monsters, but realistically there are too few to make my own bestiary, so I might add them here. This is just an idea so far.

An "Armory Book" for 5e, with martial, exotic and magic weapons - this might be a bit niche - sometimes it seems that most D&D players prefer to have 500 different spells than 50 different weapons - but I really like swords, shields, polearms, armor, etc. I already have a few blog posts on that, so you'll read it here even if it doesn't become a book!

A "Fighter's Handbook" for 5e and OSR/DFB - 5e is lacking in fighting styles. And, again, I like it. So, maybe I'll make a single book for both weapons and fighting styles, maybe two separate small books. In addition to fighting styles, I'd like to write on grappling and "stunts" - hit locations, throwing sand to the eyes, feinting, etc. So maybe there is enough material for a couple of books, I dunno.

The reason I'd also like to make a book for DFB is because I'm interested in the old "weapon proficiency" system, and I think I could write something a bit simpler but still varied and flavorful for DFB. Again,you'll read it here even if it doesn't become a book - I have a few posts on the works for many different fighting styles.

Planet Asterion and The War of Earth and Sky, two small setting books - I have a few settings I like to use, but not these two - they would be small books, made purely to inspire and entertain, not full settings. If I could create something as inspiring as Black Sun Deathcrawl I would be very happy.

Yeah, that is basically it.

I'm not putting this stuff out there to advertise or make promises. As you might have guessed, this is a hobby to me - but it became my main hobby.

There are two reasons I do this - I enjoy writing, and I enjoy being read. I can only write what I believe, I only write about things I enjoy writing about... but given theses parameters, I write this blog for the readers. Which is probably pretty obvious, I guess.

What I'd like to know with this post is - does any of that sound interesting to you? What would YOU like to read next? Adventures? Monsters? Fighting styles?

So, again, thanks for reading my stuff and have a great 2018!


  1. I love your simple 5e monster statblocks, but I'm having a little difficultly trying to make a complete monster with varying abilities and skill and whatnot out of it. So more Monsters would be great, particularly the idea of a random-generator.

    1. Thanks for the feedback! Yes, this is a thing I've considered - high-CR monsters often have lots of special abilities. I'll se what I can do about it!

  2. On your point of 50 different weapons vs. 500 spells, it's all about the weapons being basically an optimization hurdle. You pick your style in melee/at range, and then you sort through the list until you find the weapon that affords you the largest damage dice. And published adventures gravitate to shortswords, longswords and daggers so any new interesting weapons are unlikely to see the daylight outside setting-specific unique weapons. On the other hand, spells tend to be very flavorful beyond a name and two statistics (range+damage vs. range+damage+secondary effects+components): Khukri (shortsword) attack #17 just doesn't feel as cool as a bouncing green flame that you set loose with a mystical word and a strike with the now-aflame weapon of choice.

    What the martial classes (barbies, fighters, rangers, rogues, purposely excluding Paladins) need are interesting combat options - blinding an enemy, disarming them with a riposte, knocking them prone with a wild swing or terrifying a mob of them through a display of martial prowess. Subclasses tend to give us breadcrumbs, with the notable exception of battle master whose maneuvers IMO should've defined the baseline fighter, and not the boring-ass basic attacks.

    And it's not that their damage per round doesn't need to go up, they just need interesting choices that make it feel like their choice of class wasn't suboptimal after level 3. This is especially bad as a result of how MAD martials are: they need their primary damage stat (str/dex), con to live through hits, spellcasting stat, and dex to not die instantly to traps and area effects. Meanwhile, Spellcasters need their primary stat and either dex or con for survival, after which they can allocate for RP and not feel like they are gimped.

    Oh, and the reason paladins were excluded is because they just work so well - lay on hands is great, smite is awesome and their spell options cater to twenty different playstyles.