It's 2017. I made progress on some projects, failed to completely push through a few others, and made some important breakthroughs on even more. In no particular order, here's what's on my plate at the moment.
I've been learning how to write for years, and I'm still definitely not there. I have learned a few rules for writing, though. The first is that successful writing emerges from rules. Here are some of the rules I'm following for creating locations for the Compleat Villain project.
I'm finally getting off my ass and putting together "The Compleat Villain". This will be a compilation of characters, locations, and rules for superhero gaming, based on material I've put together over the years. Here's a few of the highlights.
I'm a fan of odd or unusual player characters. I like creating PCs that could plausibly plug into a typical gameworld in some atypical way, and especially when those PCs explore the edges of what a game system is meant to allow.
Here are two characters that I've thought about playing that show these traits.
I haven't seen "Batman v. Superman" and I probably won't see it in theaters. I've read plenty of reviews, and it sounds like it's not my thing. I think I can sum up the problem many fans have with it, and this echoes some reviews I've seen elsewhere: the movie doesn't seem to depict these iconic characters in the fashion I'm either accustomed to or comfortable with.
So if I was given responsibility to write a B-vs-S fight, what would it look like? To make this easier, we'll assume the events of "Man of Steel" stand.
I'm running a play-by post game, called Super-Sheriffs of Sagan City. I've been thinking about publishing the setting as a standalone thing. I want to talk about some of the challenges of doing so.
This is more discussion about the Super-Sheriffs of Sagan City game, found online here.
Today I want to talk about how I applied the principle of "draw maps, leave blanks" to the superhero genre.
I've been running a play-by-post game with an overly long name. It's a superhero game with the PCs set on another planet, the first off-world Earth colony.
This isn't a post about the whole game, which you can read online here. Instead, it's a run-down of my favorite moments from the game.
After writing about the Top Ten Super-Tropes that bother me the most, I thought I would talk about the tropes in superhero gaming that really make it work for me as a genre.
I recently backed the Masks Kickstarter, and I think it will be well worth it. Before that, I backed the Daring Comics RPG. Before that, I've played any number of supers settings, at any number of power levels, and in any number of worlds. I've read comics from DC, Marvel, and independent publishers.
And right now I want to write about the top ten super-powered gaming tropes that really piss me off.
I've occasionally thought about resurrecting Villains Victorious! or otherwise publishing it in a collected format. My reservations there are practical - to put out a high-quality PDF of the material, I'd want appropriately four-color art.
Similarly, I've got a decently polished sci-fi concept (Song of Eden) and the start of some unconventional urban fantasy (Fairy Soul). I have enough ideas that I could assemble a fantasy universe, but that would take more time.
We often talk about "effects-based" superhero RPG rules. By "effects-based", we mean the game-mechanical effects: how much damage you do, how fast you fly, how much weight you lift, and so on. Rather than buying "throw fireball" as a power, your super-powered character buys "deal damage at range", for example.
My argument is that effects-based games are a poor fit for high-powered campaigns, or campaigns where a variety of powers are possible. I'll also try to address some objections to my proposed alternative.