What are you working on right now?

“You’re the Company. From years, you’ve been preparing for this moment. Today, you will Face the Titan. But before, take a moment to share your memories, your journeys with your fellow Companions.”

From months now, I’ve been working on Facing the Titan. It’s a GM-Less RPG focused on the narrative side. It involves an epic battle against a gigantic foe, the Titan. But it’s also about the people that are facing it.

It’s my first “big game”, after creating tiny games for contests. And I launch myself in a Kickstarter campain to get it out there, in a physical book and not just PDF. With beautiful illustrations. With people writing for my game. And that excites me to get it out. But that stress me too.

As the campaign is already funded (my first hope), the hope now is that people get this game and make it their own. That they play it, speak about it. I want to read stories about the game. I want to see how people use it.

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While working a routine reconnaissance job, the PCs overhear an exchange that reveals a moral depravity at the core of the city’s governance!

Specifically, the players are hired to work out what someone’s spouse’s favourite tea is so he can surprise them on their three hundredth wedding anniversary, but overhear that the duchess’ son plans to bring human meat to an elite dining club — and that this fact is protected from being further shared by a powerful ritual geas.

It’s a D&D5e module that I’m making for the DM’s Guild to reuse some art assets I have and to open a wedge for people to look into my OSR products. I’m very much enjoying designing this from a permissive perspective whilst gating everything under the sorts of rolls D&D players expect to make.

Plus it’s another vehicle for my putting-petrifying-animals-into-mansion-gardens crutch

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I just submitted my first game to a game jam, sneaking in under the deadline for the Folklore Jam!

Elevator pitch: The Godhood in our Veins is a microgame of demigods on a quest. You don’t want to die, and you definitely don’t want to ascend to godhood.

Why I’m excited: I like the collaborative GM role (the Fates) I’ve used here, where players who do ascend to godhood put their character sheets aside and join the Fates to have dominion over their inherited divine purview. And I like the push-your-luck aspect of getting to roll an extra gold dice (on top of the normal PbtA 2d6) by letting your divine nature shine through—but if the gold dice is lowest, a god becomes jealous of you, creating more problems.

What are my hopes: I’m hoping to playtest and polish this version (including using any feedback I get from folks who download the jam entry), and submit a later draft to Codex for publication!

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I’m working on this for quite a while now, yet it seems to get harder the further I get …

Mosaic - The Flowers of Montezuma
It’s a gritty swashbuckling pbtA-game, it’s main theme being different cultures getting into contact with each other. The game is taking place on a fictional, lawless, slightly mythical island, which seems to draw to its shores adventurers from the Americas, Africa, Asia and Europe. Here, they have to find ways to work together to take on a supernatural threat, creating a truly ‘New World’ together.
The setting is derived from 16th century Mexico (New Spain), yet I’m aiming for a post-colonialist take.
The rules encourage players to create characters of mixed heritage and to define how their characters perceive their own cultural backgrounds.

I’ve been wanting to make this game work since I first read Charles Mann’s “1493”, and his notion of Tenochtitlan/Mexico City being the first truly globalized place on earth, merging cultural influence from all over the world. In fantasy games, I always liked the moments best, in which the characters were reflecting about their different heritages and backgrounds, yet coming to understand and value each other and value and maybe even change their own ways of seeing the world. My juvenile self wanted to have that, but with Aztec priests, Spanish Conquistadors, African freedmen, Filipino sailors and Japanese Samurai …
That was horribly stereotypical of course, yet the idea of making a game about an alternative course of events, in which heroes and heroines of these different cultures would cooperate to build something new, still excites me very much.

My hopes for Mosaic are what you probably have guess by now: to make this game work in a tasteful, positive and inclusive way, or to put it different, to not create a horrible piece of racist and colonialist garbage. As I am no member of any of the cultures, languages, faiths or landscapes that are depicted in the game, I am well aware that I could not have picked a more daunting task. And as I do more and more research and reflection - also with the great articles written by people from the Gauntlet community (e.g. James Mendez Hodes, lately)- I become more and more horrified that it might be impossible for me to pull off.
To end on a more hopeful note: I think there are some great and worthwile story for people to tell with this game, thus I stand by my initial decision not hide these difficult topics behind some faux-fantasy-stand-in-cultures. So the next step after getting everything playtest-ready would be to find some helpful, critical consultants, and continue working from there.

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I’ve got way too much half finished, partially written or stumbling along. What I’m actively working on though…

Down and Out on the Pyre Coast - A small sandbox region written for early editions of D&D or thier clones. Two location based adventures and a wilderness of factions. Turnip wine ruined bumpkins Range wars, Pathetic ancient tyrants, Kitten Men, Owls. More then an adventure the project is about explaining why and how I run Location Based Dungeon Crawl games and how mechanics and ethos of play fit together to create a specific experience. Currently doing final edits and art.

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I’m trying to get my D&D 4E inspired toolkit text complete. I’ve been working on it for two years now, and it’s almost ready… for the next step, which is making it usable and not just a bunch of rules and options with (if past experiences are anything to go by) way too little in the way of explanation for why things are the way they are and how you actually use them.

Still, I have a good feeling about it. It started out as a straight retroclone of 4E with minor tweaks, and while the scope has expanded I don’t feel I ever lost control of the project.

The real test will be when I start using it to make the 4E-like games I’ve always wanted but haven’t been able to write from the ground up. The slightly improved 4E fantasy game, the superhero game, the gothic fairy tale investigation game…

My current plan is to get the text done and up for testing and beta-reading before my four weeks of vacation that starts at the end of this week is over, then hopefully have it edited into something that’s actually usable by the end of the year. Then we’ll see.

Huge fan of your stuff, @Bjm! Not least of all because I ran a GURPS campaign in the 80s based on a mish-mash of Heavy Metal stories. I also ran The King Machine for my group a few weeks back and we had a great time. Really looking forward to the rest of the Soft Horizon stuff.

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Hey that is GREAT to hear! I’ve had far too little feedback on the system and it’s been a little disheartening. Derailed the project a little for a while. Your experience lifts me up! Thank you for posting about it.

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This is exciting!

What sort of changes are you planning to make? I had a ton of fun playing a relatively long-running Diaspora campaign years ago. We did end up modding things a bit so I’d be very interested to see what direction you take this new edition.

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Well, we’re moving away from Fate and trying to update the system to use some of the technology we developed in Soft Horizon while still keeping that Traveller feel. We have a draft character section and a draft cluster gen section done and about 50 pages of outline notes to work through playstorming and drafting.

I talk about it occasionally at the VSCA blog and patrons are getting previews of the drafts.

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For the last six months I have been working on an OSR (perhaps with an indie-vibe) horror RPG, about modern day cultists who stumble out of this reality into magical and terrifying worlds.
Selling points for the game are:

  • Expanded wound/trauma mechanic that models both the wear on the body and the MIND that adventuring causes.
  • Experience is earned from learning the secrets of the creatures you encounter, not slaying them, or taking their gold, unless slaying and stealing also offers you insight into their role in the overall scheme of things. Which pretty rapidly devolves into the PCs asking themselves “Do we dare to bang this?” when they encounter new threats. :wink:

I had the Swedish edition done by Easter. And this weekend I finally got the English translation done. I still sell the game as “early access” while I wait for my English proof readers/editors to do their thing. But the game is so close to done that sometimes I permit myself to think that it is, and dream of future projects.

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If you thought that Kuf seemed like a fun game and want to learn more about it the link above takes you to a podcast episode where I discuss the game with my friend Mattias

Is that Mattias from RMR?

Not the same guy. Very common name in Sweden. :slight_smile:

The Mattias from Red Moon Roleplaying spells his name Mattiaz IIRC.

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pitch:
“You are a council in charge of a city. How will your decisions impact the city?” I have a “finished” version, which is more like a mediocre boardgame, but this would be a complete overhaul/redesign.

excitement:
• Getting my students (11-12 year olds) to think about what it means to be a leader (good or bad, which is a theme of the year in my religion class)
• Teaching through games

hopes:
• Keep it under an hour, or make it a weekly end-of-class thing (like playing diplomacy over several days, each week being a round) so that it’s usable in class.
• Getting kids to think critically and learn them how (not) to lead.

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So I’m new to the forum, and I seem to have independently been working on a game that, to be honest, seems pretty similar to the project @rabalias is working on.

Pitch

The Fleet: Humanity’s Exodus is a game where you play pilots aboard Forward Base Osiris: the last human colony in the universe. The Earth has been ravaged by the all-consuming Hivemind, forcing humanity to flee into uncharted space in search of a new home. It’s up to you and your fellow pilots to lead the fleet on a galaxy-spanning quest to escape the Hivemind before it’s too late.

Why I’m Excited

  • Highly collaborative world-building where the whole table gets to contribute details to the fleet, the galaxy, and the threats.
  • Each star system has a unique playbook that helps make every place the fleet jumps to feel distinct.
  • The game takes the day-to-day grind of Battlestar Galactica and adds a heavy dose of cosmic horror in the vein of The Expanse or Eclipse Phase that I think makes exploration feel very risky and exciting.

Hopes

The game has been in serious iterative playtesting and development for about 6 months and I think the system itself is getting close to a point where I’d feel good about releasing it. After that, I’ll still need to create an MC guide and other supplemental materials.

If possible, I’d like to launch a Kickstarter to fund additional art and graphical design for the book. Otherwise, I’ll be content to just put it out for free once I’m happy with it.

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I’m working on my first attempt at a game, about a lost or broken hero who has failed utterly and who must depend on a group of spirits attempting to guide them in order to find out if the hero’s final act will fulfill a quest or lead to ruin.
I’ve had this general idea for awhile but have been more recently inspired by Girl Underground from Jesse Ross, especially the idea of a central character being played collectively while the players all support in their own way. I’ve also been inspired by the description of Quietus by Oli Jeffrey, as a one-shot game that builds tension and allows for scars (I think) to be revealed to add both narrative ties and dice mechanics.
I’m excited to explore themes of the hero’s journey, dark night of the soul, etc through a dynamic where the central “hero” of the story is actually a complete failure for whatever reason. Any chance of survival depends on the influence of different spirit entities, who in turn have their own agendas.
I intend to make this a streamlined one-shot, zero prep game using simple PbtA concepts, probably using a dice pool with mixed results. A few things I’ve got going so far:
-The hero is chosen by the group from a number of options to set up who they were, why they have lost their abilities, what they hope to achieve and what doom threatens to overcome them. This sets the tone for the game and helps establish why these particular spirits have come to guide the hero. Players take turns as the hero.
-Player characters (spirits) include archetypes such as Ancestors (literal or spirits of past heroes), Relics (embodied artifacts or weapons), the Wild (animal spirits, etc), Ghosts (vengeful spirits) or Angels/Minor Deities (invoking elements of faith or folklore) each with unique ways of aiding or influencing the central hero.
-Spirits must maintain a balance between the spirit world and physical one, which oscillates as they use abilities related to each. Too far into either realm and they will cease to exist.
-The hero will be affected by the outcome of rolls, tracking something like hope/despair and ultimately leading to a final outcome of something like legacy/ruin.
-Games progress through phases of dreaming - where the sprits can send visions or the hero can pray or perform rituals - and facing challenges. The spirits try to set up the hero through buffs or by pushing them in a certain direction, and the hero attempts to pass through a challenge (hopefully enacting something in the physical world that a spirit wanted).
I hope to make something simple and evocative I can share with friends. I think it will be interesting for each player to experience being a “hero” without heroic abilities while the rest of the group attempts to support or influence them. The tone and themes might allow for an interesting mix of tragedy and hope with a lot of range to explore different outcomes of a perhaps overdone “hero’s journey”.

Anyway, that’s the general idea I’ve got so far. I’m new to trying anything like this but it has been inspiring to see the range of games and ideas here. I’d be curious if any of this sounds like something you’d play or if there are other sources you think I might look into for inspiration. Thanks!

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Hesitation at the Gate is a roleplaying game where you play as renaissance scholars/occultists in the pursuit for ultimate truth. It is a rule-medium, diceless rpg that instead uses tarot cards for conflict resolution.

The game is quickly reaching draft 1.0, I will be doing a first playtest with my friend group this month and need to start soliciting around for other groups to do blind playtests. I am pretty excited about it because this will be my first dry run for card based RPGs, which is the main area I want to explore mechanically. This game is like the fourth or fifth evolution of a wizard RPG I’ve been kicking around in my brain for a couple years, and I made the conscious decision to work through the entire game design process and using those lessons learned to better implement my pet project. I plan to publish on DrivethruRPG and I hope I can get some exposure and recognition more than any kind of monetary success right now.

The game is one step away from being ready to release into the wild so I would greatly appreciate anyone willing to critique/playtest. If you know of anything remotely similar to this please let me know! I don’t mind reinventing the wheel at this point but it would be awesome to know what the current state of the art is.

first draft is here

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Wow! It’s very encouraging/inspiring to see so much creativity and passion here! (That’s my optimistic side, because I simultaneously feel like, “Oh, well, my game is just another drop in the bucket.” :smile: )

My game is BATTLESTREETS-- crossing classic martial arts stories with old-school side-scroller fighting games in a modern-day urban setting. Players are heroes of the streets, empowered by and fighting for an emerging new cosmic “element”-- Story.

It features a very tactile element as players use their moves to build “Edge” which can be spent for even greater feats. I hope to make it super new-gamer friendly while also taking a cue from what makes PbtA/FitD so story-driven and character-centric.

We’re all a product of our past, I suppose, so you can find some of my game’s DNA from the old Marvel TSR stuff, Feng Shui, Wushu, Fate, and probably more I’m not aware of, while also trying to be something that creates its own unique worldbuilding.

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I have been writing LEDNIK for well, too long and I hope to ascend the next creative plateau by engaging with the Gauntlet. This is a game built on the tech of G.Walmsley’s Cthulhu Dark.

PITCH Stalinist Soviet GULAG meets a Palaeolithic Dream-time.
Play as the first generation reared in a Sharashka (Science camp / prison) on the wrong side of a dimensional breach. Keep your papers in order and cling to doctrine because the spirits of the Valley will snatch you away. They will take you and change you in their everlasting war with LEDNIK, the glacier God who broods and bellows at the head of the Valley. How to live and how to die in a world that offers the Authoritarian and Orthodox versus the Transformative and Self Dissolution as the only two choices. The tension between ideology and belief.

I’m Excited because LEDNIK captures the mood of Soviet era Russian fiction and projects it into the kind of open setting with potential for escalating risks that is good bedrock for roleplaying. Also it has 50’s Soviet tech and ideology, a Moody glacier God who may or may not be re-incarnated nuclear Stalin and hungry trees.

I Hope to be able to pull it off and deliver on the concept. More practically, I hope to play some games on the Gauntlet, earn my apprenticeship or what such passes for and Playtest LEDNIK here, improve and release it to the wild.

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