Intrepid – available now!

•05/11/2013 • 2 Comments

It’s been two years since the first game (about pirates and a magic lighthouse) but Intrepid (né Quest) is done, printed (and PDF’d) and available to purchase by clicking on this image:


Many thanks to all the people who play-tested it (contact me directly for a 20% discount on the book) and of course Ash and Pete for editing, layout and advice.

I don’t have anything more to say so I’ll end on a couple of pictures…



All go…

•12/08/2013 • Leave a Comment

The text for Quest is done. It’s been edited, tested, edited some more and proofread. Next step is layout, drawing some maps and preparing for a pre-order Indiegogo campaign in September.

People have been saying some nice things about Quest over on UK Roleplayers.

Over the weekend I was in Essex, play storming the new system we’re going to use for Athesia Reborn, all in all it went very well and we’re in good shape for some more rule writing and proper play testing. More details about this should follow on in the not too distant future.

Also over the weekend I started the ball rolling on the ‘UKRP Design Collective’, which should grow to be a collection of independent role-playing games developers, banding together for shared knowledge, collaboration and exposure. Just before making this post I set up a new blog here.  Obviously nothing on it yet, but that should change within the next 24 hours. If all goes well most of the content on this blog should end up over there, along with post from the cream of British game design talent.

Quest progress

•15/04/2013 • Leave a Comment

Work on Quest continues and now I have Indie Pete editing it with me and Ash helping with the layout. The text is coming along nicely, looking much better than I could have hoped. Getting the game into a good shape takes a lot of time though, but it should be ready in time for IndieCon. 7 months seems like a long time but between editing, layout, art and printing (all done in my and other’s spare time) it all stacks up.

In other news now I’m working on Quest less I’ve started to investigate my next game more. Current working title is ‘London 2053’ which is 10,000% better that ‘Quest’ as the only thing Google throws up are addresses. The aim is for a structured freeform cyberpunk thriller with a strong implied setting (is that even a thing?) and one-shot focused play. I don’t even have enough together for a play-storming session yet however.

‘Rule 0’ 2.0

•23/01/2013 • Leave a Comment

After the London Indiemeet last Saturday it was brought to my attention that I don’t rant on the internet enough. Clearly the internet is short on people with strong views angrily typing on blogs and forums, so here is something a little something to consider…

‘System Matters’, the idea is old news now but something new has become apparent to me as I’ve been playtesting Quest, something related to the age old ‘Rule 0’ (“The GM is always right”, basically the GM can change/ignore the rules, ostensibly in the name of running a good game). Now I still strongly believe that system matters and I still find the need for rule 0 an abomination, but I think we can learn from rule 0 rather than dismissing it completely and use when we find to make better games.

So, every game of Quest I’ve played has gone slightly differently. I’m not talking about the worlds/stories created or the fact the rules used to change all the time, but about how and when the rules got used.

For some groups things like setting cards, leading questions, strict narration rights and even the quests themselves didn’t seem to matter much. The players just got on with it and we had a great game.

Other groups would have struggled without all that structure. Without the setting cards you have a blank slate to work with. Without rules governing narration you don’t know who controls what, when. Quests, questions and conflicts provide clear goals and difficulties with which the players can react to.

Fine, you may say, some people are naturals at this and some (like me) struggle, so what? The problem is when you have all these systems for helping people along the road to a good game they can get in the way if they aren’t needed. If system matters though shouldn’t we follow the rules anyway, otherwise what’s the point in having them?

By this reasoning we are in the same boat as traditional games that drove the creation of rule 0 in the first place. SO I’ll suggest a new rule that gets the job done but fits into games with a more modern design.

“If a rule is being broken, but you like what’s going on, don’t feel compelled to speak up. If a rule is being broken, and someone mentions it, change what just happened to conform to the rules, no questions asked.”

It seems obvious to me now, maybe it was already obvious to everyone else, but by giving it a rule you legitimise this approach. System still matters, it still has to pull its weight when needed and create the structure for a great game, but it also has to be able to get out the the way when things are doing fine without it.

P.S. Presumably this replacement rule 0 would work in a traditional game with a GM, it’s not something I’m likely to explore.

Quest, the writing continues

•15/01/2013 • Leave a Comment

Just a quick post to prove the blog isn’t dead and neither is Quest. Unfortunately I’ve been unable to get a game of Quest in since IndieCon, but at least writing continues and I’ve nearly written everything I want to. Not quite the ‘end of the year’ deadline I hoped for but certainly on track for the end of January.

I’ll be hunting for an editor, layout’er and artist soon, although I have some ideas. No idea about marketing the thing but we’re not at that bridge yet and I’m hopeful I have access to enough expertise that I can at least make a good stab at it.

Rather dangerously I’ve started making notes about the next game I have planned. While that usually sounds the death knell for whatever I’m currently working on I’m still enthusiastic enough about Quest, and it’s so close to being done, that it shouldn’t be an issue this time round (fingers crossed).

Quest: Lite

•04/12/2012 • Leave a Comment

Quest is not a game that pitches well… it’s a game where you make up stuff and stuff happens, whatever you want really. At least that’s what I usually end up saying and that sounds like a vague description of any storytelling game.

With that in mind it seems prudent to make a ‘lite’ version of the game that anyone can read as an extended pitch for the full version.

I’ve done that and the first draft is here. It’s basically been cut down to just the rules needed for to run a one shot, nothing about campaigns, play advice, optional rules or anything else I end up putting in.

Quest post indiecon

•17/11/2012 • 1 Comment

Indiecon went well last week, I ran a total of 3 Quest games, all of which I’d consider a success. I may write up more about them in the next week.

Quest is pretty much done now, as far as mechanics are concerned. Now for the hard part (for me anyway), which is getting it ready to publish. It all needs writing up properly, editing, laying out, art and deciding how to print the damn thing. Made all the more complicated because I really like the idea of the setting cards, which I could really do with crowd sourcing some ideas for (here).

Luckily loads of people from the London Indie RPG have offered to help get it to going, so hopefully that will make things less daunting.

I shall set myself a deadline of the end of the year to finish the writing, then everything else should follow in 2013.