The second (very rough) preview of Wightchester is up, in the form of some important and relevant information about the radical political and religious forces at work in England in the 1660s. That period being the (approximate) setting and time period for the book.
Think of it as a ‘bluffer’s guide’ to the Levellers, Diggers, Ranters, Fifth Monarchists, Quakers, Baptists and others at work during the English Civil War and its aftermath.
Patrons and Subscribestars get access to such exclusive previews and material, and access to me for questions and help with their games – or anything else I can help with.
Plus you get to help and support a struggling game designer, writer, videographer and all around lovely chap – me! Hard times have meant some of my larger patrons have had to cancel their support, so I’d really appreciate even a dollar a month to take the rough edges off.
(Hardcopy will be available soon, technically you can buy it now at Lulu, but I’m waiting on a quality check).
Many fantasy games, if not all of them, follow the lead given by Dungeons & Dragons, and rapidly become superheroic parodies of themselves. This has been especially true of the newer editions, since AD&D Second Edition. It’s great, but it’s not for everyone.
At least not all of the time.
There are many kinds of fantasy, and Dungeons & Dragons’ increasingly sanitised, fluffy, generic, high-escapist fantasy – dripping in magical weapons and character invulnerability, isn’t necessarily what people want.
A Grimdark game is in part made from difficulty. In this context, that has to come from encouraging the players to play tactically and carefully. To do everything they can to swing advantage in their favour.
It’s also as much about encouraging players to deal with difficult and horrifying role-playing and decisionmaking consequences, all with less resources and power than they might be used to. It also encourages them, when necessary, to run away.
We need to take that, lustrous, heroic, ‘fantasy-Portland’ edge off 5th Edition’s default rules-set, to amp up the difficulty and make people play more carefully. At the same time, we don’t want to just turn it into an unfair meatgrinder.
So why not a game designer, literally known as ‘Grim’, to do it?
A haven for scum, pirates, slavers and other ne’er-do-wells, squatting amidst the ruin of the fallen Urlanth Empire, right on the edge of a warzone.
100 shops, services and interesting people for your players to interact with, inspiration for hundreds of adventures and many ideas that can easily be ripped off for other space opera, heavy metal or OSR science fiction games.
Recently I made a video about ‘making a living wage’ as an RPG designer.
It’s a rough thing to try and accomplish, but it is doable. It just gets harder every year and is better off being your ‘side-gig’.
In the process of making that video, however, I came to the realisation that if payments and prices within RPG publishing had kept pace with inflation, we’d be paying about half-again as much for our RPG books, and artists and writers would be being paid about half-again as much for their work.
We’ve been publishing full time since around 2005, and in all that time we’ve only increased our prices once, by a fairly modest amount (about 50c to $1 per item). I’ve always been loath to price things too highly, and the psychological $10 barrier has had a downward pressure on pricing as well. I’ve striven to keep below that level as much as possible, but I just don’t think it’s doable any longer.
I need to make more money.
Artists and writers I work with under the Postmortem umbrella need to make more money.
I want to pay people more, and I want to be able to afford to ‘up my game’ and offer people more freelance work.
Here’s how it works. Generally speaking I price a project at 10c for every 10 pages of (A4) text in the final work, hitting the brakes at $10 ($9.99) unless a book goes well over 100 pages.
From now on, the upper limit will be $15 ($14.99), and a work will have to be considerably longer to trip higher pricing.
Old products, already released, won’t be affected. Stock art pricing I’m leaving up to the contributing artists.
Haven’t had much luck with this in the past, but let’s give it another go shall we?
I can’t really make it to conventions in the UK and certainly not abroad. My anxiety has severely fucked me up, amongst other reasons. I also can’t reliably be in the right headspace to stream games.
If you’re a regular convention goer who is willing to demo Postmortem Studios games at conventions, please get in touch. We can figure out some free materials and promotional bumpf.
Similarly, if you stream RPGs and would be willing to run Postmortem Studios games on stream, get in touch. People taking this on will also have access to support from me in running these games, and cross-promotion of anything else they do.
A ‘Schlocktoberfest’ quick-and-dirty set of monsters for you to use in your 5e compatible games. They’re rough as toast, but you get five novel monsters from my twisted mind. Screen size and format for easy tablet/laptop reference.
Urban Blights – When the neighbourhood goes bad, for real.
Cloud of Objects – When animated objects form swarms.
The Godless – When your hate for the gods is so strong, it attracts the soul fragment of an ancient evil.