Hello regular blog readers,
Final production of CAPERS is underway and all is going well. Die Laughing is currently in the hands of a whole bunch of playtest groups. These groups will be providing their feedback by mid-July.
I try to be fairly transparent with my game design work. I started blogging about Murders & Acquisitions from the very first rule set. I've continued that process ever since. While I don't hit on EVERYTHING in terms of my designs, I've endeavored to provide enough insight into what's happening that you will be intrigued with and satisfied by what I AM providing.
I will be continuing with that transparency in the future. BUT, the next game idea I have (post-Die Laughing) is in its most rudimentary stages. It's a really cool idea (I hope) and something that I'm really excited to start developing. I'm not prepared to get TOO specific with what I'm developing until I have it fleshed out further. (As with all new game ideas, it might explode - in the bad way - before launch.)
So, I'm going to be a little vague for a while. But I do want to continue with SOME level of transparency until I'm sure this game idea is ready for more specificity for all of you.
This is a code name for the next game from NerdBurger Games while the game is in the first stages of development. The word, "Thunderhawk" has NOTHING to do with what the game is actually about. It's just a name, so don't bother guessing. :-) But I'll be talking about it here on the blog on occasion.
Right now, the idea is pretty well fleshed out in my head. I've created a 10-page outline of the game. This outline is mostly organizational but it's filled with a metric shit-ton of IDEAS. Some of those ideas won't pass muster. But many of them will. I hope.
The Game System
Project Thunderhawk will use the same mechanical system as CAPERS. I'll be releasing CAPERS under a very permissive Creative Commons license. Project Thunderhawk will use the system, expand some things, try out some new mechanics ideas, and (hopefully) show how the CAPERS Core system can be modified and expanded to create other types of games in different genres. I'm really excited to see how the system can be developed beyond CAPERS.
Genre and Themes
The new game is something I'm calling a "mid-apocalypse" game. Player will portray characters who are LIVING THROUGH an apocalypse in their world. There's more to it than just THAT, but that's the best description of "genre" I can put it in right now. The characters might be able to stop the apocalypse. They might not. That is an important part of what the game is about...HOW the characters interact with the apocalypse.
The "world" of Project Thunderhawk is, I think, something that hasn't been seen in many RPGs before. That is, it's not fantasy. It's not space opera or exploratory sci-fi. It's not "real world" apocalypse. It's not a supers game. It's something...quite different. It falls right in line with NerdBurger Games' "brand" of "exploring corners of the RPG landscape that haven't been explored very often...or at all."
Vague Tidbits to Hopefully Get You Interested
Here's a list of some of the "cool stuff" currently residing in my 10-page outline. Some of it is fleshed out a bit. Some of it is just a line item. Some of them may disappear entirely from the game as I develop it.
- There will be “zombies,” of a sort.
- Vehicle chase/combat rules will be VERY important.
- There will be gladiators!
- Characters will have a “race” of a sort. It won’t be called “race” but will be similar in that each “race” will have certain features that differentiate it from the others.
- There will be something called “anomalies” in the game.
- There will be a settlement/location in the game that can move around. In fact, it HAS TO move around.
- There will be a type of “storm” that does some pretty horrendous things.
- There will be something called a “death flicker.”
- Moxie will be called something different but will work like Moxie in CAPERS. In addition, there will be a shared pool of this “Moxie” that all the characters can call upon. This version of “Moxie” will also function as something else very important in the game. This “other thing” will inform game play across an entire campaign and will define how characters relate to each other. (I think it's fair to say THIS is the mechanical bit that I'm most excited about. Game mechanics that serve the theme and style of game play.)
What I'm Currently Doing With All of This
Right now I'm trying to get all of this under control to the point that I can run an initial alpha playtest of the game later this year. This is what happened with CAPERS. I ran a rudimentary playtest at AndoCon a couple years ago just to see if the game mechanics and "world" had legs. It did, and I moved forward.
I hope the same thing for Project Thunderhawk. While the CAPERS post-Kickstarter process moves forward, I'll be tinkering with this new game idea. With some hard work on my part, I'll be ready to give it a spin in the not-too-distant future. If it seems viable, I'll push forward. Or maybe I'll have to re-design a bunch of it. Or maybe I'll shelve it and look at some of the other ideas I have.
But I have hope.