Saturday, January 5, 2013

About game writing...

...because I can't describe it as a game design. At least not in my case.

Why? It's simple - during the last eight or nine years I've created TONS of "rpg design stuff". Hundreds of pages full of notes, loose thoughts, partially-filled random tables, lists and so on. And I thought "cool, I'm great at this!"

But I wasn't.

During all these years I started shitloads of projects. Complete games, campaign settings, supplements great and small. Really, really lots of them - I think that over twenty. And how many I managed to finish? Three. Fucking three. Terminal Space, Towers of Krshal and Bandits & Battlecruisers (I don't count Bandits & Basilisks because it took me about five hours to complete it). And you must know that they weren't complilation of my previous notes. I just sat down and wrote them. From scratch (or almost from scratch). And what is even more funny - all these hundreds of pages of notes were almost useless.

Quick summary:
  • Towers of Krshal - three days of work, from beginning to end. Nothing more, nothing less. Released, one negative review, two ultra-positive (or maybe more? I don't remember).
  • My Big Hard SF (not OSR-related) - six years of work. Status - about 0% of rulebook is done.
  • Underworld Kingdom - I don't know - three years? Four? Status - 80% of rulebook is done but it took me about one month to write it*!
  • Bandits & Battlecruisers - one year or more. Status - complete but it took me about one month to write it*!
  • Terminal Space - three months of work? I sat down and wrote it within seven days (with two month-long gap between them :D). Status? Ask the guy behind the Stars Without Number :D
So, it's not about the game design. Apparently I suck at game design. But I'm not that bad about game writing. I guess I should sit down and fucking write rest of my stuff. Space Alphabet, mapbook, Charon Prime - but now I'm working on Project P. Instead of fucking around, I'm just writing the rulebook. That's what I can do.

*) excluding very long gaps between given time - I count only days of active work.


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