Saturday, September 4, 2021

Step up in the cross-section mapping

I love cross-section maps. In many cases, they are much more evocative and inspiring than ordinary maps of the regions (I'm not talking about dungeons and hexcrawl). And Pain rulebook will contain mainly such maps.


Also, I realized that I made some progress with my maps. Here is an example from January 2012:

And here is the most recent one I made for my current project:

 

Of course, the second one is much more abstract. But I fell in love with artpunk.

 

If you like my work and want to support me, please consider joining my Patreon.


Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Pain RPG - the Trophy Room

 

Located in the maze of dungeons between Upper and Lower Cities, the Trophy Room is the largest known (has anyone actually seen it?) collection of skulls, skeletons and taxidermied animals in the entire City. Some of them originate from before the Fall.

>> some were brought from the outside
>> off-world artifacts
>> from the Shattered Moon
>> and beyond

Some outcasts from the Biologists claim that some of the trophies are still alive in huge vats, operated by the keepers bound by the ancient oath.

***

I've come up with an idea for this place about three years ago, when I started to work on Pain again, after years of hiatus. But it doesn't end there!

As I mentioned in this post, most entries in the description of the setting will have a short random tables, called the Emblems. In Trophy Room's case, I went much farther. I made a table of random trophies. A d% table. And I managed to finish it in one and half days!

Here are the first 20 entries from the table:

  1. The Clockwork Crow
  2. Blue Neural Core, preserved in a jar
  3. Preserved skinless crocodile
  4. A petrified troglodyte
  5. Skull of cybernetically enhanced human
  6. An Extraplanar Decahedron
  7. Spider-squid in a water tank
  8. An Ultraviolet Ladybug
  9. Stuffed Newt Drake
  10. A huge, eyeless, albino fish
  11. Head of an enormous, four-eyed ape
  12. Six-winged Swordfish
  13. Dreamvoid Spectre in a stasis field
  14. Skull of a Rat Man
  15. Rust Gnasher's egg
  16. A Void Spawn chrysalis
  17. Huge Quartz Anemone
  18. Stuffed Beetle Man
  19. A Graveborn Larva
  20. Toad Warrior's head

If you enjoy my work, consider dropping me few coins on Patreon. I will post a full table there!

Sunday, August 8, 2021

Pain progress report 8/2021

 

 

Things are getting better for the game. I took an over 2-months break from working on the game (here I explained how I managed to get back on track) but now I enjoy designing new stuff even more than before.

GENERAL PROGRESS

  • I rearranged the entire rulebook. In my previous vision, almost all lore about the game world was packed into one huge chapter, the Book of Keys. It was fun design-wise but I realized it would be a totall mess to find particular information there, despite being sorted alphabetically.
  • I can't speak for other designers, but when I rearrange the old stuff in the project I'm working on, I always come up with some new ideas and re-evaluate the ones that already exist. Thus, I completely removed the descriptions of three locations (or maybe four), as I found them being too shitty. I mean, they weren't bad per se - but they were noticeably weaker than the rest. Also...
  • ...I realized that I can't describe all places shown on the map. It always pissed me off in some products (I'm looking at you, World of Darkness) that everything was already fully described, leaving no place for my own ideas. Moreover - for me, things that exist only on the map and not in the world description add more mystery to the whole picture.
  • So, as I kicked out three locations, I've already added two more! The Obsidian Maelstrom (for the sake of things described in the previous point, I'll leave you with the name only.... for now) is already described, the Shrines of Vortex still await being fleshed out.
  • I... rather dislike detailed encumbrance rules, I always stuck with common sense. But I know that many folks prefer at least some description of how much junk can characters carry, so I added literally three sentences about it to the rules section.
  • The Emblems were born - short lists of random items and quotes (mixed together) for almost each aspect of the setting. I need to make almost 500 of them, so far I have slightly over 100.
  • More quotes. There will be almost no typical descriptions of the game world - everything will be presented in form of quotes. Lots of them. I managed to write about 15 new ones. I have no ideas how many quotes are already made - probably hundreds.

And all of this within one week! Which brings us to the second part of the report, which is...

THE PACING

I enjoy working on this game alot. But I enjoyed it before - and burned out. Now I must keep the right tempo and not strain myself too much. Now I try to create something new every day - but not too much. Also, I don't push myself. Right now I'm not bound by any deadlines - so I exploit this fact, haha!

Quick advice to all of you - IF YOU EVER COME UP WITH AN IDEA TO CREATE A D666 TABLE WITH AT LEAST TWO SENTENCE DESCRIPTIONS FOR EACH ENTRY - DON'T TRY TO FINISH IT IN ONE MONTH!

 

If you enjoy my work, consider dropping me few coins on Patreon.

Saturday, August 7, 2021

Patreon

 

So, I decided to give it a try. I'm not very good at self-promotion, I'll keep it simple - if you enjoy my work here (and here as well), please consider droppin me few coins. The money will most likely circle back into the community.

I will still post new stuff on both my blogs, but I want to spam the Patrons with much more info - many texts I currently write for Pain (and probably also for the Void Blade), as well as both finished artwork and WIPs of them.

SUPPORT THE CAUSE!

Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Pain RPG website

Actually, the page (blog) for Pain RPG is up for quite some time, but I only recently started to fill it up with some information. I will post there mainly artwork and excerpts from the rulebook (however bear in mind that all the texts are prior to proofreading). Enjoy!

Also, as you can probably see, you can also find the link in the navbar.

LINK

 

Sunday, August 1, 2021

Story about hitting the wall and filling the void

I knew it would look like that. It's like playing games with my mental issues - and cheating to win, haha!

I plopped into a creative abyss with Void Blade. I managed to write several pages of text and random tables and made two full pages of laid out artwork and text. And created half of a map. And then I hit a wall, again. 

Guess what happened next... 

After half a day spent in brawling with depression (played ADOM, had an amazing run, got torn into shreds by Cat Lord), my brain was immediately filled with an urge to work on Pain instead. And it actually worked - currently I'm filling the gaps in the descriptions.

Also, I realized that there is a significant flaw in my mindset - it's like a clearly visible pit in front of me, and it's filled with manure. And I still hop into it, each time. 

I often thing "I must do this", "I must do that". And that's okay. Life forces us to do things all the time. And in many cases, it's rather wise to do some things. But - at least in this case - the problem is not that I must design some less-fun stuff, like equipment lists and monster stat blocks. The problem is that it took me DECADES to figure out that it depends solely on me HOW I will make these things. How I will design them and how I will present them in the rulebook.

What does it mean for the game? From your perspective - not much. From my point of view - everything has changed. And I must hack out the significant portions of the manuscript, and rework it. But it will be fun.

Two posts in a row? I must be outta my mind!

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