I’ve made the decision to start wrapping up the writing on SimpleQuest and Monkey. This has more of an impact on SQ, since it’s been a largely unplanned fun project where I’ve largely been going with instinct rather than plan. By giving myself the focus of getting the writing done by a definite date, means that I can no longer meander or waffle about. It also means that there will be material left on the cutting floor and some bits of the project (SQ especially) aren’t going to happen at all, or be deferred to a latter date.
So wittering aside what does this mean for everybody’s favourite unreleased games.
SimpleQuest – End of writing Feb. Means that some of the additional rules – Mastery and Ritual magic – will be terser and less explanatory/example ridden as a result. Also the Creatures section will be less colourful than I would like. There will be shorter creature descriptions and less detail about making pcs out of creatures. Herodotus as a setting is being dropped, possibly be made into a separate release later in a year Instead the Shattered Lands, in a slightly expanded form than the current preview on the website, with the adventure ‘Dead Pot County’ will be SimpleQuest’s example setting. This is an easy decision since Shattered Lands is nearly finished while Herodotus is almost at zero. Cutting floor: some rules for Political/Social combat, possibly rules for Shamans.
Monkey – End of writing March. Looked at the Furnace edition the other day and was quietly impressed. Actually in a much better shape and closer to being a full game than SQ. The character generation chapter needs rounding out with more examples of magical powers, but on the writing front all that it needs are a ‘Narrators advice’ chapter and the Big Guide to Immortals and Locations in Monkey’s world. The ‘Big Guide’ could become a bit where I languish and ponder to much, but I’ve got a definite list of locations and people from the book I want to cover, and the Antony Yu translation (4 vol, just about to finish vol 1 YAY!) is nicely giving me the colourful detail that this section needs. Another longer adventure, since the Bag of Wind only lasts a couple of hours (three with character gen), would be nice, but not essential.
This means that I’ll be able to finally publish these games by Continuum, and give my long suffering play testers a full game to play with.
On the Monkey front Mark Galeotti is signed up as Editor and Simon Bray is going to be doing the art. Mark has been a long time support of the game and has invaluable experience form his work as HeroQuest line editor and Mythic Russia publisher. Simon’s style is a perfect match to the more traditional B&W line art feel that I want evoking for the book. It also helps that both Simon & Mark are long time friends and allies from the Gloranthan community. In fact they are currently working on publishing some of my Gloranthan scenarios for their Unspoken Word magazine. So we already have a comfortable working relationship.
Another self-publisher is looking at using SQ under the OGL to get his game out this year. More when this is further down the line, but it is a very exciting prospect and when I can say more I will gush excitedly about it.