Dev Diary – Captain Flint

I’ll soon be releasing the ‘taster set’ with its solo adventure and single pregen. After that will come the ‘quickstart’, which will feature more detailed rules for group play, including the use of low-level aether invocations and scientific gadgets. The quickstart will also include at least 3 more pre-gens, of which this is the first. […]

Dev Diary – character sheet v2

After a solo playtest and some refinements, this is the latest version of the pregen ‘adventurer log sheet‘ for The Aether Throne. This, together with the intro rules and the solo online tutorial adventure, will form part of the ‘taster set’ for the game and setting. Amazingly, someone in the industry whose work I have […]

OGL1.1 and The Aether Throne

The Wizards of the Coast / Hasbro OGL1.1 furore has caused an understandable stir amongst the ttrpg creator community, from established third party publishers like Kobold Press to indie creators self-publishing on DriveThruRPG. The official license and details thereof have still to be released, but by all accounts it’s not great news for creators, particularly […]

Dev diary – backlog

As previously mentioned, I am close to finishing my ‘starter set’ version of The Aether Throne, my steampunk ttrpg system and setting. Now, I’m considering the ‘backlog items’ – the rules, sections and other material I want to produce for the full game, which is going to take a lot longer to put together, but […]

Dev diary – Adventurer log sheet

I’m making good progress on my ‘starter set’ for The Aether Throne, my steampunk ttrpg system. It will consist of 3-4 pages of basic rules, an online Twine ‘tutorial adventure’ and a pregenerated adventurer for players to run through the scenario and familiarise themselves with the mechanics and setting. The Twine adventure is about 60% […]

Dev diary – Time for Twine

I’m a big fan of ttrpg starter sets. Although they are often gateway drugs to the never-ending world of rulebooks, expansions, scenarios and accessories, some of them are marvellous self-contained worlds of adventure that represent great value and give players an idea of what to expect from the full game. I’m adopting the starter set […]

Dev diary – Roll with it

The Aether Throne uses just one die to resolve all actions and outcomes. A twenty-sided die (a d20 for short) governs all the fickle fortunes and fates of adventurers as they attempt to overcome obstacles, hazards, situations and foes in their path.  At its simplest, an adventurer rolls the d20 and adds modifiers to the […]

The Edinburgh Files

The publication of Tourist Trap sees the fourth scenario of my The Edinburgh Files Call Of Cthulhu 7E campaign see the light of day. Back in June this year, I started to read about the Write Your First Adventure course from the wonderful Storytelling Collective. My relationship with D&D had long since petered out, but […]

Dev diary – character sheet design

Now that I’ve made the major design decisions for my steampunk ttrpg system, I have started to write the first draft in earnest. I know how I want the major parts of the system to work, and as such I know what attributes, characteristics and values I want players to be able record on their […]

Playing the Game(s) – TTRPG plans for 2023

A significant amount of my free time is spent creating ttrpg scenarios, systems and products, but a chunk of that is always carved out for actually playing them too. I’m an eternal GM (through choice – call it my control freak nature if you wish…), and I generally try and maintain four separate groups, each […]

Dev diary – Welcome to The Aether Throne

The Aether Throne is an alt-history version of our own world, in a time period resembling the late 19th century: the Victorian Age. In The Aether Throne, a distant Queen rules over a vast Empire, her prosperous rule having allowed huge advances to be made in science and technology. The powers of steam, clockwork, arclight […]

Dev diary – The Aether Courts

As a break from the mechanics of my steampunk ttrpg system, I’ve started to think about the setting and worldbuilding. Playing cards are a core mechanic of the game, and I have a magic system of sorts in the shape of aether. When I started to think about how I wanted magic in the game […]