Dev diary – It’s tricky

One of the key mechanics I want to include in the system uses playing cards. Now, I’m aware this isn’t the first game to use a deck of cards as a mechanic. Deadlands is one in the ttrpg space, and Malifaux is another in the skirmish wargame field. Interestingly, both have a steampunk/weird science/weird west […]

Dev diaries – Combat

I’m at the stage of design thinking for my steampunk ttrpg system where I’m considering how I want combat to work. I don’t want combat encounters to take place on a 5×5 grid or similar, but I do want range to be important. I also want opponents in combats to be able to be controlled […]

Dev Diaries – Jobseeking

The final part of character creation is selecting a profession. Like classes in some other systems, this will give a character a role (to an extent) and a set of skills and abilities that define what they are good (and not so good) at, and complement other roles in the team. Professions and character progression […]

Dev diaries – Mad skillz

So far, I’ve settled on my steampunk game characters’ primary attributes and secondary characteristics. I’ve also started thinking about some aspects of the gameplay, which I want to be a D20 roll vs a Target Number, with modifiers from a number of sources. One of these sources will be skills. I love games with character […]

Dev Diaries – Designing through design

I’m on to thinking about skills and professions now, and whilst my thoughts have still to settle and land on something, I decided to switch mental mode and design a page layout for the game that doesn’t exist yet. I enjoy doing design & layout, and Affinity Publisher makes this a pleasure. So this mockup […]

Dev Diaries – Secondary Considerations

A character in my steampunk ttrpg system (which I really need to come up with a name for soon…) is defined by four primary attributes: Fortitude, Dexterity, Wits and Charisma. Of course, those alone aren’t enough to describe each character’s specific variances and abilities. They will have professions and skills that describe a little bit […]

Dev Diaries – All About The Numbers

Now I have settled on the attributes in my steampunk system, I am now thinking about how players will use them. At the end of the day, I want this to be a D20 system, with most player actions requiring a roll to meet or exceed a target number. I’m fond of Paizo’s approach to […]

Last Christmas

The second of my Call of Cthulhu scenarios to be based on an idle social media post I made, Last Christmas is a one-shot scenario that takes a single premise and stretches into a full-blown investigation. ‘A scenario that is a literal interpretation of the lyrics to Last Christmas by Wham’ was the guilty post […]

Dev Diaries – Being Human

One of the first things I’m looking at in detail as part of my steampunk ttrpg system design is character creation. More specifically, how the game models characters. Classic for a reason Thinking about this, I realise how much of a work of inspired genius the original D&D concept was, to the extent that the […]

Lady Jessica returns

Several years ago, I wrote a series of short pulpy steampunk novellas very much inspired by Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Firefly and other episodic ensemble TV shows. I had a blast with it, and enjoyed the worldbuilding of my alt-history version of the ‘Grand British Empire.’ Now, my focus has switched to tabletop roleplaying game […]

Careful what you Tweet for – The Real Housewives of Arkham

UPDATE – THE TRUE HOUSEWIVES OF ARKHAM IS NOW AVAILABLE TO PURCHASE ON DRIVETHRURPG FOR ONLY $1.99! CHECK IT OUT HERE. It’s not the first time. An idle tweet, made in jest, which ends up firing some overactive part of my imagination and results in something actually seeing the light of day. The last time […]

Dean Cemetery

One of the most gothic and spellbinding cemeteries in Edinburgh.