Tuesday, November 29, 2016
So. I haven't written on this Blog in a very long while. I would love to say I will jump back in and I will become a regular contributor to the "blogosphere" but we all know that is unlikely. I will do what I often think about when looking at the tab for this page at the top of my web browser. An update. On the game and life. Well, we will start with the largest change and update- in April (2017) I had a second heart attack. It was major but I did no permanent damage. It has reset alot of plans and ideas I had for my life. I am doing better now, though my thoughts can ften be morbid, and now that I no longer work in tattooing I am often alone. That is a good and a bad thing. Loads of time to work on FALLING IRON, not much personal contact. FALLING IRON is nearing completion after many years. I am presently working on final edits. The final play-test has warranted a few final tweaks; but overall the game is about 98% complete. Once the edits are finalized a professional proofreader is ready to take care of the book, then it is onto Graphic design and illustration. I have 45+ illustrations already complete, but I am going to add a few illustrations from other artists to round out the design, for a total of about 65-80 illustrations (cost dependent) As the kickstarter draws closer I am going to being trying to do more on here. Trying. thanks.
Friday, November 6, 2015
Falling Iron has been eating up all of my free time, as it is moving into the final stage. I have been polishing the game, adding detail and more flavor text. The game now has an even more detailed setting, as it is integral to the game; additional types of rewards for characters and more detailed monsters(and NPC)types- allowing the Loremaster to use creatures and threats at each point of character development. (example: a lesser goblin at early levels and a Goblin lord, or Otherwylde Goblin Knight to be used when the characters are high level- still allowing for a challenge and continuity to a story about a goblin/Fae artifact) I ran an Falling Iron Campaign for several months, tweaking, the system and used the experience to modify and add systems for rewards. Classes had Stances, and Ritual Systems added and now they are in place, these systems give players more options for mid to high level play. Stances for example give martial characters more options for actions in combat. Several of the Races got more detail and slight changes to appearance and culture to definitively have them stand out from other gaming and fantasy settings. The Gear, Magical Items and Bestiary sections of the Player and Loremaster guides (respectively) are going through final polishing now and will soon be where I want them for final edits and ultimately printing and release. System-wide and game setting goals have been met. I started out wanting to create a game that could be taught to a new player quickly; a setting that is rich and dynamic acting as a colorful tapestry to tell stories in- or to act as a backdrop allowing the Loremaster to tell stories in the same world. I sought to create a game that was easy to learn but not so restrictive as to keep exciting and new things from happening,but to encourage them because the rule system could flow and breathe. Never one to be easily contented, I am proud of the work I have gotten done, but want these last few things on my Falling Iron to do list, to be great as well. Over the next few months they will be finished and the final edits will begin. During this time I am going to be hunting for just the right illustrators (as well as myself) to bring the beauty, fantasy and horror of the world of Aern and the Otherwylde to life with pictures. When I was a small boy (continuing until now) the illustrations in rulebooks and magazines inspired stories to brew in my mind. I got so excited thinking about adventures and adventuring. The idea of telling a story or experiencing one stemmed from those amazing paintings, pen and ink drawings and watercolors. I hope to find that same energy to give my game and its Worlds that same life. I am about to start a new Falling Iron campaign. My players will be experiencing the game in its nearly finished form, and I could not be more proud or excited to weave new stories and share Falling Iron with the world. ~Ray Aern, Otherwylde, Falling Iron are all copyright 2015 Raymond Roberge
Wednesday, May 27, 2015
Hello all, Well it has been quite so time since I last wrote about the progress I have been making (partially due to running the playtest, work and simple forgetfulness) Since I last wrote the game has moved into the Alpha, and now the Beta tests. I have a group of 6 Players running individual characters. The Story and elements have introduced them to the setting and they are moving right along in the story. We have made some adjustments to mechanics (dual wielding weapons,a few new Talents, notes on healing, racial traits, Health and initiative.) So far the players have all voiced a positive response to the mechanics and the dice system; two integral parts of the game itself, an interest to know even more about the setting and world of Aern (the setting is woven into the game, but leaves room for the person running the game to change, add and edit as they will to make new stories in a world with hundreds of cities, villages, and sites.) The players made low level characters and have faced several combat and non-combat challenges. As the game progresses we will be bringing them through higher levels of gameplay to test the more intricate game mechanics. At the same time I have been adding, editing and reworking portions of the Loremaster guide (the handbook for the person running the game) for streamlined play and adjudication. The Monster list grows and gets more detailed each time we play; I find myself making notes and having flashes of new ideas all the time! Keep posted as the playtest advances soon I will be obtaining all the legal forms (noncompete, nondisclosure, and Copywrite) to allow me to expand the playtest to outside groups. I am hoping to be able to personally run the first session for new groups to give w asense of gameplay, mechanics, the game world and setting; answering questions and making notes. Playtest groups will be expected to fill out questionnaires regularly to help with development and will be thanked by name in the final publication of the book(s) Thanks for your interest! Ray ps. please follow my blog and suggest it to anyone that may be interested. http://skyofsnakes.blogspot.com/
Sunday, January 4, 2015
Hey everyone! Another year has come to a close and a new one has begun; new and exciting things are also happening in my personal life ( I am getting married in a few months!)as well as my professional and gaming futures! Falling Iron is progressing nicely and though I have missed my initial projected target release dates of late November or early December,the play test is close at hand. With a handful of minor nit-picky detail oriented things left to tweak (finishing a "rewards and curses" system involved with character deaths and resurrections, little things like poisons and traps, etc) and with editing really just a matter of both Jacqui and I syncing up some of the work done and finishing the last few remaining parts of the book, Falling Iron is truly about to be ready for initial play-test release! With numerous classes, a dozen or more races, magic and quick to learn combat system (that the players can influence the difficult of the rolls!) I really look forward to the next step AFTER the play-test has begun- the additions to the set in the Expanded Ruleset. The Expanded Ruleset will be included with the standard rules in one volume. The expanded rules will include a few more races, more spells, more combat options, a ritual magic system for both Arcane and Divine magic,new weapons, gear and a new Magic Item section- including relics (Divine Magic origins) and artifacts (arcane Items of legend) as well two more additional settings and more! The Sage As Falling Iron progresses I have also pulled my comic, The Sage, from the back burner and begun initial stages of blocking out new pages, creating new story-lines, reworking the look of the heroes and villains of that world, researching historical photos for reference, and an effort to begin to really delve into the finalized full story arc! The characters, locations, and events have all been through so many changes over the years I have been chipping away at this project (with its false starts, my half-hearted attempts of just slogging through, the synchronicity troubles, etc) however I truly feel like I have distilled the very best version of each to bring forward a compelling story in the vein of classic Golden age era comics with a modern day twist. The initial story is set in an alternate historical London, during WWII, during the Blitz ( a horrifying time of danger and a growing darkness). A hero once more is called upon, with his sidekick The Acolyte the two fight the forces of darkness. I look forward to trying to get readership of this blog up (and with that a stronger sense of obligation, on my part, to you the reader to write more frequently and more regularly) Once Falling Iron has entered the Beta test phase I will finalize all of the copyright information (providing that here) and I will be able to discuss with more detail different aspects of the Game! Thank you for reading and if you enjoy my ramblings about Falling Iron, The Sage, comic books, board games, movies and more nerdy stuff please encourage others to join the page! The more readers the more I will write I promise!
Saturday, July 5, 2014
Falling Iron races towards the beta-test (in most ways it is ready to play and nearly complete!) The game itself is ready to go, with the only things remaining to do: add more to the 40+ page players guide/setting, a few minor details here and there, the dreaded Copyright process, which I have been and writing the legal-ese or the non-compete and non disclosure agreements; after which points I am hoping to have a robust beta testing period (lasting between 3 and 5 months) The game will also have an expansion once the beta is finalized and the game moves closer to the final version. This expansion will have more religions, more magic, more monsters, several more classes, races and details with which a player can tweek their character, etc. It has been difficult to not rush forward, begin illustrating/ finding artists,add the expansion rules,etc. My main concern is a playable, FUN game with cohesive ideas/rules/concepts, that longtime role playing fans can appreciate and new players can pick up and easily enjoy. The system is one of a divergent complexity. If a player wants to try simple combat maneuvers and attacks- the rules are there. If a different player wishes to improvise, the Loremaster (the person running the game) has the tools to allow for complex improvisation without the hindrance of a mountain of rules and rolls in the way. All while giving the player the ability to alter their difficulty with the Dice system. I am excited to see this game spring to life. The setting, is already a great source of stories I am readying for future releases. Mini adventure arcs, that Loremasters will be able to add to their own campaigns. More on Falling Iron coming soon! (ps. I am looking to create a webpage for the game starting very soon anyone have suggestions on webmasters, hosting, etc?)
Thursday, May 15, 2014
First things,first: Progress on falling iron marches onward. The last few steps before beta playtesting can be readied (materials printed, groups signed up and ready to play) is finishing the descriptions of the last dozen spells and the descriptions of the talents, and to make quick start characters (gear, beginning stats etc). After the beta I am going to be reaching out to artists to work on the project, with me. So, soon my friends. Soon. Okay onto the reason for the title of this entry. I walked into a comic store today. A massive one. It is one of the largest in the region. The amount of titles is mind boggling. Yet, as I stood there looking at these titles, hopeful to find a new title, or a long running one to perhaps begin a subscription for something new, exciting, well written and well drawn. I did not find anything that fits that. I found the art lacking on nearly every title, save for a few standouts, such as Thor (they started off strong, but after the first 6 issue arc the art and writing fell short) Tom Strong, well written and amazing artwork abounds.) Titles like Moon Knight look horrible, as do the new Spiderman title and Wolverine. The art work is HORRIBLE. I mean I believe in a variety is good for comics, but the art in these titles is so poor that it is hard to get into the story. Have we passed through an age of great stories and great art? It seems so. I am willing to take suggestions; but as a lifetime comic-book geek, walking out of the store, I felt sad.
Saturday, March 8, 2014
As I near the point at which I can release test materials for play-test groups I once more am looking at what I have here and I am so very excited and proud, even at the unfinished skeletal version of the game. I am excited to release materials and get feedback, I am also so tempted to work a bit longer and release a 80% version of the rules and setting, but I know it is better to hold a little back and keep some materials for the second round of Beta. I simply cannot wait for the day I can be sitting at a table running the first official game. I have more than a few outlets to have official release parties! Please share this blog with anyone that you feel may be interested