Monday, April 27, 2009

Basic Rules Version 1.1

Over the weekend I released version 1.1 of the Basic Rules. I’ve been trying to increase sales lately and I thought this might help. Basically the new version features material from the Imperium Grab Bag, including religions, new factions, and trade maps. Perhaps more importantly, I’ve also changed how players generate their character’s starting attributes. Originally, each character had a set of attribute values based on their race. I’ve now changed it so players roll for attributes and then get race-based modifiers. This will give players more flexibility when creating characters and it’s more in line with how other games do this.

I’ve also been trying to increase the number of fans on the game’s Facebook page. The Facebook site is nice because I can keep fans updated on the game more often than this blog, and I can also reward fans with special coupon codes. Overall, I’d like to build up the Imperium player community if I can.

Today I’ve been working on Scent of Decay. I’ve started the descriptions of several locations and the action that takes place there. While doing so, I’ve also been thinking about new skills (like Investigation) that are currently not in the game. I will likely add those ideas into the Basic Rules later on.

Here’s a new image I put in version 1.1 of a Fire Monk. I’ve been trying to add better artwork for a while now since I know people like “eye candy.” I thought about just putting in photos of me in a bathing suit, but the Wife once again said “No.”

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Little Miss Sunshine

After writing the secondary plot last week (featuring Barbara Bennett), this week I wrote her actual character bio. Like her fiancĂ© Jon Fletcher, Barbara is a tragic figure who suffers a loss and then tries to fill the void with terrible results. She’s an aristocrat, so (in the Imperium universe) she has it all: money, prestige, and probably a robot to say how pretty she looks every morning. However, after spending too many nights at clubs and carousing with the wrong people, she’s introduced to a new drug called Sunshine. The drug offers ultimate euphoria, but then a deep depression after it wears off. Oh, and it’s also highly addictive. In a way, it’s kind of a morality tale, which is often the case in these kinds of stories. Eventually, the drug causes a brain hemorrhage, which nicely explains her cause of death.

The guy who gives Barbara the drugs is a Vogar named Rex Kazak. Of course, Rex comes from the typical name for a dog (since he’s from the canine race). I got his last name, however, from a dog featured in a Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. novel called Sirens of Titan. Besides the reference to the book, I think it has a nice ring to it.

Btw, I also did three new maps this week: the Ghul tunnels, a warehouse, and a secret laboratory. Maps are kind of boring to show on a blog so I’ll just include two other images: Jon Fletcher (sans facial hair) and Rex Kazak’s mug shot. I thought about including a photo of Barbara Bennett getting out of a limo without wearing any underwear, but the Wife said “No.”

Monday, April 13, 2009

SuTech the Destroyer!

Per Matt’s suggestion over at the Dwarf and the Basilisk, I did a new render of Jon Fletcher (one of the main characters in Scent of Decay) to make him look less sinister (and more cute and cuddly). I also did a render of Barbara Bennett (see below), and the SuTech office building. The latter is a corporation specializing in nano technology, and Jon Fletcher’s employer. The word SuTech is a play on the name Sutekh, which is the god of chaos in ancient Egyptian mythology. Sutekh was also featured in one of my all-time favorite Dr. Who episodes, Pyramids of Mars.

I sent Matt a copy of the Scent of Decay synopsis over the weekend and he suggested that I add some additional plot structure to act as a red herring for players. Unfortunately, this got my mind racing, which ultimately left me awake until 2 AM last night. D’oh! Eventually, I came up with a side plot that explains why Barbara had the brain hemorrhage that killed her. It involves a Vogar drug cartel called Cerberus and a fashionable nightclub called the Dancing Jackal. Keen-eyed readers of my posting from April 5th may’ve noticed that the mortician looks like Anubis, the jackal-headed guardian of the dead. Just a hint: every successful drug cartel needs someone who can get rid of a body without raising suspicions . . .

Friday, April 10, 2009

Easter Sale!

For the month of April I’m running an Easter sale! Click HERE to get a coupon code to buy the Imperium Chronicles Basic Rules for a whopping 50% off! Yaaaah! Woot!!

Okay, too much coffee . . .

Yesterday I defeated my nemesis, Captain Writer’s Block, and wrote the full synopsis for Scent of Decay. This was a good start for the module since it gives a thorough outline of how the adventure is supposed to pan out. On the other hand, I’m writing the rest of the module in a more asymmetrical way since I know players don’t usually like to follow a plot from A to B to C. They have a nasty habit of going to C first and then getting some Starbucks in between. Darn you, Players!

Special thanks to Matt over at Dwarf and the Basilisk for writing a review of Monster Menagerie. I appreciate his kind words of support. If you don’t normally read his blog, you should bookmark it. He always has something interesting to say (unlike me).

Sunday, April 05, 2009

City of the Dead

Monster Menagerie is now on sale! The money and accolades are now pouring in (mostly from my Mother). I’ve also uploaded the newest version of the Basic Rules (1.0.2), which includes new artwork and some minor typo corrections. I’m doing my best to improve the game as I go along, so hopefully people will appreciate that.

Speaking of which, I’ve also started writing my new adventure module, Scent of Decay. I’ve also rendered some new pictures (see below). The first one is of a Vogar who works as the mortician where Barbara Bennett’s body disappeared. I used a Vogar (the canine race) because Anubis, the Egyptian guardian of the Dead, has the head of a jackal (dog). The second image is a crypt. Notice the door is slightly ajar . . .

Speaking of Egypt, the city where all the action takes place is called El’Arafa. This is named after an actual place in Egypt called the City of the Dead or just “the cemetery.” I’ve already started on the city map for El’Arafa. Just like the map of Regalis in the Basic Rules, I took the map of a real city and then flipped it to make it less recognizable. In the case of El’Arafa, I used the city of Paris. For Dr. Who fans, you may remember the story called City of Death which takes place in, you guessed it, Paris! I thought this would be a cool reference, even if most people wouldn’t get it. Just one of the many things I do to amuse myself . . .