It's been a busy month full of exciting designs and unexpected collaborations. I'm excited to share lots of updates with you.
First up is Honor Bound, a freeform game I've co-authored with Jason Morningstar. The game explores honor culture and toxic masculinity through the lens of an old fashioned duel. Characters struggle to deescalate a fraught situation as societal expectations push them toward violence.
Collaborating with Jason has been an absolute treat! I think he's one of the best designers in the world and an incredibly thoughtful and considerate human being. This collaboration was a spontaneous thing and I was happy to put my other design work on hold while we quickly iterated. At some point I'll write up a post covering our entire design process.
The playtests for this game have been wonderful and the rules and handouts are laid out and looking great. We're going to coordinate a simultaneous release on his Drip and this Patreon, hopefully in the next month or so. Stay tuned for more news!
CIA: Collect It All
Earlier this week I launched a Kickstarter with my friends at Techdirt. We're creating a competitive card game called CIA: Collect It All which is based on a recently declassified CIA training game. You can read all about it on the Kickstarter page. The game funded in it's first 48 hours and we're nearly at 150% of our goal!
This project came about in just the last few weeks when my friend Mike Masnick, founder of Techdirt, saw that the CIA's game files were declassified and released to the public. He asked if I wanted to help create a consumer friendly version and we jumped right in.
I'm generally more interested in storytelling games than card / board games but this is a fun project and I'll also be creating a storytelling variant that uses the same cards. The game is solely a Kickstarter endeavor for now so you won't see any charges related to it.
Behind the Magic
I am so excited about this game! The rules are in a great place but I still want to create more scaffolding for new players. I'm going to toy with using cards to help players frame scenes. I also need to move the rules from Google Docs to high fidelity designs in Adobe Indesign. I'm hoping to move on to that soon!
I've also commissioned art for the game: a group of incompetent party members and the bard who is capturing their journey. The illustrator is Meghan Dornbrock, host of the wonderful Modifier Podcast. Her style is perfect for the tone of this game and it's been great working with her!
She's about to transition from thumbnails to the final designs but I love how the characters are shaping up so far. Here are a few of the early sketches:
So awesome! I'll be sure to share more here as the design process continues...
Thanks again for supporting me through this Patreon – hopefully I'll be publishing my first game through here soon!