Monday, May 31, 2010

Layout Issues

I really liked the way that the layout for Resolute: Towers of Arvandoria came together, and I used lessons from that experience to design Resolute: Supers 2nd Edition. However, while this layout is ideal for display on a computer, it’s not quite as handy when you print it out. I decided to do a second layout with a ‘printer friendly’ edition that has the same pagination, but with no color and no graphics (except for one map on the final page, which you don’t need unless you are running the sample adventure). I aimed for 16 pages for everything, and actually got all of the rules into 15 pages, so this left room for a sample adventure. However, getting the adventure into 1 page didn’t work, so I ended up 1 page over the goal. However, this breaks down well- the first 10 pages is what the players would have access to, 5 pages is for the referee only, and the last 2 pages are an adventure. If you are going to be a player only, just print pages 1-10 and that’s your player’s handbook.
The printer-friendly version is going to be bundled with the full version for the $2.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Character Building in Resolute Supers 2E

One of the design goals for Resolute Supers 2E was to make characters, and character building, more creative and dynamic. 1E suffered in part because a few abilities outstripped others in terms of their overall value. Once that was cleaned up, a whole new world opened up for supers. The test I kept applying to abilities was 1) Would I ever want this ability for a super I was playing and 2) Would I ever ALWAYS choose this ability? If the answer was no for the first and/or yes for the second, it was time to re-work the ability. “Balance” was never a goal- too much effort to balance abilities leads to sterilization of the system. It’s a game of superheroes! As long as abilities ended up in what I felt was a reasonable range of relative balance, it stayed in. I know the some abilities can be pushed to make your super inherently more powerful than other abilities, but none of these is so far in any direction as to break the game or make the ability untenable. Abilities like disintegration or time travel have simply been left out, since these (by their nature) are game killers. The only reason you purchase time travel is to get an automatic do over for anything that goes wrong, not because you have a cool vision for a hero who travels through time (okay, you might, but I’d wager it’s at least 90% in favor of the first option).

Creating a more uniform approach to abilities also helped to solve some of the funky abilities from 1E. For instance, the previous edition had specific rules for growth and shrinking. In 2E, these are part of shape change; you build a second set of character stats based on the form you are changing to, the total level set by your ability rating. Now, with growth +5, you have 50 character points to play with to build your ‘giant form’. You are probably going to give this form better armor, might and stamina, and you are probably going to drop your accuracy and evade. In fact, you may decide that this form gives you elongation +1 as well. Hey, whatever. You get to build it in the way that seems most reasonable to you. You have specific guidelines so you know the parameters of what you can do, but you have no limit on how it works.

Refocused and Resolute

Welcome to the new blog/web portal for my games and comics, specifically for Resolute the Superhero RPG 2E. With the new edition of the game, I’ve decided to streamline and re-focus my energies. Maintaining a full web site was both more costly and more effort than was warranted, and I’d rather put that energy elsewhere- specifically into writing and publishing RPGs!

Additionally, I’ve been endeavoring for the last few years to fully support three game lines, and I’ve felt like I’ve always let one game or the other fall through the cracks. Over the last two years, the game that has garnered the most attention has been Resolute the Superhero RPG. I’ve decided to re-launch that game with a second edition, and spend the next year fully-committed to this system. My plan is to update this blog regularly (focusing on superhero gaming), and to publish regular (i.e. monthly) updates for the game.

Resolute 2E will be available on RPGNow as of June 1, and a whole bunch of more information will be coming your way.

Thanks for swinging by, and keep checking in for more!