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View Poll Results: DFRPG Future, as whished for by Forumites
1) Just make more. 17 14.91%
2) .pdf with POD support 34 29.82%
2a) Seperate line. 8 7.02%
2b) Integrate into the DF line 51 44.74%
2c) Finish whats available, and end further production of new material. 1 0.88%
3) Simply end all further production, and place resources in other projects. 3 2.63%
Voters: 114. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02-15-2018, 07:48 AM   #21
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Default Re: The Future of the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game?

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But unless that adventure support materializes soon, once I run the 2 Rat adventures, and the Fire Demon, I'm back to converting D&D/PF adventures for use.
There's The Pagoda of Worlds, and Kromm has mentioned that a new full-length adventure is in progress.

That said, adventures have never been GURPS's strong point, to the point where even most of the people who have helped build the DF line feel that they're unable to write them. If we're going to have significantly more adventures, what we need, I fear, is a new generation of writers who are inclined to that style of game writing rather than the GURPS standard of brilliant rules frameworks but fewer worked examples.
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Old 02-15-2018, 08:26 AM   #22
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Default Re: The Future of the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game?

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[...] what we need, I fear, is a new generation of writers who are inclined to that style of game writing rather than the GURPS standard of brilliant rules frameworks but fewer worked examples.
I think so. Being a 23-year veteran of my post, I'm probably set in my ways but I'm also very confident that I don't suck at rules-writing, so I'm willing to face even the harshest criticism on things that depart from rules-writing, like adventure-writing. I might ask:

What do people think of I Smell a Rat?

I bet that the nicest words I'll get are ones like "adequate" and "necessary." I don't really expect praise, much less an Origins Award, because I know I'm not the master of adventures. Even my adventure/campaign ideas in places like GURPS Zombies: Day One and "A Westward-Shambling Horde" (Pyramid #3/74, pp. 24-30) haven't exactly been super well-received.

So we'll need people who are just as experienced at writing as me (i.e., 20+ years) and about as familiar with GURPS as me (closer to 30+ years) delivering copy that's no harder to edit than mine, but stronger with adventure kung fu – even if its rules kung fu isn't as good. Unfortunately, most of the people asking to write adventures are gamers who've never written for pay and who want to sell things they used in their campaigns. I admire their enthusiasm, but (1) they're not writers, so they're heavy edits, and (2) they tend to assume that everybody games like they do. The result is content that gets very expensive very quickly, because it needs so much reworking.
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Old 02-15-2018, 08:42 AM   #23
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Default Re: The Future of the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game?

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So we'll need people who are just as experienced at writing as me (i.e., 20+ years) and about as familiar with GURPS as me (closer to 30+ years) delivering copy that's no harder to edit than mine, but stronger with adventure kung fu – even if its rules kung fu isn't as good. Unfortunately, most of the people asking to write adventures are gamers who've never written for pay and who want to sell things they used in their campaigns. I admire their enthusiasm, but (1) they're not writers, so they're heavy edits, and (2) they tend to assume that everybody games like they do. The result is content that gets very expensive very quickly, because it needs so much reworking.
Reason (1) is definitely a big reason why I haven't even tried to submit a proposal. I suck at trying to get my thoughts onto paper.

A second reason is time. On average I'm doing an hour or so of prep, spread over the week, before gaming for my group and handling anything that crops up in a free wheeling, improvised manner. I don't have the time to write an adventure that's slowly forming in my head down into a document on the side.

I wonder if Matt Rigsby or the other writers are willing to do an informal Writing for SJGames 101 to help get past reasons (1) and (2) and be familiar with the WYSIWYG template.
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Old 02-15-2018, 08:54 AM   #24
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Default Re: The Future of the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game?

The option I don't see is opening a third party publishing program. It obvious from the 2017 Stakeholder report and previous report that manpower constraints are a serious concern for anything but the top sellers like Munchkin.

The result is a series of "silver" bullet projects being published for the GURPS lines in the hopes that it will the thing to ignite interest in the RPG.

It will not Discworld/Mars Attack, nope OK it will be a DF Boxed Set nope. well it will be.....

One thing that the Stakeholder report clarified for me are the comments about the "State of the Industry". My experience with publishing with the OSR is that while there still a long tail (I still sell several copies of Majestic Wilderlands a month despite it being released back in 2009). The bucks go to those who produce regularly (with good quality).

The continual appearance of a given publisher's product in the new and hot category is the "killer app" of keeping sales up for the entire line. At least down at the level where the OSR operates at. It doesn't have to be every week but at least once a month or at a minimum once a quarter.

By having a Third party publishing program either at Warehouse 23 or OBS stores (RPGNow/DriveThruRPG) SJ Games sidestep the manpower crunch and let the fans of GURPS propel it forward with multiple releases in multiple formats with SJ Games getting a cut. This directly addresses the condition of the market with multiple releases over time.
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Old 02-15-2018, 09:06 AM   #25
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I admire their enthusiasm, but (1) they're not writers, so they're heavy edits, and (2) they tend to assume that everybody games like they do. The result is content that gets very expensive very quickly, because it needs so much reworking.
Isn't the point for a game to be played? What good is technical excellence if there are lackluster sales not for a a year or two but for a decade. Yes the market has changed but in words of Obi-wan Kenobi "There are alternatives" Alternatives that sidestep the traditional proposal edit product cycle and breathe new life into a product.

OSR and the awards it serves as a counter example. Along with the fact it single handily revived formerly dead editions of D&D from the grave.

Doing this doesn't preclude the usual procedure being followed when it comes to product bearing the SJ Games imprint and trade dress. That way people who care about that specific kind of quality know where to buy.

While I am critical what I propose is in addition to what being done not in lieu of.
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Old 02-15-2018, 09:47 AM   #26
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Default Re: The Future of the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game?

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What do people think of I Smell a Rat?
Not the adventure I would have written. Of course, Against the Rat Men isn't the adventure you'd have written, so the score is one all there.

Mechanically, I think I Smell a Rat is just fine. But as you may have noticed, I tend to go for glitter, exoticism, and romance (in the broad sense) rather than gritty. That's a stylistic difference, but since in genre material style is substance...I have no idea what I'm saying, really.

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I wonder if Matt Rigsby or the other writers are willing to do an informal Writing for SJGames 101 to help get past reasons (1) and (2) and be familiar with the WYSIWYG template.
FWIW, I put up a blog post about how the WYSIWYG template isn't nearly as complicated as many seem to think it is. I don't have the time or inclination to talk about writing in general, but I may do something about what I think adventures need.
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Old 02-15-2018, 10:45 AM   #27
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Default Re: The Future of the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game?

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Mechanically, I think I Smell a Rat is just fine. But as you may have noticed, I tend to go for glitter, exoticism, and romance (in the broad sense) rather than gritty. That's a stylistic difference, but since in genre material style is substance...I have no idea what I'm saying, really.
My issues with I Smell a Rat are how it's pitched. The DFRPG is designed for serious dungeon adventuring. I would have doubled-down on this, making a big Stonehell-like dungeon, with many rooms and levels in a maddening layout but less description.

"Dungeon" is part of the name. Embrace it.
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Old 02-15-2018, 10:54 AM   #28
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Default Re: The Future of the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game?

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FWIW, I put up a blog post about how the WYSIWYG template isn't nearly as complicated as many seem to think it is. I don't have the time or inclination to talk about writing in general, but I may do something about what I think adventures need.
Given clear instruction and a little coaching sure. However what if you disagree that the way to format adventure. Or your opinion is that the template is a detriment to the presentation of a good adventure. Or even with instructions and coaching, you find the template stifling to creativity.

These procedures have been in place for nearly 15 years. But nobody seems to be happy with the overall result they produced. People are happy with specific items but there is a general sense that GURPS is languishing.

What is need is experimentation. My Scourge of Demon Wolf was a GURPS adventure for 125 point 3rd edition fantasy characters. I did nothing to change it for OD&D aside from figuring out the level ranges it best worked with it (3rd to 5th).

If I wrote it for GURPS, I would use the same format I using now because I believe it is the best way of presenting that adventure. But it is not the way is outlined in the template.

What I would like to see is not for SJ Game to adopt what I am doing. I would like to be able to do is present what I am doing in parallel with what SJ Game thinks best.
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Old 02-15-2018, 11:09 AM   #29
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Default Re: The Future of the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game?

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Given clear instruction and a little coaching sure. However what if you disagree that the way to format adventure. Or your opinion is that the template is a detriment to the presentation of a good adventure. Or even with instructions and coaching, you find the template stifling to creativity.
Not questions I'm attempting or competent to answer. The request to me was how to deal with the template and get past obstacles as they exist in the current environment. I'm a freelancer who has successfully operated within those parameters, so I'm vaguely competent to address those issues. Don't like those parameters? Talk to somebody else. I have no input on business decisions like that.
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Old 02-15-2018, 11:24 AM   #30
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Default Re: The Future of the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game?

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Not questions I'm attempting or competent to answer. The request to me was how to deal with the template and get past obstacles as they exist in the current environment. I'm a freelancer who has successfully operated within those parameters, so I'm vaguely competent to address those issues. Don't like those parameters? Talk to somebody else. I have no input on business decisions like that.
I actually found the style guide to be fairly straightforward. The problem is that MS Word is a nightmare piece of garbage software that does its very best to get in the way of productivity as many times per hour as it possibly can. I work in Scrivener and when my (non-SJG-related) editor sends back revisions that need to be wrangled in Word I break into a cold sweat. I can’t imagine having to work in Word where I’m the one responsible for style formatting.
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