Completing a challenging game-writing assignment is always a mixture of elation and weariness. In this case, a few days ago, I delivered my intro adventure to the new second edition of the Swedish horror RPG Chock (“shock” in English) by Eloso. Ten thousand words dealing with young men dying strangely in Stockholm’s finance industry in the late 1980s. This setting coincides intentionally with my time at Target Games as its editor & in-house game designer; we then published the first edition of Chock, which (unlike the second edition) was a straight translation of Pacesetter’s Chill.
Designing games in my spare time is always an up-and-down experience: while writing this adventure, I have also had a regular office job as a techwriter, moved to new home, assisted my three daughters with this and that, been knocked over by an Italian stomach infection (steak tartare is tasty but hazardous), and so on. But writing games and fiction is such a pleasure that I won’t stop doing it despite being short on time.
Next major challenge is developing the Swedish Wastelands setting for the post-apocalyptic RPG Freeway Warrior by Åskfågeln. I have a pretty good idea what I want to do — for example taking a closer look at my old hometown Gothenburg and the farmlands of adjacent Västergötland — and I have some old stuff that can be overhauled to fit the new context. This will be fun.
If you want to support my continued game writing, please sponsor me at my Patreon page — link >>>
If I get sufficient backing, I’ll switch to designing new games and stuff full-time.
I have activated my Patreon page. My supporters get access to RPG articles in Swedish or English, among other things my first complete game, Thriller, an espionage/action RPG with science fiction opportunities. I wrote it in 1983-84 but it never got published. And more content is on the way.
Link to my Patreon page >>>
Fifty years ago, the Apollo project sent 27 astronauts to the Moon. I was a child and followed their live broadcasts on TV together with my father, an aerospace engineer in the then-nascent European space program. The Lunar exploration lasted for four years and eleven launches, after which the United States retrenched to a more modest space program. Hopefully, I will see astronauts on the Moon again some day, perhaps in the company of curious and eager grandchildren.
This weekend, I made a complete mock-up of my Patreon site. What remains to do is adding the final batch of PDFs. My Patreon supporters will get access to: Thriller, the first Swedish role-playing game I wrote; an English alpha version of the rules to Iron Mars, a dieselpunk planetary romance RPG I have been working on for over a year; and some other goodies in Swedish or English. And there is more stuff waiting in the pipeline. Launch within a week or so, so stay tuned to this blog for further news.
I haven’t touched the blog for three weeks, because I have been terribly busy with my daytime job as a techwriter and with various family-related matters. However, I’m gearing up for an exciting fourth quarter. My first priority is to complete my introductory adventure to Eloso’s new Swedish horror RPG Chock. Only 20% of the text remains to be written.
After that, it’s time to get going on Wastelands Sverige, a Swedish setting for Åskfågeln’s postapocalyptic RPG Freeway Warrior. My setting is based on the classic Swedish RPG Wastelands from 1991, updated to fit the 21st century. I intend to pay a lot of attention to the port city of Gothenburg and to the fertile farmlands of the adjacent province of Västergötland.
And there are a few other “gamey things” in the pipeline, though my non-disclosure agreements prevent me from saying more. It looks like I’ll have an exciting 2019 when it come to writing games.
I am still working on my Patreon site, and I want to get it up and running before the end of the year.
As for my science fiction and fantasy novels, they are in the backburner for the time being; they have no deadlines, unlike the game texts.
Twenty-five years ago, I masterminded the creation of the sourcebook The Kin-strife for Iron Crown’s game Middle-earth Role-playing together with a bunch of creative Swedes and Americans.
The Kin-strife deals with a civil war that wracked Gondor about 1,600 years before the events in Lord of the Rings. Gondor suffered ten years of bloodshed and tyranny as the usurper Castamir deposed the rightful king Eldacar by armed rebellion. However, Castamir failed to hold on to power, and the exiled king staged a successful counter-rebellion and reclaimed the throne by killing the usurper in battle. Our book, about 200 pages long, explains in depth what Gondor is like in those tumultuous years and how to run several types of campaigns there.
Today, The Kin-strife remains a much appreciated sourcebook and, a few days ago, the podcast Red Moon Roleplaying interviewed me about what is was like to write it. Listen to our discussion at Red Moon’s web page (link >>> ) or in this YouTube video. (And here is a blog post from 2011 about the MERP Kin-strife project — link >>> )
Polar scene by Rob Watkins (click on picture for lager version)
When I wrote my dieselpunk spy adventure The Ice War (link >>> ) some years ago, I let the story have three protagonists: two people — spy Johnny Bornewald and mechanic Linda Connor — and one continent — Alba, an alternate-history substitute for Antarctica. Transportation across Alba’s icy wastes is mainly by juggernauts, huge diesel-electric vehicles that take people and supplies from one frozen location to another. This illustration by Rob Watkins captures quite well what a freight juggernaut of the Russian army looks like.