As I said when I first came back, I want to focus my attentions on completing larger projects. I also said I was already working on one, and that I would discuss it in a later post. This is a later post.
My original plan was to make another module. I’ve got a lot of ideas for a sequel to The Hidden Tomb of Slaggoth the Necromancer, as well as ideas for entirely new adventures. I still plan to make more modules, because it’s a lot of fun. But now that I have my feet wet, I’d like to try something a little more ambitious. Not quite as ambitious as a fully developed game system, but more demanding on my fledgeling talents than a 60-page adventure module would be.
As much as a year ago, I began to think that my “usable game content” post series’ (Colorful Characters, Magical Marvels, Merciless Monsters, Lively Locals, and Deadly Dungeons) would make good material for game supplements. Anything a GM needs to produce in large amounts can become a little tedious, so having a book filled with unique, developed ideas which can be modularly inserted into any game is useful. So for a little while now, I’ve been working on putting together a monster manual.
We don’t have an official title yet, but I’m working with the same two artists (Catherine Bradley and Ronnie Whelan) who worked with me on Slaggoth. The project is only just in its infancy now, but we have the basic concepts for over 100 different monsters, which seems like a good start!
Here are my goals.
- End the project with between 290 and 320 monsters.
- Do not take longer than 1 year to complete the game design and writing elements of the project. (The artists may need a little more leeway than I’m giving myself).
- It’s more important to keep a tight time schedule than it is to hit the goal for the number of monsters. Neither goal is written in stone, but if at the end of 1 year all I have is 150 monsters, I’ll end the project there and move on to something else.
- No GM should be able to open this book to a random page and ever think “Pft, I could have come up with that in 2 minutes!” Every monster should be unique and exciting. Not just because they look cool or have a cool backstory, but because they challenge the players in creative ways.
- When finished, the product should be of high enough quality that I am comfortable asking people to give me money for it. Because I plan to ask you to give me money for it.
At present, I’m about 99% sure this book will be compatible with the Lamentations of the Flame Princess game. I’ve asked James Raggi, and it sounds as though this will not be a problem so long as some simple, common-sense requirements are met. Of course, most OSR games aren’t too difficult to switch between, so if you play Labyrinth Lord or something, the book should still be very accessible. But I like the way LotFP’s core rules insist on monsters which overrule the game’s normal structure.
I’m sure I’ll be posting more about this project in the future, though obviously I must be somewhat discreet. I don’t want to give away too much on the site, and make those who buy the book feel cheated. I’ll also be maintaining the “Current Project Status” bar over on the left, which will be updated every now and again when I feel like it. Likely once a week or thereabouts.