The Big Announcement and Other GenCon 2012 Ephemera

Let’s just cut straight to the point, shall we? GenCon 2012 was a riot. It was also very, very good for me. I’ll admit, before the show I was kind of reticent about going. You see, and I’m not gonna lie to you kids, I’ve been feeling both burned out and discouraged these past few months. GenCon fixed that problem for me, and quite handily. So, what all did I do at GenCon? What games did I play? Did I run anything? What’s the big announcement? Well, I’m glad you asked!

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This Just In from HQ!

So, just a quick shout to talk about some upcoming projects/products from Amalgamated Fiction. I’m currently working on a sample to send to Shane and Clint at Pinnacle Entertainment to show them that Amalgamated Fiction – Detroit is worthy of using Savage Worlds as an officially licensed SW company. If the sample is good enough and they agree to let me use the license, I’m going to dive straight into bringing AEGIS vs. SPIDER to market. What’s AEGIS vs. SPIDER? I’m glad you asked! AvS is a setting I’ve been dicking around with for years. Taking place square in the middle of the Cold War in the 60s, the players are super-powered espionage agents working for the American Espionage Group for International Security, a super-secret organization put together in the wake of World War 2 to deal with a perceived “Super Gap” with the Soviet Union. Their primary antagonists are their opposite agents within the SPDR, a shadowy Soviet espionage group not officially part of the Politburo whose motives are unknown to nearly everyone, including the leaders of the Soviet Union itself.

The world in which AvS takes place is mostly our own. Technology is slightly more advanced, but there aren’t any laser rifles or space stations or teleporters…at least not that you know about.Supers in AvS are relatively low-powered. No cosmic entanglements, no alternate timelines, no aliens, no gods. It’s more Batman than Superman if you will. It’s a bit James Bond, a bit Secret Six, and a whole lot of Cold War cloak and dagger skulduggery. It’ll be full of exotic locales, devious and dangerous opponents, double and triple crosses, and tough looking Slavs in trench coats and fedoras demanding to know where you’ve hidden the microfilm.

I’m shooting to get my first product, a pack of playable AEGIS agents, out by the beginning of July through DriveThruRPG. If those sell well then I’ll do some SPDR agents, a canned adventure or two, hell, maybe even a full setting book. So, yeah. Keep your eyes peeled.

 

Downtime

Let’s just check our to-do list and…oh…

See that up there? That, brothers and sisters, is what my project list looks like currently. I’ve hit that bane of freelancers everywhere, the dreaded dry spell. Remember months and months ago when I bragged about having deadlines from here ’til March? Well guess what, it ain’t March anymore. I busted my ass for those months, turned in those manuscripts and then…nothing. The first week was great. I lazed around. I played video games. I wasted time. I luxuriated in my new deadline-free life. Then there was a second week of no deadlines, which was nice. I worked on the house, played with the kid, played a lot of music, got my motorbike running for the season. Then there was a third week, and I was like, uh oh

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Do You Sons of Bitches Want to Live Forever?

For the Emperor!

For the Emperor!

Aw, yeah. Look here, children. That’s my latest project in the flesh. Only War lets you play members of the Imperial Guard as they slog between stars on a galaxy-wide tour of the shittiest battlefields and warzones imaginable. All I can say right now is that it’s totally rad, so keep your eyes peeled for more info as it comes out.

A World of (Internal) Darkness

What's a tortoise?

Describe in single words, only the good things that come into your mind about your mother…

In the years that I’ve been in the semi-public eye as a game writer, I’ve never made any bones about the fact that I’m in therapy. In fact, I credit my therapy for being in the industry at all. Without my shrink and her withering eye and her sphinx-like demeanor and her habit of giving me just enough rope with which to hang myself, I would not be here today. Sometimes it’s hard, sometimes it’s easy, sometimes it’s like every joke you’ve ever seen about laying on the couch and talking about your feelings, and sometimes it’s like the goddamned Voight-Kampff Test. Today, I had a pretty harrowing session wherein I talked about writing and about how what a writer writes says a lot about said writer, including many things he may not know or would prefer to keep hidden. So that’s what we’re gonna talk about. (Note: This post is going to take some personal and, perhaps, dark turns. If you’re not interested, and I can’t blame you, please allow me to draw your attention to this hard-hitting expose of Wesley Crusher which is, without a shadow of a doubt, completely unsafe for work.)

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Hahahahahahahaha, Welp….

The best laid plans...

All ideas are good ideas at first…

As my tens of readers know, I’m the king of harebrained schemes. My latest involves all those Dragon Magazines I was talking about yesterday. Know how I said I was going to start reviewing them Tomorrow? Well, funny thing about that, I don’t know shit about reviewing product. So, before I get started and make an ass out of myself (or a bigger ass than normal) and make a bunch of crappy posts that don’t really get to the meat of the thing, in this case how awesome and hilariously bad Dragon and the golden age of gaming are/were, we’re going to shelve this for now. I’m going to talk so some friends of mine who are actual journalists and do product reviews for a living, get some pointers, and make it look like I know what I’m doing. Instead, you guys are going to get a rather personal post tomorrow about me and writing and telling things about a writer by what he writes. Exciting, neh?

You Guys Will Never Believe What I Found…

Big ol' stack of nostalgia

Look. At. This.

Oh man, you guys. You’ll never believe what I found! Well, I didn’t find these, a friend of mine did. Anyway, that right there in the picture is a stack of Dragon Magazines! Twenty-five Dragon Magazines to be exact, from the years 1982 to 1985. Can you believe it? My buddy and bandmate Stephen scored the lot of them in a used bookstore in Nashville for the princely sum of twenty American dollars for the whole lot. He called me from Nashville and was like, “What’s Dragon Magazine?” and I was like, “Why do you ask?” and he was like, “Cause I’m looking at a box full of them, and they’re, like, a dollar a piece.” Then I blacked out a little because I think I had a joy-induced aneurysm. When I came around Stephen was still on the line, and I believe I said something like, “BUY THEM ALL FOR ME!” which he was kind enough to do. And now here they are, twenty little time capsules from the golden age of gaming. What does this mean for you? I’m glad you asked! Starting  Friday I’m going to begin a weekly review section called “One from the Vaults”, wherein I’m going to review old-school gaming literature. I’m going to start with these Dragons, then branch out into old games and modules and such, many from my own collection. So stay tuned, we’re gonna get our grognard on.