As I’ve spoken of not long ago, I’ve recently taken to writing a fair amount of games. What’s more, last week was objectively my most successful week for games design – I became a finalist in the Game Chef design competition and
I was paid for my writing for the first time, specifically to write an adventure module for the Patron edition of Grant Howitt’s CULT OF OSIRIS.
From this, I’ve learned two things.
ONE – I’m quite handy at coming up with interesting premises and compelling concepts; both Contempt for the Ogre Poet and Parisien Tempest have been applauded for having good stories.
TWO – I’m bad at writing rules. Now, Contempt was concepted and written over nine days, but still I gave all these rules for “here’s how to do shit” and only in the penultimate paragraph said “here’s what the shit does”. I need to front-load my key details more. Especially the whole “how to win” bit.
I’ve done a little research on “how to write rules” and found this on Numberless to be the only decent one that really addresses my needs. (If anyone has some great guides, please recommend them.)
It’s odd, because as a teacher I give instructions every day. I’m usually pretty good at explaining things in person. Maybe I just need to imagine I’m actually talking the rules through as I write.
I’m going to combine three games I’ve been variously working on for a few months into one package. The package (ebook) will be called CON’S PRIAL, and is made up from the following games. Watch this space!
1. CONJURORS! It’s the turn of the nineteenth century and you scrabble to create the greatest magic show the world has seen.
2. CONSTITUENTS OF R’LYEH. The MP for Innsmouth and Grimwater has been dismissed; you stand in the by-election and need to win without succumbing to the whims of the Elder Gods. Cthulhu plus politics.
3. CONTEMPT FOR THE OGRE-POET. There is no book in the fiefdom, not since the ogre-poet came. You have three days to complete a strategy that will prevent the inhabitants of Easthaven from being eaten.
Each game is designed for a pack of cards and two or more friends. I’m really excited to put them all together.