Posts Tagged ‘vicious crucible’
Today, I want to talk with you about Josh Roby’s latest Kickstarter, the Vicious Crucible of Villa Argentate.
He’s doing something with Kickstarter that’s a bit different than most: he treats it like the Ransom Model, looking to collect a certain amount in order to make the game free for all. He’s done that with the previous Vicious Crucibles, which you can check out right now: The Vicious Crucible of Verdigris Valley and The Vicious Crucible of the Eburnean Tower.
The design premise is refreshing: the core rules take up four pages, with a layout designed to be printed front-to-back. Rules modules get two pages, and each new Vicious Crucible comes with a new module. Verdigris Valley came with Combat, Eburnean Tower came with Sorcery, and as far as Villa Argentate…well, that depends on the backers. Because among other things you’ll get in the Kickstarter, you’ll get to vote on which rules you’d like to see Josh develop:
The character of the Silver City will determine which rulesheet gets used with it. If the vote goes to the scheming and dealing, the Influence rulesheet will be included. If the backers want the underworld, the Theivery rulesheet will ship. And if you fine folk want to see artisans, well then, you’ll be served up a hot cup of Crafting rulesheet.
Each rules module works with the other Vicious Crucibles. I love these games, because they take a Lady Blackbird approach to situation design and with a die system reminiscent (but lighter than) Cortex Plus. Each has a set number of six possible protagonist characters, a few NPCs with agendas, some opening scenes, and useful descriptions of places.
If you’ve played the Smallville RPG, this will feel familiar…because Josh designed Smallville.
So if this sounds remotely up your alley, check out the free stuff. And if you like supporting people making small, interesting games and releasing them for free, back the campaign. If nothing else, check out the page and see what he’s got planned — since it’s reached funding, it’s gonna happen!
Josh Roby & I are at it again. Pay close attention, my sons and daughters, for one is totally free and the other is being Kickstarted. These are the Vicious Crucible games, which Josh Roby explains both us in this sweet Kickstastic video:
If you’re allergic to videos, here’s what’s up:
The borderlands of the Verdigris Valley have never been peaceful, but now an invasion force gathers at the summit of the Pashuan Way, looking hungrily down on the rich homesteads and crippled fort below. The days to come will throw six men and women into a gauntlet of desperate pressures, crushing obligations, and entangling relationships. Some will fall; some will triumph; some will cave to the pressures; some will bask in the flames like a phoenix. These six stand on the precipice of The Vicious Crucible of Verdigris Valley. The only way out is through, and the only way through requires a painful transformation into something new.
The Vicious Crucible of Verdigris Valley is game for up to six players and a GM. It plays in three to five sessions, or a pulse-pouding single session of jump cuts and action sequences. Best of all, it’s free.
All Vicious Crucible games are released as a free download. I’m using a “ransom model” for funding the project, with a bit of a twist. The first game, Verdigris Valley, is already released for free (download below). If the ransom is met, I’ll publish the next game for everyone to enjoy. On top of that, when you back the project, you also get the Franchise: you get to vote on where the next Vicious Crucible will be.
So check out Verdigris Valley and decide if you’d like to see more. Then hit up the Kickstarter and pick a reward tier that looks fun.
As with Void Vultures, my role in the project is editor & co-developer, Unlike Void Vultures, this system is actually is only a few pages long. The rules are six pages in total (and Josh gets into the process of designing for that), with the supplemental material for the adventure 30 pages beyond that (including characters, locations, and a map). It has a witty back-and-forth beat mechanic that’s focused on character elements to generate the scene’s language. Check it out; it’s free, and I think worth your time.
For that second game I mentioned (in case you didn’t finish the video above), Josh is doing the Kickstarter for the second Vicious Crucible game, which the backers will vote on if it succeeds. Consider backing the Kickstarter if you’re interested in that, or you just plain like what you see in Verdigris Valley and would like the see the creators get some coin for their work.
 Which has become one of my favorite mechanics. I love it in Cortex Plus, loved it in Dogs in the Vineyard before that.
Three different podcasts had me on over the last week, two of them taken at NeonCon.
Allan Sugarbaker and I talk about Mythender, which I ran for him and some other fine folks at NeonCon. We talk for around fifteen minutes about the game and my plans for it.
Josh Roby & I are working on a new game, Vicious Crucible. We had Sean Nittner try it out, and talked about it on his show for around 25 minutes.
Another Nittner-Macklin combo, Sean & I talk about player trust in games. His show notes are extensive, so you’ll know if you want to listen by reading them. :) This episode is 33 minutes long.
All told, that’s barely more than an hour of me mouthing off. Some of you take longer to drive to work. So, hey, enjoy.