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I have to say, I feel a bit like Charles Marlow, relating a series of half-real half-imagined events to an unknown audience.
"'Try to be civil, Marlow,' growled a voice, and I knew there was at least one listener awake besides myself."
(This is a continuation of this post.)
I've been working on a roleplaying game for half my life. I started it in the summer before college, sitting in the empty campus of UNL. I was about to leave for a another state, bitter about my life, bitter about leaving it. But this isn't about that. I recently finished an eight session campaign using the system I built. I thought I'd tell you about it.
I've been working on this project for Lamentations of the Flame Princess for some time, and it's finally jumped to the front of my working goals. Briefly, it shifts the location of the game to the Ottoman Empire, during the same canonical year, 1630.
I want to talk a bit about a play test session for a game I am designing. The game is called Citadel of Time and it goes something like this:
Trapped in the Citadel, you pursue missions to retrieve graels for the Castellan's Great Project. Moving to different points in time, your success or failure hinges on overcoming your own issues and the obstacles of the time you find yourself in.
I've moved into playtesting for Levied Souls, with the help of friends at Spelens Hus. It's a long-term project with plans for multiple sessions, and so this first session was for character creation. By player request, it's also audio only, athough I have set it up as a video for helpful captioning and occasional textual comments.
I played a lot at IndieCON, in a relaxed way. This was a good example, a little bit of messing with my notes for Dreams of Fire. I didn't film the session so the video is just me talking and thinking about it.
I've shifted our focus more fully into the concrete experience of designing a game. I'm also finding it useful to consider the practitioner's general outlook of "this is how I did it," vs. the observer's or analyst's outlook of "but how does a person do it," without falling into the trap of tossing it back into the observer's lap by saying, "well, you just do it and then you'll see."
Here's the last session but one of the epic Cosmic Zap playtest, which sorta actually worked, and shows why successful playtesting has nothing to do with wowing people with your genius. Far from it.