Friday, May 30, 2008


Okay, I know someone that did receive the 4e rules early. Now, he says it wasn't from I guess some others busted the release date after did. Who knows.

Anyway, the books look very nice and what I had a chance to look at indicates what I thought before. It isn't the DnD that I started with and some of it isn't very "comfortable" but I think it'll be easy enough to adjust to. Having a chance to borrow the books and read a bit was pretty nice. Probably not going to get a real chance to look anything over until I have my own copies next week.

This is likely a good thing as I am sure I'll get more work done that way.

In other news, DS#1 had good soccer try-outs. He is with the same coach as in spring, but that trainer is taking care of the team one division up from what he was last year. Basically, he is going to have to work hard to get play time. He is excited about the prospect. I am happy for him too. I am not sure I am happy about how much driving we'll be having to do this fall. The sad thing is that not enough kids were at try-outs to form a full team at the level he played before. This means that a number of those boys didn't get an offer. DS#1 got an offer as one of the dedicated, hard-working players that the coach believes can play at this level. We'll have to see how it goes. DS#1 seems very energized by the prospect.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

I'm Back

Okay, really we got back yesterday afternoon and I actually had the laptop with me while we were out of town. The little I did use the laptop (my wife used it for her blog a bit) was more for writing than anything else.

I have a bunch of material I need to scan, and I should get to that sometime today. My wife is on the computer I prefer to scan with so I guess that it'll wait until tonight, late tonight. She is on-call and DS#1 has soccer try-outs. I know which team he'll make. Okay, I know his present coach wants him back. It IS possible that he'll get an offer for a team that is a division above. I'd prefer he play with the same coach again, he is a starter and plays every minute of the game. At his age he simply needs as much play time as he can get. He has the skill to play a division up, but not the consistency-then again, I am his papa and I can be pretty picky sometimes.

I have had a little bit more time to look at some more 4e information. I think I'll like the game. I am going to get an extra PHB for my boys to look over. If possible, I would like to run a game for them. I think it'll be possible to run 4e on a smaller scale, but we'll have to wait and see. In my opinion, it is a good game, it will get slammed by some people though. The funny thing is that I think it'll be easier to convert some 1e/2e material to 4e. I was looking over some of my older notes the other day and I realized that one particular adventure would be pathetically easy to convert to 4e. When I have the full ruleset I will look it over and maybe talk to Goodman Games about that one. I think it would fit into their DCC line pretty well. I have others that should be easy to write up too, but those would be a bit longer. The adventure I will convert first actually had some text typed out in the computer, years ago. Now, I am not sure I'll be able to locate those old files, but if I can find them I bet I can use them.

I THINK I'll have products ready to upload/sell by June 6. I just don't know what sort of schedule I'll be able to release follow-up products on. I guarantee it would be as fast as I would like.
Well, back to work ...

Friday, May 23, 2008

Heading out ...

We are leaving town for the Memorial Day weekend. I'll have the laptop with me in hopes of getting a tiny amount of work done, but I am more likely to end up writing some notes, or maybe a bit of drawing.
I have done all the paperwork, etc. to get signed up at OneBookShelf to prepare for selling things. I probably should have signed up before to have access to the publisher's forum, but I have waited this long, I can wait until next week. I want to be in town and available to respond to emails after I send everything in.

I NEED to update the website, but that ran into problems. I tried to switch everything over from GoLive to Dreamweaver but all of the buttons died. It looks like the changeover somehow added two new lines of code that essentially kill the buttons. It'll probably end up easier to recreate the website in Dreamweaver from the ground up, creating a style sheet, etc. In any case, I really want to spend my time preparing products, what few there are.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Okay, 4e comments

I have a few comments on 4e, but you need to take them with a "grain of salt" as I don't have the full rule books or anything.

(1) Creating and running monsters appears easier and faster than 4e.
(2) Combat involves more critters attacking the PCs and goes closer to older editions in this realm. I like this.
(3) Combat (at lower levels anyway) seems faster, or, if not faster, more actions are taken during a combat lasting the same length of time.
(4) Classes appear to have more clear cut abilities and roles. I happen to like this. I also happen to like the fact that you can't multiclass ten ways to sunday.

Not-so-Good (maybe bad, maybe just takes getting used to)
(1) More "conditions" to keep track of during combat. Not thrilled with this at the lower levels, not sure how it pans out at high levels. This is likely more of a problem for the DM than the players though. Players should be able to handle their side pretty well. I think the DM is going to need some sort of chart. I think there will be a good market for "extras" used to "mark" various conditions.
(2) VERY battle-map dependent. I usually use a battlemap anyway, but I do run encounters without maps sometimes. You need to have an entire group of people that can picture maps and positions well to run combat without a map and I just don't see an entire group able to do this.
(3) I think some of the changes to magic items, spells, magic, and rituals stand a chance of being "awkward" and difficult to get used to at first. I think this might just take getting used to, but some of the changes seem a bit contrived to me.

All in all, I do like what I have seen and used so far. I am very curious to see the "whole story."

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Go Spurs Go!

Okay, one of the other distractions is the NBA playoffs. I do like watching a good basketball game. I would love to see the Spurs go all the way again this year. We'll have to see what happens.

I am looking at the possibility of some additional product lines. I have even outlined several products, the joys of hanging out at soccer and/or swimming practice with a notebook in hand. Now, rather than producing some of these myself, I could also propose some of them to another publisher leaving me doing only the writing and letting them take care of everything else. I have a lot of other things in the works right now and if I don't stay focused, hmmm, a lot less will get done.

I have seen more about 4e lately, and I have to admit that I think I will like this edition. Sigh, I suppose that means spending money on it. I'll have more comments on 4e soon. I thought I'd have time today, but I am heading to bed ;).

Oh Well

Well, I need to post a bit more often. Things have been extremely busy lately. Making plans to change the kids' schools next fall has been horribly time consuming. While that is the most major distraction, there have been quite a few others. We leave for New Jersey this Friday. Yes, flying the entire family on a holiday weekend. My wife's cousin is getting married and it is costing me quite a bit of money. Some of that includes suits for the boys who will grow out of them so quickly they are likely to wear them only once. sigh.

I have gotten more done in the background, just not as much as I would like. Still tweaking the layout design right now. It is more nitty-gritty type stuff right now, picking fonts, font sizes, etc. Also looking at placement of some of the (very little) artwork. I have finished up editing on a few more of the City Streets locations and I have outlined some possible products in another product line that I am considering. More on that another time.

Well, off to feed some children before an evening music concert at their school.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


Okay, the length between posts shouldn't have been as long but I guess I saved a post instead of actually posting it. I decided there was no need to finally post it as it was short anyway.

GU- well, things have slowed down due to a number of distractions. I think I'll still be ready for June 6th though. Not anywhere near what I had hoped when I started this up. Certainly not for, um, April, or even May. Well, if I wasn't changing out burned out light switches in my house and putting in new light fixtures I might have a better shot at May. I am still getting things done, just not at the rate that I would like.

I have had a bit more information on 4th edition, but not much, no more than anyone could probably find on the internet. I am interested in the "whole story" when the books actually come out. I do have some distinct ideas of some other product lines but I will touch on those another time.

I hope to be making more regular updates soon now. We'll all have to wait and see how that goes.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

4e GSL

Well, WotC has answered some questions about the 4e GSL. Like all things, it is a mixed bag.
Basically, you have to decide if a "product line" is going to be GSL or OGL meaning you clearly can't have game statistics for the GSL and include game stats for another game such as d20, CnC, True20, etc. It would appear that making two versions of a book is also verboten. None of this is really surprising. It still leaves some larger publishers such as Mongoose and Green Ronin with some difficult questions. Example: Green Ronin has been planning (or rumored to be planning) to release more Freeport material for multiple game systems. Goodman Games often re-releases some of its DCC line as CnC modules. Mongoose has several of its own OGL games but I am guessing they'll create a new "line" to support 4e as they can make money doing it.
Another thing they haven't answered is whether or not there is any way to use other people's GSL material (as with the OGL). People have asked whether or not you could bring OGL material into GSL releases on the message boards. This hasn't been explicitly answered, to my knowledge, but, well, reading the OGL tells me that the answer is clearly no. Now, companies can use their own copyrighted material in new GSL releases, so they CAN upgrade material of their own.
I think a lot of questions will be answered, on, well, June 6th when the GSL is officially released.

Onto Maps. I am working away on (re)creating maps. I am climbing the learning curve here, but it is starting to go fairly well. I am trying to decide how many details to add to some of the maps. More details=better looking map=longer creation time=more work. Obviously, less detail makes for faster map-making.
Right now I am using Dundjinni, transferring into photoshop, adding a few more details, and going black and white (grayscale). I am trying to decide whether or not it is worth creating "battlemap" sized maps as additional releases. It appears I am back on track for the moment but I have a lot to do before the end of the school year. Including some decisions about what school(s) the kids will go to next year.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Windows Blows!!!!

Okay, minor rant here. My wife has a new printer/scanner/etc. combo with a larger scanner bed for her scrapbook pages. I set it up today and TRIED to get the software installed for her. Well, it has both Mac and PC software, let's just say the 5-year-old Mac desktop (that we still use for most everything) installed the software and was up and ready before the PC would even recognize there was a new printer on the network. The PC is a little over a year old and is (theoretically) a much faster machine. I am sorry, but Windows is clunky, difficult, and slow. If not for some of my wife's work software and needs, we wouldn't even own a PC. I would say, "WAIT, GAMES!" but I haven't even had time to play games on ANY machine lately.

Sigh, okay, on to the work news. Dundjinni has confirmed my interpretation of their new EULA so I am preparing some of the maps now. This means I should, realistically, be ready to start releases by the end of May, possibly much sooner. Well, it would be much sooner if I stop insisting on having a total of 5 fully ready-to-go releases. Frankly, with the way things have gone lately, I think insuring that I have 5 releases (freebie promo + 4 ready releases) ready is a good idea.

Anyway, I did put another one of Jason Ludwig's pieces of art on the GU website. I added a few things to the list of releases on the Products page but I have held off on a few other announcements. I want to insure that I have releases ready before I announce anything else.