Some quick notes on my latest game development activity.
It has a name
The more I wrote, the more I realised that this game is set against the intersection of power and religion, for society and for the individual. Religion is a commitment; a life-changing devotion. With that in mind I've taken to calling this game SacredVows. The player characters are monks and monks take vows. Keeping and breaking those vows will be part of the games' rules, and will drive story. Vows are restrictive. Vows liberate.
I'm writing it with a dodgy layout
A few years ago I was talking with Nathan Russell about how he designs games. At the outset he creates a layout template and writes it in that. With the rudimentary layout and art he is always looking at something that encourages the feel of the game. In turn, that influences his writing and keeps him on track.
Sadly, I'm crap at layout. However, I've taken a default template from Apple's Pages and am typing in that. I've even peppered it with some art from deviantart.com. It's having an interesting effect; one that it not far from what Nathan said happens to him. Having a picture in sight, and a layout that roughly resembles a gaming book… it's remarkable. It feels like I'm writing a game. Three cheers for the dodgy layout.
More play testing
Once more to the table! Yes, it's play test time again. This Friday night I'm taking the lessons from the previous session and running this thing again. I hope my players don't get sick of my play testing. We have only a few more game sessions left in the year so I want to make the best of them. This might be the last play test for 2014.