06/29/2020: Chapter 1 Rough
about 1 month ago
– Wed, Jul 01, 2020 at 08:33:12 PM
I've attached the rough draft of Chapter One. It covers many elements of the game, but focuses primarily on world-building.
I also go into detail on VR, and some VR worlds. Pinnacle Entertainment has kindly let me write up some overviews of their settings. I have an image for the section of someone you might recognize :)
Anyhow, I hope you like the chapter! You can get it here:
Chapter One Rough
6/26/2020: Follow up on my last two updates
about 2 months ago
– Sat, Jun 27, 2020 at 02:38:52 PM
So, one night, back in 1996, my brother and I are getting ready for a Fantasy LARP we thought might be fun to join. We go to the grocery store and get some spray paint for a project related to the LARP and leave the store. We don't even get half a block away when cops stop us and ask us where we're going, why we have a can of spray paint, what we are planning to do with it, are we in a gang...It goes on and on. I have to sit there and describe every tattoo I have (most of which I got while I was in the Navy) so they can put me and my brother into a gang database. Also, bear in mind, that the can of spray paint was in a bag, so how did they even know (and so fast) that I had a can of spray paint?
I logically know this shit is jacked up, and I should just exercise my right to keep my mouth shut without an attorney present, but that'll likely just bring more cops and escalate the situation, so I sit there and take it.
In 2000 my wife and I drove up to Salt Lake City from Texas to visit my family and go camping. As soon as I fucking get close to my grandmother's house, this cop who had been following me ever since I got off the freeway, pulls me over and literally says he did it because I had an out of state license plate and he wanted to know if I'm bringing drugs up from Texas.
Again, I should have exercised my rights and told him to get a warrant if he wanted to search the truck, but that would have brought more cops, and I didn't want to get my wife involved.
It's only now that I realize what was going on inside my head when I made Teusday's Post. I posted that because I'm still incredibly angry over what happened to me. I’m incredibly angry over what is happening across this country, and I’m just some white dude who legally bought a damned can of spray paint. I was guilty of driving with an out-of-state license plate. You may think I’m making a mound out of an ant hill, that what happened to me was nothing (compared to what people of color go through every day, it was nothing).
You might think, well if you weren’t doing anything wrong, what did you have to be worried about?
You’re completely missing the point.
What I was subjected to is a misuse of power. I don’t care if they were following procedure. I fit some profile and was stopped for it. Screw my rights as a law-abiding citizen. I looked different and therefore I needed to be questioned.
Please take a moment and consider what it’s like to be a person of color, and how this type of thing happens to them all the time. How much more are they affected by this kind of behavior? How deeply rooted are these feelings of helplessness (and yes literal fear for their lives or those of their loved ones) in their minds? It's taken me almost 24 years to come to grips with this and realize how it has affected me.
Yes. I absolutely know there are GOOD, HEROIC men and women in law enforcement who put their lives on the line every single day. I know police officers DIE in the line of duty. Policing is the hardest job, especially in the United States and I won’t deny that there are some extremely violent people in our society who need to be taken off the streets, and it’s the police who have to risk their lives doing just that.
I know it must be impossible to be a police officer right now, especially if you are doing your job the right way. You’re getting branded as corrupt and judged for the actions of a few. I’m sorry for my part with my Kickstarter post and the trauma it may have caused you.
I sincerely hope you can forgive me, but I do stand with Black Lives Matter, and I do feel like something has to change with regards to law enforcement in this country.
I don't know HOW this needs to change. I DO strongly believe that police are desperately needed, wanted, and loved. I don't think the police need to be "defunded" or abolished entirely. You and your family members deserve so much respect and admiration.
My Tuesday update did come from a place of anger, and I'm sorry I subjected you to that.
As I said before, the Campaign Theme and the Plot Point Campaign are staying in, but I need to go through it and make sure it's written with a level of sensitivity to the current conditions.
The rest of the manuscripts are pretty much done. I have one chapter to send to editors and then it's layout and art.
Well that happened
about 2 months ago
– Fri, Jun 26, 2020 at 12:33:18 AM
First things first.
I want to apologize to everyone I've offended.
I REALLY didn't mean to...Like I said initially, I've been extremely conflicted over this. I don't take this sort of thing lightly.
I'll keep the Campaign Theme in, and I'm sorry I even brought it up.. It's just HARD for me right now, and even though I've been thinking alot about this, I rushed to judgement.
Please forgive me.
06/23/2020 update: Various Issues
about 2 months ago
– Thu, Jun 25, 2020 at 01:58:17 PM
Thanks for your patience,
I’m hopping in because I want to discuss a few things and get your feedback.
I’ve been working on finalizing the last few elements of the GM’s Guide, and I have to be honest; this month has been rough, both mentally, and emotionally. The unrest in this country over police brutality and the murder of George Floyd has given me…I don’t want to say a new perspective on the horrors that have been visited on black communities for hundreds of years, but rather a new sense of clarity about my place as a white man in this nation.
Yes, I have white privilege, and I have never been more aware of it than I have this past month. What happened to George Floyd and many, many people of color likely never would have happened to me or any white person I know. It’s really tough to reconcile that fact with many things in my life, especially the fact that I have, for many years, been “woke” to the fact that racism in the ranks of law enforcement agencies across this nation is systemic, and yet I’ve largely been quiet. I abhor racism in all it’s forms. I believe the justice system in the United States is in dire need of change, which brings me to the subject of Interface Zero.
I’m cutting the Sector Cop Campaign Theme from both the Player’s Guide and the GM’s Guide. I can’t in good conscience provide a platform for police to be “heroes.” I’ll also be donating a portion of the proceeds from the Game Master’s Guide to 2095 to Black Lives Matter and encourage all of you to do so as well.
For more information on Black Lives Matter, you can check out their webpage here:
Now, on to a couple other things.
I’ve been receiving a lot of feedback (largely negative) on starting cryptodollars, specifically that it’s just too much, so I’m also thinking of dropping starting funds to half the original amount, so 10k cryptodollars rather than 20k.
I’m also considering just cutting Origins Equipment altogether, as having BOTH starting money and starting equipment apparently doesn’t sit well with some people.
I’m also considering adding basic rules for VR into the Player’s Guide rather than the GM’s Guide, as it makes more sense to give players basic rules to create avatars and play in VR worlds.
Finally, I want to take a look at adding a few more things to the equipment chapter, mainly toolkits and possibly some more electronics and other things.
Anyhow, I need to get back to work,
Thanks for your patience, and please, I want to hear from you, so let me know what your thoughts are on everything I’ve discussed!
Edit: After Initial Feedback, I'll consider keeping it in, though I object to it.
5/22/2020 Progress Update.
3 months ago
– Sat, May 23, 2020 at 02:30:23 AM
Hi everyone, I hope all is well with you during these crazy times.
Much has happened since my last update, and I wanted to share it all with you.
I’ve hired two new writers to help me with various elements of the book, and thus far their drafts have been great, which leads me to editing. I have some people working on the final passes of various savage tales (more on that in a minute) and the plot point campaigns and am just about ready to send the remaining chapters for editing.
So, what’s actually going in this book? Much has changed since I gave an outline of the chapters in the book, but that is sometimes what happens when writing begins. Some things get cut, and other things get added. This time around, nothing has been cut insofar as the broad categories are concerned, but we have added a bunch of stuff. So, let’s go through it blow by blow.
Chapter One: Building your world.
This chapter has always been about giving you the tools you need to create the world YOU want to run/play in. We cover a lot here, but the bulk of is it trappings.
First, you’ll find City Trappings. They’ve been modified slightly from what’s in the Player’s Guide (which I’ll also revise) and expanded on. These also come with example areas, all of which are set in Chicago. These trappings have situational modifiers, resources you can find in the area and, where appropriate, encounter generators.
Next, we go deep into corporate trappings. There are around fourteen different types of corporations you can create. The rules are really simple; each has an effective influence rating, a size, and a dirty secrets entry. The biggest aspect of this category is all of the corporations we’ve listed for examples; over 30(I got tired of counting)! They’re fully fleshed out, and we’ve also received permission from Pinnacle Entertainment to a write up of the corporation as it exists in 2095. That one is going to be pretty fun to read.
Next, we deal with organizational trappings, which includes sample activist groups, crime syndicates, extremist groups, and gangs.
After the Trappings section, we start discussing the Global DataNet and ways it can be used for Networking. We address Hyper Reality, and deal with things like hacking hyper objects and how to use them as hazards!
Next comes virtual reality. We talk about how it’s used in Interface Zero, how you can use it in your game, simple ways to create “avatars,” guidelines for hacking VR, a setting rule(sort of) I call “Heroes don’t Die; They Respawn” and then we list a bunch of virtual worlds your characters can enter. Again, Pinnacle Entertainment has given me permission to do write-ups for many of their settings, including the Deadlands Universe, ETU, Rippers, and a few more. There are also new worlds, and some that I’ve hinted at in previous IZ books. You might even see those worlds in future GMG products.
Next comes Law Enforcement. The main thing here is a brief discussion about making all police officers Wild Cards. Police officers spend months and even years training to properly enforce the law. Any encounter with them (especially violent ones) should be dangerous. I don’t go into any detail on actual laws; it seems like a waste of time writing a bunch of minutia about what is considered a crime, how long your sentence is, etc. GM’s should just use the real world criminal system for that. Besides, if characters have been arrested, something has gone seriously wrong.
After that, I talk about life for the unplugged, and what it means to live life without a TAP.
I wrap chapter one with a brief section on life outside the sprawl, discussing what has happened to rural (insert your nation here), adapting to a changing world, xenophobic societies, travel and add an encounter table.
Chapter 2: Plot Point Campaigns
In chapter two we introduce the three PPCs and add new Campaign Themes for you to consider, including one dealing with Fantasypunk. I’m considering adding fantasy races you can choose for this Theme, though I have to check the Fantasy Companion first. I’m also changing the name of the Cleaning Crew Campaign Theme to Bio Hunters. It just makes more sense. The name will be revised in the Player’s Guide as well.
Chapter 3: Toolkits
Chapter three adds a bunch of tools GM’s can use to build adventures and rules to help them deal with a variety of elements. You’ll find three adventure generators (One designed for each of the core campaign themes), an NPC generator, a bio-horror generator, rules for surveillance (Big brother is always watching, everyone has a video recorder, Black spots in surveillance and how to find them), rules to create security systems, safe houses, rules for adventures in space, and rules to handle corporate warfare. These are Protracted Battles based on SWADE’s mass combat system and can be really fun to deal with as part of a long-term campaign involving megacorporations.
Finally, we deal with lifestyles and general costs of living. We base these rules on the Wealth system; I seriously doubt anyone wants to create a spreadsheet to keep track of every single bill their characters have to pay, or how much a carton of milk costs.
Chapter 4: Savage Tales
Chapter four is all about savage tales. We have a bunch of them, some are designed for campaign themes, while others can be used in any game.
Chapter 5: Threats
As you guessed, this one’s about NPCs. We run the gamut here, and also provide suggestions for modifying npcs to fit your game.
Chapter 6: 2090 revisited
This tends to break with other savage worlds book formats, but I wanted to put the world section in the back so players can check it out without having to flip through the entire book.
So, that’s the book in a nutshell. There’s a lot to love, and a lot of love has gone into it. I wanted to get it out this month, but life has made a liar of me. I will provide a proof version once all of the text is in place in hopes of getting errata while I wait for new art. Hopefully any catches can be fixed before the release of the pdf.
Anyhow, long read. Here’s a few new images for you to check out. As always, thanks so much for your patience.