Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Space Time?

While the GOZR Kickstarter is still going, of course I'm working on entirely other stuff. Namely, my space game.

Working title is ZSF, Zoa Space Fantasy. This is the setting from Supercalla and Cozmic Metal Heads, but instead of going with Troika! (much love) I'm going to make it another original game system. I'm having fun making original games, might as well ride that high.

This time I don't plan to hand letter the thing. It'll probably be a more traditionally laid out book. But the visual inspirations are 70s era art albums and art books... so the plan is for every page to be art. Lots of full page pieces, lots of small pieces. Not so much density of text per page. Something like 50/50 art book/RPG guide.

This cartoon world has lived in my head and in a couple of RPG books for years. It'll be fun to put it into yet another form, one that I can claim entirely as my own. I've been noodling and doodling this for the last week or so. Kind of excited about it. Kind of the same sort of feeling I had when I started working on GOZR.

Of course this could all change. I am a slave to my whims, after all. I might drift away from this. Hell, I really do need to get back to my OSR book and FINISH IT. But we'll see.

Let's talk about mechanics.

How do you decide what kind of mechanics a game needs? I don't know. But I have an idea about how to start.

First, what is the game about? In this case it's space opera with a strong 70s heavy metal aesthetic. What might characters in such a game be doing? Flying in space ships, fighting weird monsters, dealing with space wizards, making deals with demons, and contending with strange robots. In fact, the words "weird", "strange", and "cosmic" seem to pop up a lot when I think about this thing.

So I am starting with a list of actions. PCs in ZSF will:

Shoot (load, aim, fire, reload, and duck)
Talk (charisma, persuasion, negotiation, etc.)
Operate (machines, robots, computers, etc.)
Fight (punch, kick, tackle, bash, etc.)
Explore (perception, instinct, toughness, etc.)
Drive (ships, cars, bikes, etc.)

I think that covers the important bases. I wanted it to spell out something badass. "STOFED" is as close as I came.

What I like about this is that it strongly implies the game theme. It's a game "about" flying through space and doing action shit.

The primary mechanic (I really dislike the term "core mechanic" for some reason) is, for now, to roll d20 and add your modifiers vs. the GM's* roll. High roll wins.

So the whole hit point thing...

I have wrestled with this. I actually like hit points and damage as a mechanic (I used it in GOZR). But since I'm making an original game system, I might as well think about trying something different.

Right now I'm messing around with a mechanic from the least likely place of all... my stupid little game Lizards vs. Wizards. In that game, when you get hurt you simply roll a d100 vs. your survival trait. If you fail, you are a dead lizard. No hit point tracking at all. So I thinks to myself... why not? This is a space game, which means it is also, in some ways, a western. That is, when you get shot by a laser pistol you should probably almost certainly DIE.

Of course I don't want ZSF to be as slapstick and cartoonish as LvW. There's a trick to it. Yes, it is going to be a game where you can get shot and die with one die roll. But a Luck mechanic is also in place. Not luck points, as I usually like to do. More of a limitless luck roll. The trade off is that failing the luck roll causes instant bad luck for all the PCs.

Anyway... more on all that later.

*Ok, I'm actually planning to call the GM "Spacelord". Because fuck why not? It's a SPACE GAME. And nobody cares anyway.

Thursday, May 5, 2022

GOZR Goes Live

GOZR Kickstarter is LIVE! Funded quickly, per the dictate of Mother Gooz.

If you haven't backed this sci-fantasy romp RPG, maybe consider doing so. If you can't, that's ok too. I still love you very much.

Sunday, May 1, 2022

GOZR Print Test

I received a few copies of the GOZR print test from Squarehex. They look VERY NICE. The heavier paper and coating really makes the colors pop. It just feels good in my hand.

And a huge plus to me is that you can open it up and press it flat and it will remain open to the page you wanted. Very cool.

Kickstarter launches in a few days...

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

GOZR Pre-Launch

GOZR Kickstarter pre-launch is live. Bookmark it!

Weirdos. Guns. Wizards, Robots. Monsters. Random tables. This one has it all. Organized in a handy-dandy chaotic explosion of hand-drawn madness.

Saturday, April 23, 2022

Budda Budd!


A GOZR image. Not part of the book, but perhaps it'll go into the next one or be a poster in the Kickstarter.

Friday, April 15, 2022

GOZR Kickstarter Coming

I'm happy to say I'm working with Peter Regan of Squarehex to do a GOZR Kickstarter! I was on the fence about doing this, but Peter's experience won me over.

Details will be announced soon. The KS will offer your choice of soft or hard cover. It'll be nice. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, April 5, 2022

GOZR Lulu Copy

I got my print proof of GOZR today! It looks pretty slick. However, my main issue is that Lulu charged about three times as much for these as they cost from Ka-Blam. I am not sure why. So I've ordered some copies from Ka-Blam too. When they come in I'll compare the quality and then I'll know. In the end, unless Ka-Blam has went downhill since last time I used them, I'll probably just use them for POD.

Sunday, March 20, 2022


Here we are in a new year! Well.. we're 3 months into it now, I suppose. I'm always a little behind the times. Anyway, what do I want to accomplish, creatively, in 2022? Let's explore this question.

I love to do a few things, generally:

1. Draw stuff. Whatever the fuck I want to draw. I hope to do this as much as possible in 2022.

2. Make shit up. The great magic of RPGs is their potential. Every game could be a million and one things. I want to make up a million and one things.

3. Publish stuff. I have been self-publishing books and zines and comics since 1988 (87??). It fills me with joy and pride to hold the finished book in my hands. I do not believe I published anything in 2021 so I'm really hoping to get some books out in 2022.

So far this year I've been mostly focused on design, writing, layout for a few books. At this time, there are at least 3 books I could finish and publish this year. GOZR (finished, just working on the publishing end), Doomslaker B/X (tons of work, mostly done), and Hellion Cross (my third Troika! book, probably 75% complete).

I have this crazy notion that not only might I publish those 3 books in 2022, I might also publish a 4th book... a pinup art book. But that's a distant possibility. I have the material, of course.

This all depends on my energy and focus. But I can tell you that GOZR is done and will be out in the world within a few weeks. The other books are largely finished, but still need a lot of work. So who knows? By next month I might be in a death metal band living in Spain. I dunno.

Sunday, March 13, 2022

Blue Gooz

Here's a blue gooz with their spiffy helmet.

The game is finished. Now I'm considering the ways in which to publish it. Current thinking is to get it printed through Mixam and sell via Etsy. This feels like a fairly simple way to move forward. The reason I haven't went POD, which I do prefer, is because of the lack of the ability to print inside covers.

I could go with a comic printer, like Kablam or ComiXpress. But then I'm outside of the insular TTRPG community.

Still thinking.