Bringing Your Brain Back to the Game

Archived Homepage Messages

Here is where older messages will end up once they roll off the main index page.

July 21st, 2015

I realized today that I haven't updated the website in over a month! Well, I've been working on a few things, so let's update you on where we are.

On July 2nd, our "False Promises" group met for the third session and nearly completed the adventure. The details are found here. When we meet again, we'll wrap up "False Promises" and move directly in to "Fury of Thringalesh". Last Saturday, I GM'd a 5th edition group playing through "The Shambling Thieves" (working title). This adventure will be published for TSRS and 5th edition sometime in 2016. I'm not publishing any campaign notes to avoid spoilers; plus, I need to make a few minor changes to the adventure before another playtest. My 2nd playtest group of Colby, Steve and Kristina (and hopefully Kris next time) will meet again sometime in August to finish the adventure and begin the next part (this is not a series like most of my work but there is a hook for a nearby adventure). They'll find that they're not quite done with Samas and the arch-mage Kellek.

I've begun writing "God Slayers" for the end of August release. Most of the hard work was completed in the detailed outline, so what I'm doing now is the prose elements. I hope to have the book written by end of July, maps and illustrations in early August. Right now, this is shaping up to be a 32+ page book. I'm not sure what the final page count will be until it's fully written but there is enough content to really push to that many pages. This could have easily been split into 2 parts (book 3 and 4) but it's meant as a 3 part series so we'll stick to that design.

"Island of Blight" will follow up in September - this will be a short interlude adventure that is part of the "Trail of the Serpent Queen" series but if skipped, will have little bearing on the series outcome. This will likely be 16 pages but will have a cool player handout booklet (or downloadable booklet) with it. I'm quite fond of this series and although I've mentioned that it's a 4 part adventure, the Serpent Queen may resurface in a later series.

I've been invited as a Special Guest to the local Sticks & Stones convention in October - for that one day event, I'm running 2 adventures; a TSRS Espionage variant playtest adventure, and a themed scenario entitled "Halloween Goes To Hell", a bizzaro, gory, comical adventure that designed as a TPK. Check out the con website for more details.

As for the rest of the year, I do plan on getting the 3rd book out for the Serpent Queen series but there may be a few cool surprises in the works. It's too early to discuss those right now, but if either of those materialize, it may change my release schedule to some degree. Stay tuned!

June 12th, 2015

The dust has finally settled from a busy May... I printed and sold 3 books in May in preparation for the 2015 North Texas RPG Con and it was a tough road to the day before the Con. I finally got everything together with a couple of days to spare. Note to self: I'm never going to try to put out that many books in one shot ever again!

The NTRPGCon was excellent! If you're looking for one con to attend, this is the one to do. I met several legends of the industry, including Merle Rassmussen, Tracy Hickman, Zeb Cook, Steve Winter, Erol Otus, Darlene, Jeff Dee, Frank Mentzer, and Tim Kask. Additionally, I met up with several modern day icons like Jeff Talanian, Zach Glazar, Bill Barsh, Allan Grohe, and others. Bad Mike and Doug Rhea put on one hell of a show! I could do a full rundown of the weekend but that seems like too much work still. Perhaps more to come on this later.

Just before I left, the Kickstarter for "In Defense of Thuil" finished in at $1186, over the the $500 goal. This is a 2nd printing and is over and above the 75 printed in the initial printing. If you are interested in either printing, please let me know by sending me an email HERE. Additionally, if you are interested in the NTX Exclusives (either "The Great Minecart Race"or "Scavenge the Sands"), also send me an email.

In the next few days, I'll *FINALLY* be adding the extra content for these 3 books in the Downloads page of the site. Each book has one or more additional PDFs of content that didn't make it in the initial book - most of this content is support information. I didn't want to clutter the pages with extra "stuff". Check the Downloads page often for extra content, including the upload today of the Journal pages from "Scavenge the Sands".

I'm continuing with the Sci-Fi variant work - "Scavenge the Sands" played very well at the con last weekend - the melee and ranged weapon mechanics (including the shotgun) worked great, so its on to the ship configuration and battle mechanics next. Lastly, I'll return to the mutations section and add more meat there. After some additional playtesting, we should have a release date (likely around July/August).

I've started writing the last book in the "False Promises" series entitled "God Slayers". This is going to be a longer book and will probably be out in August. So until next time, enjoy!

May 24th, 2015

It has been several busy weeks as I prepare and print 3 books by the 4th of June! The long awaited "In Defense of Thuil" is finally going to print this week (likely the 26th or 27th), producing 75 first print copies. The Kickstarter that ends on June 3rd will print another 25-50 2nd print copies. If you're interested in a first printing, you should contact me asap as I only have a few left unclaimed. There is still time to get a 2nd print through Kickstarter: Kickstarter - In Defense of Thuil. There are 10 days left to get a copy!

In addition to this book, I'm printing 2 special books for the North Texas RPG Con on June 4-7. These 2 digest sized adventures are: "The Great Minecart Race", a TSRS and 5th edition fantasy adventure, and "Scavenge the Sands", a TSRS and 5th edition science fiction adventure using the new sci-fi variant due out later this year. These are only being sold at the convention - if you *MUST* have a copy, email me and I'll see what I can do.

My next book will be out in August - "God Slayers" wraps up the 3 part series started in January. This will likely be a 32 page book with loads of art and cartography. Like "In Defense of Thuil", it will be a multi-system design (TSRS, 1E, 5E). Well, that's it for this post. I'm back to work, putting the finishing touches on the last book for NTX. Enjoy!

April Fools, 2015

Just a quick update today as things are busy on every possible front! I've uploaded the supplemental content for "The Miller's Blunder" (March Mythoard) - this content was removed from the book before it was published but is useful as it adds more to the back-story. You can find it here for download. Note that the adventure itself is *ONLY* available through

I'm attending the North Texas RPG Con in June and have signed myself up to writing and printing two exclusive adventures: "The Great Minecart Race" (TSRS and 5e) and "Scavenge the Sands" (TSRS-SciFi variant and 5e). These will be digest sized, approximately 16-24 pages in length each, and will *ONLY* be available in June at the convention. "Scavenge the Sands" is completely written and requires a good playtest to make sure it's okay. I begin work on "The Great Minecart Race" in early May.

I've also completely written "In Defense of Thuil", the first book in the next series. I'm currently working with Lucas on the cover art and Monkey Blood Design on the first of 2 maps. This should release at the end of April. In May, the last book in the False Promises series will go to print - "God Slayers" wraps that series up with 28-32 pages and three system design (TSRS, 1e, 3e). I'll update the website over the next few months with more details as needed. Going to be a busy few months!

Finally, on the Colossevm front, I finally managed to get the last piece of the puzzle working last night! php talks to Oracle now - I will now begin writing the front end to the game and should hope to have a very basic pre-Alpha system by June. For those wondering where I'll get the time to write code while writing all the TSRS material, have no fear. I can live on less sleep and PS3 activity! Until next time, enjoy!

March 18, 2015

Eleven days, where did they go? This is what happens when the plate is overflowing. Although I'm the one spooning the extra helpings on. Anyway, here's an update to a few things:

I finally sent off the March exclusive to Mythoard yesterday. It was nice to get that out the door before I leave this weekend to Texas (no, not a convention or anything, but a family wedding). The March Mythoard package looks great already, with BadMike's Books adding Judges Guild material and GameMash putting in tokens. My little digest makes sure that subsrcibers have a new adventure to play! If you haven't checked out Mythoard, you really should!

As for writing, I've just finished the first rough draft of "In Defense of Thuil". I have to restructure it for the new format (3 systems - 1E, 5E, TSRS) and then it's off to get edited. I'm already working with Lucas on the cover illustration, and have sent off the preliminary map to Moneky Blood Design for ideas. I've decided to source out the cartography going forward - Glynn from Moneky Blood is an amazing map maker and will do a much better job than I. You can check out his work here. I hope I can afford to continue to use his services for the next several books! This series alone has four books!

I will begin writing "God Slayers" next week. This final book of the three part Sivona/Darkhome series will be a big one - my outline details look like they will probably fill 28 to 32 pages, maybe more depending on how it goes. This series conclusion will be impressive... not all will survive the finale. Although the first two books in the series were written exclusively for BECMI with a separate printing for TSRS, I'm considering writing this as a three system book as well. If I do that, it makes the third book different than the first two... but doing the layout twice like the first two books, especially with this being a larger book, makes me cringe. I'm 51% leaning toward a single printing, 3 system book.

On the Colossevm front, I'm at a standstill with my db/php server. I can't get php to connect to the database layer - this has prevented any work on the front end of the game. Before I leave for texas, I'm going to hand off my server to the guy who built it in the first place to see if he can figure it out. We've troubleshooted over a dozen common issues and configurations, but none of the changes have worked. Something else is wrong and it's not in my skill set to figure them out - I'm a database administrator and developer, not a Linux server admin or PHP specialist! Hopefully, when I return from Texas, he'll have figured it out. Until next time, enjoy!

March 7, 2015

The cold and snowy New England weather is both a blessing and a curse. Although I'm tired of the perpetual snowstorm and record breaking colds that we're living in, it does allow me more time for writing and general gaming work. I've used this winter to get quite a bit of writing done, especially on the two series I started last year. 2015 is going to turn out to be an incredibly productive year with respect to RPG books; much of the first 4-5 books published this year were partly/mostly written in 2014. We've already published 2 books in the first series, and the first 2 books in the second series are already written and playtested. Last year, I wrote the sci-fi variant guidelines and after a bit more playtesting, will be available for free download sometime this year. Finally making some headway!

This week, I'm putting the finishing touches on the first book in the new jungle series, "In Defense of Thuil". It was written for my TSRS Guidelines, but I've decided to make it a 3 system crossover book; I'm revising the text to include rules/stats for 1E AD&D, 5E D&D, and TSRS. This will likely take the rest of the week to complete. I do have a major design roadblock with this book and am looking for feedback on what people would like to see - one book with the adventure and all rule/stat differences in line, or two books with the second book containing the differences. I'm at a crossroads with this design issue but will probably land on a solution in the next 2 days and go with it.

I'm really excited about this new series. For one, I'm designing the books to have an old-school, detachable cover. Secondly, it's an "all-in-one" design, usable with three systems! This makes the book more useful for GMs. Plus, I don't have to do multiple layouts and printings for each system. Lastly, I'm using new software for the covers and so far, it's very nice looking. I'm happy with how things are going!

One last thing - I've written an exclusive adventure for! It is available this month but you have to sign up for the March subscription to get it. I will not be offering it for sale here so if you would like to have this 20 page digest, sign up at Enjoy!

February 21, 2015

Just a quick note today. For all of you who have paid for a copy of Fury of Thringalesh - they were mailed yesterday and today. Most of you should start seeing them early next week. Keep your eye out here for the status of book 3, God Slayers which will be out in late March or early April.

Additionally, I've just finished a new and simplified Adventurer Sheet (version TSRS1310) - this new sheet is very generic and can be used for TSRS Fantasy (core) and the upcoming Sci-Fi variant. You can find it on the downloads page. Enjoy!

February 17, 2015

I just realized this morning that I've been so busy writing, editing, drawing maps, and working with illustrators, that I've forgotten to update my website! It's sorely overdue, so here's an update on where we are with things:

For those of you who have purchased a copy of Fury of Thringalesh, your wait is nearly over. They are being printed this week, likely Thursday/Friday, and should ship out on Saturday. If we get yet another NE storm and my printer closes for a day, we might instead ship early next week. The weather has wreaked havoc on us this year! Lucas has done an amazing job again with the art in this book; the cover is spectacular! I think you will all enjoy the second book in this series. The third and final book (God Slayers) in the series is due out in late April or early May. This book will be bigger than the previous two and will conclude the False Promises series.

A new, second series begins in March - Trail of the Serpent God takes takes the adventurers from southern Wynhelm and deep in to the jungles of Nolgur-Wul. The series begins with In Defense of Thuil (March) and is quickly followed up with Island of Blight (April/May). The third book in the four part series, Trail of the Serpent God will release sometime in June or July. The last book in the series will likely be out around September.

Several more books are in the works and should be available for free here or for a small fee for the PDF on DriveThruRPG. Check the release calendar for more details. Additionally, my Sci-Fi rules variant is ready for testing... if I could just get my playtesters together! These will likely be available sometime in the second quarter of this year. I'm already outlining an adventure that follows up the starter scenario from the guidelines.

I've booked my hotel and registration for North Texas RPG Con for June - I'm thinking about producing an exclusive adventure for the convention - I'm going to solicit attendees for their thoughts and interest. Regardless of that outcome, I'm planning to run a few BECMI and TSRS sessions at the con. It should be a blast!

Well, that's it for now. I have several more adventure books planned but need to find a way to fit them in my already packed schedule! Enjoy!

January 27, 2015

Sitting here laughing at the underwhelming snow from storm Colbie/Juno, I decided I'd post an update on TG work. Half of the interior art for "Fury of Thringalesh" (FoT) is complete - Lucas should finish up the rest by week's end. The color cover can be seen below in the 1/20 update. Although this book will have the same page count as the first book in the series (False Promises), it will have one additional interior illustration. I hope to send it off to my printer next Monday.

I have two other books to write/complete/print before March - I'm signed up to write an exclusive for for their March box; I have the story outlined and partially written and will easily be done in time. Once Lucas has finished his work for FoT, I'll ask him for additional illustrations for this book. Also in March, I plan to print the first book in a new four part series, "Trail of the Serpent God"... the first book is entitled "In Defense of Thuil" and is about 85% written. I have a few ideas for this series - I'm thinking of printing it as a digest-sized book, and having it as a 3 system crossover (TSRS, 1E AD&D, and 5E D&D)... I'm not sure yet if I will do that or not but I don't have to decide yet - I always write the adventures as system neutral to start. The second part of this new series is already 50% written as well. "Island of Blight" should be ready by May or June. Parts 3 ("Trail of the Serpent God") and 4 (yet to be named) will follow later in the year. Note that the third and final book in the False Promises series will be ready in April/May.

I still have yet to get all my playtesters together to test out the Sci-Fi variant of TSRS - there is a simple 3 page starter scenario in the guidelines that I'm hoping to get three players to run through. Honestly, nearly all the mechanics of the science fiction variant overlap the fantasy mechanics except for two new areas: advanced ranged weapons (guns, both gunpowder and energy) and ship combat. Psionics work similarly to Magical Arts, at least in the basic concept - using MP (in the Sci-Fi variant, these are Mind or Mental Points) to do whatever is within your specialization. Psionics or mental powers could actually be used in a Super Hero type system too (hmm... a new variant?). Although we won't be able to test ship combat, we should be able to playtest advanced ranged weapons and Psionics. We just have to get the group together!

On the Colossevm front, I've ordered a new database server to prepare for the upcoming pre-Alpha testing. I'm expecting it this week, and hoping to have it fully built out with Oracle Enterprise Linux and Oracle 12c by early next week. I'm also going to put the web server on this too, mainly to simplify the testing and hardware footprint in my home office. Although all the core backend code is done, I have much of the PHP code to write in the next 3 months. I've designed the PHP flow and have much of the high level work planned out, but have to actually write the code! Note that I've written applications using OPAL for years so this will not be difficult once I begin. I'm shooting for a late 2015Q2 pre-Alpha test, early 2015Q3 Alpha, and Beta(s) in late 2015Q3 or early 2015Q4.

Well, thats it for now. As you can see, I have several books and thousands of lines of code to write in the next 6 months. I'd better get to work! Enjoy!

January 20, 2015

Things are coming along well with the 2nd book in the False Promises series. I've completed all maps except one and Lucas should begin work on the interior illustrations tomorrow. His cover is complete and is quite beautiful:

"Fury of Thringalesh" should be ready by mid-February as planned. The book has 20 packed pages, several maps and illustrations, and will take the adventurers across the borders of Darkhome. The D&D version is meant for 3-5 characters of 2-4th level. I'm still taking pre-orders but I'm getting close to the first print final count. Contact me HERE if you are interested in getting a B/X copy. The third book in the False Promises series will be titled "God Slayers" and is targeted for April/May.

I'm putting the last touches on the first book of the next series, "In Defense of Thuil". This book will take starting adventurers from Wynhelm in to the dark and forbidding jungles of Nolgur-Wul. It's fully playtested and ready for editing and art. This book should be available in March. I'm also working on an exclusive OSR book for for their March subscribers. If you're not familiar with their site, you should definitely check them out! I've signed up for a few months and throughly enjoyed the first box in December - I'm eagerly awaiting the January box!

The 2nd book in the jungle series is already written and playtested as well. "Island of Blight" will probably be printed in the April to June timeframe. I've been holding off on this series because I'm trying to figure out if I want them printed for OSR or 5E... (additionally created with the TSRS in mind, playtested as such).

After these, I have several ideas I'm working on including: a book that has simple adventures spanning one every two pages (meant to be fill ins when the GM needs a quick cave, catacomb or house), a mega-dungeon series (started several times and put down due to other work), and a high level solo adventure. Enjoy!

January 12, 2015

Just a quick update today... Work is nearly complete with the second book of the three book "False Promises" series; Fury of Thringalesh has been written, edited, and the layout is complete. Lucas (my artist) is completing the cover image this week and should have all the b&w interior art done by next week. The books should get printed in the last week of January. That means...

...We're taking pre-orders for the new book! Each 20 page book is numbered and signed. The book has a color cover with a b&w interior. The costs of the book are: (1) collector copy to the USA: $20, (2) collector copies to the USA: $35; (1) collector copy outside USA: $30, (2) collector copies outside USA: $48. Send your PayPal payment to and indicate your mailing address and the number of copies in your message. If you missed out on the first book, I have a handful of copies left - I can add one in for an extra $20 (while supplies last, I think I have 10 left). Enjoy!

January 3, 2015

Happy New Year to all! May 2015 be a wonderful year for everyone!

We finally had a chance to continue our play of "False Promises" two nights ago. Details are here.

I'm just finishing the layout of "Fury of Thringalesh", the second book in a 3 part series - it too will be printed in B/X D&D and TSRS versions like book one ("False Promises"). The details of the color cover illustration have been sent to Lucas; he will begin working on it on Monday. Once my layout is done, I'll send him the B&W illustration details. I'll begin working on the maps after layout. The "end of January" time frame is still good.

I sold about 65 copies of "False Promises" and hope to do the same with "Fury of Thringalesh" but there is a chance I may sell over 200 copies of the TSRS version of the second book to a company I've been talking with that runs a monthly subsrciption service... no names yet until it has been finalized but I'm hoping that it works out! I'm also signed up as a guest author for their continuing series adventure. Looking forward to it!

I've finished the rough draft of the Science Fiction variant which includes a short 3 page starter adventure. I'm hoping to playtest that very soon but already have several ideas for a few digital adventures for the site. Like most of my work, the Sci-Fi Guidelines and the next few adventures will be free to download here at the site.

Lastly, I'm going to continue to work on a few nearly completed adventures for free download here. Once FoT is done, I'll try to complete 1 or 2 of those before working on the third book, "God Slayers". With the additional guest author work and a new series for 5E/TSRS coming in March, I'll be a bit busy! Enjoy!

December 15, 2014

False Promises is printed and shipping out today and tomorrow. If you bought one, it will be in the mail by tomorrow afternoon! Next up on my agenda is to upload the PDF copy to DriveThruRPG (RPGNow), then to reorganize the TSRS version for a super-limited print run, likely around 12-20 copies. Fine tuning of Fury of Thringalesh continues. I'm up to around 25 pages of triple spaced text - that should result in about the same number of pages as the first book (after editing and illustrations). I hope to have illustration desriptions out to Lucas in the next 2 weeks.

We playtested part two (Island of Blight) of the four part series Trail of the Serpent God last week and it went well. Playtesters liked the mystery and play elements - the testing revealed a few gaps in the story that I've got to adjust (the reason why we playtest!). This series will take the adventurers east into the jungles of Nolgur-Wul. Once I've wrapped up Fury of Thringalesh for print, I'll begin work on part three of this series.

Not too much else to report at the moment - just working hard on completing all the outstanding work. Enjoy!

December 1, 2014

Work continues on several fronts: After my first print proof of "False Promises" (part one), I've changed the cover to handle the spine issue (seen here: Photobucket Slideshow). I should have a new print proof in the next day or two - assuming it's clean, I'll get 60-65 printed up this week. Then I should be able to pack them up this weekend, and ship them all out early next week!

I'm completing part two of the "False Promises" series (layout and editing, preparing for illustrations), and I'm starting the rough draft of "God Slayers", part three of the FP series. I've decided that I will release parts two and three of the FP series through a couple of channels only (right here at my website, Facebook, and Acaeum). I expect "Fury of Thringalesh" to be ready for print in January, and "God Slayers" in March or April.

My rough draft of the TSRS Science Fiction variant is about 75% complete - it's being reviewed by three different playtesters right now. I hope to playtest it sometime in December/January when my work is completed. It takes the TSRS rules and adapts to the SciFi genre... the Blessed and Magical Arts training styles have been removed and replaced with Science and Psionics. New advanced missile weapons (pistols, rifles, etc.) have created a need for new combat mechanics. For example, advanced missile weapons have three types: aimed, burst, and spread - these resolve differently than your standard weapon in combat. Additionally, I've created the guidelines for starship creation and combat, mutations, and new species and foes. I'm very excited about the variants! My son Ben is already working on the Western variant, specifically with a weapon handbook.

While we complete the rough draft revisions and playtest the SciFi variant, I'll continue to write/complete the work that is outstanding: there are four adventures for TSRS that *NEED* to be completed - these are a priority for me over the next 3-6 months. I also have a solo adventure that I want to print for GenCon 2015 submission - it will be released for TSRS and D&D 5e - it will need to be completed by April or May to make the cutoff I believe.

There seems to be too much work for one person but this system is my passion and I love writing. I'm going to continue to write TSRS work (including D&D, AD&D and 5e D&D variants) as long as you all keep buying my work!

Wow. One more month to go and it's 2015. Can't believe it.

November 18, 2014

One week after taking orders for "False Promises", we've capped the print run to 60 copies. There will be a few left over with most going to paying customers. I'm sending the files off to the local printer today and should see a proof in the next 2 days. I'm hoping they can print a color background but if they can't we'll likely go with a glossy white cardstock. I really hope the local printer does a great job with these - with several more print runs in the next year, it would be great to support a local business (with the associated conveniences).

I attended a small CT convention this past weekend - EllisCon, in Danielson. It was a great little con, with more attendees than I would have expected. The focus was mostly on MTG and board games, and although I ran TSRS there, I really didn't get many players interested in FRPs... but it looks like the table for Pathfinder was relatively quiet too. I think the con attendees were really focused on many of the newer games, with a few old favorites: Star Wars X-Wing, Munchkin, Cards Against Humanity, MTG, and a few new card games I've never seen before (BigFootses?). It was fun to head out to the east side of the state for some gaming! And it was great to finally meet up with James Carpio! Next up will be AnonyCon in Stamford CT (if schedule permits) or TotalCon in February.

Well, time to get back at it. Until next time, enjoy!

November 12, 2014

The Kickstarter project for "False Promises" didn't reach its funding goal, but we're goint to print it anyway! Click this link for more details.

Other news: The writing for "Fury of Thringalesh" (part 2 of the FP series) is done but requires editing, art, and finished maps. We're on target for a January release. After the last KS misfire, I may only release this with the offline method - so, if you're ordering "False Promises" through this website, check back here for release dates and orders for part 2.

I'm trying out a local printer for my work - if they do a good job, I may print more books, including some of my past work. I'm also hoping to change some of my layouts to include old-school detachable covers, etc.

I'm 50% through the Science Fiction guidelines... this variant takes TSRS and adpats it to a Sci-Fi setting. This variant will be available as a free download once it is complete. My target release date is sometime 2015Q1... it needs a considerable amount of playtesting and editing before it will be available.

I've written an article entitled "Luck Beyond the Roll" for & Magazine that should be published in February/March 2015. The article is heavily focused on TSRS but has been adapted to fit any system, including d20 and d100 games. Watch for that article in their next issue!

I'm pausing my mobile MTG business for 2015 so that I can focus more on TSRS and Colossevm. I have a lot of unfinshed work in the pipeline that I really want to complete - it's seriously bugging me that I have incomplete software (that's so close to being done) and 4 adventures that are nearly finished. I will spend the next several months wrapping these things up. Check back here for updates! Until then, enjoy!

October 10, 2014

Although it may seem that I've been neglecting TSRS or ThrowiGames work, that's quite the contrary. I've been busy writing both adventure material and code for Colosseum, an internet game due out in 2015. Sometimes, the work effort isn't seen by those outside my immediate circle of family, players, and friends... this website is *supposed* to inform all about the progress on my work, and the delay in updating these pages was unintended. I'm back now and hope to continue what we started. Without further apologetic nonsense, here is the status of work:

"False Promises", the first part of a three part adventure series, is now complete. It has been written for Moldvay D&D and will be available on Kickstarter on October 10th at noon (EST). I will also print it for TSRS in December or January (see the download page in coming months for details). Part 2, "Fury of Thringalesh" will release on Kickstarter in December or January, again in Moldvay D&D format. Part 3 (title not finalized) will be available in March or April of 2015. Lucas Pandolfelli has provided his fantastic artwork once again:

Additional adventures are still in various stages of completion - I have too many started! I hope to return to work on these once the three part False Promises series is over. I also have two or three other adventures outlined for writing (for 2015). Check this page and the downloads page for details on all the outstanding work...

Two adventures are in development by independent authors - one adventure will take place in Lunramal while the other is a campaign setting on the 3rd "unknown" continent in the ThrowiGames world. Both will likely be available for download in early 2015. More details soon...

Lastly, work continues on Colosseum. Nearly all of the backend (database) code is as complete as possible, and front end work has started (this of course will introduce more back end work too). I should have a working prototype of the game by March 2015. I've purposely kept quiet about Colosseum so as not to get too many people excited; the industry can be unforgiving with respect to game release dates, and since I'm bootstrapping this game and TSRS, I have to be reasonable about my spare time and when I can get the work finished. Things are moving well but there is quite a bit to do, and TONS of testing to complete.

Until next time, enjoy!

April 21, 2014

When your work life and your personal life both increase their demand on your time, what slides off the list for awhile? Hobbies, of course. My hobbies are writing TSRS and running mobile MTG events... and I'm still running MTG events every month. TSRS work has definitely fallen off since early February. I've done a little bit of work on it but I'm really not putting in the same effort as I did in 2012/2013. There's just not enough time in the week for everything! That being said, I've completed about 50% of the starting campaign adventure "False Promises", EC2 (TSRS2211). Why have I moved away from the other three in the works? Well, my players wanted to start playing again, and they know those other mods. A new series was needed, so I started this one. I'm not going to say too much about it (since my players may read this thread), but it's a 5 part series meant to take 4-6 adventurers from starting PR24 (easy) to PR42 (difficult). they will face things they've never faced before... We began our campaign last week, you can read the details of each session here. Each part of this series should be available for download a few weeks after it is completed by the group.

For the next few months, I can't promise more than the "False Promises" series. Work and life are just too chaotic right now. Take care and enjoy!

January 31st, 2014

January has been a busy and productive month! Where do I start?

The TSRS All-in-One Guide Kickstarter books (hardcover and softcover) have been printed and are now sitting at my home awaiting shipment to KS backers. I'm sending out surveys today to get addresses so that I can pack and ship these nicely produced books out early next week. PublishingExpress (softcovers) and BookBaby (hardcovers) did an amazing job printing these guides, and both shipped them out to me much faster than I expected! The print runs are 35 copies of the softcovers and 46 copies of the hardcovers - I have only a few spare copies of each to limit the runs to a small number. Our target delivery date to backers was March - we'll beat that easily.

The All-in-One Guide is likely the last major revision/production of the Core guidelines for a while. I'm not planning any major additions to the Fantasy theme in the near future besides a few odds and ends (e.g. Falling damage). There are a few more books to produce for the Core line but those are on hold for the time being. There are a few things I'd like to start/finish in 2014: 1) finishing the 3 adventures started last year, "In Defense of Thuil", "The Evil Within", and "Walking Dead in to Umfall" - they are each between 50 to 75% completed; 2) publish all current TSRS adventures to LuLu (for print copies); 3) 2014 Kickstarter - a digest sized boxed set for B/X [not for TSRS] in honor of D&D's 40th anniversary; 4) complete the special crossover GenCon module (AD&D and TSRS) "The First Annual Minecart Race"; 5) and if there is time, begin work on the TSRS Variant Guide (extends the core guidelines to Westerns, Science Fiction, Horror, and Espionage). A monumental task.

As mentioned above, I'm hoping to publish all current (and future) adventures to LuLu so that players can have the books printed professionally. I'm still working on the conversion of the first adventure; LuLu has some interesting formatting requirements that other publishers (like the ones I used for my KS work) don't have. This makes it hard to get them out there for printing. If this gets too difficult, I may switch up vendors (if I can find another print-on-demand company). More on this in the next few weeks.

On a different front, the Nomad Gaming part of the business (mobile MTG events) is starting to get busier. We've had a steady number of players each FNM event with the last turnout (January) being pretty good. We have two BNG events planned for February - things are looking good! You can find more information about my mobile game store business at

Until next time, enjoy!

December 28, 2013

As this time every year, I think about how fortunate I have been and what we've accomplished. Here's a look back:

(1) We put out several guides and adventures in 2013, (2) the TSRS Core Guidelines book was nominated for a GenCon ENnie, (3) I made the trip to Indy for GenCon and met some wonderful RPG authors, artists and collectors - namely Frank Mentzer, and Tim Kask, (4) had the privilege of working with an amazing artist - Lucas Pandolfelli, (5) started a mobile game store, selling RPGs and MTG supplies, along with setting up Friday night MTG events, (6) launched a Kickstarter project that met goal! There are many more successes outside of Throwigames of course, but these are the relevant highlights to TSRS and NomadGaming.

I'm very thankful for my children, my loving wife (who edits nearly all my work), my employer for believing in my strategic vision to advance IT in our company, my good friends, my collector buddies at Acaeum, TSRS players for playing my system and spreading the word, and my extended family. All of you have helped me accomplish my goals and succeed in what I did this year! Thank you!

Next week, I'll post what's next for TSRS and revise the delivery timelines for upcoming work as necessary. Stay tuned, and enjoy!

December 9, 2013

Thanks to many backers, the TSRS All-in-One Guide Kickstarter project is fully funded! In less than 2 weeks, I'll send the print counts to both printing companies for the soft and hard covers needed for all backers. I'll also send orders out for the supplies (boxes, envelopes, labels, etc.) so that I can ship the books out once they are in. Although I have a ship date of April 2014, I believe I'll have the books out to folks a month or two early, as long as the printing companies print them quickly. I'm extremely excited about this project being funded! Additionally, I may run a celebratory game session at a CT game store (name to be announced) in January/February - I'm likely to have some giveaways with me for players.

In other news, I'm behind schedule with my adventure releases - my primary gig has been exceptionally demanding and I've been working a lot of extra hours. I hope to catch up after the holidays, as long as the work schedule dies down. I'm so close to finishing three of these adventures! Keep your eyes open for new releases as they become available!

High level design of the multi-level megadungeon is nearly complete. I'm leaning toward a double release, i.e. a version for TSRS and a version for B/X. I may offer the B/X version as a Kickstarter in mid-2014. I might even release it as a boxed set, maybe digest sized to honor the original D&D books/sets. Nothing is decided yet, I'm just working out some of the high level parts right now. I've talked to a high school alum about cover art and he might be able to help out - he is a well known fantasy artist (freelanced for Wizards, with artwork for D&D and MTG) and if the timing is right, could add some work to the project.

Well, 2013 is closing. Thanks to all of you who have supported TSRS, both with the Kickstarter and by downloading and playing the system. I love writing games and as long as you all keep asking for more, I'll keep doing it! Happy Holidays and enjoy!

November 19, 2013

The TSRS All-in-One Guide Kickstarter project is LIVE! Check it out here: TSRS Kickstarter Project and here. There are a limited number of copies available, so don't delay in pledging. For the next 30 days, I'll double post updates here and on the KS page (except for next week - I'm in FL and will only update the KS page). When I get back from sunny Orlando, I'll try to complete at least two more adventures, while also making my existing pdfs available in print at It's going to be a busy month!

It's funny how this whole system started with the rediscovery of my notes early last year. In the same box, I also found a multi-level megadungeon that I'm thinking about rewriting for next year... keep your eyes and ears open for news in March/April. I still have other work that I want to get done before that epic task, you can see my release schedule here.

If you arrived here via Kickstarter, you're probably looking for the downloads page. You can find the link at the top of the page or click here to go right to it. You're probably asking why I'd develop a Kickstarter for product that I give away here. Well, it will always be free electronically at, but the Kickstarter is for collectible, print copies. If you are like me, you like to have printed materials in hand. That's why there is a Kickstarter. Whether it's digitial or print, enjoy!

November 12, 2013

Many of you know that I recently started a mobile gaming business which has consumed much of my time over the last few months. Also, I've been putting the finishing touches to the first TSRS Kichstarter, the All-in-One Guide. These two things have really filled up my free time, slowing down my release schedule. Well, things have picked up recently and I've been getting some good work done! All but the Kickstarter video is complete for the All-in-One Guide project. I had a video but decided to redo it after some feedback (you know who you are, and you can stop laughing now). Once the new video is done, I'll launch the KS. The realistic start date now looks like mid-November. Also, I've nearly completed the first moderate difficulty solo adventure, Lair of the Goblin King Grasnhak-Kul! The release schedule indicates November 15th, and we should meet that. I have to finish the last edits and one player handout, and it will be ready for download within a couple of days.

Once the Kickstarter launches, I'll devote more time to completing the adventures. I have four adventures more than 75% completed - I just need to finish the darn things! I've also decide to put my entire adventure line on to make them available for print. Yes, they will still be available here for free as a PDF, but for those who want professionally printed books, they will finally be available. I will start uploading them to in the next couple of weeks. I haven't decided if I'll have the main guides available in the same manner yet. At the moment, I'm not thinking that I will. I definitely will not have the All-in-One Guide available in any format after the Kickstarter ends. This will be a one time offering! Well, back to writing, I have two or three adventures to finish before the end of the year. Enjoy!

October 3, 2013

Where did September go??? Wow, the last few weeks went by so quickly. Between my day job, family, a new mobile game business, and TSRS (note how TSRS was last), I've been flat out all month. The good news is that I finally finished the Terra Minor World Guide, available for download here. I'm very happy with the finished product and hope that you will be too! All of the adventures that I write for TSRS will take place in this world. Also, I've updated the Product Release page with new timelines for upcoming product. You will note that the Kickstarter is nearly ready to go live, so keep your eyes and ears out for that announcement.

A few of you have asked what tool I used to build the dungeons in 'Crypt of Mandazed' (ES1). Surprisingly, it was not CC3 (although I like their software, it is a slow process to use) but a freeware online tool at This site was offline for many months but now it is back! It's easy to use and can take just a few minutes to build out many maps. I know I'll go back to it for more color mapping. Thanks to the diligence of my son Ben for finding it had returned (I had just about given up on it).

There is a lot of work in the coming months, so watch for the new releases. Enjoy!

August 26, 2013

Our first Magic Guide, Res Magicus, is finally available for download! This guide provides several simple magical item suggestions and examples for GMS and players. Our next guide, Res Magicus II, will feature only unique items, specific to the world of Terra Minor. RSII should be ready by year's end. I'm finalizing the map for the Terra World guide, our next product for release in September. The entire guide is written and only needs the final inked maps - I'm holding this document up until I'm happy with the maps! This guide is also needed for the September/October Kickstarter project for the All-in-One guide (discussed several times on this page). I really have to get these maps finished for the Kickstarter!

Once I finish the maps and get the Terra Minor guide out (and while the KS project is in the approval stages), I'll return my focus to the four adventures already in mid-development: 'The Great Minecart Race' (TSRS2105 D1 - GenCon 2014 submission candidate), 'Lair of the Goblin King Grasnhak-Kul' (TSRS2002 MS1), 'The Evil Within' (TSRS2102 E2), and 'In Defense of Thuil' (TSRS2201 TSC1) - not quite in that order. I'm also planning to have a special printing of 'The Great Minecart Race' - this will be a first edition version (old AD&D) and will likely be for sale at the OSR booth at Gencon next year. Keep your eyes and ears open for that. That's it for now, enjoy!

August 21, 2013

Well, I've finally recovered from my trip to GenCon. What a wonderful, yet exhausting adventure! I got to meet many online friends for the first time, and played several different RPGs and card games. I also purchased "a few" books for my collection while I was there (the live auctions with Frank and Tim are a blast!). Although TSRS did not win an ENnie, it was a great experience and an honor to be nominated. Unfortunately, silver and gold winners in my category neglected to show up to receive their awards. Hmm. I plan to enter two or three products next year!

So, what's next for us? Quite a bit actually. I'm preparing to release two products next week (mentioned a few times in recent posts): The Terra Minor Guide and Res Magicus. both have survived editing and just need a layout cleanup before they can be released. I'm also making a few, last minute adjustments to the world map before release. Both these books will be part of the Kickstarter All-in-One guide, planned for late September or early October. While the KS is live, I'll finish up two adventures that are in mid-development (they were on hold while I was completing the KS content). Early in 2014, the Variant guide should be close to completed - this guide adapts the current FRP guidelines for use in Westerns, Sci-Fi, Horror, and Espionage. After that, there is plenty to work on, but the order of releases may change for next year's competitions. Check the Release Schedule page often for details.

Most importantly, thanks to all that voted for TSRS this year, and to those who bought my rulebook at GenCon! Enjoy!

July 22, 2013

Voting is now open! Please vote for TSRS in the category of Best Free Game! Here is the link to the ENnies voting page. Put a "1" in the Throwigames Simple Roleplaying System for Best Free Game (if you feel it deserves it, of course). Thank you for all your support!

July 18, 2013

That's right, you read it correctly! TSRS has been nominated for 'Best Free Game' at this year's GenCon ENnie awards! Starting July 22nd (through July 31st), voting for your favorite submission will be open to the public; I encourage all of you who enjoy and play TSRS to vote! Maybe, we can just win this competition! I hope to have more details in the next couple of days with respect to voting - where, when, how, etc. For now, here is a link to the Gencon ENnies page: Nominees page. Remember, TSRS is under the 'Best Free Game' category.

The first magic guide, Res Magicus is nearly complete. All content is written and is undergoing the last edits. As I usually do, I'l publish it first with limited art content and at some point later, I'll have art added. I know Lucas would like to draw some cool magical items for the guide, but I'm reserving my capital for the upcoming Kickstarter (later in the post). The guide covers basic magical items, randomization methods, identification detail, and a few unique items. TSRS encourages GMs to create their own magical items so this guide is really just a helpful starter. A second Res Magicus for unique items and artifacts is planned for 2014.

The Terra World Guide is completely written and edited but the maps are incomplete. If you've read about the New England weather this summer, then you know that it's been very hot and humid for weeks; my house isn't air conditioned, so working on maps at night after my day job is near impossible. I hope to complete the inking of the penciled maps soon! In the meantime, I'm going to update the community pages with missing deity information and other Terra tidbits.

My Kickstarter plan is coming together. I've completed the project plan and have begun sketching out the video. Yes, we'll be doing a video! I'm not sure how it will come out but I'm looking forward to it. My daughter Emily will film and edit it for us (she has more skill than her father in this area). We're targeting sometime next week for the filming. I hope to launch the KS sometime between August 2nd and August 14th (before I leave for GenCon). Keep your eyes out for TSRS in print at Kickstarter! Enjoy!

June 29, 2013

Well, it's official. I've decided to develop an All-in-One TSRS Guide Kickstarter! I've just put the finishing touches on the financial plan, organizing the stretch goals and add-ons, so that it is the best deal for backers without losing my shirt. If you've never done this exercise before, let me tell you it's an interesting process. I have a financial background with large corporate organizations (IT related project plans and departmental budgets) and had to apply many of the principles once used there to this plan. I can see how many people with Kickstarter projects have fallen down - without tightening the financial screws, there can be a huge gap between what you think you can pull off and what actually happens.

I've said that TSRS is and always will be free. So what gives with this Kickstarter? Well, the entire system is still free. I'm producing an All-in-One Guide for two reasons: 1) it allows further brand recognition through a well established and popular channel. Many people back RPG Kickstarters and by doing one myself, it allows me to reach greater numbers of players. 2) Combining several guides in to one book lets me produce a hard cover (if we hit the associated stretch goal), something I've always wanted to do. Plus, I love print copies of RPGs; I hope others do too. All the individual guides continue to be free on the website, even once the Kickstarter begins. However, the All-in-One Guide will not be available in PDF form but only in print. Let me say it again: The individual guide pdfs will remain free on this site. All my work produced in digital form will remain free. Anything I want to print will be sold to cover the printing costs.

So, when does the Kickstarter project begin? My target is start the project by July 20th. I still have to finish the last three to four pages of the Res Magicus, and have four maps to complete for the Terra Minor guide (both will be in the All-in-One guide). Lucas just completed the art for Lusus Naturae IV (available here for download right now) - all four monster guides are in the All-in-One as well, so this art was crucial to the KS. Also, with GenCon running from August 15th to the 18th, I wanted the project to end *after* I got back, not during it. There will be more details in the coming weeks with respect to the All-in-One guide and its contents.

I've got a lot of work to do in the next week. Until then, enjoy!

June 17, 2013

Free RPG Day at Fantasy Realms in Pittsfield, MA was a blast! I was one of a handful of GMs running an RPG and had 6 players at my table! Before I forget, special thanks to Tim, Andrew, Brian, Matt, Ben, and Riley for their participation in the event. They were able to get through five of the nine Mannath mysteries and fared quite well. I didn't expect to play as long as we did (an epic six hours!) and we lagged a bit towards the end (we skipped lunch, I think everyone was getting hungry and tired by 5pm), but all in all, it went well. As promised, the Mysteries in Mannath adventure has been uploaded here. Also, a special thanks to James, owner of Fantasy Realms - he's let me run my game system two years in a row at this event! It's great when your local game store supports guys like me. Again James, thanks!

Well, what's next? Quite a bit, actually. I should have Res Magicus out in early July - this is the basic magic guide for this system. Art for Res Magicus will follow later in the year, after I complete a few more adventures. I'm pushing hard to have "The Great Minecart Race" ready for GenCon in August. I plan on printing this one and will need Lucas' talents again. In the next several months a few other adventures will show up, as well as the Terra World Guide. After that, we'll tale a breath to see if we're ready for the Kickstarter I've been thinking about. Until next time, enjoy!

June 14, 2013

Although my last post was several weeks ago, I've not been idle on the TSRS front. Just last night, I completed Mysteries in Mannath. Over the last week, I finalized the layout and added art and additional text to fill gaps in the pages. After one final edit, it's done! Writing the adventure and drawing the maps are the easy part - completing the layout is actually harder. Moving text, maps and art around to produce a clean, final product seems to take a long time. I plan on running MiM tomorrow at Fantasy Realms for Free RPG Day; I'll post MiM on the site after the event. Look for it here on Sunday!

The first round of edits is complete on the Terra World Guide. While working on those, I'm also drawing the world maps (large and detailed sections). I've decided to do more and more of the cartography freehand; even though I have very expensive cartography software, I can never quite get it right. Drawing my own maps by hand just feels good. Once the maps and re-edits are done, the Terra World Guide will be posted - likely in the next 1-2 months.

Lucas is nearly there on the last image for Lusus Naturae IV. Once that's completed, the four monster guides will finally be completed! We'll take a short break on art while I focus on lots of wrtiting (see next section) but I will need his talents again for Res Magicus I and II, as well as the first printed adventure, The Great Minecart Race.

I'm planning on making the pilgrimmage to Indianapolis in August this year for GenCon. The TSRS Guidelines have been submitted for an ENnie under the 'Best Free RPG' category. Unlike the other convention awards, I'm going whether I'm selected or not. I plan on printing a small run of a very exciting adventure I've written called the Great Minecart Race, and bringing it with me for trade and sale. This adventure will truly test the limits of the system and the adventurers! I'll need a bit of art for it but have to finish the writing first. I think the writing will be finalalized (before first edit) by end of June.

Other work in progress: The Evil Within, Welcome to the Swamp, and Walking Dead in to Umfall are all in various stages of writing and re-writing. That's all for now, I'll see some of you tomorrow at Free RPG Day, and to everyone, enjoy!

April 30, 2013

My PC finally returned yesterday! Hopefully, after I've reinstalled everything (tonight) and get it running again, I can return to work on all the outstanding items on the release schedule. It's very difficult to do more than mapping by hand and note-taking when you are completely without a computer! I will start by scanning the hand-drawn maps for "Mysteries in Mannath" and adding them to the current layout. This adventure will likely be ready to publish within the week! Other hand-drawn maps for the World Guide and a text only Res Magicus I will follow soon after.

Lucas has completed two of the last four monster images for the final Lusus Naturae (IV). So far, the Giant and Floating Eye pics are excellent! He has the Dragon and Demon left to do. Once done, I'll publish the final monster guide with art. I'm hoping that Lucas will be ready for more work; Res Magicus I and two adventures will need illustrations soon. One of the adventures may get printed for Free RPG Day (and likely will be in my backpack at GenCon in August) and will need a few choice images.

The latest installment of the Community Submissions book is now available for download. Two additional guidelines from JeremyK and ElijahL offer some interesting variations to the core system. Check them out here. Well, that's all for today. Hopefully, that darn PC will be finally fixed and ready for work!

April 12, 2013

Last night, we started our new TSRS campaign in the the world of Terra Minor. Adventure notes can be found here. After a slow start, it went well. We got side-tracked a few times with side jokes and elaborate video game references, but the session went well. We learned that there is an optimum design for Combat - Missile adventurers (the ranged adventurer brought down a majority of foes with his bow before anyone else could get involved) and that a Stealth trainee can still fight when needed. The melee and destruction specialists saw little action in the first night but I suspect in the coming session their skills will be invaluable!

This group is playtesting the first continuing campaign series adventure, "In Defense of Thuil". This adventure takes place in southern Wynhelm and will eventually take the group in to the jungles of Nolgur-Wul. This should be published in the 2nd quarter of 2013. While we're playing through the first three books of the campaign series, I hope to publish several one-off adventures that are in progress now. I've been talking about "Mysteries in Mannath" for ages now and it is nearly ready. Another computer mishap has slowed me down (actually sent the system back to the manufacturer for repair as I've lost 2 drives); when this system died, a few of the images created with Campaign Cartograhper hadn't been backed up and were lost. I've decided to recreate the images by hand using a few techniques learned from the Cartographers Guild. So far, they look great. I hope to have "Mysteries in Mannath" finalized this month.

Work continues on the other in-progress items: Res Magicus I rewrites, "The Evil Within" finalization, and Lusus Naturae IV artwork. Quite a bit is going on! Enjoy!

March 26, 2013

A new version of Lusus Naturae III is now available for download. This version includes three excellent illustrations from Lucas Pandolfelli. The monsters in this book are quite nasty, ranging from PR 25 to 40. Lucas will begin work on the four images for Lusus Naturae IV in the next week or so. Original illustrations for demons, dragons, floating eyes and giants will fill the empty spots in the last monster guide. Is this truly the last monster guide? It's unlikely; I'm planning a special foe guide for 2014 that will inlude unique variants of creatures from the first four books as well as gods and immortals.

"Mysteries in Mannath" is still not finished but is very close. Several editorial rewrites and additional maps have prevented me from releasing it on schedule (or even close to schedule), but it is nearly ready. This multi-adventure book is close to 32 pages in length and is full of illustrations and maps. Work on three other adventures goes slowly while E1 is completed.

I'm holding off on the Kickstarter "all-in-one" project; there is still so much more work to complete before I'm ready to commit to a project of that magnitude. There are still two magic guides to illustrate and finalize, as well as the complete writing of the GM and Battle guides. At my current pace, it's likely that these 4 books will be completed in the fall. As we get closer to that point, I'll look at the Kickstarter again.

The community section has a new section on the gods of Terra Minor. Over the next week or two, I'll detail gods from each province. Enjoy!

March 8, 2013

Progress on TSRS products and storylines is a bit slow right now, with focus prioritized on many other different areas of my life. Don't worry, I've begun to shift a bit more time back to Throwigames FRPG work. So where am I at?

I'm still finishing up the last map for "Mysteries in Mannath" - just adding the finishing touches and sizing. The adventure booklet is truly done. I just have to put that last darn nail in! That should show up for download in the next week. Lucas has finished the art for Lusus Naturae III and once I've paid him for it, he'll begin the much anticipated work on LN IV. This last monster guide has the best creatures; dragons, demons, giants, and liches. I know he's looking forward to the work he'll get to do on these beasties, and I can't wait to see it. As a teaser for LN III, I'm putting his fantastic work on the Troll at the end of this blog post.

I've nearly completed the first draft of "The Enemy Within", an adventure I wrote several years ago for d20. Porting in to TSRS was easy but I found that a few of the areas needed rework. That goes well. "Welcome to the Swamp" is underway as well. A new adventure that I plan to print up especially for GenCon called "The Great Minecart Race" is also underway. This short, one-evening adventure really tests the boundries of the TSRS system and the players themselves. Look out for that one in the coming months.

On a discouraging note, my TSRS Guidelines were not selected for the 3 Castles Award at NTRPGCon. I was really hoping for a better showing there but I was competing against Goodman Games, the Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerors of Hyperborea, and a few other, well-known RPG developers (Jeff Dee of TSR-past, and James Maliszewski of Grognardia fame). I have some thoughts on the NTRPGCon selection process but I'll keep those to myself.

February 21, 2013

Well, that was a longer break than anticipated. When you work on two different "side projects", your normal day job and try to spend some time with the family, it gets a bit hectic. Here's a quick update on what's going on with TSRS:

We had a bit of website downtime recently... It appears that you all have been downloading the heck out of the PDFs and I have blown out my monthly limit. I've upgraded the site service plan so this shouldn't happen again. I'm still amazed at how many documents have been downloaded to date!

I'm working on several world and adventure maps for the new campaign starting next month. These adventures will eventually get published as the TSRS Continuing Campaign Adventures, 'C' series. The first up is "In Defense of Thuil", a starting adventure that takes place in southern Sivona. As my campaign group (aka playtesters) completes the adventures in each booklet, I will revise, update and publish it on the site for others to use. The map making portion is the hardest part - I'm still a novice with the Cartographer products, especially CC3 (City Designer and Dungeon Designer are much easier to use). I'm also critical of my own work and throw away maps that aren't just right. But, they are coming along and nearly done.

"Mysteries in Mannath" is nearly done after several edits and map redesigns, with a couple of the images from Lucas thrown in as well. There are enough scenarios and action for a several nights of gaming. Other adventures from the campaign series as well as stand alones like "The Evil Within" and "Welcome to the Swamp" will follow soon after. Lucas is working on the handful of images left for Lusus Naturae III and IV and should be done in the next couple of months.

Finally, I've completed a Kickstarter outline. After much review, I found it hard to produce a TSRS boxed set: it was not cost effective and would likely cost me a bunch of money to print, build and ship. I have decided to go with an "all in one" book instead. This would be a softcover book containing 6-10 guidelines and manuals, with additional adventure scenarios added depending on stretch goal achievement. Several upgrade options are available to enhance the book, e.g. you can pay extra to have the book upgraded to hard cover. There will be more information on this Kickstarter in the next month. Enjoy!

February 6, 2013

The 2nd monster guide, Lusus Naturae II, now has illustrations and is available for download. Lucas has down a great job again - the book looks great! He's going to start on the next guide shortly; this one is a bit smaller and will only require a few images. I'm very excited for illustrations of an ogre, troll, and a wight. I'm super excited about images for Lusus Naturae IV! Lucas will get to put his pencil to the task of dragons, giants, and demons! Wonderful!

Three of the six territories of Ornaklia have been highlighted in the community sections with three more to go in the next week. Lunramal, the desert lands is up next. After that, I'll detail the southern jungles of Nolgur-Wul, and wrap up with a little information on the unexplored territory of the far east. The details provided on the Community page are just excerpts from the larger, Terra Minor Guide, available for download this quarter. Enjoy!

February 1, 2013

I'm changing my normal pattern of posting every week by adding a new post only a few days later! Well, I don't really have too much news but I thought I'd stop in and add a few things. First off, Lucas has finished the last of the art for Lusus Naturae II. I've already integrated his work in to the document and will post it in the downloads page once I've paid him for his work. Yes, you can't have it until I do my part and paying Lucas for his time and talents is my part indeed. I've also added a new thread on the Community Page for Terra Minor, specific to the territory of Sivona. Over the next several days, I'll add content for the other four provinces, and may even shed some light on the Untamed Lands.

I'm supposed to receive my new hard drive from Vendor X no later than next Friday so that I can fix my brand new PC. Hopefully, if everything goes according to plan (or luck), I'll have all the software resinstalled and running by the weekend after. The last two maps for "Mysteries in Mannath" should get completed by the end of that week (2/17), inserted into the adventure and published a few days after that. Let's hope anyway. In the meantime, I'm working on the Terra Minor Guide (TSRS1501) and "The Evil Within", E2 (TSRS2102). E2 has all but one map already and needs additional content added. It's really almost done. Well, off to do family things... can't let that part of my life slip! Enjoy!

January 29, 2013

Hello again! It's been a busy week, with a lot of focus on both TSRS and Colosseum. I'm writing content and code (respectively) for both systems every day and although I'm excited about the progress, I'm a bit tired. Here's an update for TSRS: I've finally replaced my trusty old Dell PC for a brand new, powerful system... that arrived defective. This new system (the company name remains anonymous, unless of course they don't fix the issue) came with hard disk issues, namely bad sectors and corruption. I'm waiting for the replacement drive now. Why is this an update for TSRS? Well, I can't get to my mapping software, it's not installed on the new system. The old system? I knew when I finally shut it down, it wouldn't restart. And it won't. No mapping software means I can't finish the last two maps for "Mysteries in Mannath". So, I decided to complete both Lusus Naturae III and IV instead. They are both available for download today. They, as well as Lusus Naturae II, are without art. Lucas is on the last image for LNII and should begin on the next batch for LNIII and IV shortly.

I've also posted a few threads for Terra Minor in the Community Forum section. This content is extracted from the Terra Minor Guide, underway currently. The new campaign series adventures start soon and take place in this new world. My playtest group will play through the adventures and world first; I'll post final products thereafter.

As for Colosseum, I'm mostly writing administrative code for backend functions and PHP delivery code. Although mundane and not very challenging, this code is necessary to drive the site and behind the scenes processing. It is a breath of fresh air however. With the really hard code behind me, it's nice to write easy code for a change. More on this to come. Have a great week everyone, and enjoy the new books!

January 21, 2013

I can't believe we're already in to the 4th week of January! This month is moving quickly. Well, a couple of updates: In honor of my son's 15th birthday, I've created the first Community Submissions document with his three ideas, found on the Downloads page. His optional guidelines for failed attacks and DR checks, and the experience idea for Health increases are good ones. They may provide your game with a few interesting options. Happy Birthday Ben!

I've also uploaded the last of the adventurer sheets, the Construct. The Advanced Guidelines suggest ways for powerful spellcasters to create constructs like Golems or mechanical-like structures. The Construct Sheet (TSRS1309) is useful for tracking attributes, body location DP, and other abilities given to the creature. You can find it on the Downloads page as well.

Starting at the end of January, I'll begin detailing the campaign world I've been building for the last year. Descriptions of the world will begin on the western edge of a large land mass and over the next few months, I'll move eastward. I'll provide a few maps, major cities (and territories), race information and other interesting facts about the world I call Terra. Most of my posts for this thread will take place on the new Community Forum page, found here. Look out for these posts in the next week or two! Have a great day everyone, and enjoy!

January 15, 2013

Hello again! It's been a couple of weeks since my last post but sadly, I have nothing too exciting to report. Progress continues on the January releases (Mysteries in Mannath, Construct Sheet, Lusus Naturae III (and LN II with art), and the three user submissions wrapped up in a nice document). Life has been exceptionally busy so it all goes slowly. It is likely that I'll publish all the releases within a single week at this rate, probably in the last few days of January. Lucas has completed two more images and is closing in on the six needed for LN II.

Well, it's back to work for me! Happy gaming all!

December 31, 2012

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year from Throwigames! It has been a good (but busy) few weeks with family and friends - however, that does translate into minimal progress on books due this month. I've pushed the schedule into January as I'm not going to make it by the time the ball drops! Seriously, I'd rather not rush these adventures and guidelines. They will get published next month. Please bare with me.

I've started roughing out the costs and designs of a TSRS Boxed Set. I may use Kickstarter as a way to get the word out and raise the funds necessary to put it all together. My plan is to have the Core Guidelines, Advanced Guidelines and four Lusus Naturae bound as one complete book. The boxed set will also have at least two adventures, likely ES1 and E1 (or E2). Kickstarter encourages "stretch goals"; right now, I think additional adventures and custom dice would be nice upgrades in the boxed set. More on the details later. Of course, a boxed set is impossible if I don't finish the work! So, I'm back to writing tonight! Again, Happy New Year and be safe!

Lucas has finished a couple of images for the Lusus Naturae II book; I'm posting them here as a preview.

A Queen and her soldier...

Nasty scorpion. Looks hungry...

December 19, 2012

Wow, that was a quick couple of weeks. I've been very busy with my day job; this has made it hard to be productive at night, the time I spend on TSRS development. I'm making progress but it does go slowly. Here are a few updates to mention...

Illustrations for the second monster guide (Lusus Naturae II) continue. Lucas has one of the six completed with a second in a rough draft state. Both images look great! I really like his work and hope that he'll stay on to develop images for all four monster guides.

I've entered the Core Guidelines in a 3rd competition, the Origins Award. I found that they had extended the deadline to December 15th, and managed to get the print copies to them in the nick of time. I'm not sure how I'll do in this one (fewer categories than the ENnies) but it's worth a shot. They haven't posted entries yet but you can check the website to see more about the award and the Origins Game Fair next year.

Development of a community page is coming along. I'm more focused on the completion of actual TSRS products but I know the website needs more of a community focus. I hope to have a new page with community interaction (Q&A, etc.) up by end of January. Finally, "Mysteries in Mannath" is nearly complete and ready for edit. It should get posted in the next week. Here is the Mannath town map, created in City Designer 3.

December 4, 2012

Although I try to do my best when editing my work, I occasionally end up with errors. Spelling and grammar issues annoy me but I can generally live with those. When the mistake is with game mechanics or table data, I'm really disappointed. Well, the print copy of the Core Guidelines has two small issues. They aren't extremely painful but an Errata sheet was needed anyway. You can now find this Errata sheet on the Downloads page. A new version of the Core Guidelines PDF (v1.29) has also been loaded with the fixes.

Work continues on both the adventures due to release this month. With much of the CC3 tool learning behind me (well, at least the basics), maps are much quicker to make; I can now spend more time on the adventures themselves. "The Evil Within" differs from "Mysteries in Mannath" in that it will come with four pregenerated adventurers, use of which is of course, optional. These four adventurers are part of the storyline so if they aren't used by the players, the GM should incorporate them as necessary. I had started writing "The Evil Within" for D&D 3rd Edition, then 3.5, then 4th before I finally stopped. I had hoped to submit it to Goodman Games for publication but never quite finished it. When I picked it up again last week, I realized it was more than 80% done. This adventure will likely be between 32 and 48 pages when completed.

December 3, 2012

Two new docs are now available in the Downloads page: Lusus Naturae II (without art) and the User Rules Submission Guidelines. I've pushed the User Adventure Submission Guidelines to later in December because, quite frankly, I'm not sure what I want in the guidelines. Obviously, I want users to submit their adventures in whole with all the pages, maps and tables necessary to play, but there are some design elements that I'd like to have included - even I have not released official TSRS adventurers in a consistent way yet. When I complete "Mysteries in Mannath", an adventure due to release this month, I should finally have landed on a format and style that will be used as a baseline for adventures going forward. The Submission Guidelines will likely follow this adventure.

What's so special about "Mysteries in Mannath"? Well, it's the first group adventure for TSRS. It is also a collection of the playtest scenarios used in the development of the TSRS Core Guidelines and Lusus Naturae I. Many of the playtesters will recognize many of the scenarios and actors. There are several encounters that each, should take only an evening of play (great for periodic play) but can be strung together as a starter campaign; Mannath is a small village that has several issues and they need help! This collection of mini encounters has a bit of everything: combat, puzzles, traps, and mysteries. All adventurer types should improve their attributes or gain new specializations by the end of the book.

"Mysteries in Mannath" is also the first TSRS adventure using the impressive Campaign Cartographer 3 software. Specifically, City and Dungeon Designer was used for all the maps. If you haven't seen this software, take a look. It's really amazing.

November 28, 2012

It has been a few weeks since I've posted anything here; I'm way over-due. Let's see, after my return from vacation last week, I've completed the first pass of Lusus Naturae II. It's the largest of the four monster guides and took longer than expected. It's in edit now and should be available (without art) for download by the end of the week. Next week, I'll contact Lucas (the artist from LS I) to discuss illustrations for this one.

I've moved a few of the November items out to December; It was unlikely that I'd finish them on time. I've also added additional items for release in 2013. My son has urged me to create variations of the Core Guidelines for different genres, e.g. Western, Sci-Fi, Espionage, and Horror games. After thinking about the system, I believe I can make those generes work with the Core Guidelines with little changes. Should prove interesting. The 2013 schedule is full!

I'm sending out the Core Guideline copies to NTRPGCon tomorrow or Friday. Hopefully, I have everything in line with the rules for their 2013 Three Castles Award. I plan on attending that conference if I'm up for the award; I'll probably have copies of one or more printed books for sale if I go. I will probably try to schedule a few game sessions too. Regardless of my 2013 ENnie award status (Gen Con), I plan on going to Indianapolis next year. It will be my first time to that convention - I think I'll stick to being a spectator/consumer/attendee and not focus on selling or playing.

November 6, 2012

What a busy day! Three different and exciting pieces of news. Firstly, the final Lusus Naturae I is now available for download! This latest version comes with illustrations, drawn by the very talented Lucas Pandolfelli,. I can't wait to see what he comes up with for Lusus Naturae II, due out later this month.

Secondly, I've decided to enter my Core Guidelines in to two RPG competitions in 2013. The Core Gudelines have already been submitted for 2013 ENnie consideration. When the time comes to vote, I hope you will all support Throwigames. I'm also submitting the Guidelines for a Three Castles Award, at the 2013 North Texas RPG Con. This is a great, old-school Con with many well-known, industry pioneers in attendance. I actually pushed to finish the Guidelines on time just to enter this competition.

Lastly, but arguably the most important of the three bits of news today, is that the printed copies of the Core Guidelines arrived at my home this afternoon! They are gorgeous! Those of you who are supposed to get a copy will see them soon. Have a great day everyone!

November 1, 2012

I've been averaging about one post per week so back to back posts on two consecutive days is pretty rare. I just wanted to let everyone know that the TSRS Advanced Guide is finally available for download! Although the 16 page book currently lacks art, I do plan to add a few pictures later. For now, I'm moving on to the two Easy category adventures releasing in November.

October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween All! Although the weather here has been mild compared to those to our south, we were without power for 2 days - this made it difficult to do any work on those items that are due very soon. Here is an update on a few things: the Core Guidelines have been printed and are on their way to CT. UPS is claiming delays in the midwest however, so I'll be lucky to see the books this week (my guess is that they'll arrive on Monday). The Advanced Guide is in the last edit and should be available for download tomorrow or Friday. The artist for the next version of Lusus Naturae I, Lucas Pandolfelli, has completed three of the four images. I thought I'd post his latest image here to give you all a sample of his work.

Work continues on E1 and E2 (Easy adventures) as well as Lusus Naturae II. I'm using several different mapping tools for my adventures but none of them are giving me the desired look for E1, "Mysteries in Mannath". I may have to handcraft the town map. Mixed feelings on that - I love the style of old roleplaying games of the '70s, where authors hand drew their maps, but modern technology provides us with tools to simplify our work... in some cases. The tools I have are very sophisticated yet, the learning curve is quite brutal. As a technology person by trade, I can generally figure out most software tools but drawing packages require graphic arts knowledge, which of course I do not have. Over the next few days, I'll try to figure out what the map of Mannath will look like. You may end up seeing a hand drawn map!

October 24, 2012

Just a quick but important update today: the Core Guidelines with art are now available for download! It was a longer road than expected but I can now say it's done. I'm very proud of the work put in to the final product; the artists did a great job and the last of the edits brought everything together. I've already submitted the order to the publishing vendor (to be announced later) for 75 first print copies. More than half are already allocated to family, friends and select playtesters, but a few will be left for anyone looking for a paper copy. Email me if you're interested.

While I'm waiting for the printing effort to complete, I'm busy reworking the Advanced Guide after first edit and putting time in to the first two Easy adventures. My style of working on several things at once is not always the best choice but I like to work on different aspects of one or more items each day. I think I'll hit my targets easy enough.

After giving it a little more thought, I decided to add art to the first Monster Guide, Lusus Naturae I. I've contacted an artist who is working on four images for the small guide. He's already completed the zombie illustration and it's great. I'm looking forward to the rest of the images! It's now likely that I'll add art to the other three monster books as well as the Advanced Guide at some point. All this art costs more than I intended to spend but it does give the work a feeling of completion. Until the next post, enjoy! - Thom

October 16, 2012

I'm behind schedule on the Advanced Guide and the final release of the Lusus Naturae I, both due out yesterday. Lusus Naturae I has been available for a few weeks; the final version has very few changes but is now available. The Advanced Guide is in edit now and should be available for download later this week. The artwork looks to be complete for the Core Guidelines - I'm putting the images in to the main document tonight. If everything goes well (sizing, etc.), the final Guidelines will be available in the next couple of days! Then it's off to the printer.

Work returns to the next couple of adventures, focusing on the group series, starting with "Mysteries in Mannath" and then "The Evil Within". "Mysteries in Mannath" will be a great starter mod for a group of players - it will contain several, loosely coupled mini-adventures that can introduce the game system to new players as well as provide opportunities for a few evenings of play. "The Evil Within" is a mod I've been writing on and off for several years but will finally be finished for TSRS. It's designed for 4 players (starting adventurers provided) and contains a good mixture of intrigue, puzzles, and combat. It will likely be the longest of my beginning mods - it should come in around 32 to 36 pages. This may be the first mod that has a bit of art as well.

Early in 2013, I'm considering building a TSRS boxed set that will contain the Core and Advanced Guidelines, the four Lusus Naturae, several experience and adventurer sheets, and two to three adventures. It's only an idea that I'm kicking around at the moment; it requires a bit more thought as well as the completion of the before mentioned books. More on this idea later.

October 9, 2012

I completed the first draft of "Another Knight Like This" this past weekend and I'm pleased how it turned out. The editing is complete and the adventure is now available for download (earlier than the target date of October 15th). I'm putting the finishing touches to the Advanced Guide this week so that it will be ready on time as well. The Advanced Guide provides information beyond the Core Guidelines - it expands on the simple ideas in the main book and offers new (optional) rules like movement, life creation, and undead animation. As with all the TSRS guidelines, these are optional; the system can be played with or without the Advanced book.

I'm still waiting on two images for the Core Guidelines... I can't wait for that to be completely done and printed! I plan on a first print run of 50-100 copies. The printing company has already been selected and contacted. They are just waiting on my final document to print them. I really hope to have everything wrapped up by end of week.

October 3, 2012

The art for the Core Guidelines is nearly complete. I expect to receive the final images, sized for their page locations, by end of day today. I should have the final guidelines complete by the weekend. I'm as anxious as you are to see the final version complete with art! That being said, if you are interested in a print copy, let me know soon. I'm not selling the copies for a profit, but if you'd like to cover the cost of printing and mailing, that would be nice. I plan on setting the first print run count at 100.

As mentioned in previous entries, I've begin work on two other adventures for October and I'm nearly done with the Advanced Guide. The Lusus Naturae I draft has been cleaned up and will be ready as a final product on October 15th. Lusus Naturae II will be next on the 'monster guide' list - this book is the largest of the four I plan to produce in 2012 (they have already been written but need revisions, edits and and maybe art). The target date for LS II is November 15th.

Off the subject of TSRS for a minute, I recently purchased a few out of print RPG books from a great company out in AZ, Wayne's Books. He has a massive selection of great priced books and delivers your order super-fast. He gave my site a shout-out on his Facebook page; he deserves the same from me. He has two sites: a sales site and a research site. I've used both and they are definitely worth visiting if you're looking for that hard to find RPG book! Thanks Wayne!

September 28, 2012

Crypt of Mandazed, an Easy Solo adventure, is now available! This module is a short, 4 page adventure designed for one player and one GM. It should take less than two hours to play through and is the prototype for my solo series. I'm still thinking about module layout and sections; after a couple more of these, I'm sure I'll have enough for the Submission Guidelines for 11/1. I'm working on DS1, Another Knight Like This next - this may seem out of order but I'm publishing the adventures with the most completed material first. Please be patient... everything listed on the product schedule will come out as close to the release date as possible. Heck, I'm 2 days early on ES1!

The art for the Core Guidelines should be done any day. I've validated image sizing one last time and hope to get the final products very soon. I'm already thinking about art for the Lusus Naturae I and the first full length adventure, E2 The Evil Within. Note: E1 Mysteries in Mannath will be a set of short encounters that may or may not have art (tbd).

Enjoy ES1, Crypt of Mandazed! If you play it, let me know what you like or don't like about it. And remember: once the submission guidelines are available, you can submit your adventures for use here at the site. I am looking forward to what you can dream up for this game system! Cheers!

September 24, 2012

The latest Core Guidelines revision has been loaded and is now available on the Downloads page. It was a very minor change in content but may be rather large in gameplay. Table 5-5 (bonuses to attributes, from 0 to 15) was modified - bonuses were reduced in the upper ranges. We found in game play that adventurers with extremely high attribute scores (specifically CO) were overpowering pretty difficult foes. These bonuses return in the attribute range of 16-18 (found in the upcoming Advanced Guide). The 3 Panel GM Screen was also updated - it had this table too.

I've seen all the art for the final version of the Core Guidelines and it looks great! I know the illustrators are working hard to meet the deadline of the end of the month. It will not be long now! Speaking of deadlines, I'm working hard to finish "Crypt of Mandazed" by the end of the month. It's going to be close. Well, that's all for now. Enjoy!

September 20, 2012

I've updated a few sections of the Downloads page today. You'll notice that I changed the release dates of the adventures and also grouped them differently. There are group adventures (for 2-4 players), solo adventures, and a continuing campaign series for 2013. This last series of adventures will be structured to be a continuing set of mysteries, puzzles and encounters meant to take starting adventurers up to PR 50 or beyond. I'm still designing the series - more on this later in the year.

I'm nearly ready for another full edit of the Advanced Guide. It has grown to nearly 12 pages (without art) and covers many of the interesting dilemmas facing GMs and players alike. I hope it helps provide additional guidelines beyond the core book. Although this guide isn't scheduled for download until mid October, I'm updating sections as they are encountered (during play-testing) or discussed.

Now, back to writing and revising the three adventures! Good night all!

September 19, 2012

Work continues on "Mysteries in Mannath", "Crypt of Mandazed", and "The Evil Within". Although the download page lists the order in which each will be available, I may revise the schedule depending on how much work each adventure requires. The length of each module is considerably different; the update and rewrites will really determine the order. For example, "The Evil Within" requires a more substantial restructuring than the "Crypt of Mandazed". "Mysteries in Mannath" needs to be completely written (it is mostly playtest notes and hand-drawn maps at this point). I also have my 2011 One Page Dungeon winning entry, "Another Knight Like This" to add to the list of adventures. I may revise the adventure list in the next few days.

I had hoped our Monday night game session would have been the start of a new campaign but two of our regular players were unavailable. We instead tested three high PR adventurers (PR49 or PR50) versus a dragon! They faced three separate dragon strengths (in 3 different encounters); the Lusus Naturae IV (to be released later this year) details the Young, Old and Ancient dragons. The adventurers faired well against the young dragon (as expected) but struggled when they faced the old dragon. The ancient dragon exterminated 2 of the adventurers in the first couple of rounds. They are nasty! The test indicated that higher attributes needed a bonus modification (i.e. reduction). A core guideline revision is underway and will available this weekend.

A third of the art for the Core Guidelines is complete... and the illustrations are excellent! I'm excited to add them to the core guidelines very soon. My deadline is fast approaching.

September 15, 2012

It's been a few days since my last update... Over the last week, I've been working hard on the first monster guide (Lusus Naturae I) and I'm glad to say that it's finished. The first draft is available at the download page! You'll find there aren't any illustrations yet - I stretched my art budget for the core guidelines so I'm going to wait a bit to add art to LNI. I probably will release all the monster guides without art just to get you the many TSRS foes to play with. Once done, I may bundle all the guides in to a single PDF with art. Still working on which way to go with that.

I have a few more things to put out by the end of September (E01 "Mysteries in Mannath", the Companion Sheet and printed Core Guidelines); I'll be working hard over the next few weeks to get those completed. More details next week. Also, we've scheduled a game session for Monday night with a few of the core playtesters - instead of testing guideline changes, we're actually just going to play! I can't wait. Have a great weekend all!

September 11, 2012

It's eleven years after the attacks in NYC and the Pentagon... This day always returns me to that fateful morning. I was on the street in NYC (working in Manhattan at the time) and actually witnessed the 2nd plane crashing into the World Trade Center South Tower. This experience itself was horrific enough but was made more personal when I found out days later that Chris Carstanjen, a former classmate and D&D club member in high school, was aboard the very plane I witnessed crashing into the WTC. In high school, Chris was a quiet but important member of our D&D club; he always urged us to try other games beyond D&D. He loved to explore different RPGs and often got us to try them out. I still remember a few of his Traveller and Twilight2000 sessions. He opened my mind to other game systems and helped me to look at them in a different way. You could say that my lifelong pursuit of finding and playing great RPGs is partly because of what he instilled in me and our club back in 1985. TSRS probably would not be here today if it wasn't for Chris. Thanks buddy, you won't be forgotten.

Work on the Lusus Naturae I goes well; it's more than the simple copy & paste exercise I thought it would be but it's coming along. It will be tough to meet the September 15th deadline but I believe I'll be done in time. Look for it on Saturday!

September 8, 2012

Core Guidelines Download Day! The guidelines are now available on the download page. These guidelines do not have any art yet - when the illustrators have finished their work, I'll embed the art in a new copy that should be available by the end of the month. In the meantime, enjoy the guidelines! Please email me with any questions you may have.

I cleaned up the Advanced Guide work last night and moved into the re-design of Lusus Naturae I. This was mainly a copy and paste exercise (the content was completed months ago) - I'm mainly playing with margins, font sizes and tables. This first monster guide will be available next weekend.

September 7, 2012

We're getting close to releasing the core guidelines! I'm cleaning up a few bits of wording in the last revised sections and should meet the schedule - the document (without art) will be available for download tomorrow. I'm really happy with the final product; the layout and content have come together very nicely. The illustrators are working away and I hope to meet the deadline for the final product with art! The printing company I've chosen to print up copies is really great to work with - the answer all my questions instantly and are ready to get printing. I'm looking forward to the final product in paper!

Later tonight, I'll continue with the Advanced Guide. I plan to start the section on magic item crafting and clean up some of the previous work on creating life, semi-life and undead. Once that is complete, I'll push the work off for editing - it's a logical stopping point. I may even have time to reorganize Lusus Naturae I (the first monster guide), the release date for the draft version (without art) is due in a week. I have already built all 4 monster guides but they are in a draft format and require some slight adjustments to the statistics. A busy night (and even busier weekend). Have a great evening everyone!

September 5, 2012

Not too much to report today. Last night, I did make good progress on the Advanced Guide. I tackled sections on Creating Living Creatures, Golems and Undead. These are the most complex areas of the guide and the game system. I feel pretty good about the work and I think it addresses the areas quite well. I also added more examples of game play situations that are difficult for a GM to handle. Raising the dead and converting an unintelligent creature were a couple of the things addressed. In the optional guidelines section, I added Movement and a few new specializations, just to give GMs something to think about.

No news on the illustrations as of yet. I know they are working on them but I haven't seen any images; I hope to see them soon! Also, no new downloads today. I think you will see a few added to the Downloads page by the end of the week. Keep checking each day!

September 4, 2012

Just a brief update today, things are extremely busy on all fronts. The illustrators are about half way through their penciled versions of the initial drawings. I'm not sure if this means half of them are done or that half the work on all of them is done, but I look forward to seeing their work (which I'm told should be today/tomorrow).

I've completed the final round of slight revisions to the core guidelines, with the magic section finally completed. I'm handing off the document to playtesters and others to review and then hope to have the draft uploaded by Thursday or Friday (pending any significant errors or issues). I also plan to add one more document to the download page by end of day today (the 3 Panel GM Screen).

Tonight, I'll focus on the Advanced Guide (content) and a bit of the Lusus Naturae I (layout). That should get us to tomorrow. Have a great day everyone!

September 3, 2012

Happy Labor Day everyone! Over the next few days, I will upload a few support documents for the TSRS (found in the download section). With the core guidelines still unavailable for download, this may seem out of order... these support pdfs won't need changes, the last edits to the guidelines are in the magic section and have no impact whatsoever on the adventurer, mount, and GM experience and encounter sheets. These docs will be available ahead of schedule with more on the way.

I'm making the magic changes to the guidelines over then next two days; my document layout is pretty tight so I'm carefully changing the section without messing too much up. The illustrators already have the layout so I'm trying to avoid sending them changes to sizing and page location. I'm pretty sure I can make this fit without any sectional changes... I hope.

The layout of the Advanced Guide is nearly complete. This document supports the core Guidelines with advanced and optional suggestions for gameplay. Much of the content is laid out as examples from play testing or conversation between players; with an open system, sometimes guidelines are made up on the spot. My hope is that these examples stimulate further ideas and discussions on how to resolve particular scenarios or player actions. This document will be available for download in October.

September 2, 2012

I finally loaded the new website up (as you can plainly see). Within the next week or two, I will start loading TSRS content in the download section as it becomes available. You can see that I've committed myself to a rigorous writing schedule. I have several guides and adventures due to release in the next several weeks. Don't worry, much of it is already written, they only require a few rewrites, another round of editing and adaptation to the new layout.

I think I've finally solved my magic dilemma. The guidelines for magic in the TSRS were always a but abstract (intentional) but lacked at least a simple starting point for players and GMs. I believe I've finally put together the base I've been looking for. I'll pass them by the play testers this week to see what they think. If all goes well, this should wrap up the core guidelines once and for good.

With respect to Colosseum, the code writing continues. It has been a secondary priority over the last few months but I need to find a way to make it an equal priority. With over a million lines of code already written, I can't let it slip again! More on Colosseum in the coming weeks.

August 31, 2012

I'm working on the Magic section of the TSRS Guidelines today. Our playtest last night revealed a few more gaps in the guidelines - not necessarily broken concepts but issues with the feel of gameplay. I've got a few ideas I'm going to pass along to the playtesters before adding them to the next version of the document. And if you were wondering about the monsters in last night's playtest, the adventurers faced large, poisonous spiders and a regenerating troll. They suffered defeat against the first spider encounter (we reset the encounter, changing count and poison difficulty, and they emerged victorius). The troll proved almost too much for them at first but with some quick thinking, they managed to prevail.

I've finished the specs for the images and the artists should begin work soon. There's a slight wrinkle in the cost of these images but we'll work through that. I hope we can make the deadline I've set for the final product!

In the next few days, I'll post the final draft (sans illustrations) for download in the Downloads section of the site. Remember, my current goal is to develop a simple tabletop RPG for free. Of course, allowing the community to add additional guidelines, adventures and other materials to the system is really the ultimate goal of TSRS!

August 30, 2012

Playtest tonight...

We're playtesting the latest version (2.24) of the TSRS guidelines by throwing monsters that have special abilities at the adventurers. Up until now, they faced mostly the run-of-the-mill goblins, giant ants and bandits. Tonight they'll see... well, they will find out later.

August 29, 2012

I've finally completed the last version of the guidelines. This pass was twice as difficult as updated much of the content from previous playtests, and redesigned the layout for illustrations and printing. If you've ever had to layout a document for print, you'll learn the importance of starting the design process *before* writing. I've had to retrofit the document for print after the intial draft was complete. Although the primary distribution method for the TSRS product line will be PDF downloads, I need these initial guidelines printed and bound for this year's competitions (namely, the NTRPGCon and maybe, the ENnies). I've learned a valuable lesson here (thankfully, on the initial product): layout your document for print from the beginning! Don't wait until after it's done.

August 28, 2012

The new site is nearly done. I need a place for people to download the new TSRS guidelines (when finished) and eventually, a place for community to post and read other ideas, adventures and rules. Although I'm updating this website as often as possible before it is live on the internet, these older posts will be useful for historical reference and clarification.

Older Posts and Reference

Before I shifted gears from Colosseum (see the blog link for reference) to developing the Throwigames Simple Roleplaying System, I used several other media channels to record and discuss my efforts. See my 2011 blog here and my little used Facebook page (search Facebook for for past updates. Going forward, the new website will be my primary method of cummunication and interaction with players.

Pages Maintained by Thom Wilson