Category Archives: General

March Madness

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What a month.
I’ve got this personal vendetta against distraction, but March had me against the ropes.
Getting sick is no fun, but I did learn a lot from it.

For one, working in the games industry means I get to help others relax, have fun, and spend time with friends. March showed me just how important that can be — there were some bleak moments when escaping into game and time with gaming friends was very uplifting.

Secondly, I recommitted myself to the three pillars of my work:

  1. Coding
  2. Game design
  3. Writing

Eventually I’d like to be doing what I do for the tabletop for online games. The coding side has been something I haven’t given proper time to of late, but you can expect some interesting things from me in the future.

 

New Products — Contagion’s Kiss

“O true apothecary, thy drugs are quick. Thus with a kiss I die.”
— Romeo, in Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare

Contagion's Kiss CoverWhen the city’s water supply is threatened by extortionists, the heroes are called on to infiltrate the fortress of a powerful outsider. Can they get in, get even, and get out, before it’s too late?

Contagion’s Kiss is an adventure for a party of 4th level characters. It can be used in any fantasy city or town where wells or cisterns are the main source of water. The Pathfinder Roleplaying Game GameMastery Guide and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary are required for play. This adventure includes creatures detailed in Chilling Curiosities — A Field Guide.

This adventure includes a full scale, printable poster sized map of the adventure.

Chilling Curiosities is available on Paizo and the Open Gaming Store.

 

In the Works

We’ve been hard at work on a number of products. Here they are, in no particular order:

  • Today I handed over the final draft to Bob Greyvenstein for layout for our new setting, Scarthey, which our Field Guides are a part of. More on this soon.
  • Also for Scarthey we’ve got a bunch of adventures in the works, from both new and experienced writers. I’ll talk about that, too, soon.
  • We received the final draft for a new, fast paced modern spec ops game by Basil Koufos, designer of Might. We’re very excited to be publishing his latest creation and absolutely love the system and all that it stands for.
  • The Nightscape RPG for the Nightscape Series and Imperiad Entertainment is off to a good start. We’ve defined much of the core mechanics and have some interesting things we’re looking forward to trying.
  • Steampunk Musha rolls on with a number of books in and out of editing. As the line editor I’ve been learning a lot from the talented individuals who make up the team at Fat Goblin Games — they’ve got some great stuff in the works.
  • I did some editing work for best selling Dungeon Master’s Guild author M.T. Black. If you’re a Dungeons and Dragons fan then check out his great collection of adventures, such as the Complete Adventures of M.T. Black Vol. I.

So all in all, a great month.

 

March 21st

On a more sombre note, March 21st is Human Rights Day in South Africa, a day of remembrance for the Sharpeville Massacre of 1960 and the suffering caused during the Apartheid era.
To me, the most important thing is remembering that we all share this planet. We all have a right to life, dignity, and respect. Let us all strive for mutual understanding — therein lies peace and happiness for all.

Photo credit: Redd Angelo
Photo credit: Redd Angelo

Fantastic February

Lots has been going on, so stick with me for all the Hot News. We’ve got some great offers to tell you about that you don’t want to miss.

When Flamingos Attack is the first official adventure for Claustrophobia!, and the perfect introduction to the game. It’s more than that though, as it sets the scene for a larger campaign I’m designing.

January was an excellent month for Claustrophobia!, and so putting aside time to support the game was a natural next step. That’s the thing about this industry; fan support is vital to the growth of any game, so I deeply thank you for getting behind us on this.

We’re just putting the finishing touches on a new Pathfinder Roleplaying Game compatible adventure too. Contagion’s Kiss is a location based adventure, with the PCs needing to break into a defended keep to solve the mystery of the poisoning of the town’s wells. We have some fun surprises hidden within!

Contagion's Kiss Cover

Contagion’s Kiss will be available by the end of the month.

We previously released our 2016 PDF bundle, and this month we’ve release a Pre-2016 bundle, which includes the updated Lunatic Labyrinth solo and 1-on-1 adventure.

We’re not the only ones with a great bundle out. Legendary Games has a massive sale on Pathfinder Roleplaying Game compatible books: 60 books for $30. You can grab yours on DriveThruRPG.

The last bit of news is that we’ve signed the compatibility license for the Starfinder Roleplaying Game, since it will lend itself nicely to something we’ve been chipping away at.

That’s it for this month. Remember, you can get all the news, every month, by subscribing to our newsletter.

2017 is going to ROCK!

Quick, wish them a Happy New Year so we can talk about the wands!

Um, yes, Happy New Year. May 2017 be a truly prosperous year for you and yours. Rising Phoenix has a big year planned, with all sorts of projects in the works. 2016 was a smash hit for us, and 2017 promises to be even bigger.

Now tell them about the wands…

Sheesh, I’ll get to that! But first, the new game…

Imperiad Publishing announced that the Nightscape series of Lovecraftian horror will be getting its very own roleplaying game this year. Although Rising Phoenix Games isn’t the publisher, our head bird, Rodney Sloan, is designing the game, so we’re super excited for their offering, which comes out in September.

Here’s the trailer to the Nightscape movie.
WARNING: The following trailer is unrated and may be disturbing to sensitive viewers.

Rodney is also the new line developer for Steampunk Musha, an Asian inspired steampunk setting, developed by Fat Goblin Games. If you love Asian inspired worlds, consider yourself an otaku, are a Steampunk connoisseur, or love kung-fu kicking oni in the face, come join the team for a chat on Facebook.

As for our own stuff, Claustrophobia! has some exciting things on the go, with its first adventure sitting in layout. Right now, until the 23rd, the complete rulebook is on sale for 20% off on Drive Thru RPG. This is a great time to pick up a copy and introduce a new game to your group.

Claustrophobia Cover

We’ve also collected all our works from 2016 in one handy, discounted bundle. If you’ve already bought some of our books on One Bookshelf sites, you won’t have to pay for them again, so it’s a great way to grab any Field Guides you might still need.

2016 Bundle

Some of our fans might remember our popular Lunatic Labyrinth, our first product, ever. It has been hugely successful, with over 5000 sales to date. We’ve relaunched it, updating the text and added a map tile for the combat encounters, making it better than ever before.

Lunatic Labyrinth Updated

If you like what we’re doing, why not join us, we’ve put out an open call for writers. You can find more information on the blog.

If you’re a Pathfinder fan, of if you’d like to to get started with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, there are still a few days left to support a good cause and grab the fantastic Humble Bundle they’ve got on offer. Personally, I’ve been enjoying the Goblin comics, fun!

And that’s all I can talk about right now, except for those wands I promised you about.

Here’s a sneak peek at something Bob Greyvenstein and I are working on. Have you ever wanted to make wands more of a thing, like the wands portrayed in a certain wizarding franchise, in your Pathfinder Roleplaying games? Try these rules:

 

Personalized Wands

Attuned to their owner, personalized wands allow a spell caster to focus their magical powers and channel them with a great deal of accuracy.
These rules modify the rule for magic in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook and can be used at your GMs discretion.

Casting arcane spells with a wand cancels the material component of the spell unless the material component is more than 25 gp. The wand is used to execute any somatic component of the spell too. Personalized wands cost between 500 and 2,500 gp.

Casting without a wand is difficult, and even unpredictable. There is a 20% chance of spell failure for any arcane spell cast without a wand. If there is a somatic component to the spell, the chance of spell failure increases to 30%. Casting arcane spells with someone else’s wand, or using a spell storing wand to cast a spell not stored inside it, incurs a 5% chance of spell failure.

 

Till next month, Tell Thrilling Tales!
The Rising Phoenix Games Team

 

Chilling Curiosities—A Field Guide

Our newest book, Chilling Curiosities—A Field Guide is out!

Chilling Curiosities—A Field Guide

This time we’re covering a bunch of new, low level monsters instead of the standard fantasy monsters like we’ve done before. I’m interested to see how well this does compared to Griffins and Phoenixes. Also, we’re trying the horror angle, so we’ll see if that’s a hit or not.

Some of the monsters are really fun too. We’ve got an eye in a jar, an ooze that gets more powerful when you attack it and a dream-haunting apparition. As always, Bob did excellent work on bringing the stats to life, and the layout is equally chilling.

I really want to recommend this to GMs who are running a low level (lvl 1–6) campaign, particularly a horror one. I think the new monsters will test your players in new ways, that’s exactly what I designed them to do!

Flame…ON!

Our newest book is up on Drive Thru RPG!

Phoenixes—A Field Guide, the cover.

Rising Phoenix Games and The Figment Factory have brought you the second publication in our Field Guide series.

I could not be more proud of our work on this. And phoenixes! Man! Those birds have a place in my heart. Getting to do not 1 but 7 of them was a sweet challenge.

Of all the birds in this book, I think I’m most proud of the Japanese inspired houou, partly because I just haven’t found them in the core books, but also because they remind me of holidays in Japan, visiting ancient temples or checking out works of art by greats like Hokusai.

Oh, and wow, speaking of art, the art in this is top notch. I think Bob Greyvenstein is going to need to offer his illustrations as printed posters, they’re amazing.

You can grab the book on Drive Thru RPG and RPG Now.

Tell Us What You Want!

I’ve been chatting to Bob of Figment Factory — who created our HeroGridz tiles — about doing a second set of sewer tiles. I want to reach out to you to find out what you’d like to see added, what themes you’d like covered and your general thoughts on the new line. Drop a comment here or hit us up on Facebook, Twitter or Google+. We’d love to hear from you.

We’ve also made it easier to collect HeroGridz tiles. Now you can buy individually printed tiles from One Bookshelf sites. Need an extra T-Junction? Just buy what you need, without having to buy another core set. We’ll be adding straight sections and junction/entrance tiles later in the month.

You can also check out our 1 inch tile line, I’d love to put more sets of those out if there’s much interest.

Surfin’ the Tube!

Hello hello hello!
We’ve just moved AND started this game publishing thing for reals. It’s exciting and a wee bit scary — but life on the edge always is. Awesome!

We’re super excited about HeroGridz, our new clix scale map tiles. I LOVE minis and miniature gaming, but I haven’t found many map options for my clix collections, especially modular sewer systems, so I got some made. I spoke to Bob from the Figment Factory, and he put together some awesome tiles. You can grab the Core Set on Drive Thru RPG — check ’em out!

Bob and I are working on some other things too, so watch this space.

June Update

Update time.

I thought I’d try posting some biweekly updates concerning Rising Phoenix Games  and my own writing and design projects. Onto the news…

I’ve contacted my successor, who will be taking over my teaching post here in Japan in the summer. She seems lovely and the perfect fit for the job. After 5 years on the JET Programme it’s great to be handing over to new talent.

That leads nicely into the big question: “What Next?”
In August I’m taking the plunge and going full time into game design, writing and development. This is a big step, but I’ve managed to build a network with some great companies, both in Japan and the USA, which means that my dreams are now a plausible reality.

And now for the highlights from the last two weeks:

Claustrophobia! got a 5 star rating AND an amazing review on YouTube.

– Lots of animals visited our town, we believe Kintaro is holding a sumo tournament in the area.

– Rodney has joined the Steampunk Musha team (but don’t worry, he’s still a Phoenix Gamer).

– Met with the owner of JAST USA here in Japan to talk about some programming work for them. If you’ve never heard of them go check out Steins;Gate and see what the whole visual novel thing is about.

– Father’s Day number 2 was amazing. We did a lovely little nature walk through the mountains. Didn’t see Kintaro or his friends.

– Secured a deal to write a role-playing game for an established author. More info in a few weeks.

– Wrapping up some setting development for our good friends at Wayward Rogues Publishing.

– And some other RPG design work is on the cards, just need to sign some contracts before I talk about that too.

– Finished reading Map of Bones by James Rollins, a very interesting read that’s going to lead to plenty of Wikidiving.

– And a bunch of other things are in the works. More on that later.

Till next time.