Here we are again, this Saturday, end of March, marks roughly the seventh month, sort of, since Gaming Ballistic was incorporated. While that might be the official incorporation date, it probably makes far more sense to date the birth of the company from roughly October 1, 2016, which is when I really decided that Dungeon Grappling needed to happen, and proceeded to plan and launch the Kickstarter by November.

In any case, what’s been going on?

Mostly trying to get back on to a regular posting schedule again. I got very, very head-down on working some of the projects I’ve been working, and noticed that I’d not written any real content on the blog, certainly not much of value-added nature, in weeks. Well, frack that.

My new intended posting plan is something like this:

So tomorrow I’ll either review the latest Pyramid, or I just got a copy of Cirsova Magazine #5, and I can throw down some game-inspiration notes from that. Means I need something OSR/ACKS-ish for Monday . . .

Beyond that, the only real question right now is which project gets far enough along to Kickstart first. Continue reading “Gaming Ballistic – March Update”

Well, another month has come and gone, and what’s happened? More and less than one would think. I’ve been so head-down in doing the projects that my blogging and general evangelism has fallen off a bit.

Dungeon Grappling

Well, the book came out, well ahead of schedule, and in addition to those sales I made during the Kickstarter campaign (about 300), I moved about 24 more. Mostly PDF through DTRPG (15 sales there), and nine more – a healthy mix of print and PDF – personally and through my web store. I sold two copies of The Art of Dungeon Grappling, which is disappointing but perhaps unsurprising, despite the benefit to both charity and the artists.

The reviews have been very positive to date, so I can’t complain about that. Word will hopefully get out, especially as I broaden the applicability of the system and offer more products. Most folks probably just have been so burned with bad grappling in the past that they might not be interested. That was to be expected, I think – it’s a niche product. It’s a good product, but niche.

I will be running a few Dungeon Grappling Smackdown events at GenCon via the Independent Game Designer’s Network. More on that in coming months.

I also released Dungeon Grappling through CreateSpace. That was a bit of a chore, as I actually had to lay out the book again to meet Amazon’s margin requirements. But it’s available as both a softcover and a Kindle book (I’ve sold one Kindle version, and no CreateSpace print copies).

Dragon Heresy

Looking over my blog, I see I’ve not said much about Dragon Heresy. Well, things are moving. Continue reading “Gaming Ballistic, LLC – February Update”

It’s like a moth to flame with me. First there was GURPS Martial Arts: Technical Grappling. That one  was my first full-length book for anyone: 35,000 words of fairly detailed subsystem that was my first attempt at taking grappling rules and put them on the same scale and mechanical basis as striking with fists or weapons. It’s where I created and put to paper the concept that one should treat wrestling with the same level of abstraction and the same mechanics as other methods of fighting.

Then I got involved a bit in a Swords and Wizardry game. This deliberate throwback to the original Dungeons and Dragons rules took me back to the red box and AD&D days, and had the same brutal and elegant simplicity that I recalled, but also was found more rarely in later games. An entire party of folks could sit down, roll up characters, and begin play in less than an hour. Maybe less than 15 minutes. West End Games’ Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game has that same feel. Few others since have managed it (Fate Core and Accelerated do a very nice job as well. They should: Leonard Balsera quoted WEG’s Star Wars as one of his primary influences when designing the game).

So when my S&W group and I got a few games under our belts, Peter Dell’Orto encouraged me to take Technical Grappling and strip it way, way down and apply it to S&W, and by extension to all of the games based on the old-school D&D rules. We took that on together, and the results appeared in Tim Shorts’ zine, part of Manor #8. Peter and I took everything that wasn’t strictly required and threw it in the dustbin. Doubly so because the old games’ monster writeups mostly did not include much in the way of statistics. You would get Hit Dice, Armor Class, and Hit Points. That was about it. Size? Strength? Yeah. Make it up. Continue reading “Dungeon Grappling – Designer’s Notes”

The manuscript is done

Final tally is just shy of 425,000 words, which will wind up being about 780 pages laid out. Likely split into two or three books.

Now final ‘scripts are off to Ken Hite for editing, and I’ll be looking at my current and extended contacts for a layout pro to make this every bit as pretty a book as Dungeon Grappling is.

Now . . . sleep, perchance to get eaten by kittens.

There’s always something that gets away, and this release is no different. I learned from Steve Jackson Games, though, that there’s real benefit to waiting for a few weeks until the PDF gets a chance to be worked over by the meticulous, the curious, and the interested.

So here’s the current list of proposed errata that I am considering making before the PDF goes to print, gets turned into an ePUB, and then is re-uploaded and distributed to backers and pre-order customers.

If you sent me something and I missed it, respond here, and I’ll either say “no,” as with some of the suggestions where “this could be done differently” is operative instead of “this is a mistake in grammar, formatting, usual style for this game, or something that is badly wrong.”

I’m doing this here because the Kickstarter comment forums is simply terrible for this sort of thing.

But as they say at the airport, “If you see something, say something!”

The actual table is below the break… Continue reading “Current (Proposed) Errata for PDF of Dungeon Grappling”

A trick I’m discovering:

Make a google sheet or a Word file.

Insert a table, of three columns.

First column is page number. Second column is “From this . . .” and third column is “To this . . . ”

Make very, very sure that the second and third columns are exactly the same width. Ensure that width is something rather less than your in-page column width in your original document.

Paste the phrase you’re changing in the “From this” column, removing line breaks. Don’t use this method for things that span a paragraph unless you must. If you must, preserve the paragraph breaks.

Make the desired changes in the “To this” box.

If the last word ends in the same place for both From and To, then you probably won’t mess with layout at all.

If it’s shorter or longer, you’ll need to check text flow.

Not sure if this will always work, but it seems right to me.