Friday, 6 December 2019

Hopes of Glory 2, updates and Five Leagues product listing

Greetings gamers.

I am excited to announce that Hopes of Glory has been updated to be compliant with the second edition Five Leagues rules.

What is Hopes of Glory? It is a gritty military campaign module, allowing your warband to take on mercenary work during the perpetual border skirmishes that the nobility tends to get up to.
New encounters, new skills to learn, a variety of interesting people to meet, whether you want tactical combat or pseudo-RPG experiences, Hopes of Glory has them. 

You can of course use your existing warband or create a brand new one as you prefer.

This updated edition offers full compatibility with second edition rules, additional enemy types and encounters, new skills and more.
I’ve also double-checked and made sure that as many items and skills from other second edition sources have been accounted for, so as many of your questions as possible are answered up front.

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Additionally, Roads Well Traveled, Tools of War and the core Five Leagues rules have all seen small updates to take Hopes of Glory into account, adding notes on how material will function within that campaign.
Go ahead and download your new files.
Five Leagues also features a chance to the post-battle Unusual Finds table (reducing the chances of finding stuff a little, just to avoid loot inflation).

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With that, I thought it’d be timely to remind you of the material available for the second edition rules, all available by going to the Nordic Weasel section :

We have 3 Micro Packs, each offering a bite-sized new “thing” to add to your games (a new companion, a town, a quest).

We have The Sunken Temple, the first scenario pack, offering you a mini adventure to play through and get some nice loot.

Tools of War offers new skills, items and options for your games.

Roads Well Travelled expands the Roadside Encounters aspect of the game, offering improved tables with more results (and more unique results too).

Monday, 2 December 2019

Five Leagues Patreon adventure and Five Parsecs 1.11

In case you don't check the Patreon page, the first chapter of the Five Leagues campaign has been uploaded.
This marks the start of a campaign you'll be able to play through as it unfolds.

The exciting thing is that the "stand alone" nature means I can also use it as a testbed for ideas over time, before they show up in expansions or other material.

The campaign chapter is available to anyone who is a Patron, so swing over and get your adventure started!

If you prefer to just purchase conventional material, the chapters will be compiled and published separately down the road, but I do not know what form that will take or when I want to do that. I am still feeling out all this Patreon business.

* * * *
Five Parsecs has been updated to 1.11.
The only change is that the Battle Conditions table now has 10 entries on it instead of 6.

Sunday, 24 November 2019

Squad Hammer Core Peoples Edition

Greetings gamers.

Today I am pleased to announce the release of Squad Hammer Core - Peoples Edition.
What is this?

Well, Squad Hammer is our beer&pretzels "anything goes" wargame rules for everything from ww2 to dinosaurs vs robots. Grab some miniatures and have a go.

It's aimed at being fast, easy and fun without sacrificing tactical finesse.

It's one of the best games we've done (in my somewhat humble opinion) so if you haven't gotten it yet, go ahead and get it.

What is the Core version of SH?

It's a slimmed down version, focusing on just getting you from reading to playing in as little time as possible. If you get the bug, you can pick up the original Squad Hammer for more options or the more refined WW2 set Hammer of Democracy.

Is this a new edition then? No, other than some tweaks with fonts and so on, this is the same game as the original Squad Hammer Core.

What I've added is something that is hopefully pretty cool:

A full license so you can freely create and distribute your own Squad Hammer content: Whether you want to make army lists, scenarios or variants..or publish your own "powered by Squad Hammer" game commercially, you'll be able to do so.

I talk a lot online about finding ways to empower new game designers and I hope this helps put my money where my mouth is.

So whether you are budding game designer or just in the mood for some super-fun fast-paced gaming, go ahead and grab the rules

Did I mention they are Pay What You Want?

I'd appreciate any donations to help fund our operations and new projects, so please throw some coin in the bucket but if you want to give them a good read first, then come back to make a payment, I support you 100%.

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, 19 November 2019

Renegade Scout Patreon pack available

This is an exciting piece of content for two reasons:

First, a lot of you have asked about "army list" type unit profiles for Renegade Scout. This pack provides the 3 first: Unity Colonial militia, Fringe gangers and Corporate Mercenaries.

Each has options to outfit them and predetermined points values, so they can be picked for battle "Codex Style".

I've also included a special Skill and equipment item for each of the three. For example a colonial militia grunt can be made an Old Vet (no penalties to fight while Pinned).

You also get three "scrap book scenarios": Basically scenario outlines with some suggested complications.
These are intended less as "play out of the box" and more "play after 15 minutes with a pen" if that makes sense.

Secondly, it's the first Renegade Scout update for the Patreon.
If you are a 5+ dollar supporter of the Patreon, you get it for free. Just check the Patreon posts on the site.

If you are not, you can still pick it up from the Wargame Vault.

Since this is the first few weeks of the Patreon and nobody has been charged (or gotten paid) yet, I'm not sure how much more I'll be able to do in this "pre-Patreon" phase, but there'll be a Five Leagues thing tomorrow and I hope to do at least one more Parsecs thing before the 1st.

Thursday, 14 November 2019

Five Parsecs 1.10

Version 1.10 of Five Parsecs From Home is available, as a thank you to our friends on Patreon.

This features numerous improvements and updates.
Simply download your files from the Wargame Vault as usual.

WIth this update, I will be turning my attention towards new encounters, enemies and scenarios for a while. Stay tuned and don't forget to check us at Patreon.

Wednesday, 13 November 2019

Something to try - Hammer of Democracy

A friend of mine mentioned running Hammer of Democracy at a convention and had a blast, but he also said he'd been using an intriguing house rule: Letting elite troops recover 3 HP instead of 2 when regrouping.

I guess I never thought of that, but that's a really easy "toggle" to set a unit apart: They aren't any stronger on the attack and still have to be pulled back to reform, but they'll "shake off" the effects of combat faster.
I really like that.

Give it a shot in your games.

Also don't forget to check out where Nordic Weasel started:

Five Men in Normandy is one of the easiest, quickest playing ways to get that "Band of Brothers" feeling that you will find on the market 

Best of all, it is Pay What You Want so why not check it out and see where we came from?

Sunday, 10 November 2019

Bright days ahead?

Updating games is a perpetual headache as a designer.
Not because it's bad: It helps build loyalty, it lets me continue to improve on a design rather than having it be less than the game it could be and it gives you something to look forward to.

While a good game can be played a thousand times, we all like having something new to tinker with.

The problem is that providing updates for existing games translates to very little in sales.
It's great for improving the loyalty of existing customers which does have a long-term effect in sales of future product, but spending a week working on something for a game people already own does not typically translate to more people buying that game.

Supplements do bolster sales, but there's also a limit to how much you can do that before it becomes sprawling.

So how do we solve that?
As you may know, I've experimented with just asking for donations for updates. That works but it's a bit messy and I don't know if people feel it's easy to figure out.

The solution instead is going to be a Patreon page:

We will initially focus on three game lines:

* Five Parsecs From Home
* Five Leagues From the Borderlands
* Renegade Scout

with the aim of 2-4 additions for each of them every month.
This may be a scenario, new monster or new threat type for Five Leagues, a couple preconfigured units (with points values) or a scenario for Renegade Scout or a rules update or new module for Five Parsecs.

This allows me to continue working on making Five Parsecs everything it can possibly be, while giving Five Leagues and Renegade players new things to play with.
For Five Parsecs especially, there is a wealth of content I'd like to add, like alien PC's, new missions and much more and this may allow me to do so.

If this takes off, there's a lot of additional benefits it could produce:

* I will be able to apply updates to this bonus content.
I see a lot of RPG Patreons out there that release new material and then it just disappears into the void.
With a steady funding source, I'd be able to go back and provide updates to any new material we release.

* If we make it big, I'll be able to do additional focus on things in the back catalogue, like updated versions of Blast Pistol, a Laserstorm revision, porting game engines to new settings and who knows what.

* A goal I also have is something that could potentially be mega-cool, which is to run a "Living Campaign" for the three games in question.

Imagine this:
Every month, there'd be a campaign event that happens.
Let's say that in Renegade Scout, the K'Erin invade Soulless controlled space. So maybe we have a scenario for the month, along with a new unit or two.
Players could email me with any battles they played and tell me how it went and it might even influence future events.

Or in Five Leagues, a plague is ravaging the lands so now its harder to recruit and you may have to deal with plague zombies!

I think that could be incredibly awesome and it'd be something that really doesn't exist out there.
It would also mean that when a new player buys the game, there'd be this huge array of content to play through for them. How awesome would that be?

* * * * * *

Some questions and answers:

* What will the money go to?

Paying my bills. If I can make a hundred a month, then that's 100 less I need to make from releasing new material.
If I somehow get enough that it pays my rent, then I can focus on creating a ton of cool stuff for you guys, right?

* Will that be the only three games?

I want to start out simple and those three are the games that tend to sell the most.
If this becomes a thing, I'd like to add FiveCore and Starport Scum to the mix, but I don't want to try and overpromise, and then have to churn out a bunch of stuff that's sub-par, in order to collect a sandwich's worth of money monthly.

* How will the material be released?

Rules updates, particularly for 5P will typically just be part of the core rules.

Some new material will be made available for sale as well. The way this will work is that Patreons get a comp copy, if your pledge level is the sales price or more.

The living campaign material I am not sure about yet, I'll let you know when we get there.

* What does this mean for new developments?

Hopefully not too much. The goal is to be able to dedicate time on both, without having to scramble for money or rush anything.
Development of new games will not go through this process for now.

In theory, maybe in the future that's something we could look at, but I don't know if there's enough interest for that.

More specifically, this means that Five Klicks and Dreams of Dragons material is NOT covered by the Patreon since these are still formally in development. I'd rather keep that separate for now.

* So how much do I need to give you?

I set it up with tiers from a dollar and up. Give what you feel it is worth to see new content.
Obviously, the more I make, the more I can focus on this stuff.

As far as total amounts, 100 dollars monthly is where I feel the game updates are justified. At 300, Living Campaigns will be for sure, but we'll evaluate what to do if we get really close.
It may be doable with less.

I also need to feel out exactly how easy or difficult Patreon is to work with.

If I end up with a huge chunk of money, we might even be able to do things like putting out material as "pay what you want", creating a newsletter etc. All of that is just daydreaming right now though.
Let's get the basics off the ground first.

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We also have a Twitter account now! It's strictly for public announcements, please don't ask rules questions on there.
I don't expect to be using it for any debates or hot takes of any kind.