Late April recap
Zines, playtests, community, jams
Hi TTRPG enthusiasts, a lot has been going on at The Lost Bay Studios during the month of April, I shall even say March-April. Here’s a quick recap of TLBS activities:
I love community projects. They mean a lot to me. I’m always interested in discovering new creators, and in awe of what collective intelligence and imagination can achieve.
This month I’ve contributed to conclude a community project, the Soda Mystery Machine, and to launch a new one, the Artifacts of Horror Game Jam.
Soda Mystery Machine
The soda mystery machine zine has been released for free on itch. It’s a little pamphlet beautifully illustrated by a very cool artist Amze Emmons, and laid out by Jean Verne. The zine features a soda vending machine that distributes weird soda cans. The cans and their effects have been written by a bunch of cool designers and the whole project was sparked by a conversation on twitter about Capitol Hill’s mystery soda machine.
Folks have started using the pamphlet for Troika adventures. The Soda Mystery Machine can easily fit any space fantasy, modern fantasy or maybe even sci-fi setting.
Artifacts of Horror game Jam
The Artifacts of Horror Jam has started, the submissions are pouring, and are amazingly beautiful and creative. I totally recommend checking it. The AOHJ is all about creating collectively a journaling mystery solving solo TTRPG.
A town has mysteriously been abandoned in the early 90s. The only trace of the incidents that struck the town is a collection of Artifacts: flyers, handwritten notes, article clippings.
Each entry to the jam brings a new Artifact, and those artifacts will be the visual and textual prompts of the solo game.
The Jam rules and concept have been meticulously crafted for more than a month on The Lost Bay server by Alfred Valley | Archaeomancer/Neonrelic | Christian Platzer | Goblin Archives | Marx of High Water | Peter Eijk | Philip Jensen | STATIONS, myself and a bunch of other fine folks.
There is one month left before the end of the jam, is you feel like contributing to the mystery or just want to check the amazing entries hop in on itch.
The prelaunch campaign for SKYREALMS, system neutral fantasy sourcebook, AND coloring book has started!
There is an awesome team working on the project, and I feel so grateful about that: Evlyn Moreau, Bordercholly, Emiel Boven, Armanda Haller, Sam Leigh, Laura Elle, Cleo Madeleine, Batts, Lucas Rolim, Côme Martin, Montro, LF OSR, Swag/ship/hack!
The campaign will start on the 7th of June. This project means a lot to me. I’ve been putting a lot of work and love in it. And to be totally candid, a lot of stuff has happened lately in my (professional) life and I’m trying to make TTRPGs become more than just a hobby for me, and more like a professional occupation. Truth be told, I’d love to be able to give more TTRPG stuff to the community.
If you want to support this project, give it a shout out on social, tell your friends, colleagues, share the campaing or give it a follow here’s the campaign link https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/thelostbay/skyrealms
If you want to read more about it here’s the press kit
THE LOST BAY GAME
The development of The Lost Bay TTRPG is continuing. Thanks to the feedback of the many playtesters I could fine tune the core mechanics, in particular the Curses, the Prayers, the use of Weird, and the character creation process. My goal is double. On the one hand I want the system to remain nimble and fast. On the other hand I am trying to have every mechanical aspect of the game informing the setting. And that’s where the playtesting has been so useful.
Here’s the list of the available Vibes (classes or backgrounds): Half-dead - Screamer - Junker - Monarch - Asphalt Kitten - Splinter - Firestarter - Fountain of love - Mohawk. More will be added in the following weeks.
A few features I’m particularly happy with:
Death: when a character dies, they don’t die, they become something else. This is going to be super interesting in particular during combats, giving characters a (random and dangerous) exit option.
Doom: character's actions almost inevitably increase the Weird level of the Bay, and that leads to the Doom, the end or destruction of the entire Bay. I’m having a lot of fun crafting Doom tables that inform the particular mood or setting of each adventure I’m writing/running.
3rd party creators
I’m starting a new playtesting phase: I’m going to run several open world sessions. I’m actually interested in crafting quick world creation tools and procedures.
The cool and frankly unexpected thing that is happening right now, is that 3rd party creators have already begun writing for The Lost Bay, even if the game isn't finished yet. And there’s really cool stuff being prepared right now!
If you want to playtest the game, read the draft document or write something for it you can get in touch at The Lost Bay discord server.
Thanks a lot for reading and for supporting my work!
Have a great weekend