Nothing Ventured Games
Thoughts in tabletop gaming by Paul Stefko.

#AprilTTRPGMaker 2019: Week 3

21 April 2019

Getting back on schedule with week 3. Since I went late last week, this one is a bit shorter. In addition, the questions this week did not lend themselves well to further discussion, so the actual commentary here is sparse. (It doesn’t help that I sat an entire day out for reasons.)

17. How does your identity influence your work?

Yeah, I don’t need to be chiming in on this one. (“How does your identity influence your work?”) #AprilTTRPGmaker

— Paul Stefko (@PaulStefko) April 17, 2019

Certainly various mental health and neurological factors weigh heavily in my ability to make stuff, but I don’t really consider them part of my identity in the way I think this question means. So I decide to sit this day out.

18. What are some underlying messages in your work?

A common message in my recent work is “By working together, the seemingly lowly can make the world a better place.” #AprilTTRPGMaker pic.twitter.com/67XNNokzc1

— Paul Stefko (@PaulStefko) April 18, 2019

I think this question and the next go hand in hand.

19. Favorite themes to explore?

Some of my favorite themes to explore are parallel/alternate worlds, the lowly taking on the seemingly unstoppable, and solving mysteries/exposing the truth. #AprilTTRPGMaker

— Paul Stefko (@PaulStefko) April 19, 2019

But I like the idea of theme a lot more than “messages.”

20. A game you want to make you think no one would play?

I don’t think there’s a game that I would like to make that would be hated universally, but I can guarantee that there is some element in every game I make that no one but me actually wants. #AprilTTRPGmaker pic.twitter.com/gUKTfsicLJ

— Paul Stefko (@PaulStefko) April 20, 2019

There are certainly games I’d like to run that I would have to look very hard to find players for, and they would certainly have to be played online.

21. What external factors do you struggle with to create?

I can’t produce quality illustrations on my own, nor can I afford to commission them. I feel like I know or can learn just about all the other parts of production, but not art. I rely on free resources, which usually are crap or don’t fit my project/aesthetic. #AprilTTRPGMaker

— Paul Stefko (@PaulStefko) April 21, 2019

This is by far the number one issue I run into when trying to make things for public consumption. Art is so important to game texts, and unless you’re making something that can use modern photographs as illustration, you don’t have a lot of options for free or public domain art.

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