Update!

Hi All,

First up our sincere apologies for going dark for so long.  All three of us running SKG are incredibly busy in other areas of our work, from studying games at the highest academic levels, to running line development on Dr Who rpg and writing a gazillion words a day, to art directing at Cubicle 7.  You would be more than forgiven for thinking Dragon Warriors is currently, to be kind about it, in a deep slumber.

However, whilst progress has been slow and sporadic we have never stopped working on the new Players Book and DW in general, from writing and testing new material to making translation deals and clearing up after things go badly wrong with those, and so on.   We have been remiss in not posting more here, and for that we can only apologise. Often times it feels we’d be repeating ourselves if we were to say yet again “we’re working on it” with little to show.  But, well, we’re working on it.

The mainstays of the DW line remain available in pdf format here, and plans for print have remained in flux for a long time, due to a couple of factors it isn’t possible to discuss here.  Rest assured we’re working on the best option for Dragon Warriors.

Thank you as ever for your continued patience.

A Solstice Gift: Dragon Warriors FAQ

It’s been a long time coming — 25 years or so — but Dragon Warriors finally has an FAQ, answering all those niggling questions and philosophical paradoxes, like “What happens when one character tries to use Intangibility to walk through another character’s impregnable Bastion?”

Download the FAQ document here: Dragon Warriors FAQ

Huge thanks to Kieran Turley and Shaun Hateley, who between them did the vast majority of work on the FAQ, and to the Dragon Warriors yahoogroup, who asked most of the questions.

We’re still working hard on the Players Book. We’re about to start the final playtesting of the new rules, and in the meantime, Jon Hodgson is finishing off the art, so we hope for a release quite early in the New Year.

A lot of people have asked about printed copies of the books, and we are keen to get everything available again soon, probably as Print-On-Demand copies via DriveThru. There are a couple of final hurdles to jump through there, but it is being worked on.

Happy Solstice, folks!

Players Book Preview: The Hunter

We’re (still) all hard at work at SKG Towers. The Players Book is largely finished, at least in terms of writing, but we are still finishing off some playtesting before finalising the text. The art and layout process will, inevitably, take longer still, probably pushing us back to a 2012 release.

We have a couple of adventures currently being worked on too, so do look out for at least three releases from us next year.

In the meantime, as a sneak preview of the Players Book, here’s the current, near-final version of the Hunter Profession. Feel free to use it in your campaigns right now, and email us your thoughts: info@serpentking.com

The Hunter Profession

Windhammer Prize winner

Hearty congratulations from all the team at Serpent King Games to Andrew Wright, one of our regular Dragon Warriors writing team (he contributed to the Friends or Foes anthology for Magnum Opus Press, as well as the upcoming Players Book) who just won the Windhammer Prize for short gamebook fiction. He’s blogged about it here.

In other news, that Players Book is very, very nearly through the editing and rewriting stage. That doesn’t mean we’re quite ready to sell it yet; there is still a lot of art and layout to do before that point. We’re working on it, though, and are still determined that it will be a print release as well as PDF.

RPGNow Sale

It’s the Christmas in July summer sale at RPGNow, and our two Dragon Warriors books are both available at 25% off for another few days:

Dragon Warriors on sale

Arting by blog post

Here at the SKG blog we shouldn’t bore you by only trying to sell you our gamebooks, marvellous as they are. We can bore you by talking waffle too.

So I just starting the very first 3 pieces of work for the forthcoming players book for Dragon Warriors, which is auspicious.  I don’t really know why it’s auspicious, but it feels that way: Just run with me here a while ok?

And whilst painting I usually spend a great deal of time surfing the net.  The way I work is quite intense – 3 minutes of laying down tone and form very quickly, then a minute or two of being distracted by the web, which sits just behind my work on the computer, and then back to the fast painting.  Now this might sound like slacking, or a lack of concentration, and I would utterly forgive you for that judgement. But it’s how I’ve worked the last ten years or so and so far it seems to be going fairly well.   As a youth using traditional media I used to sit with my acrylics and a hair dryer for those paints renowned for their fast drying times didn’t dry fast enough for me.  That’s the general background of how quickly I like to paint.  Anyway whilst on one of those brief surfing breaks I stumbled across a blog post by our wonderful benefactor and DW creator Dave Morris, which linked to something I wrote a few months back about my early experiences with Dragon Warriors.  It seemed Dave approved, which is always nice to hear.
Rereading my earlier posting struck a chord for me.  Something very important about working on something you love is that you are still in awe of it, almost frightened of it.  That’s part of what makes the love significant.  So I’m painting some of the new professions we will see in the players book, along with some of the new life path type template thingamajigs which will be in there.  These are of course optional bolt ons to the core rules, but they are additions and changes to something we love.  We don’t do this stuff lightly.  And that’s good.

A lot of thought, frequently in the form of worry goes into depicting these characters.  It is very rare for me to restart commercial pieces of artwork. Time and tide is always against the freelance artist, and every moment spent wondering, pausing, thinking or worse doubting comes directly from your pay cheque.  So frequently its a case of doing the best you can within tight constraints.  And hey I could write another lengthy ramble on how that can actually get the best out of you, but I’ll bore you all with that another time.

When you own (part of) the company you don’t have those worries to the same degree.  Of course there are time constraints, but they are different to those imposed by a lot of freelance work.  I can stop and redo these if I want or need to.  So I spend a lot of time thinking about whether these fellows are “Legend” enough.  Are these generic fantasy fellers, or are they specifically Legend people?  What do Legend people look like?  And there’s the rub – I get, in part, to make that up.  And along with the rub comes that very healthy fear and respect for the subject matter.

There’s probably a point in there about love and affection that one could ferret out if one was so inclined.  There’s fear in there somewhere, and that not all fear is negative.  And we often fear things we love and love things we fear.  But hey, this is a post about making goblin drawins for a role playing game, not a self help book.
So anyway, buy our books, and if you have a few spare moments, what do people look like in your Legend?  You can interpret that as broadly as you like.  Perhaps I’ll steal your ideas.

Unleash the beast! The Bestiary is out!

http://rpg.drivethrustuff.com/product_info.php?products_id=92332

Dragon Warriors back on sale!

The pdf of the core rulebook is now available from DriveThruRPG! This is a revised version of the Magnum Opus Press edition, incorporating all the errata.

Next, we’ll be rereleasing the other Magnum Opus books. Part of the delay with the core rulebook was getting all the graphics, fonts and other design elements in one place, and now that we have all those assets, the process of updating the other books should go much faster. At the same time, work on the player’s guide is continuing.

Almost there…

Just a quick one to keep everyone informed.  Progress is progressing, and it shouldn’t be long now before those DW books are back on sale.  We have a working pdf version, we’re just giving it another run through for errata and tightening up here and there to make sure it’s all appropriate for SKG release.

There have been some truly boring delays to do with business banking, which is fantastical in the scope of it’s tiresomeness.  I guess we all do need to be certain we’re selling roleplaying games rather than plotting the downfall of Western Civilisation.  And that apparently takes an incredibly long time.

Art direction has begun on much anticipated “The Player’s Book”, and other stuff to do with design, editing, writing and so on that your humble author for today’s post doesn’t understand is also now happening in earnest.

Our new partners over in France L’elf Vert have announced preorders of the French edition of Dragon Warriors. Check out their Facebook Page here: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=126484327374186

Stay tuned!

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