Wednesday, May 19, 2010

My antiquated RPG is now retro

As early as jr. high school I was trying to design my own RPG. One of the brilliant things about D&D was the way it inspired many to become game designers in an attempt to tinker, "fix" or improve on the original. Not long ago I uncovered a box in our garage that stored those booklets I had made way back then. It brought back a flood of memories, I could see in them the earliest seeds that would one day become Dungeoneer, my first published game.

While attending college I worked at a print & copy shop where I had access to desktop publishing equipment, and in my spare time I retyped and laid out my first RPG into a larger format. One of the challenges to finishing this RPG is that I've always been as interested in the art as in the words. Since I have a little skill as an illustrator I tended to spend as much time, or more, making illustrations as in playtesting and writing. So the going was always slow, and I never managed to quite complete the RPG. To this day I'm still working on it!

I have long since lost the data for that edition of the RPG, and I only had one printed test copy. I recently took the copy apart and scanned it in so I could have a digital version for safekeeping. Here is a page from the monster section:

In the late 90's this design was becoming very dated, and I lost interest in finishing the RPG. Instead becoming excited about making a card game version. But here we are 14 years later, and contrary to being antiquated, the design is actually quite retro!


  1. Bearded Beholders and buggy bugbears?

    That is sweet!

  2. I love the look of the Beholder, like it's as horrified by its own existence as the characters should be by encountering it.

  3. Shades of the Wink(l)er and Bug-a-bear?

  4. yep. painted right over those drawings to make the full color version of the winker and bug-a-bear

  5. The beholder is 9 kinds of awesome!