So this has nothing to do with Rolemaster, at all or in any shape or form. Devil’s Staircase [DS] is about as far away from the crunch and simulationism of RM as you can get, without playing FATE.
So why am I writing about it?
Well, I wrote the game two years ago now and it spent a year in playtesting, Spectre771 proved to be the lead playtester. I did all the layout, with loads of help from twitter followers giving free advice, in August and finally this week I have launched the crowdfunding campaign for the game.
What I really, really need is for people to spread the word about the crowdfunding. The address I need sharing is https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/devil-s-staircase-wild-west-roleplaying#/.
So where does Rolemaster come into this?
I am trying three different approaches side by side at the moment.
Strand 1 is Navigator RPG. That is offered for sale as PWYW for the playtest. The money from the playtest all goes back to funding the development of the game. The approach means you need to be able to work with a drip-feed of money. We are talking very small amounts and regardless of when the books are bought you get your funds at the same date each money.
Strand 2 is DS:Wild West. This game had a year’s playtesting, there is a free quickstart on DTRPG and now crowdfunding.
Strand 3 is Plague, Famine & War. These adventures can easily be a vehicle for new professions, new monsters, new spell lists. I can remember really enjoying buying modules and they had all sorts of new things to add into my game (B/X D&D back in those days). I am extremely careful not to use any ICE intellectual property in these adventures, which makes using new monsters and magic items and all that jazz even more useful. Creating all that stuff is fun as well. Why? Because ICE released the original companions at a rate of about one a year. An adventure takes less than two weeks to create. Seven fully-featured adventures like this could contain seven new professions, seven or more spell lists, seven new monsters, and magical items. That pretty much sounds like a companion right there but you also got seven full adventures as well.
Rolemaster fans deserve new things, new toys, and new challenges. On top of that having a flow of new releases for RM makes the system seem more alive and vibrant for potential players. It is also easier, especially for new younger gamers, to find $3 every few weeks than it is to find $20-$30 for a full-on companion.
So, supporting DS:Wild West even just by sharing the link anywhere and everywhere will indirectly help Rolemaster, past, present and future.