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In Defense of “Gamification” in RPGs

Last week we had a double-barreled shotgun blast of opinion pieces advocating for RPGs to hide or drop some of their core conventions and abstractions. Tom Bissell, writing about Dead Island, complained about pop-up damage numbers in a real-world zombie RPG and landed a glancing blow against leveling and statistics-based…

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Pre-order pricing lasts one more week!

Attention ladies and gentlemen: as of today, there is precisely one week left to nab Telepath RPG: Servants of God at the early pre-order price! On Tuesday, September 27, the price goes up from $19.95 to $24.95. In the meantime, I’ve once again updated the demo* with a variety of…

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Imagined conversation and character-building

Looking back on my last developer rant, I’ve decided that I was a little bit too scattershot in my approach. I wanted to cover a multiplicity of areas where detail tends to get overlooked in RPGs, but in doing so I skimped on solutions. In particular, I want to revisit…

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How to Install Telepath RPG: Servants of God

Since the release of the AIR build of Telepath RPG: Servants of God, I’ve been getting a lot of questions about how to install the game. This post will stand as the definitive guide to doing just that. This post primarily concerns installation of the game in Windows, but the…

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TSoG Update: AIR build released

I’ve now officially released the first AIR build of Telepath RPG: Servants of God! This version of the game runs on Windows, Mac and Linux alike using a single installer. To install, make sure you have Adobe AIR–it’s free and available right here. Install AIR first–once that’s taken care of,…

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Chicago Comic Con is go!

Hey folks, good news! Sinister Design is going to have a booth at this year’s Chicago Comic Con! The show hours are as follows: Thursday, August 11, 2011:    5pm – 9pm Friday, August 12, 2011:    12 NOON – 8pm Saturday, August 13, 2011:    10am – 7pm Sunday,…

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Sinister Design SwagShop Update

The Sinister Design SwagShop has received an update, with lots of new products and some drastic price cuts. (Everything in the shop is now being sold at close to cost!) Check it out!

Using Details to Craft a Coherent Game World

The RPG is an inherently inelegant creature. It is something of a Frankenstein monster, a suite of different gameplay systems stitched together into a shambling chimera. Character creation, simulated markets, item management, navigation, combat, stealth, dialog, puzzles, class and skill trees–as a developer, it is difficult enough simply to make…

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