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Aug 30, 2018 56 tweets 19 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
WARNING: Extensive Self-Promotion Ahead

Folks, due to some large expenses on the horizon—that are altogether exciting & voluntary and not of the GoFundMe variety—I'm shifting my hustle into overdrive for the next few months.

Gird thy loins.

So if you were thinking, "I wonder when would be a good time for me to pick up those back issues of Worlds Without Master I've always wanted," the answer is "Now."

PSA: Whoever is telling you Dread is out of print is lying to you.

I am, at this very moment, stitching together the long awaited 12th issue of Worlds Without Master. More swords and sorcery fiction, art, comics, and in this particular issue more #SwordsWithoutMaster⚔️ Rituals, Tales, Campaigns, and Phases!
Like all good things, this relaunch comes at a price!
Specifically, $4,99, an increase in the cover price by $1.
But you, my friend, don't have to pay this price. Join the Patron Horde & partake of the spoils for the same $2.99 patrons have always enjoyed: patreon.com/Epidiah
Or, if Patreon isn't your jam, but you feel like tipping me $3 on the regular, I'll also be sharing any new releases of Worlds Without Master as they come out with anyone signed up for monthly support on my Ko-fi: ko-fi.com/epidiah
Note: My Patreon only charges per issue and is largely about supporting the magazine.

The Ko-fi is per month and is largely about all the stuff I do, including experimental stuff like the Person Teaches Eppy About Thing videos.
And I know what you're thinking right now: "I want in on all the wonders and horrors barely contained within the covers of each issue of Worlds Without Master, but can a wayfarer such as I get caught up?"

Behold! The first 11 issues: worldswithoutmaster.com/bazaar/bundle-…
Alright, I'm pausing this self-promoting extravaganza to eat lunch and apply for a bookkeeping job, but when I get back, folks, WHEN I GET BACK, oh, you don't even know!
Whoa boy, applying for jobs, amiright?

What could possibly be more stressful?
Except for maybe running your first Kickstarter.
Folks, this November...
TFW you paint yourself into a corner because you wanted to drop a teaser on folks, but forgot you have a thread to continue!

More on the November project later. 🐺✨

Let's talk about things you can get right the fuck now!
Like Vast & Starlit!

If you don't already have a copy of V&S, why the hell not?

You set the price and you can read the core rulebook in the time it takes to eat a Hydrox.

I'm not just a game designer, though!

Along with @ndpaoletta, I'm a Rockford Files podcaster: twohundredaday.fireside.fm

And we're just about ready to record another episode of @TwoHundredPod, which is just what I needed today.
This Labor Day, take a moment to remember all those temp workers who risked it all traveling through time to ensure all of history points right at the capitalistic nightmare landscape we're living in today.

Time & Temp was my follow-up game to Dread (a little known indie horror game from the mid-aughts).

It came out in 2010, right when I started designing #SwordsWithoutMaster⚔️.

Sandwiched between those two games, well, I'm afraid I neglected it a bit.
But there are bits to this game that I'm fiercely proud of. Not the least of which is this warning sticker. This is the best thing I ever drew. A warning label featuring a shattering hourglass and instructions not to let the information contained within to alter your course of action.
And this may be the best PowerPoint presentation I've ever made: dig1000holes.wordpress.com/2009/10/07/syn…
Time & Temp borrowed some from Dread.

🕐 Dread but with sudoku.

🕑 Dread but the slasher is capitalism and the prey is all of existence.

🕒 Dread but you can travel in time & earn $11.50 an hour.

But mainly it borrowed from my experiences as a temp worker.
Here's Time & Temp's secret engine:
🕐 Company gives temp a task & a time machine.
🕑 Time travel comes w/grave risks.
🕒 Company prohibits risky behavior to mitigate risk.
🕓 But risky behavior makes task easier.
🕔 Company's only tools are performance reviews & shit wages. A diagram showing the forces acting on the temp. The company drawing the temp toward duty and prohibitions while the temp's desires driving them to power and ultimately risk.
In the beginning, the company has the most power. They have a job and the temp needs a job to live. But once they hand the time machine over to the temp, they lose all their power.
Last September I wrote quite a few threads about Swords Without Master under the hashtag #SeptSwords. If you're curious about Swords, check it out.

Since then, a whole shitload of Swords things have happened! The Swords Without Master logo, the silhouettes of three rogues against an alien sun in a starry sky. Their shadows spell out Swords Without Master.
Hey, I'm in Canada right now for @DamageCamp where I'll be helping @emilycare facilitate a playstorming workshop!

This has got me thinking about some of my favorite playstorming successes. Namely Trial & Terror: Supernatural Victims Unit and MonkeyDome, both of which can be found for free on this page: dig1000holes.wordpress.com/other-games/
Both games were made, from inception to printing, in just a week. A handful of us sat down on a Friday night with just the barest idea of a game. How about…
• …cops & DAs in an urban supernatural setting?
• …rolling to see if you are zany or grim before you do anything?
We started playing the games, inventing and implementing rules as we needed them, throwing out the ones that didn't work, and translating fruitful player behavior into mechanics. By the end of that Friday night, we would have a pretty solid idea of where the game was going.
Then over the next week, we frantically typed, edited, typed, edited, layouted, edited, typed, layouted, edited, got gorgeous art, played, edited, typed, layouted, and then, finally, printed so we could carry a handful of copies, hot off the presses, to debut at JiffyCon.
MonkeyDome was the second game in a jiffy we made and I owe it so much, because it is the backbone of Swords Without Master. If you're a Sw/oM fan, you may want to check it out. There's a lot in there you'll recognize, often under a different name. But let's talk Trial & Terror…
Inspired by the original Law & Order format, Trial & Terror has 2 halves. In the 1st half you play detectives investigating a crime committed against any of NYC's many supernatural residents. In the 2nd half, you play the DAs tasked with prosecuting those suspected of the crime.
The halves are timed. When that timer goes off, your detectives are done with their investigation. Who they have is who they're going to try to prosecute.

When that timer goes off again, you're done with your trial and sentencing begins whether you're ready for it or not.
The successes of the detectives lead to more resources for the DAs. The successes of the DAs increase the odds of a conviction.

Nobody's successes ensures that those put on trial are actually the guilty party. You don't get to know that. You don't ever get to know that.
There's so much I dig in this game. One of my favorite things is watching folks come up with new law as it relates to the supernatural. If you're possessed and commit a crime, who's guilty? Can lycanthropes who take every precaution during a full moon be held liable?
TECHNICALLY, this thread's supposed to be me promoting things that make me money to help pay for as of yet unspecified HUGE expense on the horizon, so TECHNICALLY I shouldn't be talking about these free games. But game designers are pretty much the worst at following rules.
Here are a bunch of games and other products you can pay me for, though: payhip.com/epidiah
Or, if you're like, "Bah! Eppy, I've already got all your stuff. How they hell am I supposed to pay you now?" Well, you're in luck! I've got a @kofi_button where you can buy me a coffee right now or set things up to by me a coffee every cursed month! ko-fi.com/epidiah
There are quite a few more Swords Without Master videos on YouTube than I expected.
Most are actual play, but there's a couple badass musical playlists.
No more coyness!

This November—for the 5th anniversary of its release in issue 2 of Worlds Without Master—I will be Kickstarting a corporeal form of Wolfspell.

Not as a book, but as a majestically metal trifold LP album cover illustrated by the unparalleled @portablecity!🤘
Wolfspell is a game about determined adventurers who have been magically transformed into wolves to complete some dire task. It's Powered by the Apocalypse with a Swords Without Master twist: the dice determine if your human or wolf side is in control.
This new version will feature some updated rules, new spells for turning into wolves, and ~6 square feet of wondrous & metal art from @portablecity!
This'll be my very first Kickstarter. I'm going to run it short, with no frills. You'll hear much more about it as Winter approaches. But for now, be prepared!
Right now, if you know a podcast or other gaming news outlet that you think should know about this 🐺✨ let me know! I'm eager to how about it!
Tag yourself!
Good morning!

Did you know that...

Swords Without Master
is in
Worlds Without Master, issue 3?

Well now you do!

I've been a little lax with this thread lately, so you've had a reprieve from the self-promoting. I hope you've enjoyed it, because I'm about to redouble my efforts.

The Respite Phase is over!

Here's the deal. At the top of this thread, I said there were some expenses headed my way, but I didn't say what for.

You remember way back in February when I was raising the funds to buy this badass calc?

It's like that, but instead of a calc, we're buying a fucking house.

I mean, I don't need to raise the funds to buy the house. We've got that covered.

But every house is haunted by restless, money-eating spirits. My adrenaline has been roaring ever since our offer was accepted.
Speaking of dread & houses…

Behold, Dread House! A print & play version of Dread appropriate for kids and brave adults!

You play teenagers daring each other to spend the night in the Dread House. Pull from the Jenga tower to show your courage. Whoever knocks the tower over runs home to safety and then takes possession of one of the six monsters loving in the house. A gorgeous cutaway of the Dread House.
Also, it's the only #ttrpg out there that let's you play a vampire—after you've knocked over the tower.

If there's another one, I haven't heard of it. A very handsome like vampire with sideburns and all dressed up for an elegant meal. Too young to drink…wine.
Related but not related: Eppy uses calx as a coping mechanism.

Candid shot of our dining room table right now. For calculators: the HP 17bii+, the HP 30b, the HP 10bii+, and the legendary HP 12C.
"…takes possession of one of the six monsters LOVING in the house."

This autocorrect typo up-thread has folks craving a game that isn't Dread House. Don't worry! I've got you covered!

Let me just hit pause on this self-promoting so I can get a little non-self-promoting done.
If your looking for romance in your games, then you NEED to get your hands on @emilycare's Romance Trilogy!

It's a defining pillar of the genre, plus it's by the other author of Dread House who also happens to be buying the same house I am.

If you're like, "Yeah, I want romance, but I also want that sweet, sweet Jenga action," well then you're in luck!

@muscularpikachu's Star Crossed delivers on both!

But you're like, "Wait, Eppy, you said monsters and teenagers. Give me monsters and teenagers!"

@dreamaskew's Monsterhearts is what you're looking for!

Now that I think about it, I think you can play a vampire in all of those games as well.

But then that's it. There are literally no other games that let you play vampires.

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More from @Epidiah

Jul 12, 2018
Folks, if you're anything like me, you still use Adobe CS4 because why keep buying shit, but you've also noticed that Photoshop has slowed to a fucking crawl in recent years. Like, make an adjustment-&-then-clean-the-dishes-while-you-wait-for-Photoshop-to-register-it slow.
& if you're like me, you recently had a delightful conversation with @portablecity about making merch:

& you've been struggling with this infernally sluggish PS for weeks assuming it was just your computer getting old. Because everything grows old & dies.
Because you're a fool who forgot that things could be Googled.
Read 5 tweets
Jun 18, 2018
Been thinking about this game all night.
I think I played this on the Atari 800, though it could have been a Commodore 64. We didn't have it as kids, but our cousins did. I remember which cousins, I remember the cool basement we played in, but I don't remember which computer those cousins had.
More importantly, I never had access to the rulebook or cover art. So we just fumbled around with it for hours on end, trying to suss out its dynamics.
Read 9 tweets
Apr 20, 2018

"20. Favorite design tools?"

Alright, let's open this toolbox!
I'm going to ignore hardware & software for a moment here & discuss them at the end of this thread for reasons I'll get into later.

Instead, I'm going to start with conceptual tools—Paradigms & Practices that have served me well.

We'll start with some Basic P&P…
Designing Vast & Starlit, I delved into the very least a game had to do and still satisfy my own personal needs. Therein I found the 3 things that make game design easy:

• A Gravid Situation
• Functional Collaboration
• Interesting Content Generation
Read 40 tweets
Apr 5, 2018

"5. Favorite game you've worked on"

Obviously, I should pick #SwordsWithoutMaster⚔️. It's what I'm known for & it is destined to be the game that finally usurps #DnD.

But pound for pound, Vast & Starlit is the most important game I've ever made. So it wins. The Vast & Starlit Library, four covers featuring Hubble Space Telescope images of nebulas and a complex orbital drawing.
Vast & Starlit was unleashed upon the world 5 years ago last month. Originally, it was only available in print—tiny little game books the size of 2 business cards bound together.

To get it, you had a play a game: Either find me & hand me $1/book I'd hand you from my own wallet…
…or you mailed me the rough equivalent of a dollar in your local currency along with a drawing you made for each book. The subject of the drawing depended on the book. The core rules needed a spacecraft, Bodies in the Dark needed two aliens either fighting or making out…
Read 18 tweets

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