Fantasy requires discipline

I’ve never been good with discipline. (Well, never say never, right? I did manage to get through grad school and wrote a book, after all.) But I’m easily distracted, self-distracted, wanting to chase some fancy or another, or to break a rule because it’s a rule, even if it’s a rule I’ve made. Especially rules I’ve made. Because I don’t want to feel confined, to be told what to do, what I must do, how something should be done. I want to intuit, discover, unfold.

Discipline. Perhaps discipline should be one of my four primary attributes.

Style. Perhaps “art” or “flair”—something that suggests a bit of “flourish”—but thus far, I believe style best fits the genre while remaining broad enough in meaning.

Maybe you’re thinking… “Discipline and style—are these appropriate attributes for superheroes during an apocalypse…?”

Nope. Probably not.

(Guts. Guts might be a good one. Still on the fence about it.)

Okay, so I neglected to write a blog post for a few weeks. Something happened. I got hung up. I got hung up on my “four souls” idea and realized I was doing exactly what I said in the beginning I need to stop doing (although, to some extent, it’s inevitable). I was organizing and sorting information. Yeah sure, it might be insightful to dig into the concepts, compare the “four-part soul” to the different parts of an atom (protons, neutrons, and electrons). Everyone loves a little “dark matter” in their game theory. But I sure as hell wasn’t doing any world building, nor was I being very creative. I was thinking about Egyptian mysticism, Philip Pullman, and trying to draw together ideas from games past and present to come up with an idea without context.

And I started thinking… What really do I want to do and why?

I want to create my own unique and story-rich role-playing game that people I know will love and enjoy. Now, there’s a lot to that sentence. But there’s a key: I want to create something that people I know will love and enjoy. So I asked my partner, Roman, “If you could play any genre of RPG, what would you prefer to play?”

His answer? High fantasy. He enjoys role-playing in a world full of magic and wondrous monsters. I simmered on this for about 24 hours, and thought, should I go back to one of the fantasy worlds I started to develop? Can I do all the other things I love to do (i.e. write political allegory, explore metaphysical quandaries) in a high fantasy world? Then I remembered the sci-fi/fantasy world that I’ve developed more than any other, for which I’ve written chapters of a book and even created my own homebrew in grad school. And I asked Roman—though he knows little about the world—”Do you think I should create an RPG for Tempeste?”

“Yes.”

Yes, I’m returning to Tempeste. That’s where my brain has been for the past few weeks, brewing in a world of storms, nobility, politics, mercenaries, magic, and darkly wondrous monsters.

More soon, my friends.

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