July 26th, 2013

Asking What I Already Know (and Then Some)

Ok, so the universal RPG system I've been working on pretty much solo, in fits and starts, over the past four years is 95% done.  Or at least, the core rulebook is.

This leads me to the first of my questions to the community, the one I think I already know the answer to  The system allows GMs to build their own monsters and opponents, even vehicle stats, if they wish.  While I've always intended to release a monster manual at some point soon after the core rulebook, my thought now is that I probably need to release a monster manual concurrently.  Somehow I don't think the average GM will be too happy with having to make his/her own monsters up as they go, even temporarily. Thoughts?

I have part of the monster manual written already- the first 64 out of about 180 entries that are planned.  My monsters are a bit different, though, in that they all follow legends and folklore as much as possible, using the oldest viable version of that folklore.  So there are no orcs (since the fantasy orc as we know it doesn't exist in folklore).  There are no gorgons, since there were only three of them, ever, according to legend. And they sure as Hell weren't big armored bulls!  Similarly, there are no medusae.  Vampires are rather weak creatures compared to modern folklore, because going by the old stories, it was ridiculously easy to thwart them.  This brings me to my next question: what are your feelings about a monster manual that attempts to cut out all the layers that have accumulated on folklore from more modern pop culture and gets back to the basics? Is it interesting or boring? Why?

Final question: I do not have the funds to illustrate either book, and Lord knows I can't do the artwork myself (unless people want the same crappy kind of line drawings from old school AD&D 1st Edition).  So I will eventually have to get a Kickstarter going to fund the artwork and publishing costs.  I have a few ideas on funding rewards, but I welcome more. Any suggestions?

EDIT: Found my draft list of Kickstarter rewards for reference:

Tier I Goodies:
 - expanded sci-fi weapons and equipment
 - magical items list for fantasy (I'm working on this one right now)
 - sample vehicles (3-4 from each genre: sci-fi, fantasy, modern)

Tier II Goodies:
 - Map Pack I: Fantasy Locations
 - Map Pack 2: Modern & Future Locations
 - Sample Monsters aka the Mini-Bestiary

Tier III Goodies:
 - Scenario Pack I: Fantasy Setting
 - Scenario Pack 2: Sci-Fi Setting
 - Scenario Pack 3: Horror & Supernatural
 - Scenario Pack 4: Superheroes

Tier IV Goodies:
 - condensed world book (added per beccastareyes suggestion)