Acting One’s (Dark) Age [Monday Meeting]


Our image this week is an amazing Nosferatu piece by the ever-talented Kieran Yanner from V20 Dark Ages that relates to a couple of the topics Eddy, the Onyx Path crew, and I discussed today.

But before I get into that, I just want to thank everybody who joined last week’s blog discussion on RPG reviews. It pretty much lasted all week, and a very wide range of thoughts were expressed as to how folks heed and consume reviews. Stars, written paragraphs, forum threads, online video blogs; it seems that there’s no single preferred method, but most of our community who wrote in do tend to check them out one way or the other. Which was pretty useful for us to know and plan for as another way that folks can get engaged in the projects we are publishing, particularly since for the most part a potential fan can’t browse book/game stores looking for something of ours.

Magical Matt McElroy, representing for wanted me to share this link with any of you who think you could spare a little time to jot down a review of something of ours you purchased: This link shows you which of the products you purchased from DTRPG you haven’t yet commented on. If you can help us out with a review, even just rating with stars, although folks in the blog comments last week seemed to prefer the written out ones more, that would be really helpful in letting other folks know what we’re doing right (or wrong, for that matter).

Today, we talked about the Deluxe V20 Dark Ages Kickstarter, as you might imagine, as it hurtles forward to become our fourth highest pledge total KS. We have an interesting list of additional Stretch Goals still waiting in the wings, and something that I’ve wanted to do for a while but couldn’t quite figure out how to use in the Kickstarter format. But I think I’ve figured it out. I’ll be giving the details in an Update on the KS, but the upshot is giving certain selected backers a chance to have their likenesses used for depicting the rest of the Clan signature characters in the full page pieces we haven’t yet done. Sorry, the Nosferatu pictured above isn’t one of them.

Also, here’s V20 DA Developer David Hill in a fascinating interview with the Gentleman Gamer: talking about his plans for V20 Dark Ages and other books like V20 Black Hand: Guide to the Tal’Mahe’Ra, Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition, and nWoD‘s Hurt Locker.

Eddy and I went over how he and his team are approaching the fine line they are walking on Beckett’s Jyhad Diary for V20 in terms of providing the info on what is happening in Vampire in 2014/2015. We are working at finding ways to create fascinating and rich stories for the setting while still trying to avoid overwriting folks’ ongoing Chronicles (as we stringently held to in V20). A lot of the issue is getting everyone on the team comfortable with our specific definition of the dreaded “metaplot” as well as all of us being aware that no matter how we define it, the word has a great deal of baggage that we can’t force to go away. That Nosferatu has left the catacombs.

Finally, I reiterated with the Onyx Path crew how important it is to me that Onyx‘s games be open for everyone for all walks of life. I mentioned this on the Pugmire blog this way: “Both WW and now Onyx Path have a proud history of telling stories about people for people, all people, even when some of the characters are monsters. Or dogs, in Pugmire’s case.” Similarly, I stressed how important it is for us to approach the way we talk to fans on all our social media with the idea that no matter what, we’re all fans and let’s remember to cut each other some slack. If for that fact only.

This week, Rose was feeling under the weather and had to take some time off, so we don’t have her part of the Update- I’ll edit this later in the week once she gets me the info she normally gathers up:

DEVELOPMENT STATUS FROM ROLLICKING ROSE (Projects in bold have changed listings)

First Draft (The first phase of a project that is about the work being done by writers, not dev prep)

  • Beast: the Primordial core book (Beast: The Primordial)
  • W20 Pentex Employee Indoctrination Handbook (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • Mage: the Awakening  2nd Edition, featuring the Fallen World Chronicle (Mage: the Awakening) – In Open Development
  • Fallen World Chronicle Fiction Anthology (Mage: the Awakening)
  • M20 How do you DO that? (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • M20 Book of Secrets (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • Cursed Necropolis: Rio (Mummy: the Curse)
  • Secrets of the Covenants (Vampire: The Requiem 2nd Edition) – In Open Development
  • Wraith: the Oblivion 20th Anniversary Edition
  • V20 Black Hand: Guide to the Tal’Mahe’Ra (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) – In Open Development
  • W20 Novel by Mike Lee (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • Exalted 3rd Novel by Matt Forbeck (Exalted 3rd Edition)
  • W20 Shattered Dreams (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • W20 Changing Ways (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition)


  • Mummy Fiction Anthology (Mummy: the Curse)
  • Exalted 3rd Fiction Anthology (Exalted 3rd Edition)
  • Arms of the Chosen (Exalted 3rd Edition)

Second Draft

  • Promethean: the Created 2nd Edition, featuring the Firestorm Chronicle (Promethean: the Created) – Playtesting


  • Firestorm Chronicle Fiction Anthology (Promethean: the Created 2nd Edition)
  • V20 Red List (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • V20 Ghouls (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • World of Darkness Dark Eras- Vampire chapter (WoD Dark Eras)
  • Sothis Ascends (Mummy: the Curse)
  • V20 Lore of the Clans (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition)


  • Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition core book (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • Werewolf: the Forsaken 2nd Edition, featuring the Idigam Chronicle (Werewolf: the Forsaken)
  • Exalted 3rd Edition core book- From Holden: “The book is in editing. Art is coming in thick and fast, being reviewed and revised. And the final piece of writing for the book is now in editing—a new short story by Jenna Moran”. (Exalted 3rd Edition)

Development (post-editing)

  • World of Darkness Dark Eras core book (WoD Dark Eras)
  • Idigam Chronicle Fiction Anthology (Werewolf: the Forsaken)



  • White Howlers  PDF updated and PoD uploaded. Waiting on proofing the PoD.
  • Book of the Deceived – Got Luis’ art in and approved. Trabbold should have his stuff in by end of the week and head shots should be in by end of week as well. Pinging one artist to see where his stuff is. Gonna put the cover for it together this week as I think I have an idea for the logo finally.
  • Book of the Wyrm 20 – Errata continues. Looking at screen proof Tuesday.
  • DAV20 –  Tightening up layout as the bulk of the art is in. Probably going to take a day to give the clan and bloodlines sections some more love as well. Got one of my three stragglers halfs in, one of them should be done shortly, and the other is running into some difficulty due to not completely reading his email.
  • Anarchs Unbound –  At the printer. Looking at screen proofs on Tuesday.
  • T-Shirts – V20 shirts and vintage Bradstreet Vampire shirts are up. We’re going to look at our RedBubble offerings more closely on Weds.
  • Art O’ The Changin’ Breeds –   Half way through the writing commentary for everything in the book.
  • Umbra – Most of the fulls are in. Gonna get the cover for that one done this week as well.
  • Ready Made Characters: Geist – Art in the works. Cathy is still pretty sure she can hit the deadline.
  • VTR II – Covers discussed.
  • Dark Eras and Second Editions – As the artists are wrapping up DA, Umbra, and various other projects I’d like to get them onto these before the holidays. Most artists won’t take on that many pieces during the Thanksgiving and Xmas holidays and all three of those titles are big books that will require quite a bit of art.
  • WtF 2 – I know it’s off to editing. Now I need artnotes so we can get that stuff rolling. Probably going to have to ask Aileen to help out as I’ll be neck deep in M20 by the time that comes around.
  • Scarred Lands – pinging artist about cover stuff.
  • EX3- RichT here, once again tagging onto Mirthful Mike’s report, to say that art director Maria Cabardo has assigned all the art from the first batch of 91 pieces and I am looking at sketches and sending them on to the Devs, and Maria has the second batch of art notes and is assigning those pieces. With this many illustrations in the book, it’s a team effort.


REASON TO DRINK: Today is Onyx Path Office Manager Lisa’s birthday!






29 responses to “Acting One’s (Dark) Age [Monday Meeting]”

  1. Asaram Avatar

    I’ve reviewed a bunch of your stuff, the best bits (according to me anyways). Hope that helps someone 🙂

    1. richt Avatar

      Everything we’re hearing indicates it will- thanks so much for pitching in!

  2. Lydia Avatar

    Beckett’s Jyhad Diary is-for me-the most anticipated V20 supplement to date, because the line’s absence of metaplot has dampened my interest in the game. The evolving story that stretched across game books, fiction, and the video games was what really drew me in to VtM Revised (everyone I game with hates Vampire and refuses to play it, so the metaplot kinda provided a vicarious game experience–Achilli-style). Anyway, I know metaplot is problematic on the creator end and to some players, but it’s nice to see it getting a little love in V20.

    Also, the opportunity to be the image of a signature character is probably the best perk of any of OP’s Kickstarters. Very cool. 🙂

    1. Dado Avatar

      I agree with Lydia.

    2. An Fhuiseog Avatar
      An Fhuiseog

      Even as somebody who doesn’t play the oWoD, I’m also fascinated by Beckett’s diary. I predict it will cause me to buy VtM 20!

      1. Adonijah Avatar

        I agree on part with the comments above. I don’t want big metaplot that, in my opinion, freeze the game. But i would really enjoy some kind of book as “A world of rage” for W20 in the V20 line. I enjoyed the background given in the supplement by small touch, gave me a lot of ideas whithout being suffocative for my imagination. I would love a supplement like for W20.
        Anyway, really excited by shattered dreams! It’s gonna be a long awaiting til i get it in my hands…

        1. richt Avatar

          That was where we started, but then the more we looked at what Beckett’s Jyhad Diary could be, the more we realized was possible because of it being that particular character’s assembled notes on events, rumors, and stories. Sometimes relying on the unreliable narrator gets out of hand- things get too open, too many possibilities are presented- but with Beckett, I think we have the right narrator with the right vehicle to present a rich tapestry of events for V20.

      2. richt Avatar

        That would be great!

    3. richt Avatar

      Anything “Achilli-style” is trouble. Be very careful, contents could explode under pressure.

  3. Bardlebee Avatar

    Aren’t the notes from Holden from Exalted the same as last week, like word for word?

    How much would you say, percentage wise, is back from editing that is currently implemented and how much is still being edited?

    Not looking for exacts, just ball park figure here. 🙂

    1. richt Avatar

      All the Dev notes are the same, Rose was ill and could not update them. Check out the EX3 notes under the art side of things.

  4. Unsilent Majority Avatar
    Unsilent Majority

    “We’re going to look at our RedBubble offerings more closely on Weds.”

    Is this a good thing? More shirts? More choices? Stickers, mugs, etc.?

    I’ve been a huge supporter of the OP Red Bubble Store, and would love to see an even more expansive list of OP items for sale.

    1. richt Avatar

      All of the above, but mostly we’ll be posting a round-up of all the shirts we currently have available. Also, bear in mind that articles of clothing are cool with CCP, other merchandise less so.

  5. reseru Avatar

    I’m literally bouncing in my chair with excitement reading about Book of the Deceived’s progress. Shit, Mummy is such a great game.

    I don’t want to jinx it but I really believe it could be out before November! 😡

    1. Felipe Avatar

      Also ansious for Deceived! It will gonna be a hell of a book, I can sense it!

    2. reseru Avatar

      Oh, goodness. I didn’t mean to put an angry face there!

      1. Felipe Avatar

        Let’s juts think of it as a hungry face for Deceived!

      2. richt Avatar

        I liked the angry face- it looked intense. I wouldn’t get all focused on it being out at a certain time though. Stuff can happen to slow progress. Like I have to tell all of you folks that!

  6. WuseMajor Avatar

    Have you guys spoiled any more info about Beast, other than the title and brief blurb from the Gen Con material? If so, could I get a link?

    If not, are there plans for open development or a blog for that or should I just be patient and wait for more info as it comes?

    1. richt Avatar

      Be patient, grasshopper. More will come your way.

  7. Walter Avatar

    I know you don’t like talking about scheduling because too many things could cause delays, but is there at least a rough idea of when the Wraith20 KS will happen? Really I’d just like to know if it’ll be before or after the new year.

    As for the metaplot discussion, I guess I’m in the minority in that I always enjoyed it. Gave me a feeling of being able to participate in something much bigger than what was going on in the session we were running.

    1. Illuminated Avatar

      Rich mentioned in one of the updates that the plan for Kickstarters was DAV20 -> Wraith 20 -> Dark Eras. So we’ll probably see it in November and maybe Dark Eras in December if we’re lucky. 🙂

      1. richt Avatar

        That’s right, we are planning for Wraith 20 after the current V20 Dark Ages KS.

    2. richt Avatar

      Again, a lot of the issues with metaplot come from how each of us defines. For us, it is the progression of events presented in supplements that occur after the set time assumed in the core book. Only this. So, we know there are folks who enjoyed that, either because they weren’t playing so much as reading, or because their style of playing was locked into metaplot advances as each book came out. There is very certainly nothing wrong with that.

      Unfortunately, looking at our books as the RPGs they are, our game lines became harder and harder to get into as the setting info in the core books got overwritten by the supplements, and for potential new players, or those who quite understandably couldn’t buy every single book that might contain an iota of setting change, it became very hard to incorporate the changes or even understand them out of sequence.

      What we are looking at now is specifically how the fun and richness of that developing world could be brought out without leaving not just a section of our audience in the lurch, but the chance to grow our audience with new players. And books like Beckett’s Jyhad Diary or even V20 Dark Ages are where we are looking at how to get the good parts together without the downside.

      And the thing is, new players aren’t just for us as a company to make the big bucks, they are also how a line is seen as healthy and selling enough to get new supplements. So for current players, getting new players in provides new people to play with, but also increases the chance that your favorite line gets more books for you personally to enjoy.

      1. Lydia Avatar

        That was the concise explanation that I didn’t know I wanted. Thanks for posting that bit of insight. *thumbs up*

        1. richt Avatar

          No problem. I was actually told this week that I should take that comment and build a whole blog around it. So, good for all.

      2. reseru Avatar

        What about smaller lines of ‘sub-supplements’ for metaplot advancement? Like one year the Book of Metaplot I comes out and next year it’s Book of Metaplot II, and each book is small – like 30-50 pages after it’s been through layout, if that. Each one might include some mechanical knick-knacks.

        I mean, Paizo does Adventure Paths, you know? These would be like how you presented the God-machine in the GMC but with advancing story like an AP.

        I’d really enjoy something like this, even for the nWoD

        1. richt Avatar

          That idea was one of the possible directions we looked at before testing the overall idea with Beckett’s Jyhad Diary. Still could be where things lead.

          1. reseru Avatar

            That’s great, I’ll have to look more into that. I don’t do cWoD except some stuff just as inspiration, mostly from the last-released end of the world stuff