Darkness, Now with More Eras [Monday Meeting Notes]

Dark Eras MockupSmall


Well, here I am writing in another snow mini-event. Seems like a pattern is emerging. I’m on to you, Jack Frost!

Usually, I title these Monday Meeting Notes with a wee bit of wordplay and a heapin’ helpin’ of stupid punnery. But today, it’s actually pretty accurate. We started the nWoD Dark Eras Prestige Edition Kickstarter last Thursday, and last Friday we were funded (thanks, backers!). Which means that there is a chapter containing an historical time period for each of our nWoD gamelines in the basic book.

The “basic book”, you say? Yep, because now that we’re funded we’ve started asking folks to vote on which Dark Era we should add to the book next after passing the next Stretch Goal amount. We already passed a Stretch Goal where an Era for Changeling: the Lost in Germany during the time of the Brothers Grimm was added. And right now we’re looking at either a chapter of Neolithic Mage, Wild West Geist, or Werewolf Vikings to be added next. Because these are Stretch Goal extras, they are all added value to the beautiful book itself. (The proposed cover design is my picture this week). Having backers be part of choosing the next Dark Eras was our plan all along for this Kickstarter campaign, and we hope you can check it out and join in on deciding what goes into this book.


If you want to talk to us about Dark Eras, we’re going to be holding a Twitter Chat session with the Dark Eras developers and writers (well, as many of them who can) on Weds, February 4th starting at 8pm EST US and running at least an hour, maybe more if we’re getting the questions to keep going. You can either follow the #DarkEras hashtag or stay up to date through the Onyx Path Twitter account at @theonyxpath. Go ahead and ask us anything about the book! And if you can’t make it, please go ahead and write up your questions in the comments here and we’ll get them added to the mix during the chat.

Monday meeting was mostly about more ways to spread the word about this Kickstarter, like interviews and reviews and such, and our usual look at the lists you see below every week. Eddy talked a bit about his Pugmire playtest group and how he is organizing that, and a bit about job interviews and how they can really vary from company to company. Having done my fair share of interviewing as interviewer during both my WW and CCP days, I’m always interested in how this is done. Was it a Human Resources person, and/or a manager? Did you sit with the different teams you would be working with? Did they use the Interview Questions playbook and metrics, or was it a free-for-all and gut-level? Was there a written test? After the interview, did they take you out to a meal, to a bar? Idle curiosity really, but I do find it indicative of a company ethos in how they look for new employees.

And here are our current gang of projects, although a fair number of our writers are pretty new:

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)

  • W20 Pentex Employee Indoctrination Handbook (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 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
  • Exalted 3rd Novel by Matt Forbeck (Exalted 3rd Edition)
  • Demon Storytellers’ Guide (Demon: the Descent) Extension to writers was given.
  • Beckett’s Jyhad Diary (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • M20 Anthology (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • Demon Translation Guide (Demon: the Fallen and Demon: the Descent)
  • Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition, featuring the Huntsmen Chronicle (Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition)


  • Mummy Fiction Anthology (Mummy: the Curse)
  • Arms of the Chosen (Exalted 3rd Edition)
  • W20 Shattered Dreams (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • Mage: the Awakening  2nd Edition, featuring the Fallen World Chronicle (Mage: the Awakening) – In Open Development
  • W20 Novel by Mike Lee (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • Wraith: the Oblivion 20th Anniversary Edition
  • W20 Changing Ways (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • Sardonyx” System Rules (Base rules set for Scion and the Trinity Continuum) 

Second Draft

  • Beast: the Primordial core book (Beast: The Primordial)
  • V20 Black Hand: Guide to the Tal’Mahe’Ra (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition)


  • V20 Red List (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • V20 Ghouls (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • Promethean: the Created 2nd Edition, featuring the Firestorm Chronicle (Promethean: the Created) Being playtested.
  • M20 How do you DO that? (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition)


Development (post-editing)

  • V20 Lore of the Clans (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • Exalted 3rd Fiction Anthology (Exalted 3rd Edition)
  • Sothis Ascends (Mummy: the Curse)



  • Sothis Ascends –  Should be seeing sketches for this sometime this week.
  • Book of the Wyrm 20 – Signed off on interior Thursday. Just waiting on Deluxe cover stuff.
  • DAV20 –  Cleaning up for CCP approval.
  • T-Shirts – Holding pattern until the log jam is cleared out a bit.
  • Art O’ The Changin’ Breeds –   Mage still a priority.
  • Fallen World Chronicle Anthology – PDF up. Errata compiling. http://rpg.drivethrustuff.com/product/143174/The-Fallen-World-Chronicle-Anthology
  • Firestorm Chronicle Anthology for Promethean 2– PDF/ePub and PoD versions on sale at DTRPG: http://rpg.drivethrustuff.com/product/141741/The-Firestorm-Chronicle-Anthology
  • WtF 2 – Sto working on it. Abrar has until tonight to respond.
  • Scarred Lands –  Cover for [REDACTED] finished.
  • Wraith 20 – Getting Mr Cobb started on remaining Guild logos.
  • M20 – Making alterations to layout and Phil’s text cuts. So it won’t be going into proofing until end of next week at the earliest.
  • Dark Eras – KS rolling along. (see above)
  • V20 Lore of the Clans – Rolling along. Fingers crossed nothing pops up.
  • EX3- RichT here, once again tagging onto Mirthful Mike’s report: we asked the artists for a couple of redos, so new old new art is still coming in. Maria hopes to get me the very roughly laid in layout pages by the end of this week. The Devs sent their music ideas for each Exalted for the EX3 Music Suite to the composer.

REASON TO DRINK: One twelfth of the year- gone. pffft.






49 responses to “Darkness, Now with More Eras [Monday Meeting Notes]”

  1. The_Emerald_Flame Avatar

    Loving the movement that happened this week. Looks like we might possibly get a look at Exalted soon, and Dark Ages Vampire as well. I am so excited!!!

    1. The_Emerald_Flame Avatar

      Oh, and Mage 20th seems close as well. What an exciting February we will be having. 🙂

      1. richt Avatar

        We’re going to do what we can, it all depends on how much extra work these big books require to whip them into layout shape. 🙂

        1. Astral_Trinity Avatar

          M20 teaser on facebook was brutal… I need this book!

  2. Unsilent Majority Avatar
    Unsilent Majority

    Going by the art notes, it looks like DAV20 has completely jumped over everything like a young Michael Jordan, and will be next big release?

    1. richt Avatar

      The PDF will go to backers first for comments and fixes, and we’ll make sure “Michael” is ready for the big game.

      1. Unsilent Majority Avatar
        Unsilent Majority

        Michael is always ready. : ) Sounds good, Rich!

  3. Unsilent Majority Avatar
    Unsilent Majority

    Also, if Abrar doesn’t answer, I’m sure more Ron Spencer or Brian LeBlanc art wouldn’t hurt. : )

    Maybe even getting an artist that normally does work for other lines to get their feet wet on some Werewolf action? Christopher Shy, for example.

    Just an idea.

    1. richt Avatar

      Don’t worry, we have options. Really like his stuff, but if he doesn’t communicate there’s nothing we can do. Hope he’s OK.

  4. Tiresias Avatar

    Dark Eras has me wondering, when do you pitch Kickstarter stretch goals supplement to CCP? Do you get them approved while the Kickstarter is in its planning stages, or do you need to make frantic calls at inconvenient times to keep up with the Kickstarter pledges?

    1. richt Avatar

      We have pre-arranged possible products before we get to Stretch Goal time.

      1. Tiresias Avatar

        And now there is one less question keeping me awake at night.

  5. tau neutrino Avatar
    tau neutrino

    Almost all professional interviews have been with managers, and sitting with the teams. I’ve never had a written test. I’ve only been taken out to dinner once.

    Last week I was permanently banned from the forums for being a spambot, which I’m obviously not. Two attempts to contact the Forum Administrator have gone unanswered. What’s going on?

    1. Rose Bailey Avatar
      Rose Bailey

      Looks like you were done in by the spam filter, for God knows what reason. I’ve unbanned you, sorry about that.

    2. richt Avatar

      Rose says you may have been banned by an automatic spam blocker as there were no infractions attached to you, so nobody human banned you. There also were no listed Admin contact attempts, so I wonder if you were completed disconnected for some reason. She unbanned you. Sorry it happened; we’re as mystified as you.

      1. tau neutrino Avatar
        tau neutrino

        The message said I was banned by “Lioness”. Is that the spam filter? It apparently happened when I posted a link to Charles deLint’s new collection on Amazon to both Changeling forums. Unfortunately while I’m unbanned, all my posts are still gone.

  6. Simon Avatar

    Any update on the Making of the Art of W20?

    1. richt Avatar

      That gets finished on the template for Making of the Art of Changing Breeds- a bit backwards, but it is how we have to work that out. So as soon as MotACB is up, we can get back to the W20 one.

      1. Simon Avatar

        Alright, fair enough. At least it’s on it’s way 🙂

  7. jason Avatar

    Which project that y’all have in the works are you and company really excited about ? C20 ? Scion, ect ? Also nice to see we are slowly getting forward to M20. Feb looks like it will be an interesting book indeed.

  8. Vaughan Avatar

    Two eras I’d love to see are sengoku period of Japan, and the Three Kingdoms era of China.

    Can I just say I love what you guys have done with Geist for this book! Something set in New Zealand is just amazing to me. 😀

    1. Simon Avatar

      Seconding this, seconding this so hard. Not even WoD related, I would just love to see a WW/OP take on the Romance of the Three Kingdoms and/or the Japanese Warring States period.

  9. Lou Silvers Avatar
    Lou Silvers

    Mmmhmmm do that World of Darkness Dynasty Warriors!!! Need more cross over of my favorite stuff!

  10. Cardul Avatar

    So, the w20 Changing Ways..I am curious if it is going to include Kalindo and Klaive Dueling rules in it, or if those will be in a future product?

  11. Hawthorn Avatar

    “M20 – Making alterations to layout and Phil’s text cuts. So it won’t be going into proofing until end of next week at the earliest.”

    (Runs around like a headless chicken)

    Cuts! Cuts! What cuts? What glorious content has been sacrificed!

    (Hyperventilates into a paper bag)

    More seriously though, I know the page count on M20 has caused some pretty big cuts already (Phil’s mentioned the cut content is going into Book of Secrets so I’m cool with all that). I was wondering if this is an additional last minute cut or if its referring to one of the older ones the M20 backers were told about a while ago?

  12. Dawngreeter Avatar

    One of the benefits or downsides, depending on how you look at things, of being involved in a profession which utilizes objectively verifiable knowledge (programmer) is that all of the interviews I’ve been to have heavily leaned on engineers talking to engineers. Sure, managers get involved, but managers are by and large also engineers. The only difference is that, usually, ‘regular’ engineers will usually ask about technical details and manager engineers will ask about high level design. HR gets briefly involved at some point, but it’s my experience that this is a very minor part of the interview.

    I’ve always wondered how, say, an economist, a writer or an artist gets interviewed since I don’t see how you can ask them a question with a strictly right-or-wrong answer being given. I have this fear that, had I been a writer of some kind, I’d always go into interviews and people would hire be based on how much I seemed likeable. That’s a pretty terrifying prospect, I think.

    Oh, and, hooray for Dark Eras! I can’t wait for the book! I know this is an extremely unlikely scenario, but I kind of hope that chapters for 1st ed lines would get updated to 2nd ed once the game lines hit 2nd ed as well. I know, a lot of work for relatively little gain. And, yeah, I know that most of the content won’t be crunch so it probably won’t make a lot of difference either way. But a guy can hope!

    1. Dawngreeter Avatar

      Oh, and also hooray for Sardonyx making progress! Very excited to see what it shapes up to be.

    2. Felipe Avatar

      I agree with you about the rules, but this can be solved as easily as a blogpost doing the necessary changes.

    3. Caleb Cushing Avatar

      I would think (hope) that artists would be largely portfolio based… personally I wished programmers were too, but the number of developers that have code links on their resume is highly disappointing.

  13. Firanai Avatar

    wraith20 is in art already?! I’m I understanding it wrong or are you telling me that wraith20 us almost finished?

    1. marin Avatar

      Note the book’s still listed in Redlines. The comment in Art Direction is about getting the remaining Guild logos done (I think that means the Dark Kingdom and perhaps the Spectral Arcanoi, since the Stygian Arcanoi already have logos).

      1. IanW Avatar

        Note that that’s logos, like the text that says “Haunters” on the cover of Guildbook: Haunters, not the Arcanoi symbols. John Cobb did the original Guild logos, while Rich Thomas created the original Arcanoi symbols.

  14. maekkel Avatar


    I had some ideas regarding Dark Eras:

    Rococo Werewolfs (1730- 1780 C.E.) – asymetrical styles are now all the rage! Civilization & Wilderness!

    Carribean Mage (1520-1650 C.E.) – actually rebuild of the sorcerers crusade but with Pirates! 😉

    All hail the Clockwork! (1840-1900 C.E.) – Victorian age WoD/Godmachine/Demon/Promethean Setting

    The Migration (376-800 CE) – Changelings walk along with migrating peoples after the collapse of the late antiquity. cultures meet as do monsters.

    The Wild West and the bloodrich East (1783 – 1900) – Mostly young vampires follow the european settlers when they grab the land of the native people. Like the mortals they thirst not only for blood but also for territory and power.
    Later the surviving bloodsuckers will be known as the Princes & Primogen of the US.

  15. Vampire fan Avatar
    Vampire fan

    I think, The Black Hand is highly anticipated. How about some preview art?

    1. Rose Bailey Avatar
      Rose Bailey

      We’ll probably have some, but it’ll be a bit in the future, because art is only commissioned after a book’s gone through both drafts and been developed.

      1. Vampire fan Avatar
        Vampire fan

        Cool, thanks for the update

  16. Full Time GM Avatar
    Full Time GM

    Sweet, Changeling 2nd Ed is on the board.

  17. Stephen Avatar

    So, I’m just going to put this out there as another possible stretch goal for the current Dark Eras book (which is shaping up to be fantastic). I’d like to see more Requiem love. And, as a Canadian, I want to see an era in which the World of Darkness is reflected in the often tumultuous history of my country.

    So here’s my suggestion for a future stretch goal – Requiem: War of 1812

  18. jason Avatar

    I think the alterations mean he isn’t removing anything, since it’s in the art direction, he is probably making sure things look good from an artists POV, like deciding if this symbol goes good over this spot, or what small wall of text goes in this box here or which image of X goes here for example..

  19. The Cowardly Scion Avatar
    The Cowardly Scion

    I’ve not seen it so much in this comments thread but I’ve seen a lot of negativity towards some of the more and less obscure or stereotypical eras. To them I say: download the raw text from the Kickstarter page and start reading the chapters that made you roll your eyes when you first heard of them. Cold War Demon is very, very in tone with its setting or at least as much as I’ve gleaned from the Quick Start and the God Machine Chronicle. That’s not as bad of a thing as I originally felt. It doesn’t answer any big questions about the origin of the God Machine and its niche in the WoD as a pre industrial setting might but it is solid as a rock in terms of a rich playground for horror and paranoia. If one has Chicago, Bowery Dogs is a little redundant in terms of some of its urban decay themes but the social backdrop of the 70s and the uncivil war going on between so many forces in US society adds social elements that Chicago doesn’t have. The two books complement each other very well rather than rendering either one unnecessary.

  20. Darkfool Avatar

    Love the skull/clock design for Dark Eras. Hoping to see it up on Redbubble when you guys get the opportunity.

    I should also say that I have been really enjoying this kickstarter. Both my wife and I are chipping in so we have our own vote at home to see which item on the poll we will support. Loving nearly all of the options so far, lots of hard choices. Been great.

  21. Batro Avatar

    Any news from the Scarred Lands? What is the mysterious book on art direction??

  22. Sean Avatar

    So is Beast going to be getting a kickstarter as well?

    Also, as usual, just…so excited for stuff. All the stuff. And you keep adding more awesome.

    1. Simon Avatar

      I’m excited to find out more about Beast. Any hints as to when we’ll be getting some more info on it?

      1. Matthew McFarland Avatar


        (Later February/March, I think, I’ll start posting some info.)

  23. Irrefutably Thor Avatar
    Irrefutably Thor

    I have been curious for awhile now…. Will V20 Lore of the Clans be a KS or a Direct to Drivethrurpg.com title?

  24. Dennis Avatar

    Ooh, ooh! Sin-Eaters in the 8th and 9th centuries (CE), as the Carolingian Empire and the Holy Roman Empire are being formed signifying the rebirth of the ideal of a unified Europe under singular rule.
    Or during the Renaissance… Pun intended.

  25. Phil H Avatar
    Phil H

    Dark Eras sort of question. Considering doing the WoD 2E PDF add on for the kickstarter. Looking to understand, as someone who bought the God-Machine Chronicle, will that benefit me? Essentially it’s not a secret to say VtR 2E is the Strix Chronicle with a (much) better cover, is WoD 2E going to be similar or will there be bang for my extra bucks?

    1. richt Avatar

      NWoD 2nd will be much more of a combination of the God-Machine Chronicle and the sort of info found in the original blue book. And because of how that mix needs to occur, there will be some new stuff as well if I remember Rose’s outline correctly. Unlike Blood&Smoke and VtR2, where the latter replaced the former, we will probably continue to have both GMC and nWoD 2nd for sale on DTRPG. Thanks!