<+WetInkBrandon> Well, I’m Brandon K. Aten, one of the owners of Wet Ink Games.
<+WetInkMatt> I’m Matthew Orr, the other owner of Wet Ink
<+WetInkBrandon> My partner in crime, WetInkMatt is also here. (^that’s him!)
<+WetInkBrandon> We’ve been on here a couple times before to discuss our games that we’ve done: Wild Skies (both the core book Europa Tempest, and the expansion, Liberating Strife) and our last game, Never Going Home!
<+WetInkMatt> This time, we have a new game to talk about.
<+WetInkBrandon> Today, we’re discussing our newest project Tenebria: Remnant of Rome
<+WetInkMatt> It’s the first game to spin out of the development process of our last game.
<+WetInkBrandon> Yeah, it uses the same core +One system of Never Going Home with some modifications to make it unique
<+WetInkMatt> We ended up working with a whole lot of industry regulars and many of them we wanted to work with again.
<+WetInkBrandon> Tenebria: Remnant of Rome takes place after the fall of the Roman Empire, and is a survival/resource management RPG
<+WetInkMatt> The writer and artist for the game is one talented guy named Steven Wu.
<+WetInkMatt> He wrote one adventure in Never Going Home and he did the national park posters in Liberating Strife.
<+WetInkMatt> So he’s someone we’ve worked with before.
<+WetInkBrandon> As an artist he had done some work for us in Wild Skies: Liberating Strife, and as a writer he had done an adventure for Never Going Home. We enjoyed his work on both fronts so much that we asked if he wanted to work on something else with us!
<+WetInkBrandon> He has done some art for a personal project that I really liked and I asked him if he wanted to do more, and Tenebria is what he pitched
<+WetInkBrandon> Needless to say, we like what he had to say
<+WetInkMatt> So, we mentioned it’s set at the end of the Roman era. The city of Tenebria is “somewhere in Germania”.
<+WetInkMatt> It’s far enough from anywhere else that the people are pretty isolated. The PCs and their skills will be about all keeping the city from complete collapse.
<+WetInkBrandon> It’s far away from Rome, and the players take on the roles of what they believe to be the last of the Romans.
<+WetInkBrandon> As Matt said, trying to keep the city from collapse while trying to survive is big part of the game
<+WetInkBrandon> As for the resource management part of the game, the characters are scavenging whatever they can find from the former empire in order to build up the city of Tenebria into something great
<+WetInkMatt> Taking a couple notes from the magic in Never Going Home, there are blessings the characters can use and hexes they have to deal with.
<+WetInkMatt> It’s a “light magic” setting.
<+WetInkMatt> I think that’s the highlights.
<+WetInkMatt> Here’s the link to the KS page so you can see of Steven’s art.
<+WetInkMatt> (Link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2103068465/tenebria-remnant-of-rome/description)https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2103068465/tenebria-remnant-of-rome/description
<+WetInkBrandon> Other than the fact that in Never Going Home cards represent your memories or humanity, whereas in Tenebria they represent actual resources, that’s pretty much it. We decided early on that we wanted to allow the use of cards to be flexible so designers could try new things whenever they were working in the +One system.
<+WetInkBrandon> so, unless WetInkMatt has anything else, I think we can say (done)
<~Dan> Thanks, WetInkMatt, WetInkBrandon! The floor is open to questions!
<~Dan> Are the hexes and blessings the full extent of the supernatural in this setting?
<+WetInkBrandon> As of right now, that is the case, but we do have some stretch goals planned that may flesh that out a bit
<~Dan> (Howdy, GKG_Alan!)
<~Dan> (Topic: (Link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2103068465/tenebria-remnant-of-rome/description)https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2103068465/tenebria-remnant-of-rome/description )
<+WetInkBrandon> Hey Alan!
<~Dan> Can you say anything about those stretch goals?
* +WetInkMatt works out what g k g stands for. then nods
<+Akyla> Will you be keeping the supernatural reasonable? I’ve been looking for more realistic historical games.
<~Dan> Howdy, Lee!
<+WetInkMatt> I think so. The main threats will be brigands of various strengths.
<+WetInkMatt> There will be a witch antagonist, but we aren’t making this a “they have a cave troll” type game
<+WetInkBrandon> Yeah, I would even say that it could be relegated to a storytelling element rather than a mechanical element if that truly is the kinds of stories your group wants to tell
<+GKG_Alan> So. This uses the One+ system, yeah?
<+GKG_Alan> Which you used in Never Going Home
<+GKG_Alan> How have you altered the system (for those of us who’ve played NGH)
<+WetInkMatt> There are a few tweaks Steven has made in terms of skills to fit the setting better, but for the most part, it’s the same rule set
<+WetInkBrandon> The dice mechanics are the same, but cards now represent mostly physical resources
<~Dan> (Howdy, DLB_Chuck!)
<+WetInkMatt> There’s general combat as a Brawn skill instead of both Melee and Ranged skills.
<+WetInkBrandon> But, as WetInkMatt said, if you know Never Going Home, you’ll be able to pick up Tenebria quickly.
<+WetInkMatt> Missions are structured the same way too with the buy-in of the Journey at the beginning, the various encounters, then rewards.
<~Dan> Aside from gamers in general, who’s your target market? What other games do you see appealing to potential fans of Tenebria
<~Dan> (Howdy, Quindiesel!)
<+WetInkBrandon> Honestly, I see fans of historical games really finding a good time with Tenebria.
<+WetInkMatt> Yeah, ancient history is not well-represented in the market.
<~Dan> What sorts of resources does the city start out with?
<+WetInkBrandon> Through following some friends in the industry, I’ve really noticed that there really are some great games out there which draw heavily on real historical roots, rather than traditional sword and sorcery
<+Eainix> so it’s base building and survival as the primary driving factors for PCs to get out into the world to do stuff?
<+WetInkBrandon> I’m not going to say that GKG_Alan turned me onto Pendragon or anything…
<+GKG_Alan> I will own that
<+WetInkBrandon> Elainix, yeah, that’s pretty much the case.
<+WetInkMatt> I read Summerland (revised edition) this year. I think there might be a kindred atmosphere. Things are 80 percent fallen apart, but still holding on. Anyone who likes the post-collapse might like this take on it.
<~Dan> That’s the one about the omnipresent forest, right?
<~Dan> re: Summerland
<+WetInkMatt> Yes. It’d been on my read list for years
* ~Dan nods
<+WetInkMatt> Dan, I think we missed your last question.
<~Dan> Need me to repost?
<+WetInkMatt> It’s hunkered down at the base of an aquaduct
<+WetInkMatt> and it’s in a forested area. Basic needs are too much of a problem.
<+WetInkMatt> But who wants to live on just the basics?
<~Dan> Are not too much of a problem, you mean?
<+WetInkBrandon> Yes. Are NOT too much of a problem
<+WetInkMatt> yeah, should have been aren’t
<+WetInkMatt> You’ll have weapons and there are other patrols than the PCs out defending the city.
<+WetInkBrandon> That said, you can build improvements to the city, like farms, libraries, blacksmiths, pallisades etc
<~Dan> What’s the population of the city?
<+GKG_Alan> What if folks wanted to establish a new outpost and settlement
<+GKG_Alan> can they?
<+WetInkMatt> The city building comes in with those buildings. For each one you spend resources to build, you’ll start each mission with more options in the form of more cards in your hand.
<+WetInkMatt> GKG_Alan, there’s not a plan for those exact rules. But if you play a while, that could certainly be a good direction to take the story
<+WetInkMatt> Steven’s written 6 missions to go in the base book which take the players through a particular wave of threats to Tenebria. After that, the storytelling will fall to the individual Narrators.
<~Dan> (Did my question get missed again? 😉 )
<+WetInkBrandon> There are some mechanics in development around that, mostly on alerting Tenebria to potential threats before they become a problem with a chance to damage the improvements the players have worked so hard to build.
<+WetInkMatt> Dan, on the larger size of small.
<~Dan> And you said that there are no other cities nearby?
<+WetInkBrandon> That’s the intent in the setting
* ~Dan nods
<~Dan> What Germanic tribes threaten the city?
<+WetInkBrandon> It really is supposed to feel like an “us against the world” situation
<+WetInkMatt> I just checked the text. It says “tiny hamlet”. The origin of the town is as a military camp. Your character doesn’t have to be military or even Roman, but there are a lot of Legionnaires in charge of the town.
<~Dan> Ah, so it’s not a city at all.
<+WetInkBrandon> It’s more of a village that grows through gameplay
* ~Dan nods
<+WetInkMatt> The idea is the PCs will be the deciding factor that helps this pocket of survivors become something important in the post-Empire world.
<~Dan> (Did my tribes question get through?)
<+WetInkMatt> Steven has the various groups in his head. I know the Visigoths are mentioned specifically at some point. There are multiple rival groups profiled to give Narrators what they need to threaten the PCs
<~Dan> Ah, I see.
<~Dan> You mentioned non-Roman PCs. Is the city majority Roman or native?
<+WetInkBrandon> It’s both
<~Dan> (wb, DLB_Chuck!)
<+WetInkBrandon> As WetInkMatt mentioned previously, it started out as an outpost or garrison of one of the legions but now will accept anyone as long as they’re willing to earn their keep
<+WetInkBrandon> That’s actually a narrative part of the character creation section in the book
<~Dan> Is one of the challenges maintaining order, then? Is there any movement among the locals to finish the job of kicking out the Romans?
<+WetInkMatt> Yeah, the first set of adventures has intrigue subplots. Someone is passing info on the patrol routes to the barbarians.
<+WetInkMatt> There is that sort of tension built into the game.
<~Dan> Is it assumed that the PCs will be loyal to the Romans, regardless of their nationality?
<+WetInkBrandon> At least loyal to Tenebria on some level
<+WetInkMatt> Yes, you play someone for whom Tenebria is port in the storm. By that point, who was “Roman” wasn’t really about ancestors any more
<~Dan> (Heh. wb, DLB_Chuck4real. 🙂 )
<+DLB_Chuck4real> Sorry — trying to switch back from my phone
<+WetInkMatt> The narrative character creation Brandon mentioned is really great. It’s set up like an interview with a pair of NPCs who want to know what you can bring to the city.
<~Dan> Do you have a character sheet that we can see?
<+Quindiesel> Ooh, the interview idea sounds great.
<+WetInkMatt> That’s something I want to mention. Steven took the rules we had developed, but he’s made this particular book his own with a lot of personal touches.
<+WetInkMatt> There’s a beginner mission which is set up for players who have never played before to learn the ropes, but it’s set up with NPC instructors almost like a basic training.
<+WetInkBrandon> We only have the prototype character sheet since it hasn’t been through our layout process
<~Dan> That’s okay. I just find them useful in system discussion.
<+DLB_Chuck4real> Is this going to be a 6×9″ book?
<+WetInkBrandon> Yeah, this will be 6×9, which is a slight departure from all our previous products which have been 7×10
<+WetInkMatt> It will be similar to the
<+DLB_Chuck4real> I haven’t printed Never Going Home. Was it 7×10?
<+WetInkMatt> Dan, this is a link to the NGH sheet. It will look different, but work on the same rules.
<+WetInkMatt> (Link: https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/286209/Never-Going-Home-Character-Sheet?term=Never+going+home)https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/286209/Never-Going-Home-Character-Sheet?term=Never+going+home
<+WetInkBrandon> Yeah, Never Going Home was 7×10
<~Dan> Welcome, Guest!
<~Dan> You said that all combat is one skill now? What was the thinking behind that?
<+DLB_Chuck4real> Including ranged and hand-2-hand?
<+DLB_Chuck4real> There really is just one of me. I promise. Phone must be waking up
<+WetInkMatt> It’s in part the focus on more physical aspects of combat. Even a bow takes strength to pull, unlike pulling the trigger on a rifle.
<~Dan> True, but I’d think they’d still be different sorts of training.
<+WetInkMatt> There is also the idea that combat strength alone is not enough. Moral and ingenuity are just as vital.
<+DLB_Chuck4real> Do traits make up the difference? Really out of shape people can be good with a bow but not so much in a sword fight
<+WetInkBrandon> It’s one of the decisions that was made in the early development of Tenebria that I think really fits the setting.
<+WetInkMatt> That’s a fair point. There are only 9 skills in this one, so there isn’t room for everything.
<+DLB_Chuck4real> I’ve thought about the same idea for settings without technology to simplify things. I can see the logic. People who fight are generally taught “to fight” regardless of the weapon
<+WetInkMatt> DLB_Chuck, in a way.
<+WetInkMatt> There are the three attributes and you will put points there during character creation.
<~Dan> Can you describe the task resolution mechanic?
<+WetInkMatt> Then you also have the skill training (combat, literacy, hexes, etc…)
<+WetInkMatt> You start out with a pool of D6 equal to your skill training in what you are trying to do.
<+WetInkMatt> That’s going to be 0, 1, or 2 most times.
<+WetInkMatt> Then you look at what every attribute that skill is linked to. Brawn for Combat. Smarts for Literacy, Spirit for Hexes. You have that many times to manipulate the dice.
<+WetInkBrandon> Before a Roll: •Temporarily gain training in and use of an untrained skill •Add a die to the roll, e.g. roll 4 dice on a skill with only 3 points of training. After a Roll: •Add a pip to a die e.g. change a 4 to a 5. •Reroll any number of dice, but keeping the new result. This may only be done once per skill roll.
<+WetInkMatt> Before you roll you can buy a skill you have no training in, or buy more dice to roll.
<+WetInkMatt> He’s done it!
<~Dan> Is this a success-counting mechanic?
<+WetInkMatt> So to step through an example. Your Janus Septemius has 5 Brawn and only 1 in combat. He’s trying to shoot something. The Narrator says 3 successes are needed.
<+WetInkMatt> A success is a 5 or a 6 on a D6.
<+WetInkMatt> For 1 combat training you start with 1 die, you can’t roll 3 success with that!
<+WetInkMatt> But you have 5 times you can manipulate the roll, because of 5 Brawn.
<+WetInkMatt> You could buy 5 dice right from the start and hope to roll three success.
<+WetInkMatt> You could also buy just two dice and hold three more for after the roll to make a four into a five or just to reroll everything that wasn’t a success the first time.
<+WetInkMatt> You can make you various “+Ones” however you see fit.
<~Dan> I like the options there.
<+DLB_Chuck4real> what would be the incentive to do anything other than just use one point at a time?
<~Dan> Although… does that system slow things down at all?
<+WetInkBrandon> Yeah, it’s a lot of fun and allows a lot of flexibility for the players to make choices around how they build a roll
<+WetInkBrandon> No, it’s really quick
<+WetInkBrandon> Chuck, because you have to choose augments before or after a roll
<+WetInkBrandon> so you can’t buy more dice after you roll
<+WetInkMatt> You by dice before you start rolling and can only buy a reroll once per attempt so there is sort of a logic to it.
<+DLB_Chuck4real> Is a 5 a better success than a 6?
<+WetInkBrandon> no, a success is a success
<+WetInkMatt> We’ll be putting some videos up on Wet Ink Games’ YouTube to walk through the +One System, so watch for those.
<+WetInkBrandon> Yeah, those videos will be out this week or next.
<~Dan> How does combat work?
<+WetInkBrandon> I’ll talk initiative, and Matt can detail basics of combat
<+WetInkBrandon> So, initiative is based around a the highest card.
<+WetInkBrandon> The player who reveals the highest card gets to choose who acts first. I say it this way, because you can choose not to reveal a card and just act in initiative when its your turn, or you can pull from the deck.
<+WetInkBrandon> Once you have acted, you get to choose who goes next
<+WetInkBrandon> rinse and repeat until combat is over
<+WetInkMatt> There’s an actual play going up now of Never Going Home, which will give you a feel for the +One system as well.
<+WetInkMatt> (Link: http://seriouslyletsplay.libsyn.com/never-going-home-the-abandoned-trench)http://seriouslyletsplay.libsyn.com/never-going-home-the-abandoned-trench
<+WetInkBrandon> We’ve had people just all choose to act first, and then choose al the badguys last, but then the narrator can choose the badguys at the top of initiative so it can get REALLY bad if you don’t pln right.
<+WetInkMatt> To hit in combat you need successes equal to the target’s defence. Most attacks will target Brawn, but some magic effects target other attributes.
<+WetInkMatt> You roll, try to get the number needed. If you meet or exceed – apply damage! If you don’t get the number of successes needed, you miss.
<+DLB_Chuck4real> How is damage calculated?
<+WetInkMatt> Damages are standard for type of weapon.
<+DLB_Chuck4real> Any bonuses for more successes than you need?
<+WetInkMatt> Most things in Tenebria will be 1-3 damage.
<+WetInkMatt> Weapons and spells both have augments which you buy with those extra successes.
<+WetInkMatt> With weapons augments are usually more damage, get another attack, ruin their armor
<~Dan> What determines how much damage a PC can take?
<+WetInkMatt> For PCs and antagonists, all attributes are your HP and so if you take Brawn damage, your Brawn is not lower. Meaning you have less ability to manipulate future rolls and your defense is now lower too.
<~Dan> not = now?
<+WetInkMatt> *Brawn is NOW lower, sorry
<+WetInkBrandon> Hit hard, hit first
<~Dan> Looks like the game has a pretty steep death spiral.
<+WetInkMatt> If you are knocked down to 0 in any attribute, you die.
<+WetInkBrandon> Yeah, you can use resources to heal, but that just means there are less resources to level up or improve Tenebria
<+WetInkMatt> Maybe I am too kind of a GM, but using this system I haven’t kills too many PCs.
<+WetInkMatt> I like to use the threat of death, more than death itself as a motivator.
<+WetInkMatt> The death spiral was part of intention of Never Going Home – it’s in the name of the game!
<~Dan> Heh. 🙂
<+WetInkMatt> For Tenebria, the threats are a little weaker and resources come a little easier, so it’s not a lethal as it seems.
<+WetInkMatt> Still, don’t make a character with 1 Brawn, 8 Smarts and 1 Spirit.
<+WetInkBrandon> Though as a game of survival, if the threat of being wiped out of existence doesn’t feel real to the players, the point of the game is lessened.
* ~Dan nods
<~Dan> What can hexes and blessings do?
<+WetInkMatt> Befitting the low magic setting it’s pretty common stuff. Healing of the various attributes. There’s a Clarity spell for clearing debuff style hexes. There’s a berserk hex to force someone to fight.
<+WetInkBrandon> There are things that grant an extra action, and curses which randomize damage to opponents based on card draws
<+DLB_Chuck> With the setting is there a role for “seers” and prophecy etc.?
<+WetInkMatt> There’s a neat one called Blood Bounty where you can search the site of a battle to draw more resource cards.
<+WetInkMatt> There could be. There’s not a hex now which has the prediction aspect, but a prophecy could certainly be a motivator within an adventure.
<~Dan> What supernatural elements are in your stretch goals?
<+WetInkBrandon> There is room for that in the development space, and that may end up in the final product. It’s been discussed previously.
<+WetInkBrandon> We have both physical stretch goals and content goals.
<+WetInkBrandon> So we have content goals which will go into things like slave revolts and gladiatorial combat, you know in case you want to get your Spartacus fix. We also have a goal about playing during the Golden Age of the Roman Empire or the Punic wars
<+WetInkBrandon> But we have a goal which will add mythological creatures, mostly of the Romanized Hellenistic variety
<+WetInkMatt> That’s up there, but if we get there, why not add lamia and Cerberus and the whole lot of them?
<+WetInkBrandon> doin’ all the stuff!
<+DLB_Chuck> Is the printed book color or BW?
<+WetInkMatt> Full color
<~Dan> In the time remaining, is there anything we haven’t covered that you’d like to bring up?
<+WetInkMatt> Like I said back at the top, we worked with so many great people, Tenebria is just the first book in our +One line
<+Akyla> The higher levels have maps and dice. I see the dice are available to add on but is the map only at those levels?
<+WetInkBrandon> I know that I would personally like to thank you for hosting this, Dan. You’ve always done right by us, and we can always count on your support.
<~Dan> That’s very kind of you to say. 🙂
<+DLB_Chuck> Dan does a lot of good for the indy game publishers
<+WetInkMatt> We’ve already announced Heckin’ Good Doggos and “Project Fae” so stay tuned for more games from us.
<+WetInkBrandon> Akyla, the map is unique to the deluxe tiers, but may be available as an add on as we advance
<~Dan> Just a quick reminder that if you’ve enjoyed this Q&A and would like to treat me to a coffee or two, you can do so here: (Link: https://www.ko-fi.com/gmshoe)https://www.ko-fi.com/gmshoe
<+WetInkMatt> Hazzah for the GMshoe!
<+WetInkBrandon> We’re presently right around 47%
<~Dan> Thanks! 😀
<+DLB_Chuck> Hey guys, are there any other RPG publishers around Louisville other than you guys and Eric Bloat?
<+WetInkBrandon> And we would love to continue that trajectory with your help and support. Thanks so much for having us
<~Dan> If you’ll give me just a minute, I’ll get the log posted and link you. 🙂
<+WetInkMatt> Here’s the link to Tenebria again: (Link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2103068465/tenebria-remnant-of-rome/description)https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2103068465/tenebria-remnant-of-rome/description