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Sunday, April 7, 2013

Horns of Thunder In Progress

I've been getting some nudges from my... fans?  I'm going to go with fans--over at Board Game Geek who are eager to play the sequel to my award-winning solitaire gamebook, Wings of Lightning.

The sequel, Horns of Thunder, is in the works as a couple of weeks ago.  The rules are basically finished save for some minor editing, and I am perhaps halfway through Chapter One.  The game's outline currently puts it at 9 or 10 chapters, and should include some interesting narrative surprises for fans of the first game while remaining playable and fun for those new to the trilogy.  I'm trying to write it so that those completely unfamiliar with Skoros, Molina, and the events of Wings of Lightning will still be able to jump into the world of Myesta without feeling lost.

Progress is currently rather slow.  I'm juggling two intense college courses with 25+ hours at work every week, including trying to earn a pretty sweet promotion.  Subsequently, it has been difficult to find time for creative writing.  (You'll notice this is my first blog post in months.)

Still, the semester ends in about two weeks.  After that, I will be working full-time, but will not have to bring my work home with me.  So I should have plenty of free time to work on my creative endeavors.

With Horns of Thunder, I have added examples of the combat system and cleaned up the combat rules to make things easier for those new to the game.  It is, after all, a unique combat system, very different from those found in other gamebooks and RPGs.  Combat requires a standard deck of poker cards.  The player uses the face cards to make his or her attacks, generate combos, and slay his or her enemies.  The number cards are drawn one at a time to determine whether the surviving enemies hit the player and what abilities they activate, although the player can attempt to block attacks with maneuver cards built up during his or her turn.  Those who played Wings of Lightning will find the combat very familiar.

The narrative structure of the game is getting some pretty major tweaks.  Rather than being completely linear, each chapter will be broken into a series of Scenes and Battles.  Some Scenes (and possibly some Battles) will give the player an option of how he or she would like to proceed through the story.  As long as the player survives combat, he or she will always be able to progress to the next chapter, but certain choices will make the journey easier or more difficult.

I am quite excited for Horns of Thunder and hope fans of Wings of Lightning will enjoy it.  The current (tentative) release date is 1 July.

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