Why Not d20?
It’s an obvious question to ask me. Why am I designing a new game? Why not just make it a d20 game, or a Pathfinder compatible setting? The answer is complex.
Some of it goes back to what I wrote last week about simpler games. I’d like to offer people something a little simpler, without losing a lot of the depth and robustness that they’re used to. In particular, I’d like encounters that don’t take hours to play through and I’d like GMs to focus their prep time on story and ideas, not synergy bonuses.
And I suppose I could pick a nit or two with some of the changes from the design that I worked on (3.0) to create 3.5, or some of the aspects of Pathfinder that I think were mistakes, but there seems to be little point, I don’t want to focus on the negative, and frankly, they are truly tiny little nits in the vast scheme of things. In the end, I really like 3.5, and Pathfinder, and a lot of the work that’s been done over the years with various iterations of d20.
I suppose one could ask the same about game systems that are out there that I didn’t help develop. While a lot would require me getting special licenses, there’s D&D 4E and its GSL. There’s also FATE, Savage Worlds, and even Chaosium’s BRP, all of seem to be easily licensed or already quite open.
But ultimately, none of them seemed quite right for what I wanted.
And more importantly, it’s just time to do something new. To stretch those game designer muscles and produce a game I really want to play, rather than just adapting something else and making it work. I think I have some fresh variations on some concepts that are in games now, and some wholly new ideas as well.
I hope that a lot of you that have been following my work for all these years will give the game a chance. Even if you’re big fans of other games. I’m planning to announce it and provide even more details next week. As I have mentioned earlier, the plan is that sometime next month I’ll be launching a Kickstarter campaign. Even the Kickstarter itself is going to have some hopefully interesting surprises. So please stay tuned.