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Shadows Of White Wolf

So I'm trying to adapt The Shadows Of Yesterday (first edition) system to the White Wolf:Mage scenario. I'm actually surprised by how little work I think I'll have to do, provided I keep a lot of the Magic System as is and just change the name of the "Spheres" to "Secrets".

This goes on to raise the question, is making a game specifically to lure players comfortable with the Legacy Systems (d20, White Wolf, Warhammer, etc.) over to the "indie" side of things a valid design goal? If it isn't, is it because it's simply bound to fail? Trying to please everybody so often seems to please nobody.

Have any games tried to bridge the gap?

Regarding your question: I think it's absolutely a valid design goal. It's not pure and high-minded and artsy, no, but it's valid. Obviously, we (reading your blog) like indie games, and have reason to want other people to like them, both from an artistic POV and an economic one. Any way to accomplish that is a good thing.

Even if it's a hard thing to realize, it's still a worthy goal. Plus, I think Clinton has done a pretty good job of it so far...probably along with some others, though I'm not sure who. So it definitely is possible, though I suspect we'll need a myriad of "transition" games, each targetting a specific portion of the old guard.

I thought it was a valid enough design goal to "fix" Mage with Nine Worlds.

That said, I can't say it hasn't failed in that respect (i.e. getting Mage fans to buy it and play it -- I just have no idea whether that happened).

In truth, though, Nine Worlds really became its own game. I have done very little marketing (like, say, posting on d-group threads about Mage) aimed at the WW fans.

I just can't seem to figure out a way to make that work. Not sure I want to. I actually did set out with "them" as a target market. I don't have the resources to market to them, frankly. And, I'm not convinced it would do any good (for me, at least).

You must play TSOY Revised. It is way, way better than 1st edition.

The text is here:

In the world of business you find a group that is not being adequately serviced by the current product offerings. You then create a product that you hope they will like (and will buy) and then you should aggressively target them and market to them.

The RPG market could stand a little direct marketing from the Indie to the Legacy. Everyone is so worried about perception that they are afraid to make good business decisions.

Are you using copyrighted material? If no, then you can't get sued and since you are a small indie publisher, what is White Wolf going to do to you, out market you? Say bad things about you? Ignore you? All Good.

If you jump on the boards just to spam them with marketing then they will pan you. However, if you introduce yourself, ask some questions, and get to know the community a bit (if you are not already a part of it) then you may get some converts.

What's the worst that can happen? Success, Ostracism, or simply being ignored?

The worst that could happen? Consider the brain-damage thing. Even if someone personally had nothing to do with it, and completely disagrees with the sentiment, that particular episode is associated now with the entire indie community.

Also- you might seriously reconsider the idea that White Wolf fans are "a group that is not being adequately serviced by the current product offerings". Once you get into these focused communities, you'll find that they often made up primarily of people who are fairly enthusiastic about what they are playing (why else would they be there?), and fairly unimpressed with the indies. It would be the equivalent of a White Wolf guy showing up at the Forge and trying to evangelise the New World Of Darkness as being "a superior alternative to that poorly designed Indie crap.."

If you would hate that guy showing up in your world, consider how they might feel about you appearing in theirs.


If you're going to go onto boards and try addressing any kind of "legacy" community as a whole, I think the tack should be, "You like the thing you're playing? Cool. Then you might like this thing too, even though it's a little bit different." Selling it as "What you have sucks: try this replacement" is indeed only inviting a backlash.

Point 1: I am not proposing that you attack what they have. It never pays to tell someone that what they are currently doing is stupid or bad. You want to appeal to their higher sense. "I used to play Mage and really loved it, but it just never game me the game that I was looking for. I wanted a game that was more < X > and it just wasn't out there so I decided to write this. Try out this game. You might like it."

Point 2: To quote anon: "that particular episode is associated now with the entire indie community."

How so? Is Milo going to introduce himself as "Indie Gamer and Member of the Forge?" Is his game going to be available via the Forge Download, or more likely via his own site?

Point 3: to quote anon: "once you get into these focused communities, you'll find that they often made up primarily of people who are fairly enthusiastic about what they are playing (why else would they be there?)"

True they love their game. But do they love the game or the setting? If you feel something about a game, then it is likely someone else does to. If you are dissatisfied then someone else is dissatisfied too. Show them there is another option.

Point 4: to quote anon: ".. and fairly unimpressed with the indies."

Why do you think that indies have registered in any way with them. I was a gamer for 15+ years (been to more conventions and GenCons than I care to mention) and Indie games never registered on my radar. When I played big company games (TSR, White Wolf, Chaosium) I did not give a second glance to small company games (well, they did get a ... isn't that cute.)

Ultimately my belief is this: Be respectful, offer an alternative, and take the plunge.

Thanks for your thoughts!

How about games which try to bridge the gap between CCGs/Wargames and Indie RPGs?

Just look at my blog, this is all I'm about.
My front burner projects, and Slime Octopi and Coral(Shared project with Eric Bennett) are good examples.

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