Imprisoned by Nefarious Cults

It’s not unusual for people to launch websites and then update them only rarely. I had every intention of stacking this thing with content, but I was given an opportunity to contribute to a fantastic book, and so it goes - we only ever have so much time.

The last three months have been busy ones. I am very excited to say that the massive project of developing the 5E version of Kobold Press’ Demon Cults and Secret Societies book is wrapping up. I admit that when it comes to writing and design, I have a tendency to boldly agree to do things, while secretly making this face.

It's doubt, get it?

It's doubt, get it?

One of the things I really enjoyed was trying to distill the twisted evil of Jeff Lee’s cults so that I might inject it into sound 5E mechanics. Pathfinder and 5E are really not 1:1 compatible systems. Early in the process I stopped going to the Pathfinder rules for inspiration when drafting 5E traits and actions, and instead clung to Mr. Lee’s narratives. Recreating complex Pathfinder crunch was going to make for a very long and arduous process that I think would have ended up quite stale. Instead, I read the narrative closely, identified the qualities and characteristics of the fantasy, and did my best to recreate that as 5E material. I feel like in the end I really got to know the cults, and understood what it was that they wanted, and what strategies they employed to achieve that.

The amount of material was overwhelming. I underestimated the timeline for producing the manuscript by a large amount. Chalk that up to learning I guess. That said, I did get faster at it as I went, and then even faster when I made myself a tool to help. I called it AUTOMONSTER, and it was glorious - a google doc sheet that pulled monster building data from a bunch of sources and interfaced it all as a series of drop down windows. Can’t sell it, or share it, don’t ask.

Now that the Demon Cults and Secret Societies project is winding down, I’m happy to say that I have time to write my own material again. I have several projects in the pipes for 2017, the first one is a source book for Kobold Press’ Midgard setting - more on that later; however, I also have plenty planned to upload here. I’m hoping to commission a little art for the website as well - Saskatoon illustrators only!

-J