Mundus Novit Design – Setting the System

The manuscript for Mundus Novit is all written. There’s not much to develop. Well, that is if SEP intends to publish it only for the d-Modern version of the world’s most popular RPG. SEP certainly will release a Modern version. But now I’m thinking there are other avenues as well.

When I originally developed Mundus Novit . . . wow, that was a long time ago . . . anyway, when I first developed it, I was only playing D&D and its variants, including its Modern variant. Things have changed. Right now, my system of choice is still a D&D derivative, True20. I’m comfortable enough with True20, and the licensing deal for using True20 is sweet enough, so I figure we need to do a True20 version.

Thing is, I like to tinker with systems. I’m not a game designer, I would never call myself that. I’m not knowledgeable enough to design a system. I like to tinker with them, but I could never build a system from the ground up with any sense of assurance. True20 is a pretty heavy tinker, but it’s a riff off D&D, rather than a system built from the ground up. It changes some of the assumptions, cleans up some things, and injects some stuff totally new, but it is still built on the D&D foundation.

So right now, along with doing a Modern and a True20 version, I’m thinking of developing a variant based on the Open Game Licence specifically for Mundus Novit.

I’m not considering doing Savage Worlds right now because I don’t know the system well enough. I’m not thinking Mutants & Masterminds because I don’t know the system at all. That’s not to say I won’t consider these, but the plan is to get this out relatively quickly, so trying to do too much would kind of be shooting myself in the foot.

But how to package it? I’ve got two options I’m considering: multiple full setting + system books; one systemless setting book, followed by various system primers; or one setting book with a full game system (Mundus 20?) and then various system primers separately. The only reason to do a full game system + setting book is because otherwise, I don’t think anyone would buy a Mundus 20 (MN20?) system. Download for free? Sure, but people will download anything if its free. It doesn’t mean they’ll do more than give it a cursory glance.

These decisions aren’t final. There’s still administrative and financial stuff to consider before I make final plans. I’m excited to see the trade dress, as Rob Wakefield is working on that, and Rob’s work as always been exemplary. I’m very excited to see what he comes up with.

Another good thing is that I’ve secured the services of three great writers to critique and edit the Mundus Novit fiction that you can expect to appear beginning May 28. That’s going to put my game up a notch . . . or they’ll all tell me to burn everything and never write again.

Like I haven’t heard that before!

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