Nathanael Cole / Alliterated Games

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Collecting Feedback for Custom Card Deck Suits

Hey folks! for the next few days I’ll be collecting feedback for custom card deck suits. The plan is to Kickstart a deck of cards that can be used as a companion piece for playing Motobushido. The decks will have multiple artists, each doing a different suit, and if enough interest is raised there could very well be multiple decks with new suits. If interested, please answer the single question over at Survey Monkey. Thanks!

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I’ll let you in on a little secret

This weekend’s convention was pretty stellar, at least as Motobushido game play is concerned. The “pretty much final” version of the rules was tested in full, and stood pretty damn solidly. But there’s one cool thing that I really want to take a moment and talk about. Towards the end of one of the sessions, a player said to me something that I’d never really quantified in words, but had been otherwise trying to get across in different manners since the early days of this game.

To paraphrase him: “Motobushido is a game that has both motorcycles and samurai in it, but isn’t at all about either one of those two things.”

This is something of a secret, and totally true. While there are samurai mechanics, and motorcycle mechanics, and samurai fights on the backs of motorcycles, the true core of the game boils down to a sentence which involves neither: Motobushido is a game about brotherhood, reputation, and fatalistic action. Motobushido is a game about not discovering your own limits until after you’ve pushed them too far.

In pretty much every game I run, once the players finally grasp the mechanic (which – not to toot my horn here – is completely different from anything they’ve ever played before), their faces always show this “Ohhhhhhhh I get it” moment when they realize the truth of the game’s focus. And for me, that moment is always, always a wonderful thing to see in action.

Anyway, I’m spending this afternoon and evening mostly working on the final playtest draft. I had intended on releasing it today, but I’ve just got too much post-con administrivia to handle, so they’ll likely be up tomorrow, or Wednesday morning at the latest.

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Now Accepting Pre-Orders for Motobushido

Hey everyone! I’ve now opened up the store pages to allow pre-orders of the upcoming RPG, Motobushido. These pre-orders will hopefully give me a bit of extra padding for my initial print run, and help justify my potentially springing for a larger initial batch of books. There are four different versions available for pre-order:

Each pre-order will help me boost the initial print run, and a significant amount could even enhance the book with additional art and content beyond what I’m already intending.


How do these pre-order books compare to the products from your recent Kickstarter run?

These pre-orders are for the specific books, and just that. They do not include any of the extras or bonus rewards from the Kickstarter backer tiers.

What are the differences between the different versions

The $20 whitebook is meant to be a more or less “cheap” print. It’s intended to be a rules reference and little more. It will have the same dimensions as the full-color book, just black and white, basic quality.

The $40 full-color print edition is the full product, in full glorious color. It’s the one that will be on the shelves at your FLGS after it is finally published.

The $15 PDF is the full-color indexed digital version of the full-color book. The $10 PDF is just the rules, no art, indexed for use with e-readers, and formatted for economy printing.

Why are these so expensive?

I don’t think they’re expensive at all. The art is gorgeous, for one thing, and for another a whole lot of effort has been put into this game. I’m sorry if you find it to be on the pricey side, but these are the prices I have to present if I want to have any wish of one day, possibly, maybe, hopefully breaking even on this project. I hope the game’s concept is good enough to sell itself.

I missed out on the Kickstarter! Are any of the special backer rewards still available?

A few are, yes. The custom-forged swords and kiridashi are still available, for one, and I have a few extra First Founder Patches available as well. Hoodies and Shirts can be arranged, too. If you are interested in anything, please contact me privately, and we can probably work something out.

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Using the Bikes as the Gateway to Game Hacking

As part of the special “Yojimbo” backer level of my soon-to-conclude Kickstarter project, I’m currently re-writing my Jedi game conversion of the Motobushido rules. This all began a middling time ago in a basement very close at hand, in which we decided that one of our next playtest sessions would be about Jedi escaping the “Order 66” Jedi Purge.

When I first ran that scenario, the Bikes mechanics weren’t fully implemented, so we just replaced Bikes with The Force. It was that very act of element substitution that actually went on to define how I would implement the Bike mechanics in the first place. It has always been my intention to utilize the Code of the Highway as a representation of spiritual elements in at least some quantity, and as of recent revisions that intention has manifested quite totally.

With the original Jedi conversion, instead of picking specific Bikes and riding styles, the characters picked specific Force Powers to specialize in. It ended up working out very well, and now, looking back over my old notes, I’ve come to understand that the Bike aspect of Motobushido characters is probably the most “driftable” for future game hacks. In the core game, your dedication to the Code of the Highway affects all things spiritual about your character. It sets your Ki, affects its restoration, and can even call your character out on that one last Sunset Ride, never for her to be seen again. It connects to your Bike extension, and investing in its mastery unlocks new Stunts that you can attempt in and out of Duels and Battle.

Swapping that out with Force Powers is so simple, I don’t know why it wasn’t so obvious to me in the first place. What’s next, I wonder? How would this work as a Wizard’s Academy hack? A Thundercats hack? Sailor Moon? Voltron? Airbenders, etc?

Or dare I even hope, nay, pray for a future Space Stallions hack?

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