Instead of looking at a crowdfunding campaign, I interview Kevin Glusing of Samurai Sheepdog about his latest project (available now), Play Manga d20.
EGG EMBRY (EGG): What’s the pitch for your project?
KEVIN GLUSING (KG): Play Manga d20 is an anime roleplaying option for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game 1st edition. It includes ways to play point-based characters, as well as new options for Pathfinder races, classes, feats, and equipment. With over 100 attributes and defects, you have an almost endless number of options to build an over-the-top character for an anime-style game.
EGG: What system are you using, and why is it the right one for this game?
KG: The Pathfinder Roleplaying Game 1st edition. We based this book on ideas portrayed in another supplement that came out years ago for D&D 3e, and with Pathfinder being an extension of that system, it only felt right to grow into it.
Also, this was a great opportunity to show off our point-based balance system for Pathfinder classes. We did the math (behind the scenes) for every Pathfinder class that has been released. Using that, we were able to point out how every class, as presented is worth 300 points (taking into account updated options in Pathfinder Unchained).
EGG: Manga consists of every genre under the sun and several that are not staples in America. What genres within manga work best with Play Manga d20?
KG: This first offering casts a wide net on the idea of anime and manga, with options for giant robots, mech pilots, pet monster trainers, students, and magical heroes, to name a few. We also have several races that fit common anime tropes, such as cat people, rabbitfolk, and ratfolk. Plus, we came up with a slime race for those who enjoy that particular show/story.
We’re already working on our first expansion to this, which closes its focus up some to just Fantasy anime and manga. It will include the remaining base classes, as well as the swashbuckler. Angels, demons, ogres, and monsters will also appear as races. If the content remains popular, we also have plans to expand into sci-fi, converting content from Starfinder backwards and balancing it to the system as well.
EGG: What are some of the mangas that inspired this project?
KG: Trigun, Hellsing, Dragon Ball (etc), That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime, Fairy Tale, Full Metal Alchemist, Power Rangers, Voltron, and so on.
EGG: What other projects have you worked on?
KG: Our primary line of content at the moment is The Book of Many Things, which is now on Volume 3. We also recently released our 5-year anniversary edition of Mystical: Kingdom of Monsters. As for open projects, we’re finishing up The Awakened RPG for ourselves, and Lands of Theia, which is another collaboration with our Names’ Games TM initiative and an up-and-coming designer friend.
EGG: Where can fans learn more about you and your project?
KG: We post regular updates on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and I try to update our website with new information at least once every month or so.
NOTE: This article includes affiliate links to DriveThruRPG. As a DriveThruRPG Affiliate I earn from qualifying purchases.
ABOUT BOILERPLATE INTERVIEWS.
Sometimes schedules keep me from performing in-depth interviews with RPG creators. When I can’t do a proper interview, I still like to give space for creators to share their projects. To that end, I conduct boilerplate interviews, short and generic but still an outlet for creators. If you have a product you would be interested in participating in a boilerplate interview, reach out here.
Earlier this year, we hosted our successful Kickstarter for The Book of Many Things. Since then, we have continued the campaign, raising additional funds to help make each volume better and bring them to print.
Now, as the year comes to a close, so too does the campaign. This is your last opportunity to pick up the bundle for only $30.00 USD. On January 1, 2019, the campaign bundle ends, and the exclusive content included will be made unavailable.
Join your fellow gamers in playing characters reminiscent of popular videogame characters. From sword, bow, and bomb-wielding heroes, to space bounty hunters and priests who balance the light with the darkness, this 200 page volume contains many such options and more.
Come one, come all as we explore this 200 page volume containing requests from around the internet. Break the sound barrier as an accelerist. Vex enemies as 1 of 26 different races. You could even become a skiprock champion! Feats, spells, archetypes, and more await you within.
After reading the Kickstarter for the gamebook, Rider of the Black Sun, its rekindled my love for Choose Your Own Adventure-style projects. Putting my RPG review aside for a day, I look at two gamebooks, two comics, and a fantasy prose anthology as I combine all of my interests – games, comics, and writing – in one article!
Check out John McGuire’s The Gilded Age steampunk graphic novel on Kickstarter!
“Malika – Warrior Queen is a historical fantasy that takes place in a 15th-century West Africa. Part Two concludes Malika’s epic story!
Set in fifteenth-century West Africa, Malika (pronounced “Ma-LIE-ka”): Warrior Queen follows the exploits of queen and military commander Malika, who struggles to keep the peace in her ever-expanding empire. In Part Two of the hit graphic novel series, Malika uncovers a painful betrayal by one of the people closest to her. The treachery unnerves a usually stoic and composed Malika, allowing her enemies both known and unknown, internal as well as external, encircle her, positioning themselves for the destruction of Azzaz, the empire she spent her entire adult life building. Can Malika recompose herself and save her people once again? Or is this betrayal the beginning of the end for Malika and the people of Azzaz? Only time will tell.
It’s been amazing to see how well Malika has been received since it’s release in May. One of the most rewarding experiences was having chapter one of the graphic novel selected for Diamond Comic’s Free Comic Book Day event in May, where it was one of the most sought-after and best-reviewed books of the bunch!
Producing this series has definitely been the most painstaking for me as a writer. The last two years have been filled with sleepless nights, months of research, moments of self-doubt and more. But I’ve loved every minute of it. Why? Because as much as this is a fictional story, it is both heavily inspired and framed by African history. I drew inspiration for some aspects of Malika’s story from one of West Africa’s most significant female rulers. Queen Amina of Zazzau. In addition to that, Malika’s empire, Azzaz, is surrounded by African kingdoms and empires that existed before colonization. Africa has a wealth of history and mythology that is yet to become mainstream knowledge for everyone to experience and be inspired by. My hope is that the Malika series slowly begins to change that.”
“J. M. Barrie’s ‘Peter Pan and Wendy’ meets Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s ‘The Lost World’ in this brand-new, thrilling gamebook adventure!
NEVERLAND is a brand new adventure gamebook – a multi-path book, very much in the style of Choose Your Own Adventure or Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks, in which you choose the course of the story – inspired by both Peter Pan and Wendy, by J. M. Barrie, and The Lost World, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
It’s Treasure Island meets Jurassic Park! It’s Cutthroat Island meets King Kong! It’s Pirates of the Caribbean meets The Land That Time Forgot! It’s Pirates versus Dinosaurs! And you can play as either shipwreck survivor Wendy Darling or automaton avenger Peter Pan. Anybody who has read and played The Wicked Wizard of Oz or Alice’s Nightmare in Wonderland will have a very clear idea of what to expect!
[EDITOR’S NOTE: Amazon UK links have been replaced with affiliate Amazon US links.]
I’m a fan of gamebooks/Choose Your Own Adventures/Tunnels & Trolls’ solo adventures and I’m a fan of Peter Pan so this book is the concept. What would you do as Peter Pan? Jonathan Green lets you decide.
More books by Jonathan Green are available through Amazon here:
“Everyone’s favorite mistress of shadows is back! But can she defeat the bunny lord?
Penumbra: Fear the Bunny Lord, is the story of the Mistress of Shadows meeting her greatest foe, a lagomorph with great night vision!
On a heist to steal a piece of alien technology, rumored to increase the abilities of any Empowered who holds it, she faces off against Wild Hare. He has an aim to test his skills against the slickest of escape artist. Together with the small army of security, Wild Hare will make sure it isn’t Penumbra’s lucky day.
Will she succeed? Will she get paid? Did she think to bring carrots? Back the comic and you’ll find the story in your email before even Penumra could steal it!”
UPDATE 2017-11-15 10:15AM –Ed Jowett shared the creative team with me:
Ed Jowett of Shades of Vengeance is a nice guy who does gaming and comics and employees lil’ Egg Embry. He has two Kickstarters up right now, this one and the Era: The Consortium – A Universe of Expansions 2. He’s one of the hardest working folks in gaming and this comic is a product of that work-ethic. Zany heroic comedy as a thief faces a bunny-man!
To see more comics, and books, from Shades of Vengeance, click here.
“The Awakened III brings together several amazing authors to tell their stories of triumph, failure, fear, and acceptance.
On the world of Grimaton, turning nineteen is more than just a rite of passage into adulthood. When the two moons cross, it can also change your life forever. As awakened, the men and women of Grimaton are possessed of magic in the form of a special bond with an animal or a knack for manipulating the underlying energies of the land. They throw rainbow fire, swim beside alligators, or shape the blood of their enemies into weapons.
Join us for a third time as publishers Battlefield Press International and Samurai Sheepdog work together to bring ten amazing authors together. In our latest anthology you’ll find tales of triumph, failure, fear, and acceptance set once again in the fantasy world of Grimaton. Enjoy new stories with the heroes and villains from Book I. Meet entirely new characters as interesting and dynamic as the rest. Return to the fictional realm of the awakened and watch as its remarkable history continues to grow. When the moons cross, anything can happen.
Darren W. Pearce
Jonathan M. Thompson
Hal Greenberg and Ken Shannon
Interior art by Ruth Ducko”
When Jonathan M. Thompson of Battlefield Press International told me about this – that his company was trying out prose publishing – I was excited by the prospect and even more interested after seeing the contributor’s list! It’s sword, it’s sorcery, it’s prose, it’s a series, and it’s a win! They have two prior anthologies to sample (links below).
More books from this series are available through DriveThruFiction (here) or Amazon:
Decision Underground is a choice-based novel in which you must choose your own path through a dangerous and twisted criminal underworld where making the wrong decision could lead to very serious consequences ranging anywhere from getting locked up for the rest of your life to being murdered horribly. Choosing wisely however, could lead to stacks of cash, infamy, and most importantly; your freedom and your life.
Like I mentioned with Rider of the Black Sun and NEVERLAND – Here Be Monsters!, I am a fan of solo adventures/CYOA/gamebooks and this one is, to me, unique – a Choose Your Own Crime. Instead of being set in fantasy or sci-fi or superhero worlds, it’s set in our world and you’re a nogoodnik. Grand Theft Auto the book, I like the concept and want to see how it goes… I mean, how many endings are death and how many are jail?
Egg Embry wrote comic book short stories, edited comic book series, wrote and drew a webcomic, and contributed to comic book journalism across the 2000s. Now, he buys the opportunity to write for a variety of tabletop role-playing games in the tradition of vanity press. His purchases have been published by: