Howard’s To-Do List

I keep thinking that the Schlock Mercenary universe, or “Schlockiverse” as we’ve come to call it, is pretty well fleshed-out. Then Alan runs a play test, and comes back with crazy questions like “how much does it cost to get blood nannies like the Toughs have in the comic?” or “do mercenaries get exemptions to gun-control laws?”

(My answers were “the players should be able to afford this” and “that depends on the law, the location, and the gun.”)

While a huge part of the success of this game depends on the mechanics that Alan designs and refines, a lot of the sense of immersion depends on me creating and documenting the people, places, and things that the characters will interact with.  I’ve already created a lot of it, but the documentation part? Yeeeaaah, too much of that still resides only in my head.

My job, then:

  • Write up at least a dozen different races of sophont in painstaking detail
  • Set some boundaries and create some templates so that GMs can create their own races, and have them fit the setting
  • Do those same two things for a few planetary systems
  • Do those same two things for a few key locations, like big cities, spaceports, and untamed wildernesses
  • Assign a bunch of brand-names to things like spacecraft, weapons, fast food, good food, vehicles, shoes, blood nannies, medical gear, and more.
  • Put up big “FEEL FREE TO BUILD HERE” signs on the parts of the setting where I’m pretty sure I won’t be taking the story.
  • Decide whether or not to put up a “PLEASE KEEP OUT” sign in places where I know the story WILL be going. Spoilers!

I expect that when I’m about 10% into this task list I’ll have identified a bunch more things I need to write.

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