All posts by Howard Tayler

I write and illustrate Schlock Mercenary, and I do lots of other stuff too.

Success and Failure

The success of your gaming session should be independent of the success of the party in meeting mission objectives. This is one of our guideposts in developing the Planet Mercenary RPG. The Mayhem deck, the RiPP system, and the Ablative Meat rule are just a few of the ways we make it easier for the party to fail disastrously in their mission, but we’ve designed those so that such a failure will be enjoyable. You don’t have to play the game this way. You can…

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We’re Live on Kickstarter!

The Planet Mercenary Role Playing Game is now live on Kickstarter, but the odds are pretty good that you already knew that. If you want an easy to remember link to the project, it’s bit.ly/PM-RPG. We expect a lot of questions to crop up about everything from the direction we took with the game design to the finer points of outfitting characters for long, profitable lives. We’ll have posts in here that are aimed at those exact discussions. For now, however, we’re pretty tightly focused…

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Rules of Engagement for the Admiralty

The highest tiers of pledges in the Planet Mercenary Kickstarter are the Admiral levels. At this level you get something we in the genre-fiction business refer to as “tuckerization,” which is when your name gets used in the core book. The most prominent current examples of tuckerization in Schlock Mercenary are Strohl Munitions (named for my friend Dan Strohl, who was the first person to spend money on Schlock Mercenary artwork) and Reverend Theo Fobius (named for my outgoing and irreverent friend Ted, who was…

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Nudging the Progress Bar

It’s been eleven days since my last Progress Bar post, and in that time we’ve only moved the bar by 3%. We did, however, clear the 33% mark, so I’m cheering at the milestone. The really important progress isn’t visible in the percentages. Today I finished the last of the core game-play elements, which means Alan now has everything he needs to stat out the various ship, vehicle, armor, weapon, and character options. Of course, when I say “core” what I mean is these things…

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One Week Until Kickstarter Launch!

We’ll be launching the Planet Mercenary RPG Kickstarter on Tuesday, April 14th. That’s just a week away. Here’s a pair of Strohl-themed wallpapers to keep you company until then…   Still reading? We’re going to need your help! Not just with funding, but with getting the word out. Schlock Mercenary readers have lots of different reading habits, and many of them don’t visit the site more than once per month. This means that as broad as Howard’s reach may be with the comic, there will…

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The Kickstarter Launches on April 14th

 The Planet Mercenary RPG Kickstarter will launch on April 14th, 2015. That’s two weeks from tomorrow. If you need a reminder, here’s a wallpaper you can use! We also have a wallpaper for you that isn’t quite so busy… The project’s goal is to fund the art and the printing of a 208-page hardbound, full color core book, and a deck of 50 cards that are an important part of the role-playing mechanic we’ve developed.  In addition to those key elements, we plan to offer some…

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The Game Has A Name!

We’ve had the name and the logo for a while now. It’s time to show it to you!   The game book is an in-universe artifact, published by Planet Mercenary, as a way to get grunts to actually read a book, and maybe learn how to not die. More on this later. I need to slap this logo on the header graphic.

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The Progress Bar

This week Alan and I built a master document spreadsheet that allows us to track our writing progress. The core book will be between 125k and 140k words long, and while we know what those words will be LIKE, we don’t know what exactly those words ARE yet. I’ve begun taking screen grabs of the relevant cells in the spreadsheet. Here’s the latest one.     When this week began we were at 19%. Yesterday’s writing carried us from 28.2% to 30.08%. A couple of days…

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