Fledgelings: Playtesting the Epistle and the Gate

Hi, friends! Since we last talked I’ve been very busy. I’ve been fortunate enough to playtest Risalat al-Ghufran and the Mist-Robed Gate twice, and we’ve learned a lot. I’m also really seeing and benefiting from having access to a large pool of strong players. It’s pretty great.

We played Risalat with myself, Elizabeth, and Alexis, and in that playtest we realised that its rules are much heavier than they need to be; after we threw some out the window, it was streamlined and compelling. The rotating cast of characters is thrilling to me; they add a lot of richness and texture, but at the same time, they hold the action down to a human scale. It’s lovely.

We played a second time, Elizabeth, Joshua A.C. Newman, Emily and I, and that went pretty well too. The text needs some serious updating, but we’ve got the flow of play down, and it’s what I want.

I already wrote about the first playtest of the Mist-Robed Gate; we put our heads together and set up an action sequence system that resolves some of those issues, and also includes an adjustable pacing dial. We tested that out with a staggeringly large group, and it worked splendidly. Meguey Baker at Fair Game and Jonathan Walton at one thousand one beat me to the blogging punch (Thanks, guys! ❤ ), so go see them for a rundown of the action. Thanks to everyone who played!

I’m really happy with the way the game handles larger groups; now we’ve just got to run it a few times with a smaller group, and we’re all set. I’m also thinking about explicitly supporting non-character players in a couple of different ways.

As a parting gift, go see Pingmag’s update on graphic design in China, and this beautiful honey package at the DieLine. It’s pretty sweet.


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