For those who wish to record their many adventures and tell the tales of mighty deeds, I point you toward two tools of the craft that should be at the side of any scribe – Scrivener and Scapple.

With the inevitable Black Friday sales, these two apps have a 25% discount and are available for Windows and Mac. The traditional writing apps are Word or Pages, but those have become typesetting tools, not writing tools. They are too format and layout centric. Scrivener is much better for organizing, editing, saving and pulling a story together. It also has a much cleaner interface and doesn’t have 500 features you’ll never use.

There is also the companion app, Scapple. It creates story boards and links together ideas to create a working model of how a story will flow together. It’s also very handy for getting down ideas without knowing exactly how they relate to each other.

Head over to the website for a full list of features. I use Scrivener on a daily basis and highly recommend it.

Scrivener and Scapple at

More brilliant musings about my adventures in New Britannia

Ultima isn’t just inspiring people on the desktop, there are big fans of the game on the tablet platform as well. I came across this yesterday and it looks like a whole lot of fun. It’s an RPG called Ember and the developer says one of the main inspirations was Ultima VII.

The game is scheduled to come out later this year, but the screenshots look really impressive and the gameplay sounds outstanding. There is supposed to be full interactivity, day and night cycles, a complete skill tree, 70 quests and even crafting. Is this pocket SotA?

I will have to keep an eye on this one. If it’s anything like the Ultima series, I will have to play it. I’m sure I can fall down a mine shaft, get mauled by a bear and get stabbed in the backside in a portable game just as easily as I can in a full size one!

The top inspiration is a very old and classic PC game that we hold near and dear to us – Ultima VII: The Black Gate. Ultima VII came out in 1992 and was built to run on computers with less RAM and processing power than most of today’s modern kitchen appliances! Despite that, the game is regarded as one of the finest RPGs with its deep story, interesting characters, and fully functional world. In fact, this interactivity pertains to one of Ember‘s main pillars: to maintain a fully-simulated RPG world with day and night cycles, lively NPCs with daily schedules, and tons of responsive objects that would behave as a player would expect of them. We figured if this level of interaction could be achieved on a computer with 4 MB of RAM, then we should be able to do it on a tablet!

N-Fusion and 505’s Ember is Totally Going to be the Next Ultima
The Story of Ember


More brilliant musings about my adventures in New Britannia

So here we are, quite literally at the last day of the year. In mere hours we start over and start anew. It’s been quite a year hasn’t it? We’ve watched this game take shape and feature after feature show up and develop. We’ve gone from playing a couple of days per month to playing just about anytime we want to. New towns have popped up, new quests have been offered, new characters have slipped in, new monsters have snarled, new armor has been worn and all sorts of new players have shown up.

I’m keenly excited for 2015 and what it will bring. The game is coming along great! There are few rough bits here and there and some things may not make my hair stand on end with excitement, but I’m willing to look past the odd blemish or first iteration feature and focus on the dozens of things I do like. And one of the things I do like, is meeting other players and joining up with them to travel to destinations unknown. A friendly lot these New Britannians. A good sort of people.

With that in mind, it’s time to set the table, open the bottles, pass the salt and cut the cheese. The countdown has begun and I want to meet this New year head on, wrestle it to the ground and show it who’s boss. If that doesn’t work, I’ll go with the cheese.

I wish you All from ALL over the world, a Happy New Year!!

And a tip of the hat to the homeland of Aus, Adelaide to be precise, who’s already gotten the ball rolling!



More brilliant musings about my adventures in New Britannia

Hello Everyone! Reindeer and I just wanted to take a moment to wish you a Happy Holiday and wish you all the best for the upcoming New Year! We’re busy down in Braemar decorating the house and cooking up a fabulous feast! We plan to sit by the fire, drink some eggnog, read some holiday stories and then head up to the roof to watch the stars and idle in the hot tub. Well, I’ll be in the hot tub, reindeer isn’t allowed in there any more after the last incident.

If you’re in the neighborhood and you’re all done dueling in the streets, casting fireballs and slashing all the turkeys to bits, stop on by, we have plenty, and we’d love to see you!

Happy Holidays Everyone!!


More brilliant musings about my adventures in New Britannia

It’s the final 2 hours of the Sojourner Tales Pledge Drive and the Hickmans are hanging out live to talk about the game, show it off and bring in some guests to celebrate meeting their goals and the game getting it’s full funding. I love these live events because you get to ask questions and watch a live unscripted where the designers talk about whatever comes to mind. They have a lot of people scheduled to show up, at least for a couple of minutes, so this should be fun.

The live event runs for the next two hours and the Kickstarter project comes to an end. This looks to be a very cool game and should be pretty amusing. You can jump online and watch along at the link below.

Sojourner Tales Telethon Countdown


Update: What a fantastic night, not only did the game get fully funded, and not only did it surpass the $50k goal for the Steampunk story modules, but it game passed through the $55k mark which is the Shroud of the Avatar multiple story line. This is going to be a spectacular experience. Not only was it great to see that level of support, but it brought Tracy and Laura to tears.

The final tally was $55,651. Kickstarter is pretty damn cool. I’m glad to be a part of another really exciting game project.

More brilliant musings about my adventures in New Britannia

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