Derik Badman's Journal

2021-03-28 09:47

I've been working more on my western RPG Hadleyville, now up to a 0.2 version. I want to make it a printable booklet, though it isn't quite there yet. My InDesign stopped working awhile back (it was old), so I was trying out Scribus but discovered it is total garbage for designing tables, and this project is more tables than not. So, I ended up using html and css. I have never used it before but there is a whole css module for print design (different than making a stylesheet for printing a webpage) that is pretty much invisible/unused in browsers. This makes designing with it a bit tricky. Had to get a program that converts html to pdf and actually parses the print css. You edit, regenerate the pdf, then check the results. It's a little tedious, but I've managed to at least get a better layout worked up. Still need to add more art, and probably some more pages so I can make it an 8 page (2 sheets double-sided) booklet.

Since I've been thinking western, I watched Rio Bravo on HBOMax a few days ago. I ended up... thinking less of it than I remember. In general John Wayne tends to annoy me and the story just doesn't do much for me. I ended up only kind of half watching it. On the other hand, I've been rereading Oakley Hall's Warlock which I am quite enjoying the second time through, though I can't read it without picturing the actors from the movie (Richard Widmark, Henry Fonda, and DeForest Kelley in particular). The chapters shift point of view through a succession of characters in an effective way, and the novels themes about law, authority, and violence feel at the heart of what I find interesting in a lot of the westerns I like.

Somehow I stumbled upon the fact that Alex Toth drew the Dell Comics version of Rio Bravo and found a Toth fan site that had scans of it. That comic was unimpressive, but looking into other westerns by Toth (searching for material for images for my game) I found this great example of Toth inking his own pencils in Dell Comics Gun Glory from 1957. Lots of great inking going on in that comic, which, having just skimmed through a bunch of Toth comics, is not normally the case for his pencils. He does a lot of really loose expressive blacks in both background and foreground that looks less precise and controlled than what I'm used to seeing from him.

Ran a session of fake Warhammer in Marienburg last night for some of the guys. I haven't run a game in a long time (I think it was the Mausritter adventure back in June) so I felt a little... unprepared. Trying very rules-lite using this Streets of Marienburg game that is a reskin (and maybe simplification) of a simplification of Dungeon World. I'm probably simplifying it even more in how I'm running it. We didn't get super far into the adventure so we'll see about the rules. I'm most concerned how combat will go. Running this "House of Rogat Demazien" from Gabor Lux's Trail of the Sea Demon adventure zine as it was fairly easy to reskin for Marienburg.