Before You Write That TTRPG…
Here’s a short checklist of things to do before you write that TTRPG:
- Play a lot of different games. Understand different genres and mechanics.
- Play with a lot of different people. Get to understand styles of play.
- Know the audience. Understand who you’re writing for.
- Read a lot of games. Know what already exists in the market.
- Figure out how your game is different. Make that the focus.
- Write an elevator pitch first. Use it as an anchor to prevent concept drift.
- Don’t create a “better” version of an existing game. Create the best version of yours.
- Consume good fiction. Read a lot. Watch prestige TV and film.
- Understand how stories are told. Read books on writing. Take classes.
- Have a reason for characters from diverse backgrounds to work together.
If you’re going to publish for money:
- Change your mindset. You’re running a business now. Get serious.
- Throw your ego out the window. This is for your customers, not you.
- Learn project management. Set deadlines and hold yourself accountable.
- Understand what things cost: editing, artwork, printing, shipping, etc.
- Know how much you need to make to break even.
- Set a budget. Pad it by 20% because shit happens. Stick to that budget.
- Spend twice as much time editing as you do writing.
- Spend three times as much time playtesting as you do editing.
- Find a mentor that’s successfully done this before and pick their brain.
- Expect to lose money, and don’t quit your day job.
Any other thoughts or ideas? Leave them in the comments below!