I am officially shifting focus to SaSS:R, which I find frustrating because Lions of Judah is the book I want to be writing, but it is simply an acknowledgement of a reality that has set in and seems determined to remain for the moment. That reality is namely that I can work, and work quite well on SaSS:R despite school, work, three children, a wife, and a home to help maintain. That simply isn’t the case with Lions of Judah right now. But as was the case when Lions of Judah was the lead project, I am still going to work occasionally on the secondary enterprise, if only to keep it fresh and hope for a change in my current abilities.
I have continued on working through SaSS:R. A few things have changed, most importantly Mech and Aerial Combat. Rather than simply being the rules for normal combat writ large, I have given Mech and Aerial Combat a different method of dividing up Turns than the personal-sized rules allow for. Now, instead of a Minor, Major, and Movement Action, mechs and aircraft have Action Point Pools based on their speed, and they spend these points on anything they do in a Turn, or even a Round. Now, instead of free Dodges during a round of Turns (like people mounted or on foot can still do), mechs and aircraft have to budget their points in case they are on the receiving end of enemy fire to allow for Dodging. This makes it (I hope next month’s playtest will confirm this) more tactical in how you spend each Turn.
Unit Combat, the SaSS:R term for combat between significant groups of people (probably around the size of ten on each side), works somewhat in between the two sizes, and because of the numbers involved is significantly abstracted.
I have also begun making setting notes (something I have not gotten to doing seriously in previous incarnations of SaSS) for the Rozaline Worlds. I’m hoping someone likes the idea of a Greek imperial Republic centered on Constantinople, because that is what one of the powers is.
“Imperial Constantinia [CON]: Revived as a successor to the old Byzantines by the combined power of the Polish-Lithuanians and the Austro-Hungarians, who wanted a buffer between the rest of Europe and the Ottomans, Imperial Constantinia has become a major second-tier power, constantly vying to overtake the powers that brought it into being. Allied to the Ferrara-Romans and the slowly-strengthening Muscovites, the Constantinians are a renewed Greek nation, one that looks to conquer the Eastern Mediterranean in every Rozaline Earth. Wealthy and not far from joining their rivals the Polish-Lithuanians as a first-tier empire, they are known for having a maritime navy of first-tier status.
Founded in 1695 with the defeat of the Ottomans in the first war to see mechs used, and the Treaty of Marathon that followed, Constantinia is an elective monarchy like their patrons-turned-rivals, but maintains an electorate much wider than the Polish-Lithuanians.”
I’m really enjoying SaSS:R for all that it would not be my first pick of the projects I have going to focus on, and I hope it shows. It is over 30,000 words currently, and was over 150 pages until I took out some images to edit them (it currently sits at 147 pages.) This isn’t the longest project I’ve ever worked on, but it is the longest I seriously intended to publish (my first successful NaNoWriMo may have been longer, but I shudder to think of anyone reading it; I certainly hope I have matured as a writer, even if it is hard to compare working on a game manual and a novel.)