August 25th, 2006



So, the time has come to get Blood! in order and it should be ready by the end of October.

This is a tricky project for me, I love the original game and want to do it justice, improve on it and bring it up to date with some of the modern material we've seen come out since the game was published in 1990.  I want it to be recognisibly British at the same time and I want to retain what made the original Blood! great.

Horror's developed since 1990 I think, or at least people's tastes, the extremes that are being shown and the black humour have all shifted.  There's a lot of homage to the 1970's shock and splatter going on, as well as the tongue-in-cheek stuff like Sean of the Dead, Scream and so on and that needs to be reflected in the write up.

Just think of  horror genre stuff that's come around in the last... what... 16 years? 1990 is before Buffy and Angel - if you can really call them horror. It's before Saw and House of 1000 Corpses, it's before Silent Hill, Resident Evil, before The Ring or The Grudge, before all the current, modern icons of horror.  I don't think doing the Jason/Freddy Kruegar type 80's horror would work so well any more.

So, the genre information needs an update and, to keep it in the right splatter/British vein I guess I should throw in some Sean Hutson and Graham Masterton type nastiness.  For a more mythos type vein perhaps some Barkeresque weirdness and begin to develop a slightly different mythos.

So, yeah, it's going to be challenging.

Pluses of the old game
  • Dark sense of humour.
  • Wicked illustrations.
  • Percentile system.
  • Just the right amount of rules crunch.
  • Blood points!
  • Rules for transfusions.
  • Interesting skill/career system.
  • Encouragement to play normal people.
  • Good skill 'level up' system.
  • Good combat system with 'ticks'.
  • Cannibal starting adventure.
  • Weapon stats for EVERYTHING.
  • Gory critical hit tables.
Minuses of the old game
  • Not all of the old illustrations were exactly top notch.
  • Character creation had a LOT of mathematics to it.
  • Many, many sub-stats.
  • Slow combat.
  • Not enough career packs/skills.
  • Advancement by levels.
  • Price lists in 1990 UK money.
  • Combat ticks are good, but unwieldy.
  • Martial arts a bit gooby.
  • Sanity/Fear rules relatively undeveloped.
  • Not enough monsters.
  • No line support.
  • Sample weapons unordered.
  • No rules for defining own improvised weapons.
  • Crappy character sheet.
Changes for this edition
  • Better rules explanation.
  • Streamlined character creation.
  • Line support.
  • Streamlined combat.
  • Additional art (but we're keeping the good stuff from the original too).
  • Proper vehicle rules.
  • Better sanity rules.
  • Find some actual use for energy points and exhaustion.
I reckon this edition will top out somewhere around 120-150 pages given the layout might be a bit more fancy than the old and at around $10-15 as a PDF.