Monday, January 11, 2010

After the Story

Here we are, nearing the end of this blog's weekly updates. In fact, there is only one more left: Next week you will finally discover OVA's fabled release date!

With the release of the Revised Edition looming, I can't help but reminisce about the beginnings of the game I created. I didn't have a clue what I was doing, learning the skill sets required as I went. I picked up how to use Quark through trial-and-error, conquering all its idiosyncrasies and adventure-game-like unintuitiveness. I concreted my knowledge about a confusing print industry, with all the fiddly dpis, weights, and measures that entails. It was a lot to learn in a short period of time, but I loved every minute of it. Well, maybe not every minute, but you get the idea. It was an experience that not only resulted in my first published book, the same that many of you have already read and enjoyed, but one that has intensified a love of typography, of books, and of design. Without OVA it's pretty certain I wouldn't even have my day-job as a graphic designer.

It's hard to believe nearly 5 years have gone by since then. I might use InDesign now, and the industry I broke into may no longer be the strange, mysterious place that invoked a childlike bewilderment and wonder. But somehow, all the feelings are still there. OVA was the culmination of decades of playing games and dreaming of making one of my own. And even with a new coat of paint and a baker's dozen of patches, refinements, and fixes. It's still that game. My first that I dreamed about many years ago.

Karis was the first character I wrote up for OVA, and somehow it's fitting that she's the last design revealed here. She's still the same hot-tempered bounty-hunter we know and love, just a little bit cooler in every way. Arasuni on the other hand is quite a change in more than one respect, but he is actually much closer to his original concept.


  1. As long as i cant buy it without going through lulu or ipr im definitly gonna buy at least 1 copy of the book once its out and available for shipping to the uk.

  2. ooops ment to say can buy not cant :)

  3. Online, I always try to express myself in a professional and well-written manner. What's a professional and well-written way of saying, *LOUD FANGIRL SQUEAL* ?

  4. Yay for release dates! Looking forward to starting a new campaign using revised.

  5. Once the release date is announced, does that mean that all changes are final?

  6. Serenity: Unless things go extremely awry, it will get a proper print run and be available through less annoying outlets.

    Ixloriana: Squealing is perfectly professional!

    Ronwise: No, the game will continue to be tweaked and refined throughout the coming months. But if the original game was any indication, there will be several updates after the PDF release, too.

  7. Will the official web site receive a face-lift to coincide with revised edition's release?

    I've been waiting anxiously for OVA's re-release. Let it be known that my first foray into the RPG world will be with OVA as my guide and counsel. I still have the original print version, but never actually played a proper game. Thankfully in recent months I found a friendly card shop with role-players willing to try new games. I can't wait.

    Thanks for all the hard work, Mr. Gardner, and may 2010 be a fruitful year for the Open Versatile Anime role-playing game. Cheers!

  8. I can't wait! I am very VERY excited. I could pitch this as the game to start with, my new group is forming. I have a playtest copy coming for a FATE based game. Maybe OVA PDF will beat it to my gruby little hands... :-D

    Is there a playtesting group? Is there going to be? Can I be in it? What anime costume do I have to take pictures of myself wearing to get into it?!?! :-D