I have to say that you guys have done an amazing job pulling the developement of this game together in the amount of time you have. I know you have stated the game has been brewing in one form or another for years now, but I am still impressed with the speed of development and testing. If it take a few more weeks to assure higher quality then by all means take the extra time. I look forward to the purchasing the final product.
Thank you! I've been lucky to have some very dedicated developers and designers helping me along with this (in particular Kosala, former head of Silven Publishing who is acting as layout artist and a 'producer' of sorts).
One of the interesting things about Eldritch is that Randy (my co-author) and I have such different tastes in games. I like rules light games. Those who know me may remember my work with Lejendary Adventure, or some of the books I wrote for Troll Lord. Randy, on the other hand, was more of a wargamer, and something of a tactician, to use Robin Law's terms. He preferred GURPs and house-ruled Palladium systems, while I preferred Lejendary Adventure or something more along the lines of Castles and Crusades. He focused on combat and tactics, and while I love action adventure, I lean toward the narrative. So Eldritch Role Playing had to be a game that appealed to both of us, and our two different circles of players.
That was very, very hard to do. Sure, either of us could house-rule an existing system to death to suit our needs, and Randy rather enjoyed that sort of wonky tinkering, but the challenge was to make a system that ultimately didn't need to be house-ruled. It just had to work. It took many more years of playtest than I would have imagined before people stopped forcing me to alter the rules in some way. Finally, when I thought the rewrites would never end, I noticed the game became resilient to change. It wasn't that I was sick of making changes; people stopped telling me what was wrong with it. A few more years of playtest, and I knew the game was ready for publication. Now, that's not to say the game was designed by "committee", or that it tries to be everything to everybody. No, it is without apology a narrative, but action-oriented game of heroic fantasy. That is not *everybody's* cup of tea, so to speak. But the character generation allows for tremendous detail, and the potential for battle tactics (without the need of minis or battlemats) is vast due to the nature of Defense Pools. Heck, any ability can be "converted" to become a defense pool (using max-rank-value)...but that's a different subject.
Also, it's not OGL. It does not depend on D20. I think that's a plus these days. Castles and Crusades or True 20 is perfect for D20 fans who want a similar "feel" to their games, with less rules complexity. I've got nothing negative to say about those games---heck, I play lots of different games. But Eldritch Role Playing plays "differently", especially in action scenes. It forces players to be engaged with their characters' actions in a way that must be witnessed. And despite the detail, and somewhat unusual rules conventions, it plays just as fast as something like Savage Worlds. but don't take my word for it...
boy...I'm just rambling on and on...