This marks the beginning of a new phase of the journey with Accursed. This project is very special, in fact, unique in my entire 13+ year career in the game industry. Accursed is the first time I’ve had complete personal freedom to design a setting the way I wanted to from the ground up; the first time I’ve taken my own unique creative vision and brought it to life. It’s also the first time I’ve had a chance to work with John and Jason as a partnership on a project we all feel so passionately about. The launch of the Kickstarter today is a personal milestone for all three of us, and I can speak for the entire Accursed Trio when I say that we’re extremely thrilled to see the game setting take this huge step toward becoming a reality.
The story of Accursed’s creation begins with a love of monsters—I mean the classic movie monsters; Mummies, Werewolves, Vampires, Frankenstein’s creation, and many more. In my youth, I loved the Hammer Horror films where Van Helsing fought Dracula. I enjoyed seeing the Mummy deal with intruders in films like Waxworks. Possibly the best of them all was the 80’s classic the Monster Squad, featuring nearly the entire cast of monsters!
Back in 2012 I was asked to come up with an idea for a “dark fantasy” RPG setting. This was a challenge, and initially I balked—fantasy is a saturated genre in today’s RPG landscape. After mulling over the idea some more, I started to think of some things that would make for an interesting and unique take on dark fantasy… and it all revolved around monsters.
Accursed’s biggest influences came from the idea of monsters working together, fighting against the forces of evil as a team. The “Creature Commandos” comic book from DC was a great example of this, where the classic movie monsters are all soldiers in World War II in the same squad. Hellboy and the BPRD are also great example of monsters who team up together to battle darkness. From these sources, I realized that what I wanted in Accursed was a way for the monsters to gather together; to form a group of heroes.
So with the idea of the heroes, I needed to think about the world those heroes inhabited—and this is where my love of classic literature comes in. Solomon Kane is a great character in a series of stories by Robert E. Howard, and there are many elements of his world that I found fascinating—the puritan attitudes, the grim (and often harsh) environments and tones, and the stark forces of evil threatening the innocent. But tone is not everything! I also wanted to see something visually appealing, and the gothic horror of the Castlevania games has always intrigued me artistically.
Of course, the elder statesman of dark fantasy RPG worlds has to be the Ravenloft setting for Dungeons & Dragons. There are undeniable elements of any dark fantasy game that owe a lot to this trailblazer in the industry. Combining some of my favorite parts of all three of these ideas brought in the core of what would become the land of Morden, the main region at the heart of Accursed.
Thanks for reading about the history and the concepts behind Accursed! I’d like to close out this blog post with a request: please consider spreading the word about our Kickstarter—and why you think it is special—that would mean the world to all of us. For Accursed to succeed, we need your help.
Direct Link to the Kickstarter
9/14/13 Edit to ad: Kicktraq Stats