It’s been a long, winding, sometimes rocky, but always interesting road: getting the BLUEHOLME™ Journeymanne Rules to the point where all that is needed is a bit of interior art. I published the BLUEHOLME™ Prentice Rules way back at the beginning of 2013 as a very close retroclone of the “Holmes” basic rulebook , so close that it only covered characters of levels 1 through 3.
Journeymanne is simply a much-expanded version of the Prentice Rules. Character levels cover 1-20, so you don’t need the Prentice Rules to play. Characters can be of any species, referee permitting – we found medusae a bit tricky in play, but generally there are no technical problems in introducing any type of creature to the party. Character classes can be combined to create new classes like that old favourite, the fighting magic-user. There are also, of course, a lot more spells, a lot more creatures, and a lot more magic treasures. In addition, the rules have been expanded to cover high-level stuff like moving beyond the Underworld to adventuring in the Realm and in the Wilderness, and player characters establishing their own strongholds.
Like many “free” OSR books (it’s pay-what-you-want on DTRPG, which is what the Save-or-Die podcast calls “Homer Simpson Free”), Prentice used public domain art mainly by the great Henry J. Ford. Well, now Journeymanne is finally ready to get its pages filled with cool, old-school art. A Kickstarter will soon launch to fund all-original art by some very talented people who are still alive (and thus demand payment). The Kickstarter will launch in early April 2017. The book is completely written and laid out, including the full colour cover by Jean-Francois Beaulieu and a foreword by Chris Holmes, son of Dr J. Eric Holmes himself, and player of the characters Boinger and Zereth, well-known to all fans of Holmes fiction- all that remains is the interior art.
As a teaser, the inestimable and multi-talented Chris Holmes has already provided two pieces for the book:
“Cave Creeper” by Chris Holmes
“Wereshark”by Chris Holmes
As readers of the Holmes novel The Maze of Peril will know, weresharks featured in an epic battle involving Boinger and Zereth.
In addition, I have commissioned a few pieces ahead of the Kickstarter itself, by one of the current masters of the OSR genre, Bradley K. McDevitt:
The other artists lined up are (in no particular order):
- Russ Nicholson
- Del Teigeler
- Scott Buoncristiano
- Denis McCarthy
- Joseph Garcia
- Guillaume Tavernier
- Chris Holmes
- Bryan Syme
- Todd McGowan
- Luigi Castellani
- Andrew DeFelice
Hopefully this gives you an idea of what to expect, and an incentive to back the BLUEHOLME™ Journeymanne Rules Art Kickstarter!