Hexingtide Update: Playtest 3 Dates, Streams, and more

I released the second public playtest for Hexingtide in July 2022, and in the four months since have been playtesting regularly. There’s a lot cool stuff happening soon with the game, and it’s time for an update.

  1. Public Playtest 3: Coming in December
  2. Hexingtide on Upcoming Streams and Podcasts
  3. December and January Online Playtest Opportunities
  4. New Facebook Group for Hexingtide

Public Playtest 3: Coming in December!

The big news!

After four months of Playtest #2 – and a series of small updates along the way – there’s been enough feedback and experience with the game to move to the third big round of rules releases.

What to expect:

  • No major changes to the core gameplay loop, which appears to be working well. The addition of Peril dice and Passions (i.e. status effects) have been a nice value add.
  • Rules addition: NPC reactions. A consistent question I’ve gotten from playtesters has been about the how their monstrous PCs fit into the world – and the reactions they get from baseline humans. So far, it’s been handwaved and narrated. I shared my first draft about creating a mechanical hook for angry mobs and human NPC reactions on the blog recently. It will be getting playtested this month.
  • Rules addition: zones and focal points. This adds the tiniest layer of tactical decision making to combats and other problem-solving challenges. Minimal overhead. Easy to parse. Blog post coming soon.
  • GM guidance and an example of play. This is the dual-edged nature of trying to write a minimalist rule set: what’s too much, what’s not enough, and how do I keep the rules – and all the writing – as brief as it can valuably be. I’m adding GM guidance on running Scenes and a short example of play to help would-be players and GMs.
  • Assorted typos and missed rules tweaks. The small fries stuff, chief of which is calling out Niche concepts in the Example Powers list.

Hexingtide on Upcoming Streams and Podcasts

I’m also happy to share that Hexingtide will be featured in two upcoming TTRPG productions:

  • Nov 2nd & 9th with Damn Good Games: This is a two-part show first live streamed on their Twitch, then uploaded to Anchor and Youtube. We’ll start with an interview, then go through character creation, before I GM a one-shot adventure!
  • December: The crew from Table It! will be reviewing Hexingtide, and then running a Hexingtide adventure, which I’ll be joining as a player! These episodes should drop in December.

Upcoming Online Playtests

I’ve been GMing my personal playtest sessions in person over the last few months. Simply put: attendance at online sessions was wildly unreliable – which wasn’t far for the other player (often singular) who showed up or myself.

But I’m going to try my hand at online playtests again – both a session, myself, as well recruiting other GMs to run Hexingtide as a “blind playtest.”

That is where a GM will read the rules and run a game without my input. I’ll be joining those games, either as a fellow player, or just hanging out as a fly on the wall.

Want to join an online session of Hexingtide this winter? Make sure you get notified when the sign ups go live by one of the following methods:

The New Hexingtide Facebook Group

Speaking of Facebook – there’s a group now. Why, and how will that impact the Discord server? Here’s a crosspost of my Twitter thread on that decision:

As a small, solo indie designer + out of touch Elder Millennial, I created a Discord server for my game Hexingtide a few months ago. Everyone has them: hip indie RPGs, streams, podcasts, community servers. But…

Good grief, it’s piled up… and fast.

Too many servers. Too many channels on each server. Too many conversations to track. I’m simply not enjoying my Discord experience. Its value gets drowned out by the anxiety of playing catch-up. I end up neglecting my own nascent server. Put off the Discord developer docs.

For me, tabletop gaming is not a money-making side hustle. It all seems silly for what’s fundamentally a hobby project. So what do I do?

I first started a Hexingtide group on Facebook because, as the aforementioned Elder Millennial, that’s a platform I’m on. People derided that choice. Told me to get on Discord. But if I won’t actually use Discord… and *will* continue to use Facebook? Well.

I’m pivoting back to FB for a Hexingtide community. Won’t close its tiny Discord, just yet. And won’t say no to a future return. But now? If you’re interested in a TTRPG of Minimalist Monstrous Roleplaying, join me there:


In Closing: Looking to 2023

With Playtest 3 launching in a month or so, my first goal will be getting the initial wider public playtesting happening (and feedback from there).

In January and February, I’ll be looking to line up some live stream, podcast, video coverage about the game and continue to build out the community.

My goal is explicitly not to take the game to Kickstarter with a goal of a wide physical release. I’m not the guy you want to rely on for order fulfillment, you see.

But I continue to see a niche for these rules. To that end, once the rough edges get ironed out with the next playtest, I’ll be reaching out to other indie publishers and distributors to gauge any interest they may have.

A final release in time for Halloween 2023? That sounds right by me.

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