Gnomecast #65 – Meet a New Gnome: Chuck Lauer

Gnome Stew - 2 May 2019 - 5:00am

Join Ang and get to know one of the newest Gnomes, Chuck, in this “Meet a New Gnome” episode of Gnomecast! Learn about Chuck’s gaming origin story, his future plans for Gnome Stew articles, and some of his anticipated upcoming games! Will new gnome Chuck be able to avoid the stew this week?

Download: Gnomecast #65 – Meet a New Gnome: Chuck Lauer

You can find Chuck’s fungi article for Gnome Stew (which turned out to be a part 1!) here.

Check out and back One Child’s Heart through May 16th.

You can find Defy Danger Adventures at @DDEadventures on Twitter and at their website, and check out the announcement for Avarice here.

Check out The Expanse RPG from Green Ronin.

Follow Chuck at @InnocuousChuck on Twitter.

Follow Ang at @orikes13 on Twitter.

Keep up with all the gnomes by visiting, following @gnomestew on Twitter, or visiting the Gnome Stew Facebook Page. Subscribe to the Gnome Stew Twitch channel, check out Gnome Stew Merch, and support Gnome Stew on Patreon!

Categories: Game Theory & Design

InternetDevels: Meet JSON:API in Drupal core: API-first Drupal future is here!

Planet Drupal - 2 May 2019 - 4:45am

“After soliciting input and consulting others, I felt JSON:API belonged in Drupal core.”

Dries Buytaert, creator of Drupal

Read more
Categories: Drupal

NerdRage Studios discuss the choice behind using crowdfunding sources to fund Xenosis: Alien Infection: - by Liam Waddington Blogs - 2 May 2019 - 4:20am
After experiencing a brief demo of Xenosis: Alien Infection at EGX Rezzed, I had the opportunity to interview James Stone, the lead game designer on Xenosis: Alien Infection. The interview includes discussions on game development and crowdsourcing.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Webform Jira integration

New Drupal Modules - 1 May 2019 - 11:39pm
Categories: Drupal

Axelerant Blog: Axelerant People Report: March 2019

Planet Drupal - 1 May 2019 - 10:34pm
  In March, we finalized revisions to our policies.

At our annual retreat in February 2019, we'd conducted a feedback session to help us consider the viewpoints of all our team members regarding our policies.

Categories: Drupal

Context chains

New Drupal Modules - 1 May 2019 - 9:31pm

Like DS chains but for layout builder.

Under active development - watch this space

Categories: Drupal

User Permission Condition

New Drupal Modules - 1 May 2019 - 6:16pm

This module provides a condition "User has permission". Once installed it will appear on block visibility settings and any other place that shows condition plugins.

Categories: Drupal

UI Patterns Layout Builder

New Drupal Modules - 1 May 2019 - 2:21pm

UI Patterns Layout

Categories: Drupal

Epic Games acquires Rocket League dev Psyonix

Social/Online Games - Gamasutra - 1 May 2019 - 1:03pm

The deal is expected to close late this month or early next, and when it does Epic will have one of the more popular and enduring multiplayer games in recent history firmly in its stable. ...

Categories: Game Theory & Design

Drudesk: What's new in Drupal 8.7.0: a look at the new big release

Planet Drupal - 1 May 2019 - 12:17pm

The spring is in full bloom — and so is Drupal development. On May 1st, we officially meet Drupal 8.7.0 release that is bursting with new features. And, of course, they are worth a good review. After the previous release in September, we discussed media handling capabilities in D8.6 as one of many interesting updates. Today, let’s take a closer look at what’s new in Drupal 8.7.0.

Categories: Drupal

Drupal In the News: Drupal Global Splash Awards Announced in Seattle

Planet Drupal - 1 May 2019 - 10:22am


The Drupal community has just announced the winners of the inaugural Global Splash Awards. Drupal development and design leaders from around the world gathered in Seattle for the awards ceremony in mid-April, where 14 winners across 13 categories were announced, with 1 tie. The awards were held in conjunction with DrupalCon Seattle 2019.

The Splash Awards recognize the best Drupal projects on the web. Each digital experience represents a step forward in digital innovation, and a new model for others to follow.

Michel van Velde, co-founder of the awards, said, "It is wonderful to see the Splash Awards come both to North America and to a global audience for the first time." Co-founder Baddy Breidert added, "With the wider reach of audience, we saw an outstanding level of projects nominated and showcased at this ceremony."

The Nominees

A total of 109 nominations were submitted, across 13 categories. In the tight field, there was a tie for project of the year: Lullabot for JSON:API and the City of Detroit, Michigan for their government municipal site Other categories and winners include: 

  • E-Commerce: Rob Edwards Freelance, Apex Running 
  • Corporate: Elevated Third, Central Square 
  • Design/UX: Burst, Chupa Chups 
  • Non-Profit: Made It Digital, Memory of Nations 
  • Education: Connect-i, Opigno 
  • Government: City of Detroit, 
  • Publishing / Media: Lemberg Solutions, Monda Magazin 
  • Tools / Apps: Genuine Interactive, FotoOppTM 
  • Social / Community: Phase2, Pinterest 
  • Theme: Last Call Media, 
  • Care / Healthcare: Mediamonks, Montefiore - Orthopedics 
  • Best module: Lullabot, JSON: API

Edgar Montes from the City of Detroit, Michigan, and tied winner for Project of the Year, said, “We like to believe that our dedication to the people of Detroit has helped us deliver a website that can serve the needs of the city and its people; a majority of the web team lives within the city and we make a point of trying to understand the needs of every part of the site and how to best convey the information it contains. It's important to us to try to demonstrate that great things continue to come out of a city which has seen its fair share of struggles and triumphs.”

Both the Splash Awards and the DrupalCon conferences bring the world community together; big agencies and small independent developers, all using Drupal and harnessing the power of open source. The next European Splash Awards will be held in conjunction with DrupalCon Europe 2019, taking place in Amsterdam, Netherlands in October 2019.

About Drupal

Drupal is content management software. It is used to make many of the websites and applications you use every day. Drupal has great standard features, easy content authoring, reliable performance, and excellent security. What sets it apart is its flexibility; modularity is one of its core principles. Its tools help you build the versatile, structured content that ambitious web experiences need.

About the Drupal Association 

The Drupal Association is dedicated to fostering and supporting the Drupal project, the community and its growth. The Drupal Association helps the Drupal community with funding, infrastructure, education, promotion, distribution and online collaboration at


Categories: Drupal

Paragraphs Enhancements

New Drupal Modules - 1 May 2019 - 10:07am

A small module to help add some enhancements to Paragraphs to help content authors to more easily find the paragraphs they need to add when there's a lot of paragraphs available in a field.

Installation / Configuration

Install as per any other Drupal Module.

Categories: Drupal

Duo Consulting: Everything You Need to Know About Drupal 8.7

Planet Drupal - 1 May 2019 - 9:30am

At this year’s DrupalCon, held earlier in April in Seattle, Drupal founder Dries Buytaert gave attendees a preview of the newest version of Drupal: 8.7. Now, the wait is over. Drupal 8.7 is launching today, May 1, adding a new suite of features and fixes that will improve the Drupal experience for everyone with an up-to-date platform.

In his keynote, or “Driesnote,” Dries laid out what made this new release so special. Speaking to the Drupal community at large, Dries shared that the Drupal team had several core objectives when developing Drupal 8.7:

  • Make Drupal easy for content creators and site builders
  • Make Drupal easy to evaluate and adopt
  • Keep Drupal impactful and relevant
  • Reduce total cost of ownership for developers and site owners

Each one of these goals represented a major challenge, but the newest version has delivered a variety of updates that each make Drupal a more robust platform.

Empowering content creators

One of the biggest features in Drupal 8.7 is the newly stable Layout Builder tool. The product of the efforts of 123 contributors and 68 supporting organizations, Layout Builder makes designing pages more user-friendly. As the name implies, the Layout Builder tool enables editors to manually adjust the design and format of a page. With this tool, editors can make changes to the layout without having to involve developers every time. Dries displayed a demo of the Layout Builder tool during the Driesnote, which can be found below.

Along with layout builder, the other major content improvement ushered in by Drupal 8.7 is the updated media module. As of this most recent update, reusable media, images, video and drag-and-drop features for the media module are all stable, with the media library currently in the “experimental” state. Combined with layout builder, these updates make Drupal 8.7 a great update for content editors.

Out of the box functionality

While Drupal 8.7 certainly makes life easier for editors, it doesn’t stop there. New out of the box features make Drupal easier to adopt than ever. New to the Umami theme in Drupal 8.7  are demo articles containing Spanish translations by default and improved accessibility throughout the theme, with new labels and focus styles highlighted. This helps to show Drupal 8.7’s capabilities in terms of both multilingual and accessibility right out of the box. Additionally, the “Welcome tour” feature makes it easier for agencies to demo the platform. All of these features are included with the new update automatically.

Staying relevant

To remain a driving force in the market, Drupal needs to keep up with the times. The biggest breath of fresh air Drupal 8.7 brings to the platform is the addition of the JSON:API to the core. This development extends Drupal’s “API-first” philosophy, enabling decoupled and headless solutions. If this type of buildout is what your organization needs, the Drupal 8.7 update makes developing these popular solutions much easier.

Lowered costs

Because Drupal 9 (D9) is built on the same codebase as D8, the eventual upgrade process will be much easier than a conventional website upgrade. Previously, upgrades were major undertakings that required a lot of development effort. Now, as long as a site is not using any deprecated code, upgrading to D9 will be very straightforward. A tool called drupal-check is already available to check for deprecated code, so it’s already possible to start getting a site ready for D9. In the meantime, Drupal 8.7 offers a number of new features and enhancements and is another step toward the eventual D9 upgrade..

There’s certainly plenty to enjoy with this new release, but the updates don’t stop here. With Drupal on a six-month release cycle, there will be a new version of Drupal on November 1. Drupal 8.8 promises an updated WYSIWYG editor along with a potentially updated Admin UI, an ongoing project for the Drupal team. Beyond that is D9, the latest edition of the platform.

Duo can help you make the most out of Drupal 8.7’s newest features while also planning your roadmap for upgrading. If you’re ready to see what the future of Drupal has to offer, reach out to us today.

Categories: Drupal

Migrate DC

New Drupal Modules - 1 May 2019 - 8:32am

This module provides Migrate plugins to help fill your Drupal site up with default or dummy contents.

MigrateProcessPlugin - migrate_dc_file_content

Reads contents from external files. Useful for long text fields.

MigrateProcessPlugin - migrate_dc_plain_password

Hashes plain passwords.

MigrateProcessPlugin - migrate_dc_shipment_item

Helps to migrate shipment items for Drupal Commerce

Categories: Drupal

Block Anonymous Strings

New Drupal Modules - 1 May 2019 - 8:04am

This light-weight module enables opting in of any text field or text area of nodes, webforms and comments for validation against the pre-defined undesired regular expressions to automatically deny anonymous submissions when such strings are detected. The Block Anonymous Strings module is the most efficient and the least intrusive anti-spam tool without having to rely on third-party services.

Categories: Drupal

Drupal blog: Drupal 8.7.0 is available

Planet Drupal - 1 May 2019 - 7:27am
What’s new in Drupal 8.7.0?

This release introduces powerful features that will help us all take Drupal to a whole new level. The new stable JSON:API core module as well as the intuitive and accessible stable Layout Builder are game-changing.

Download Drupal 8.7.0

Layout Builder is stable

The Layout Builder module was originally introduced as an experimental module in Drupal 8.5.0. As of Drupal 8.7.0, Layout Builder is now stable and ready for production use! It provides a powerful, accessible, mobile-friendly page building tool that is fully compatible with revisions, workflows, and in-context previews.

The Layout Builder enables site builders to rapidly create layout templates for content that speed up the development process. It also permits content authors to easily customize individual pages with unique layouts.

The interface allows drag-and-drop management of your content blocks. It additionally supports keyboard controls and toggling the content preview on and off to give the content editor complete control of their experience while building their layouts.

The result of all these features is a state-of-the art content management solution that streamlines mass-production while also supporting unique creation. 123 individuals and 68 organizations contributed to this feature. More than 40 of the individual contributors volunteered some or all of their time.

Check out this demonstration based on the core Umami demo:

The team is working on implementing translation support for layouts in a future release.

New stable JSON:API support

JSON:API support is now included as a stable core feature. The JSON:API specification is an easy and fast way to build decoupled applications. Drupal core's JSON:API module is feature-complete and easy to use with robust out-of-the-box support and simple setup. JSON:API makes it simpler than ever to build ambitious projects. 147 contributors and 76 organizations contributed to this new feature. Among the individual contributors, more than 50 volunteered some or all of their time.

For example, by simply navigating to a URL like, you can get a list of available articles on your site, and filter further from there, to display your Drupal content in decoupled websites, mobile applications, and so on.

Improvements in experimental Media Library

The experimental Media Library has numerous significant improvements in this release. The Media Library is built on top of the stable Media module, which allows reuse of images, documents, and even embedded remote media like YouTube videos. Items in the Media Library can be managed with drag-and-drop. This release improves the design and accessibility of the user interface, allows inline media creation in the library, and provides more flexible grid and table views. 310 contributors and 122 organizations contributed to this new feature. More than 100 individuals volunteered some or all of their time!

Check out this demonstration based the core Umami demo with Media Library enabled:

There are various tasks left to make Media Library stable in a future release, including WYSIWYG integration.

Revisionable menus and taxonomy terms

Custom menu links and taxonomy terms are now revisionable, which allows them to be used in editorial workflows (similarly to nodes, media, and custom blocks). The Entity system now also provides a new Update API to support conversion of further entity types. It supports converting the schema of any content entity type between non-revisionable or non-translatable and revisionable or translatable, which also works when there is pre-existing data for the entity type whose schema is being changed. All these changes improve core support for the Workspaces module.

New features in the Umami demo profile

The Umami food magazine demo is now more accessible and demonstrates more features out of the box, including a new welcome tour, Layout Builder integration for recipes, and multilingual features. The profile now includes a curated set of Spanish translations, and more languages are in the works. 187 contributors and 84 organizations have contributed to Umami, with more than 60 individuals volunteering some or all of their time.

Umami empowers first-time users to spin up a Drupal project in no time so that they can use to evaluate Drupal and learn about its major components.

On the way to Drupal 9

Drupal 8.7.0 includes optional support for Twig 2 (for sites that can patch their Composer configuration). Optional support for Symfony 4 also received a lot of contributions and should be complete in 8.8. This is important work, because Drupal 9 is planned for June 3, 2020 and will update various dependencies, primarily Symfony. Testing Drupal with updated third-party dependencies will help us get better feedback on our compatibility with these dependencies and any difficulties sites encounter when upgrading.

What does this mean for me? Drupal 8 site owners

Update to 8.7.0 to continue receiving bug fixes. The next bugfix release (8.7.1) is scheduled for June 5, 2019. (See the release schedule overview for more information.) As of this release, sites on Drupal 8.5 will no longer receive security coverage. (Drupal 8.6 will continue receiving security fixes until December 4, 2019.)

Note that new Drupal 8.7.0 installs now require at least PHP 7.0.8. Existing sites still work on at least PHP 5.5.9 for now, but will display a warning. Drupal security updates will begin requiring PHP 7 as early as Drupal 8.8.0 (December 2019), so all users are advised to update to at least PHP 7.0.8 now.

Updating your site from 8.6.15 to 8.7.0 with update.php is exactly the same as updating from 8.6.14 to 8.6.15. Drupal 8.7.0 also has updates to several dependencies. Modules, themes, and translations may need updates for these and other changes in this minor release, so test the update carefully before updating your production site. Read the 8.7.0 release notes for a full list of changes that may affect your site.

Drupal 6 and 7 site owners

Drupal 7 is fully supported by the community until November 2021, and will continue to receive bug and security fixes throughout this time. From November 2021 until at least November 2024, the Drupal 7 Vendor Extended Support program will be offered by vendors.

Drupal 6 is no longer supported.

You can now use the stable migration path for monolingual Drupal 6 and 7 sites with the built-in upgrade user interface. For multilingual sites, there is experimental support; please keep testing and reporting any issues you may find.

Translation, module, and theme contributors

Minor releases like Drupal 8.7.0 include backwards-compatible API additions for developers as well as new features.

Since minor releases are backwards-compatible, modules, themes, and translations that supported Drupal 8.6.x and earlier will be compatible with 8.7.x as well. However, the new version does include some changes to strings, user interfaces, internal APIs and API deprecations. This means that some small updates may be required for your translations, modules, and themes. Read the 8.7.0 release notes for a full list of changes that may affect your modules and themes.

This release has advanced the Drupal project significantly and represents the efforts of hundreds of volunteers and contributors from various organizations, as well as testers from the Minor release beta testing program. Thank you to everyone who contributed to Drupal 8.7!

Categories: Drupal Decoupled Drupal Commerce as a new trend for online stores

Planet Drupal - 1 May 2019 - 6:56am
Welcome to review the principles of decoupled Drupal Commerce and how it helps online stores engage users.
Categories: Drupal

Sooper Drupal Themes: 7 Drupal 8 Books that can Improve your Developer Skills

Planet Drupal - 1 May 2019 - 6:43am
Learning from Drupal 8 Books

Drupal is known to be a complex and great CMS. However, if you are planning on starting to learn Drupal 8, you will soon notice that it is more complicated than Drupal 7 and other content management systems. Drupal is known to have a steep learning curve, which makes it more challenging to pick up and get started. In this article, I’m going to show you some great books that help you learn Drupal in a systematic, beginner-friendly way. My blog post is going to include 7 Drupal 8 books that are covering the basics and are beginner friendly, books that will challenge the skills of seasoned Drupal developers and books that are teaching specific Drupal skills. Pick your poison!

Drupal 8 Explained: Your Step-by-Step Guide to Drupal 8

The first from our list of Drupal 8 books is going to be Drupal 8 Explained: Your Step-by-Step Guide to Drupal 8. This book can be a great introduction to the Drupal world. It covers a brief background of Drupal, it guides you through the installation process and through a simple site build. It has easy to follow explanations. This book will definitely jumpstart your Drupal 8 developer career!

Drupal 8 Development Cookbook

This book is another great source on our Drupal 8 books list from where you can deepen your development knowledge. Drupal 8 Development Cookbook covers some of the basics of Drupal 8. However, it is not a beginners book. This book will delve deeper in the Drupal development and cover topics such as forms, block, permissions, routing, field formatters, configuration management, themes, etc. This book is not for the beginner or developer that wants to build a site without touching a line of code. It is geared towards developers that want to build custom Drupal 8 modules.

Drupal for Education and E-Learning - Second Edition

Drupal for Education and E-Learning - Second Edition is a great book that touches the topics of installing, modules and site maintenance. However, it goes in greater depth when it comes to describing on how to configure different modules to best appeal to a higher education audience. It manages to do this by introducing modules such as views, organic groups, media and concepts such as fields, display modes, entities and relationships. On top of that it also talks about more complex subjects such as PHP snippets and command line interactions. Overall, a great book for those who are in the education field and want to discover Drupal.

Mastering Drupal 8 Views

Mastering Drupal 8 Views is a great book that shares the knowledge of creating views in Drupal. What is interesting about this book is the fact that the story is told from the point of view of Lynn, a small business owner and protagonist of the book. In the book, the struggles of Lynn are presented when she is faced with the Views module. This approach to the book makes it possible for the reader to be able to realise the real life scenarios in which the Views module can be used. Overall, this book is a great Views master course that every Drupal developer should read if they aim to broaden their knowledge on the Views module.

Drupal 8 SEO: The Visual, Step-By-Step Guide to Drupal Search Engine Optimization

If you want to improve your search engine optimization for Drupal, then this is the book for you. Drupal 8 SEO, covers all the necessary knowledge required to be able to launch a successful SEO campaign for your Drupal website. The book contains a large number of pictures that are designed to guide you through the process of optimizing your website for SEO in a visual and easily understandable way. On top of that, it covers the topics of all the necessary modules and settings that your Drupal website needs in order to climb the rankings of Google. So, if you’re in need of some SEO optimization knowledge and you happen to have a Drupal 8 website, then this is the book for you.

Drush for Developers, 2nd edition

Drush is basically the “Drupal Swiss Army Knife”. Drush should be a tool in the arsenal of every Drupal backend developer. Drush is basically a command line shell of Drupal where if the correct code is inserted, then the function will be activated without having to be on the site. This can basically improve the efficiency and speed with which a Drupal developer can build and maintain websites. Drush for Developers, teaches exactly this knowledge, how to basically leverage the simplicity and efficiency of Drush. So if you’re new to Drush or you are a seasoned Drupal developer in search for new Drush tips and tricks, then you should give this book a read.

Drupal 8 Module Development: Build modules and themes using the latest version of Drupal 8, 2nd Edition

If you want to build your own modules, then Drupal 8 Module Development is the right choice for you. This book is a really in-depth and comprehensive guide to building your own modules. The book aims to bring Drupal 7 developers up to speed with module development for Drupal 8. It introduces the reader to the Drupal 8 architecture and its subsystems before learning to develop a module with basic functionality. The book also goes into detail about Drupal 8 APIs, on how to manage and display data and also about the theme system. This book is definitely a must if you are a Drupal 7 developer and you want to hone your Drupal 8 module development skills in a fast, comprehensive way.


This list of Drupal 8 books should pave an easier to follow road for every Drupal 8 beginner. On top of that, this list also contains information about specific topics that might be of interest for already initiated Drupal developers. So, pick a book that piques your interest and give it a read. Remember, knowledge is power!

Categories: Drupal

Srijan Technologies: Hello, Drupal 8.7! We've Been Expecting You

Planet Drupal - 1 May 2019 - 5:25am

Web development has moved forward from writing websites by developing codes to a place where people can assemble the websites. And that is where the Drupal community is focusing on to advance - building assembled web experiences.

Drupal 8.7 releases today, on 1 May. It is in sync with that same roadmap (building assembled websites) providing enhanced customization, stable features, better UI and what not?

Here’s a quick and comprehensive guide for you to track what’s new in version 8.7 and how it paves the way for Drupal 9.

Categories: Drupal

The Indie Game Shelf: Prism

Gnome Stew - 1 May 2019 - 5:00am

The Indie Game Shelf: Prism

Welcome to The Indie Game Shelf! Each article in this series will highlight a different small press roleplaying game to showcase the wide variety of games available. Whether you’re a veteran gamer looking for something new or brand new to the hobby and wanting to explore what’s out there, I hope The Indie Game Shelf always holds something fun and new for you to enjoy!

Prism: An Aquatic World of Relationships and Intimacy

Prism by Whitney Marie Delaglio/Little Wish Productions is a diceless RPG designed for one GM and 1-4 players to explore character interactions, relationships, and conflict resolution in a mystical aquatic world. The setting of the Prism RPG is introduced in the free online comic Prism the Miracle (also from Little Wish Productions) and involves a variety of aquatic humanoid species, elemental magic, and a collection of deities responsible for the creation and oversight of the world. Both the game and the comic promote a sex-positive environment of exploration of emotional and physical intimacy, so that’s something to keep in mind when picking up and sharing this game; it is recommended for players of age 18 and older.

The Story

Stories in Prism will focus on the characters’ values, their relationships, and the obstacles they must overcome, often by working together. The game provides a setting backdrop and mechanics that support these story elements. Each player character (PC) in Prism hails from one of the six Realms of the setting, each being associated with a different color and one of the world’s deities. For example, the Gold Realm is headed by a descendant of the God of Life. A PC’s Realm gives them a cultural and ethical background, describing things that the Realm “values” and “resents,” which have both mechanical and narrative significance. Similarly, players also track mechanics for their characters’ Relationships, providing both mechanical and narrative fuel for the game’s stories. Relationships can be of any kind (platonic, sexual, familial, etc.), and they track on a negative-positive spectrum (from the character’s viewpoint) and are asymmetrical, meaning that one character can have a Negative Relationship to another character while the second character might have a Positive Relationship to the first.

The world described by Prism, besides being aquatically themed, includes many mystical elements that can be used to contribute to an interesting and emotional story. The six deities who created the world each have different personality traits and hold a strong influence over the inhabitants of this world. They have representatives who speak on their behalf, and the gods themselves still wander the world and are at least watching, and may even be moved from time to time to interfere. The people whose bodies die in the world of Prism leave behind Silhouettes, shadows of their souls, that remain active until they can find peace. The setting also features elemental magic and a dark contagion known as the Punishment, a magical infection that awakens destructive emotions in people and often causes them to be shunned by their communities.

The game explores themes of deep emotional involvement and intimacy, and the consent and safety of everyone at the table is of great import. The game begins with the “Tea Party,” a kind of pre-game session zero that includes not only character creation, but also group worldbuilding and game topic discussion. The GM and players are reminded of the importance of enthusiastic consent during this pre-game process, and the X-Card is explicitly mentioned as an important tool to use. While the game itself focuses on particular story elements, the overall plots of the stories are left to the group to decide, and much of that discussion takes place during the Tea Party.

The Game

Characters in Prism are created as a combination of several different types of background. The Realm, mentioned previously, ties the character to a culture and value system. The Template offers some insight into the role or nature of the character, including if they’ve been infected with the Punishment! Characters are rounded out by Family (species), Vocation, and a starting Relationship to another PC, and they are completed by rating the characters Skills, which have already been affected by the earlier choices made. For example, a PC may favor the Insight Skill for being from the Violet Realm and also favor the Etiquette Skill for choosing a Vocation of Diplomat; all other Skill ratings would be filled out at the end of character creation. The background choices made also assemble a collection of Traits and Talents for the PC, such as a PC from the Barbed Fish Family gaining a special Fish Form Trait or a PC using the Nocturnal Template receiving a Trait that grants them initiative in certain circumstances.

The game explores themes of deep emotional involvement and intimacy, and the consent and safety of everyone at the table is of great import. Share1Tweet1Reddit1EmailPrism is a diceless game. The core mechanism of task resolution is simply comparing a PC’s rating in a Skill against a static difficulty number with the difference between the two dictating success and whether the resolution includes a bonus or complication. This core, however, is surrounded by additional mechanics and modifiers that can tie the characters’ values and relationships to the resolution of every problem. Acting in accordance with the values outlined by a PC’s Realm can bestow Blessings or Curses which alter the rating of the PC’s Skills. In addition, the Relationship mechanics, due to their asymmetry, confer a variety of mechanical modifiers in different narrative situations. For example, in a two-way negative relationship, one PC could get a bonus while taking an action to show up the other, while a PC with a positive relationship to someone with a negative relationship to them could get a bonus to get the other character to notice them.

A spellcaster sings an Inferno spell of “Simple” difficulty — a torch-sized flame — and “Typical” difficulty — a flying fireball.

Besides tracking Relationship mechanics, players also track Physical Endurance and Emotional Endurance, giving physical combat and social strain equal mechanical footing. The magic system is also streamlined; magic “spells” simply describe an element or group of elements that can be controlled, and the actual effect of magic is just another type of action to take, governed by a specific Skill. The game is geared toward multi-session play, as Relationship ratings are changed between sessions based on what has transpired in the fiction.

It’s also worth pointing out that the artwork communicates much about the game, even mechanically. In most games, even the best artwork goes far enough to illustrate the setting and perhaps even convey a sense of the atmosphere of the fiction or even the tone of gameplay. All of this is accomplished in Prism, but it also takes the extra step of using artwork to communicate mechanical significance, as well, such as how to set the difficulty ratings for task resolution.

Character creation is neatly procedural, and the core mechanics of the game are quick and easy to learn. The complications for new players or GMs may be the specific situational triggers for individual PCs’ special Traits or the conditions dictated by Relationships, but players keeping their own characters’ Traits in mind will help keep things flowing. The pre-game Tea Party procedure definitely makes this game easy to pick up and play, since everyone can learn all they need to know during the character creation process, and everyone at the table gets to contribute to the setting of the game and goals of the stories. With immediate player buy-in and long-term play encouraged by Relationship mechanics, this game wants you and your group to take your time to explore these characters and their world.

The Shelf

Prism is currently available for purchase in print and PDF formats from DriveThruRPG, and don’t forget you can read the Prism the Miracle comic online for free. If you’re looking for other games with similar themes, you can check out Deep Love by Jason Morningstar/Bully Pulpit Games, a four-player game of deep-sea exploration and, in the words of the publisher, “a feel-good game about the complexity of love and sea monsters.” Although not published yet, if you’re looking for underwater settings and emotional exploration, keep an eye out for the upcoming Descent Into Midnight, a Powered by the Apocalypse game of underwater community, teamwork, and corruption. The game is still in development, but public playtest materials are available now from their website. I can’t mention RPGs with underwater settings without also mentioning Blue Planet from Biohazard Games, a detailed look at a whole underwater world for gaming and exploration. Finally, if your interests lean far into exploring character intimacy, I cannot recommend enough Star Crossed by Alex Roberts (also from Bully Pulpit Games), a two-player game of complicated love.

If you’ve got something on your shelf you want to recommend as well, let us know in the comments section below. Let’s fill our shelves together!

Categories: Game Theory & Design


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