The interesting thing about Knights & Legends is, the game was designed for a very different purpose. Back in Summer 2014, I was drafting ideas for a wargame, it didn’t even have a title, just a medieval setting in mind, as I am clearly a medieval enthusiast! From the old castles to the ancient myths, and from the old tales to the shitholes. The idea of a man wearing armor, and slaying beats always fascinated me. Life is short, and I felt like this was one of my callings. A gifted story teller, I was often told. Why not give it a try? I had nothing to lose from it.
In 2016, the final game was very impractical and costly, the game itself came in a diorama-like setup in a 18×24 wooden board. After all the stuff was added to it, the damn thing weighted over 30lbs. Just shipping alone would cost a small fortune. $800 to make, with a planned selling value of $1200 + shipping. Limited to US orders only. Something not a lot of people would buy into. Unless you’re a collector of sorts. It did look pretty! It still sits at my kitchen counter, until I find a worthy spot for it. I like to sit and appreciate it from time to time. Hardly use it to play these days, trying to conserve it.
I needed something easier to distribute, that’s when a light bulb popped over my head! I was away from the trpg scene for a few years before the TSR days, did some quick research of the market and saw people were still playing trpgs in the US, which was very surprising. Then I came to realize the market had a bit of a rebirth in the last few years, this was the perfect opportunity for me to jump in and catch up on the latest. Before that, I was working on a 3D RPG game that was cancelled due to the team’s scheduling conflicts. Few months later the thought came to mind, a trpg is something a can deliver all by myself, while keeping it very cost efficient. Best part, digital!
And so the process of adapting classic K&L into a TRPG begun. I was taking my time, I was in no rush. When I started testing the waters, I saw this wasn’t going to be so easy. Oh boy! the hostility a caught on Reddit, would have crushed a lesser man. Bottom line is, you can’t be a legit game designer if you don’t have your head on your shoulders. The title “Game Designer” is taken so lightly these days, that everyone considers themselves to be one. Try going to RPGG, what a joke! It’s crazy! People go to college for this, it’s not something to be taken lightly. Game design is no walk in the park, and if you can say you had it easy, them you’re likely not a real game designer. Or One in a million perhaps?
In 2018, classic K&L debuted as a DTRPG exclusive. The game was fairly simple and straight forward, It had an unnamed set of rules that was later (2019) named Ludens Game System. The system’s goal, was to break apart from the generic D&D clones that over saturate the market today. Nothing against it, just not my thing. As anything you build from scratch, it will likely need more work done to perfect it. Once you try it long enough, you begin noticing certain flaws that were previously invisible to the eye.
Today, that simple system, became a whole different beast. Ludens 2.0, is New Horizon’s exclusive game system, to be used only with New Horizon related products. And to expand its reaches, the game licensing module drastically changed from paid, to free with permission. The Knights & Legends legacy didn’t happen overnight. The sooner you get into it, the better. Complexities will only increase from now on. Everyone knows that can be pretty intimidating for newcomers, so join it now. Just do it!