#RPGaDAY2020 Day 11 Stack

Day 8 Shade.

It is possibly my programming background, but when I saw stack, I thought Linux + Apache + MySQL + PHP.

I haven’t actually done any programming worth mentioning for a couple of years now. The last thing I made was an Android App.

You will not be surprised when I tell you that it was a solo play app.

This app has an interesting history. During the great G+ exodus, many solo fans moved to mewe. That was one of those myriad of minor social networks that tried to step into the gap.

It is a quite a good network and picked up enough users in the RPG circles. Enough to make the communities viable.

In one of the solo groups someone asked about apps, and I wanted to learn a bit about Java. The end result was this solo app.

Roll the clock on a bit, and I started to look at Itch.io. I wanted to diversify away from DriveThruRPG. I don’t like the idea of being 100% dependent on a single website. I have some products on Amazon, one on Lulu and I am starting to work up a presence on Itch.

In the new year I will go full steam ahead on Itch.io. Part of my learning process was putting some products on there to find out how the platform works.

Solo Engine with Dungeon Crawler is my solo play app. It uses the Itch.io version of Pay What You Want, or Name Your Own Price.

Technically, this is another programming stack. The app on top of Java on top of Android.

More than that, it means you can solo play anywhere at any time. No need for dice, apart from the dice you need for the game itself. These days I find myself using a dice roller more often than real dice.

This solo engine, doesn’t use dice, it doesn’t access anything on your phone, no data, no permissions. It is a light touch answer.

If you cannot use something that is unified with with your game, this is my best alternative to Mythic. In the same way that Mythic is a ‘thing’. Half the time the Mythic GME is the bigger name than the indie games it is used to solo.

I will point out that this does NOT use mythic mechanics. It is descended from Karl Henricks One Page Solo, and that is descended from Donald Featherstone’s solo wargaming cards and d6 systems.

I think I have written about Donald Featherstone a few times during this RPGaDAY. During the pandemic there has been a bit of a surge in interest in solo play. Something that I have heard repeatedly is “Solo, oh that means Mythic” or words to that effect. The thing is that solo is so much more than Mythic, it does back even before that game was written.

Solo Wargaming was published in 1973 but the rules are older than the book.

I also like the connection through time, from the physical tabletop battles fought in the 1960s to smart phones and apps implementing the same dice and cards fifty or sixty years later.

So this is my stack, layers and layers of evolution between 1973 to today.

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