Alone in the Dark, my blades in the dark solo rules, is one of my best selling books on DriveThruRPG. Currently a gold best seller, it is on course to be my first Platinum title. At the rate it is selling, that will be in the new year.
These success of this solo book can be put down to three factors.
The first is the success of Blades in the Dark, and the derived games and supplements like forged in the dark. If the base game has a lot of players, then there is likely to be many people with the game that would like to play it solo.
The second reason is the covid pandemic. I saw a big surge in interest during the lockdown periods around March and April. If you cannot meet up with your regular group, that is a good time to try solo play.
The third reason was the actual play video by Geek Gamer (below). This play through video was the first time I saw someone using one of my books ‘in the wild’. Up until that point there was always a slight worry that the books were being bought up by people who wanted ‘complete’ collections. In 2019 solo play was a lot less common that it is now.
Solo Playing Blades in the Dark
BitD is a really nice game to solo play. So much so, that parts of the rules I developed for this booklet have found their way into almost every book I have created since. The progress clocks I first discovered in BitD. The game encourages flashbacks, which work better in solo play than they do in group play, in my opinion.
The cornerstone of the solo rules booklet is the Fortune Roll, which is also a core function in the main game. It is probably the most common roll you are going to make.
The Future of Alone In The Dark
This solo supplement is going to be one of the first books into print when I start to create my ‘Bookshelf of Solo’. The printed books will be updated from the PDF. The content will be expanded to include things I have learned since creating this book. All of my print solo books will be 6″ x 9″ books. By creating all of them in the same format they will sit nicely on a shelf. Let’s face it, who doesn’t want an attractive shelf full of solo roleplaying books?
This book will also be the first print book in my solo RPG store. That may not mean much at first glance, but it also creates another opportunity. If there are other writers in the solo arena, and they have either PDFs and/or printed books on the lulu.com store, I could open up the store to those creators. There is no advantage to me in being a closed shop (pun intended), but getting more solo books, games, and accessories in the store is good for the solo community.
As far as I know, no one has ever attempted to build a specialist solo game store? I could be wrong, but I don’t know of anyone. I also have absolutely no need to charge the eye-watering 30%-35% royalty that DriveThruRPG imposes. So this would be good for me, good for solo players, and good for the publishers of solo games.
This is all part of an exciting 2021!