AquaVertigo Publishing

Thanksgiving 2023

This week saw a change in schedule with the holiday celebrated here in the States. This has meant I’ve been doing some things around the home and catching up on time with family and thinking about the future.

Games Library

The different schedule gave me time to reflect on some of the games I have and which ones I’m ready to revisit or let go of.

RPG covers

Reading Through

I’m almost done reading Pasion de las Pasiones, and I’m looking forward to playing the game in the near future. I’m curious to see how the questions in particular play into the game loop.

I’m revisiting an old game book, and in some ways, I wish I had read it through when I purchased it so many years ago. It’s the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 2nd Edition Campaign Sourcebook and Catacomb Guide. Obviously, being written and published around 1990 does make some elements out of date. However, the content inside echoes much of the useful wisdom that can be found in many sources online: working on and running games, handling players, and more. My only major complaint with the book is how little space is actually spent on the “Catacomb” part compared to the rest, and it feels like a marketing bait and switch tactic in the title, with “Catacomb” much larger in size than “Campaign Sourcebook.”

Letting Go

One game I’ve decided to let go of is Teens in Space from Renegade Game Studios, and the system is powered by Kids on Bikes with some modifications from Apocalypse World and Blades in the Dark. It’s a fine book and game. It was a fun read. There’s some great artwork. But at the moment, it doesn’t add to what I need in my limited headspace for creative work. I wish it well!

Design Updates

Eye of the Magi

  • I need to lock in dates for playtesting.

Legends of the Realm and Starfall

  • I need to revise after the most recent playtest.

Time & Tempus

  • I finally got Time & Tempus to the virtual table after delays for playtesting since a great design workshop hosted by the Open Hearth Gaming Community. I’m pleased to see some improvements and more challenges in the design. I got great feedback from the participants and have much to consider for future revisions. Thank you!

Ashcan Design

Ahead of an interview for Gameways Podcast with a local designer who’s been working on solo RPGs, I decided to have a go at it myself to see what it might be like, and over about 2.5 days I created an early draft of a game called Off the Shoulder of Orion. The game is about exploring moments of a hunt or obsession, inspired by reflections in 1980s action films, for 1-2 players.

Cover of ashcan, Off the Shoulder of Orion, David MK.

One-Year Anniversary of AquaVertigo

It’s been a heck of a year for AquaVertigo. It’s helped push me to do what I need to do professionally, to connect creatively with myself in spite of doubts and setbacks, and to interact with so many amazing people.

I realize that the creative work here is not going to directly improve the world, but my hope is that it helps make someone happy or experience something different about life, if only for a moment shared around an actual or virtual table.

Thank you for being part of the community and for supporting the challenging and rewarding work.


DMK, the founder of AquaVertigo, is a creatively curious artist, author, designer, educator, entrepreneur, and organizer based in the Midwest, USA.

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