Friday, October 20, 2017


One of my goals when I set out to make Wandering Heroes of Ogre Gate was to approach wuxia as a fan and make it approachable in play. I didn't want it to be about who knows more about wuxia, because I think that creates an atmosphere where people avoid the genre, viewing it as this thing they have to master just to enjoy. But I do like seeing passionate discussion around what wuxia is, what movies and books it includes, as long as that discussion isn't just a proxy for being the smartest guy in the room. This can extend to games as well: which RPG is best suited to the wuxia genre for example. I saw a discussion like this recently, it seemed intense, but for the most part I was glad to see so many people so invested in the topic. However when it comes to comparing games versus one another, I just hope people understand this isn't a winner takes all situation. Every game has its fans, and that is good. I love having fans of the Ogre Gate system, and I appreciate people spending their hard earned money on our stuff because I don't think anyone owes us a sale. But I hate to see that love used to attack other games. And I also realize, Ogre Gate is just one way to do wuxia. Every way involves making decisions that leave out or minimize other parts of the genre. There are a lot of great wuxia RPGs available. Too many to name at times. But all of the ones that existed prior to Ogre Gate, had a positive influence in its development. When I made Ogre Gate, I wanted to do wuxia my way. Not the correct way. Not the only way. But simply my way. I had been drawing on these other games for years to cobble together stuff for campaigns. Qin, Flying SwordsmenThe Golden Scroll of Justice, Outlaws of the Water MarginLegend of the Five Rings, Oriental AdventuresTianxia, Weapons of the GodsLegends of the Wulin are all amazing games. Games like Feng Shui and Hong Kong Action Theatre! are also a good fit for wuxia campaigns. There are more than I've listed of course. It goes on and on. There are also games I am looking forward to coming out like Art of Wuxia (discussed at the Exploding Dice Blog), Khitai for 7th Sea, as well as Kevin Crawford's Mind Dynasty RPG. I am a fan, not a competitor with any of them. Their presence gives me plenty of reason to produce the best stuff I can, but beyond that I see the genre as so niche that I believe a sale for any of them is beneficial to all. I realize Ogre Gate is small potatoes in the grand scheme of things. We are a niche, within a niche of the hobby. It is a lot better for the genre as a whole when the different fans can come together even if they disagree on the details. I at least hope my fans will realize just because another game approaches in a different way, that doesn't mean it is doing wuxia wrong. You can arrive in a very different place depending on what wuxia resonates with you. Gu Long and Jin Yong tell very different stories. King Hu is different from Chang Cheh, and they are both apart from Tsui Hark or Ronny Yu. There are a million ways to do wuxia, and the list of games to draw on is expanding relentlessly. 


  1. Thank you for posting this Brenden. I think you are essential to the wuxia/gaming fan community. The multitude of wuxia gaming articles, interviews, movie reviews, offering to run Heroes of Ogre Gate to new games on wuxiaworld forums and starting the Wuxia Community G+ group are acts of real heroism. You set a great example of how to treat one another and your humble demeanor and vast wuxia knowledge and kindness are real treasures.

    Thank you for the shout out for Art of Wuxia. I had no idea you even knew of this project. I love the genre and like you, am doing this because I am a fan and want to expose others to my passion.

    If I were a wandering xia, I would salute you with covered fist, kowtow three times, and declare you Helmsman David, leader of the wuxia/RPG fans. My sword, is yours. But still…, you’ve set a great tone and I shall endeavor to spread your way throughout this RPG Jianghu!

  2. Hey Jim. Thanks for the kind words. I noticed Art of Wuxia a while back when you made the Why Art of Wuxia post (incidentally, the 2003 Heaven Sword and Dragon Sabre is one of my favorite wuxia series) and really like what you have to say about designing it (and about wuxia in general) on your blog. I really appreciate the comment.