Thursday, April 16, 2009


Several months ago I finished the final draft for RBH. Before I could finish typing out the first page of the new document it occurred to me that I just didn't like what the game had become. I'd ventured too far away from the original inspiration for the game. Hoping to find the original spark, I started carrying one of my early documents around with me at work, reading it occasionally and just allowing myself to daydream about the thing. Unfortunately, that spark never came back. After all this time, I think the inspiration for this thing has left me entirely.

If you are still tracking this blog, then you are indeed a hardcore fan of RBH. Thank you. I'm still tickled that I've been able to write a game that folks have enjoyed playing. It's a great feeling to hear about your actual play experiences. The doodles still make me smile.

I'm sorry that I can't give you a final polished product. But I'm sure you'll agree that the honest and unpolished thing that RBH is now is much better than forcing the name on a product that just doesn't carry the same vibe.

If you still have the inclination to do anything with RBH, such as translations, hacking, or small press publishing, then please consider the thing to be yours. Do what you'd like with the thing. It's my gift to you for all the feedback and support you've given.

Thank you and goodnight.



RincewindTVD said...

Thanks for keeping up with this, and I'll leave this RSS feed in my list incase you ever decide to come back to it.


Unknown said...

Hi Eric,

How did you manage to slip this post on the only day I did not check your blog ?

Seriously, thanks for the update. I feel both saddened and empowered by the news.

Saddened first, because I realy wanted to know the ideas you've had for the third version. Please note that I love the RBH we have now. I never played a game as much as this one since the glorious high shool days and I perfectly understand your point of view. Moving too far from the original energy would probably make it something alien to the game we love. But, you know, I played with the first version and I was blasted by the transformations you made on RBH2. So I can't help but regret the fact that I will never know what you had in mind for RBH3, thinking that at least some little things would do a great addition to my game.

BUT, at the same time, I realy feel empowered. Now, I have your official blessing to do whathever I want with the RBH and I have a LOT of things I'd like to do with this game, which includes : a french translation (first) ; a pulpy tomb raiders version ; a version of Nephilim or In Nomine that I would realy enjoy running ; new classes with implied setting ; gamemastering advices and techniques ; drawings of monsters ; combat maps, etc...

So, Eric, thanks again for the RBH and for the wonderfull gift you're offering to us.
Now, I realy want to finish my french translation soon.

Your self-proclamed greatest fan

PS : Marie, my wife and fellow player, is behind my back as I am writing this and she wants to tell you that she also loves your game as it is now and that no other RPG we played was as much fun. So the RBH still have a bright future at our table.

Kobayashi said...

Hello, I never posted on your blog but I've always found RBH design almost flawless. I plan to hack it for my own designs ^^

Thank you for giving us this game. I'll hope you'll find a spark for another project cause I'd really like to see your take in other genres.

Best regards

thekelvingreen said...

It's sad that there won't be more, but in all honesty, I liked RBH2 so much that I as worried about the changes a third edition would bring.

John Harper said...

I totally understand, Eric. I have a few games of my own that have withered on the vine and I can't bring myself to go back to them.

But, like a lot people, I think the game you gave us (unpolished or not) is REALLY fun. So we can't complain.

Thanks for RBH!

Anonymous said...

Hi Eric,

I must admit I'm a little sad because I liked the direction of the new ideas you hinted at but I understand, you have to go with your heart and I'm sorry if it's got you down.

Playing and GMing RBH is tremendous fun and though I don't plaster Storygames with my doodles anymore, my gaming group still keep coming back to the hack, long after our original characters retired.

Thanks Eric

Jerome said...

Likewise everybody else.

Last sunday, antoine called me; it was roughly 3-4 months since we hadn't been in contact, and he didn't seem to have any particular thing he needed to discuss... we just chitchat a little hour on the phone.

During the conversation, he casually droped the info about RBH; didn't seem a big deal at the time, it took only around 5' of our discussion. But I understand now that he must have been completely depressed and that his whole phone call was motivated by some hole he felt in himself after having read, the day before, the end of the "original RBH".

He did however insist that he had the intention to keep on going with his projects around RBH (see his post); I believe he would make a japanese translation just to keep on having some RBH stuff to do (he might do it one day, as he's completely into japanese since a long time now).

I must say I am also a little bit saddened that we'll never know more of the ideas you had in mind for RBH3; if you find the time and envy, do not hesite to keep on blogging here, even if only to throw some pieces of ideas you had on the game, to chat around RBH once more, without the "pressure" to have to make everything into a full-fledge well conceived game (as you might perhaps have felt in the last months).

As a quick conclusion about my experiment of RBH: a really great game, I believe one of two (with Polaris - although I only played 2 scenarios of this one) which made me loose some of the RPG blockings I acquired sometime between high school and now (you know the kind of blocking: the GM fear of not being able to conceive a "good" scenario, of "failing" to entertain everybody during the game, etc.). For this I will always, even if I never play it again (which I hope not!), be grateful to RBH, and to you Eric. There was of course, in my opinion, some little flaws here and there, but not very numerous (especially in RBH2) and quite easy to correct I think (I encouraged Antoine to try and correct them in its french adaptation, but I'm not sure we have the same opinion on these flaws!).

Anyway, after the dust has settled, I think there still remains something which you can be proud of, Eric.

I don't say "farewell", since I'll see you next time you come back to chat here. ;)


Jeremiah said...

It's been a while since I came here... and my heart is broken.

I wish I could say "good for you" without having it tinted by "but I wannnnnt it!"

But thank you for what you gave us. :)
I love rbh2 so very much.


Unknown said...

Ah man.
I feel like my grandmother just died.

I've been silently following your posts for over a year now; really digging everything you had to offer.

I've loved RBH, every bit of it, and I think you should release RBH3 or whatever you have of it--just slap a title and name on it and leave it at that. I know you'll make a lot of people happy.

Well, whatever you do, keep up the good work.

Chris Sakkas said...

Hi Eric,

I've written a small product for Redbox Hack 2 that I'd like to show to you. Do you have an email address I could send it to?



Ry St said...

Eric, I was out of the loop for a month and I just want to say how much I appreciated your work on RBH. I found it incredibly inspiring and it helped me bridge a mental gap that had existed between my 'indie play' and 'traditional play'. Congratulations on a job well done, and thank you for giving it to the people who love it.

Pascal Saradjian said...

The links for downloading the rules are not longer valid ...

Chris Sakkas said...

The Raskal,

Use the links given on this site:

Pascal Saradjian said...

Thanks. Works better!

Lundse said...

Hi there. I helped translate your rules to Danish for a friend a couple of years back - and subsequently got to play his scenario (Slavehandleren fra Ascalon - The Slaver of Ascalon). He made some neat new classes, btw...

Now I am considering making a scenario myself, also with a few new classes, and a rather specialized setting. So I have a question about licensing. You say "do what you will", which we took as informal license to translate, add classes, etc. But it does leave the copyright question in limbo.

The translation I did; who owns the right to distribute that? If I make a setting and scenario, can I distribute that?

I guess I am really asking you to consider a Creative Commons license. If you have any questions about those, don't hesitate to ask, mail, skype, whatever. You could say everything is public domain (but then I'd own the copyright to the Danish version of your game, and could prohibit others from using that), but a Creative Commons Share-Alike license would mean that any translation/improvement/addition to the game would also be free to use under the same license.

Oh, and thanks for a great system!

Bill said...

Hi Lundse,

You might have more luck contacting Eric on Story Games:


Unknown said...


Thank you for your continued interest in this thing.

But, really, it's way too late for me to even consider changing my mind on this thing. I've given it all away - I don't have any rights to it anymore. I'm not sure I would even have the right to change my mind and make RBH into a CC licence. And if I did have that right, it would totally feel like a dick move. I've been pretty clear in the past that I have waived all my rights to this thing.

I do not own it anymore.

If you want to restrict access to your translation, or monetize it, or whatever... Yeah. Do that. It's cool with me.

Have fun!

Bill said...

Thanks Eric, I've noted that on the Free and Open Works! wiki, and identified Redbox Hack as "public domain" since you've revoked all rights to it:

That would allow Lundse to release their take on Redbox Hack under any Creative Commons licence they like (or no Creative Commons licence).

Lundse, I look forward to seeing what you come up with - let me know about it and I'll include it on the Free and Open Works! wiki.

Unknown said...

Thanks Bill, I appreciate your work.

Lundse said...

Thanks guys. That clears it up. I may return! :-)