It’s no surprise that we here at Passionerdly Podcasts love Third Eye Games; especially given our podcast The Wooden Dojo, a Ninja Crusade 2nd Edition RPG Actual Play. Third Eye Games is on the forefront of indie studios bringing fresh new games to the market that espouse a big vision—and given the opportunity to interview Eloy Lasanta, the founder-in-chief, we were too tempted not to jump at the chance. Speaking about temptation, let’s get to the topic at hand: the Sins of the Father Companion Kickstarter! Be sure to go check out the Kickstarter here!
(1) I just want to start by saying, Thank you for coming and talking with us, Eloy-
Thank you for having me, and for checking out Third Eye Games! So glad people are out here having fun with the things I’ve created.
(2) One of my favorite warm-up questions is asking how a game developer got into gaming; because usually we were all gamers first—
Oh man! I wish I had a better story, but it’s kind of boring. I learned the basics from my friend Adrian while we worked at his granddad’s house, fixing it up over a weird summer for some spending cash, and then I later on joined an actual group. In that group, everyone had to be a GM, so I was thrown through a boot camp of sorts. I didn’t have the luxury of sitting back and playing, but I’m really glad I didn’t. It forced me into a design mindset from the very beginning and it never stopped. My first game was RIFTS, then I played like two sessions of D&D before finding the World of Darkness (my faves were Changeling: The Dreaming and Kindred of the East) until later on starting my own company, Third Eye Games.
(3) So, for listeners who don’t know about you or Third Eye Games; how did you get into RPG creation and, along the way, is there a project that really stands out for you?
I did a bit of freelancing, working on games like Witch-Hunter: The Invisible World and KidWorld, and then I realized that working as a freelancer paid pennies compared to what the publishers were making. So I said “Everything we just did for KidWorld, could I do that by myself?” And then Apocalypse Prevention, Inc. was my proof of concept. It wasn’t perfect, but it was mine from the ground up and a learning experience on what it means to be a publisher. Every release sense then I’ve gotten better and better, bringing me all the way to my last huge game Part-Time Gods Second Edition, which is, in my opinion, the best game I’ve ever designed. It’s the one I’m harping on a LOT lately, because I think everyone should know about it and try it out!
(4) So the last time we had you on was actually the release of 1st Edition Of Part-Time Gods; with in interview with Matt Quiett. What have you been up to since then?
There’s been a lot of buzz at Third Eye Games over the last few years, but 2019 is the year of working on existing properties for the most part (except for H. P. Lovecraft Preparatory Academy which is about to hit stores soon). Coming up we have the Sins of the Father Companion and AMP: The Final Year, finishing off the AMP storyline and introducing even more new ways to play. There’s so much to cover that I’ll stop there, or I’ll appear to ramble.
(5) Obviously, we are here, now, to talk about your newest Kickstarter a follow-up for your Ennie Nominated RPG, Sins of the Father, titled the Sins of the Father Companion, what’s it feel like to be returning to this property?
It’s amazing! The scorebook was nominated for Best Game the year it was released, which was humbling. I’ve been working on huge games with hundreds of pages and huge amounts of artwork and scope. Sins of the Father was the first game for a long time that it was just me sitting down and creating something new. I wrote it and laid it out myself and people liked it. You can’t ask for more than that. It took a while to figure out the best approach, but finally we got back to Sins of the Father to introduce new ways to play, new settings, expanded rules, and input from some of my favorite freelancers to add to my original creations. It’s all an amazing feeling!
(6) So as a role player and narrator; if you had to give a pitch on what this game is—what would you say about it and also how does the expansion build upon the game?
The pitch: It’s your birthday, happy 18th! You’re parents sit you down and say “Hey champ, guess what! You’re finally old enough to be inducted into the family secret. Remember we told you about how sick your dad was before you were born? Well, Xandor the Dreameater was there for us in our time of need and it healed your father, but… of course, we had to sell your soul to it. It’s going to visit you today and let you know how you can best serve it and continue the tradition. Isn’t this exciting!?!?!” The scorebook gives you everything you need to play, sets the tone, and even has generational rules so your characters can pass the curse along as well.
The Sins of the Father Companion is a great addition to the game. Chapter 1 expands on the horror elements, introducing new Sinful Gifts, dark rituals you can enact, and brand new Dark Lords to serve. Chapter 2 gives the Soul Master (SM) more tools to use to run the game, like regenerated enemies, systems for randomizing dramatic scenes, ways to entice players with the promise of supposed freedom from servitude. Chapter 3 brings us new genres to play Sins of the Father in, including Sci-Fi, Victorian, Fantasy, and Post-Apocalyptic. It’s a LOT of material, but it makes the game even better.
(7) Sins of the Father definitely has a different feel thematically and artistically from some of your other titles; where would you say the falls as far as audience and genre?
All of my different games have their own audiences, which is something I pride myself on. I always wanted to appeal to a variety of people and not get pigeonholed into a single genre or writing style. It is primarily a horror game, but I’ve seen it played comical (kind of like the show Reaper) and it’s still fun. Now with different genres, it’s going to expand it eve more to other audiences hopefully. Again, it’s always the goal.
(8) I’ve got to say I love your Kickstarter campaign page; because it pulls you directly into the story and feel of the game. I really recommend everyone go and read thru—what are some of the tiers you currently have going?
Thanks for that! The tiers are pretty standard, offering the Sins of the Father Companion alone or along with the corebook. We are also offering a deck of themed cards as well, though, which will not only be useable for normal poker nights, but has some o the more common rules and effects on the cards themselves to save time from having to look up anything. I can’t wait for those to get into people’s hands.
(9) System-wise, this is a game that uses only a deck of cards which is a mechanic gaining popularity with games like Capers, Never Going Home, and Suited. What are your thoughts on this mechanic and it’s benefit it Roleplaying games?
I think any time a creator can come up with a new way to express mechanics it’s a good thing. Dice are great! I have a lot of them! But give me a funky card mechanic or one that uses coins or a Jenga tower or spoons or whatever. I’m loving the creativity and innovation that I see in RPGs every year and the elegance of these keep getting stronger. Cards are easy too because players have to go to specialty shops to get polyhedrals other than d6s some of the time, whereas most households have playing cards. It simplifies access to the game that much more.
(10) So how long is this Kickstarter running?
We decided on a quick, 2 week Kickstarter. The Sins of the Father Companion is done, written, edited, laid out, and proofed. It just waiting for the Kickstarter to be done and then it’ll be made available to everyone! So… you know, why stretch out an excruciating 30 days what you can get done in half the time. Also, this means it’ll be out in October, just in time for Halloween groups to play Sins of the Father and tell spooky stories.
(11) Lastly, if listeners wanted to track follow you or Third Eye Games; where should they go?
@ThirdEyeGames on twitter
Third Eye Games on Facebook
thirdeyegames.net on the web
(12) Thank you so much for coming on and doing the interview!
Appreciated! Thanks for having me!