So the absolute babes over at Once Upon A Game ran Do Not Let Us Die In The Dark Night Of This Cold Winter while I was out of town. They streamed it and you can watch it here, or here in parts on the youtubes. The stand out moment for me is when Eric’s adventurer loses a villager, an elderly grandmother, and describes hiding her body from the grand babies. Pretty quickly they learn how to tactically starve villagers to stretch the food. The actual play is great, each of the players Umbra, Brad, Eric, and GoldenWH do a great job of role playing out the situation; there are some good laughs and some sad shit. They hunt goblins for fuel and I loved every minute of it. But, I realize now I need to issue some errata and clarifications. I’ve added an errata sheet to the DRTPG and ITCH product pages, and I am going to write a paragraph about blind playtesting here, but the errata can be found in the third act of this post and downloaded here.
Blind Playtesting is important. When I released Cold Winter it had been thoroughly tested; the math was solid, the gameplay fun, and ready to go. But I fucked up and didn’t do any blind playtests and the people who read the rulebook before I published it were almost all playtesters, they had played the misery simulator before they read it so it all made sense. I realize now, that I should have had a few non-playtesters read through it and I should have also had people run it other than myself. After watching the stream I noticed there were a few things I could have explained better that make the game a little more clear. It is not enough to warrant a second edition or going through the nightmare of proofing a new thing hardback, because the list is small. Now I blind playtest as often as I can, with the sequel to Cold Winter being the best example: the dice game in it has been playtested something like 150 times by 20 or more people.
So here we fix the problems:
Errata And Clarifications For Surviving The Dark and Terrible Nights Of A Very Cold Winter:
Page 16, Paragraph one, a new first sentence: “When food becomes scarce, domesticated animals can be slaughtered for two extra units of food.” (This is mentioned several times throughout the rules but it should have been put here too)
Page 16, Paragraph three, add this to the end: “Because step one is skipped on the first turn, the temperature at the start of turn two is 1.” (Umbra from Once Upon A Game asked about this, and here is the official answer)
Page 17, Paragraph one, add this to the end: “The temperature cannot go above three, regardless of occurrence rolls.” (Another thing I thought was obvious because of the handouts, but it was stupid of me to assume)
Page 23, Consolidation Interlude gets a rewrite: “At any point during any turn the players may invoke a consolidation of buildings. Consolidating Buildings is a move that allows two adventurers to combine their villagers into a single building to save on fuel. The total number of villagers in a single building cannot exceed five, and an extra unit of food must be spent for each villager making the move. Villagers who welcome the new arrivals into their home do not need extra food, but the villagers who move will spend a great amount of energy to move furniture and heirlooms through the snow; refusing to move with empty bellies. Be sure to subtract all required units of food from the storeroom afterwards.
For Example: If one building has three villagers and another building has two villagers, the adventurers can spend two extra food units to move the two villagers into the building with three.”
Something else to note that I will not issue a fix or clarification on. It seems that people are using the key on the player hand outs as a means to track the health of their adventurers. I guess this is another fuck up of my own; assuming the adventurers would not count themselves as needing food and shit. Welp, I was wrong, and I don’t feel the need to change it. If you play the game that way, fuck yeah but sorry if your adventurer dies. If you’re playing it the way I meant to write it then that’s cool too, just make sure you hide the bodies before moving on.
Also: The next book in the series is coming soon and the name is longer and it’s themes are autumn, farming, and magic.
This will likely be the last time I post anything other than fun times about Cold Winter. It’s time to move on to the next thing.