But it has run into my inevitable quagmire of expanding word count.
The idea was to wrote up a basic 16 page comic, print it in the form of an '80s 'zine. Crudely printed on a photocopier, black and white, stapled...maybe with a cover using heavier weight coloured paper..again printed with a black toner photocopier. There would be enough in the rulebook to run a game, but it would be richer when added to a notebook filled with images of the tower setting, where a group could either buy the prewritten setting (where I scribbled over the pages describing the inhabitants and the stories within), or they could buy the 'blank' version of the notebook (which was still filled with maps and images, but had heaps of room for players to write in their own exploratory notes).
I'm rapidly finding that the gameplay I want needs more than this, players in the game portray 'Agents of the Law', the GM role is referred to as 'Dispatch', indicating the way this role points characters to the trouble hotspots that need addressing. I'm looking at producing a complete 'Dispatch Guide' to provide grounding for the way stories might unfold in this setting, and to provide prompts about the way I would run the game in ways different to those commonly found in other RPGs.
At the moment, these 'Dispatch' notes are scattered through the main text but aren't awfully clear, and they are subtracting from the space where evocative images of the setting could be added in.
I guess two 16 page booklets isn't too bad.
Besides, this design work has generated a few ideas that will be fed back into my "Familiar" project, as well as fusing ideas from my previous "System 4" discussions, and other unfinished ideas.