Tell me more about atompunk. How did it start? How far along are you?

How far along are you?
Well I have the mechanics sorted, a little teaser art, the principal and the card ideas. As far as “I want teh game now plz!” goes: I am currently squeezing cards into the gaps where we need them to make it a kick ass and fun co-op or solo game. Best timing I can give you is:
Kickstarter launch forecafor for 2012 so we miss the christmas rubbish and get on track when everyone gets back in the new year.

I want to see more of this game – develpoment blog – purple writeup (will be in 3 parts) – “Card suggestion” Thread
Google Docs Secret Code Holders Only Link – entire card list

What has inspired you to make this?
Long answer: Well I love games. I could get into a big ol’ story here about how my father used to dungeon master at D&D (version 2) back when me and my brother were about 6 years old, we then went on to be home-made games fans and went straight into some ccgs like MtG and pokemon, while playing every pc game that was ever invented (nearly). Always been into games, the original GTA series (proper Gta!), Ataris featured heavily – no consoles mind. I was part of a pretty big Eve alliance back when it wasn’t so big, was one of the first high level chars in City of Heroes, recently gave up our mining corporation in Perpetuum online etc – always been into all forms of games.
Recently a little game was released by Bethesda, I’m not sure if you know it? Called Fallout 3 (^^) and all of its bugged-to-hell DLC packs . Anyway, I LOVED the original isometric fallouts – to bits. I learned how to play “I don’t want to set the world on fire” by the inkspots on my guitar back when the second one came out: loved it. So anyway, it’s suddenly become super popular! As an aside, I go LARPing quite regularly in the UK and all of the LARP guys are quite into whatever ‘alt’ culture they can get their hands on. Currently this extends to the wave of Steampunk going on (You heard of The Clockwork Quartet? -some of them are my Larp dudes!) so this is exploding currently, and it’s kind of eating up a lot of different ____punk cultures as well. Cyberpunk, diselpunk, steampunk, squidpunk etc. Well the other day I decided that I was going to make an app for the android platform – a quick building rpg about nomadic cavemen done in a comicy style – like mafia wars but less lame. So I did LOADS of research into this, have a big ‘ol “treatment” to put to it still, but I was stumped when I realised “Sam, you can code websites, you can do marketing … but you cannot yet produce java code” so I figured I would leave it for a while. But in my big research for finding out the histories of games (for this app) I fell back into boardgames. That’s where all of these games we play come from right: german / euro boardgames! cool! I better learn about them! – And so joined up here and started my collection. Then I took my “I want to produce an app game” idea and went back and back in the history of games and thought: well logically, I should start at the start – lets make a boardgame then! Why the hell decorate it with cheap graphics, dirty screens and plastic keyboards, lets do it properly as a paper and card board game and make it pure and simple like we used to! So I had coffee with a good Friend of mine and I asked him to listen to my ideas and we came to a lovely conclusion of the basic mechanic for AtomPunk. As an aside (to this already lengthy aside) my main LARP character is a jokey, Borat-like used-car-salesman Arabic Desert Trader, trading in used Camels and Camel time shares going up and down the desert in his Camel Caravan. Caravan.

Caravan+Fallout+Make a Game.
Caravan+Fallout+Make a Game+___Punk.
Caravan+Fallout+Make a Game+___Punk+Explore Themes.


Have you thought of stuff like Six-String Samurai as inspiration
No I have never seen this film, it sounds cool though – I love samurai, ninja, oriental kungfu action films. I like legend of the drunken master best! Jackie ftw. Stuff that I am really happy to have seen as I create the AtomPunk world: Firefly, Star Trek, Spaghetti Westerns, The Book of Eli, Tank Girl, Firefly, The Fifth Element, Escape from New York and Firefly.

I love the art work shown
Well I am super lucky here. I have managed to get to speak to GREAT artists. The theme is kick ass and fun to design for! I am always trying to speak to some great great people too. To give you an idea though – currently I have sent 108 messages out at asking for artists – it’s hard work ^^

Maybe you can do a Rosie Riveter-esque picture
Yes that’s it! Ok genre-man gogo!: “Retro-future, raygun-gothic, pin-up glam, post-apoc, wasteland, nomadic, dystopian future, ‘save the homesteaders’, western” so basically exactly Rosie, but with a futuristic twist. Hmm. Perhaps a robotic arm! Yeah, cyber arm but still, really sweet and lovely in a bathing suit with a gorgeous smile and great big eyes! She’ll be like rosie riveter: an ideal, a concept. Like “lady luck” is the manifestation of a harsh luck-of-the-draw world that we live in. In much the same way that Franklin is the persona of greed “All about the Benjamins”. Ours? We’ll call her Jenny. She is what the wasteland needs. The wastelands ideal. Everyone is bitter and twisted in this harsh and unforgiving wateland. Just living is a hard battle. The game is only about “getting somewhere” remember, killing monsters is not the goal, it is just to protect your caravan and your crew. AtomPunk is just about “living” and moving-on in these treacherous lands. People are helpless to change the hedious circumstances that brought us here: to this nuclear fallout. They can do nothing other than survive. But it’s ok, because when all of this is done, and the long journey is over, I’ll be in the caring arms of a sweet, homely, genuine woman. She’ll have a gorgeous smile, wonderful bright eyes and she will pour me all of the cool water I can drink. I’ll be in Jenny’s arms…

AtomPunk Poster - Jenny's Water


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The Grand Card List

O-M-actual-G (as a friend of mine once said),

I would like to introduce to you:

The AtomPunk Grand Card List

A sample of cardsSo thanks to the awesome 137 post long “unit suggestion” thread over at boardgame geek this has happened. It is a list of every possible card. The cards differ wildly and some require entire different game systems. But when AtomPunk is made, you can bet that nearly all the cards will originate from this awesome list. Awesome. Each card is split up into definitely / probably / maybe  catagories and is color coded to show exactly what they are and what they do and what needs changing.

What else is happening with AtomPunk?

Well, we are getting some art done. It looks…pretty cool so far – I have got a lot of stuff to say about the artwork in general but will save it to another post, prospoiler: we will do a in depth review of a single piece, showing you guys the process that we take behind the scenes in order to build it up. It normally takes about 10 emails of refinement either way along with a brief and specification and about 5 research images. – Ill show you soon 🙂

Also we are still working on the stories for AtomPunk, either to be released online or in printed form, these will be short and very short stories that build up the background and flavor of the AtomPuunk apocalyptic world, following leaders, telling yarns of fantastical caravans and exploring exciting and definitive moments of the world. But why the hell are we in this arid wasteland, and why the hell did the bombs drop? I’m not telling you that story yet …

What can you do to help?

Well, the best you can do is:

1. Read on and comment on the Great Card List, here or speak to me on BGG (Cogentesque)

2. If you know any artist people that want to help, pont them to me, hell I’ll probably pay ’em too!

3. Do you like writing stories?Well write one on any of the cards from the list, and tell me a story about it. Then send it to me!

4. Tell your friends (only the cool ones, not the lame ones if that’s cool?) Tell them about AtomPunk in general. I would suggest by saying: “Oh yeah Chris, I remember you liked games, well have you seen this picture?” *show front cover* “She’s called Jenny and would you like to see the card list?” Thats it. Then *very important* tell them they are cool, from me. Tell me you’ve done that and I will award you with a secret prize. But I can’t tell you … because it’s secret. But it kicks ass. As do you.

You kick ass.

Like a lot.

You reading this right now, pay attention to what I am going to say in the next line:

You kick ass, Rock on.


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Purple Pawn cover AtomPunk!

Hot off the press:

Robert over at Purple Pawn (the super cool games news site) has covered AtomPunk WIP!

We all know from the nice easy run downs they give of all current game related Kickstarter projects. They have kindly covered AtomPunk in one of their first instalments of it. I am really happy that they have done this and love the little write up that the editor Robert put together. Seeing the words “Samuel Mercer” banded about so many times made me feel a little strange and worried that “now people know who I am?!” but luckily: it’s ok!

Thanks to those guys ever so much and thanks to everyone reading this entry – you are all awesome!

Sam “Samuel-Mercer” Mercer

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How to get on the mailing list

So I am making this here game and have requested wordpress to provide me with a lovely blog for documenting a few things. This will be added to as things happen so subscribe (is that how it works?) to this thread to be kept updated. I will also have a mailing list set up soon so if any of you fancy being reminded when the kickstarter comes up then for now, if subscirbing to blogs doesn’t float you boat and just want to be sent a nice simple email when time comes along then send me an email with the subject line:-

Sign me up to the AtomPunk Mailing List!


mercer.samuel {-at-}

Right, that sounds good! Hope to see some people on it. As always guys and girls, stay super cool! 🙂

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