Youth Gone Wild – An Interview about Wild in the Streets

wits logo croppedSomething all of us in Corehammer have been excited about for a while now is the upcoming Wild in the Streets game being developed by our US affiliate Chris Kohler. We have been selling casts of the first model, Sid the Crusty Punk for a few months now, and a few months ago I did an interview with Chris to find out more about the game. Then a lot of things happened in my life, I procrastinated and this languished in the drafts section of our website for “a while”. Thankfully, Chris is a patient dude, and with a few edits we’ve got it back on track.

Yo Chris, describe Wild in the Streets for those who’ve only seen the models

Wild In The Streets is a fast paced gang fight skirmish game that brings together gangs of skinheads, punks, goths, metalheads, mods, cholos and more. The game uses miniatures, dice and cards and has very little record keeping.

Sid the Crusty Punk

Tell us about the setting for the game, and what were the main influences you drew from when creating it.

The setting is based on the real world but of course it is a fictionalized version of the real world. The main influences I’ve drawn from are various youth subcultures mixed with gang type movies.

How does the game play? What mechanics are you using and were any other systems an influence on your choices?

Models are activated by random card pulls from a common deck that all players shuffle their cards into. This leads to more chaotic activation and simulates an unpredictable gang fight much better than choosing which models are activated. The idea behind this was to make people think on the fly about what they will do and how they will react in addition to planning their turns. You might have planned for your crust punks to ambush a lone metalhead but getting sucker punched by a group of skinheads threw a wrench into your plans. The dice rolls mechanics will be familiar to most people. Instead of deployment zones set up is done almost anywhere you want on the board. I wanted to simulate a fight that had already started or was just about to start instead of people staring at each other across the board for a few turns waiting for action. Die rolls are opposed with the winner being whoever rolled higher. I’ve gone with d10 because it gives you a wider range of probability. My favorite mechanic is the event card mechanic where you pay points for event cards the same way you’d pay for models. The cards are then shuffled into the deck and can either benefit or hinder models. Of course this can be risky but to me and almost everyone who play tested it adds another random element and a lot of fun. Having played miniature games for over 30 years other system are going to influence you, some positively and some negatively.

Work in progress shots of the Murder Cult Girls

Work in progress shots of the Murder Cult Girls

Are the games one offs, or is there a campaign/mission system?

The games are one off but there are event cards that add victory conditions. Most people seem to only play one off games so this was a big influence on that decision. I have campaign rules floating around in my head and will eventually commit them to paper if there is interest. Although there are set gangs you’ll be able to mix and match some of the models from other gangs. There are no set gang lists to choose from so this leaves plenty of room for variety by adding miniatures as the game grows.

What prompted you to start developing Wild in the Streets, did it evolve from something else, or was it a conscious decision to do a punk skirmish game. It just you, or is there a group/team of you working on it?

It was a conscious decision to make a game based on something I felt passionate about. We had been playing a lot of Warhammer Fantasy in my garage and Rob Moran and Ben Nahoum told me about I was really happy to find other people involved in hardcore that also gamed that were not in my immediate gaming group. This really motivated me to stop just thinking about it and doing something. I told Rob and Ben about my idea initially and they were both excited about it so I kept going. I had originally planned on using miniatures from other manufacturers and just putting out a PDF of the rules and seeing what would happen. Although I found some passable skinhead miniatures any punk miniatures I found looked like extras from Mad Max or a teenage 80s movies. This motivated me to ask friends to pose for miniatures and start commissioning the sculpting of them. I still plan to make the rules available for free and sell the miniatures. I do most of the work on rules, coordinating getting people to pose for miniatures, hiring sculptors, etc. I’ve had a great feedback from the guys in my gaming group every step of the way. I couldn’t do it without them so its a group effort for sure. Ben Nahoum, Rob Moran, Derak Morell, Byron Grey, Louie Sanvincente, Vincent Cordoba, Don Armbrust, Corle Huffman and Fernando Sanchez have been the guys that have did the most play testing or give the best feedback.

Playtesting the good old fashioned way.

Playtesting the good old fashioned way.

How has the development and playtesting worked so far? Are there any big changes you’ve had to make as a result of it?

Play testing was done with hand written cards and names taped to bases. We played a game or two a week during play testing. I’m very happy with where the game is now. The quick start rules fit on two sheets of paper and I can teach a non gamer to play and be comfortable in about 30 minutes. Part of the play testing was getting non gamer friends to help since they offer good feedback on what works, what is awkward and what is fun. When testing a game there are always changes but there have been no big changes mostly just tweaks.

Who is designing and sculpting the models? What do you have coming up on that front?

The sculptors who have sculpted miniatures so far are Mate Lavotha and Jae Chi Lee. The design is all based on real friends or friends of friends so it’s all been photography for concept art. Victor Rodriguez has shot some of the photos so far. Goths, murder cult girls, skinheads and crust punks have been sculpted so far. Next up are more goths, murder cult girls, skinheads and crust punks. Its all subject to change though based on availability of people to pose for photos and the sculptors schedules. I’ve also informally got some bands to agree to pose to be miniatures. I’m hoping that will turn out how I am expecting it to. I’m also always looking for people to pose for miniatures and more sculptors who are interested in the project. If you think you’d make a good miniature or want to sculpt for me then get in touch.

Work in progress shots of the Goth Gang

Work in progress shots of the Goth Gang

How do you plan on releasing the game and models, what will be available at launch and when will that (potentially/hopefully) be?

The target date has been pushed back to Fall of 2015. The rules will be available for free in PDF format and the models will be available on the Slow Death Games webstore. As with all small manufacturers it is difficult to get a distributor to pick up your stuff so it will be direct mail order for now. will continue to distribute the miniatures in the UK and Europe. I want to keep the prices of the miniatures as cheap as possible. I’d much rather sell a miniature between $3 and $5 and get it into the hands of more gamers than only sell a few at a higher price.

While it’s obvious your punk/hardcore background has had an effect on the background of the game and the gangs that are included, are there any other ways it has influenced you in the development/business/testing side?

Being involved in the hardcore scene has been one of the best things to happen in my life. I’m extremely lucky I discovered it at a young age and it helped shape the person I am now. It has definitely influenced how I am running the business. Much like putting out a record or organizing a show, getting paid is the last thing I’m worried about. Getting the miniatures into the hands of people and sharing the game with people is much more important. Selling miniatures for cheap is like selling 7″s for cheap.

Anything else you’d like to add?

I’m extremely stoked on the feedback I’ve received from people I don’t know. Seeing paint jobs from people I haven’t met yet is extremely exiting. I’d like to get people I don’t know to do some future play testing so get in touch if you want to help out. Thanks for being supportive and taking an interest in Wild In The Streets!

Check the following links below for more info and to keep yourselves up to date on Chris’ progress. Pre-orders are available now from the Slow Death bigcartel, and hopefully Corehammer will be helping distribute the models once they are released.

This entry was posted in Gaming, Wild in the Streets by OC. Bookmark the permalink.

About OC

As well as being a veteran edgeman, part of Atonement Records and bass player in bands such as Ironclad, Ark of the Covenant and Natural Order, OC has an unfortunate penchant for collecting plastic models that come in shiny boxes, such as Warhammer models and Lego, and an even more unfortunate tendency for procrastination, meaning much of their contents never see the light of day.

5 thoughts on “Youth Gone Wild – An Interview about Wild in the Streets

  1. Would be sweet if you could get deathklok in the game ;-), and where are the metalheads/thrashers, trve necro’s (aka 12 year old satanists..) and stoners???

    Bitching aside, looks great, can see my credit limit being abused 😀

    • Metalheads are coming. They’ve been play tested. I just need to find metalheads to take photos of for the minis. They will likely come after the skinheads and crust punks.

  2. Pingback: KickStarter Review: Wild in the Streets | COREHAMMER

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