I literally kicked everyone out of the house, turned off the radio and the TV, closed down my AIM and MSN utilities and went for it. After a night red-penning my manuscript came a day altering, editing and then rewriting a load of examples but .... finally .... the third iteration of Duty & Honour has been completed and is ready to head out to the playtesters. This time I have people in Newcastle, New Zealand, Ireland, London and Scotland all waiting to receive the manuscript and it is definitely more polished than the last one that went out.
There have been some definite changes to the way some of the things work - so 'Experiences' replace 'Years' in character generation as a really good solution to one of the problems that we experienced earlier. The Wealth system is in place, the role of the Skirmish Rules in Military Missions has been expanded and the system for designing your own Missions is included - which is pretty useful as it is the entire point of the Mission/Challenge/Reward system!
One or two things have been removed - the formalised 'background questions' have gone in this iteration as the new Experience and Regiment system produce more than enough flags and story fodder for a starting character to deal with! Upon reading more of the Matthew Hervey books by Allan Mallinson I've decided to remove the Cavalry option for play and instead develop a small addition to the rules that covers this area of Wellington's forces. It offers plenty of new professions, traits, skills and other rules that can be used. I'll use this as a test bed before I tackle the next big project which would be the naval version of the game, Heart of Oak.
So, as of Monday, the game will be in the hands of the playtesters and we will see whether it gets a better response than the last time. Thats not to say it didn't get a good response like, but I'm hoping it begins to move towards something that is at least ashcan-able.