Posts Tagged ‘crowdsource’

Works in Progress

February 19, 2016

Here are updates on several different things for the past couple weeks, including a work-in-progress map, the Exquisite Corpse CITY project, and a couple of DragonQuest-related items.

The map is a progress shot of another “military perspective” map.  This was trying out a shading (using a gel ballpoint pen; not how the finished version will be done. This was just testing on a photocopy of the map).  The colored shading seems to help with reading it more clearly (and shadows on the ground may help, as well).  I’m thinking about also making a simple, standard overhead view map of this same complex, to make it easier for a GM to make notes and keep track of where the characters and the opposition are.

progress2 draft

Would this be good as a future Un-Furnished Dungeon? Or, the second map could be a Patreon supporter premium, if I got that up and running.  (Some other thoughts on Patreon below.)

The Exquisite Corpse City project is still under way, and we seem to be making a little progress.  I’ve handed off sections to a couple more people this weekend, and the number of available slots will keep increasing as more pieces are done and the city grows, and there are more edges to add on to.  I’ve posted a glimpse of the 3/4 completed city center, to give a sense of the variety of styles that are going to be in this from the outset.  For those of you who aren’t following the Exquisite Corpse CITY Google Group, here this is:


I really like the very different styles that are in this already.

The start was slow, because there are only 4 sides to the initial starting square.  With 3 of those sides now extended, there are now 5 openings, and another 3 will come open when that 4th side is done.  And as some of those get finished, even more openings become available.

This Exquisite Corpse is a little more difficult to manage, since part of the process is to have each artist go back and add in some buildings in their style to the section that they built from, so the seams in the city should be a bit less straight line.  That requires everyone to work on top of everyone else’s drawings, so that is causing more complication, but I think it’ll turn out well in the end.

The DragonQuest adventure (Wilderness of Ordurak) was subject of some recent discussion on the DragonQuest RPG group.  We are really hoping that it is going to be done in the next couple months, along with the revised version of The Water Works adventure and the Poor Brendan’s Almanac supplement.

If Patreon had been around a few years ago, that would’ve been a much better model to work from.  And, I’ve been thinking about starting a Patreon for the maps I’ve been making, although there are many other gaming map makers out there, and I’m not sure if there would be interest in supporting my work.  (If you would seriously be interested, though, let me know.  If there are at least a few potential supporters, I’d be more tempted to start something like that up.)

The other thing that would make a lot of sense as a Patreon project would be a re-write of the DragonQuest rules (aka Open DQ).  This is an idea that’s been kicking around, though without much interest behind it, for quite a while.  Like other OSR retro-clones, it would be a compatible re-write of the rules to duplicate the functionality of the original SPI game, but with new (and in some cases updated) re-writing so that it was not just a transcription of the existing rules.  Each new rule section completed could be an individual goal in the Patreon system, and delivering one or two a month might be reasonable, and no one would be paying anything until something was delivered each time.

Finishing the Wilderness… is the first task.  But after that, is there more support for a DQ-oriented Patreon, or for a mapping-oriented one?




Making a Fundraiser Work

February 2, 2012

There is a good discussion about many of the finer points of setting up a project with IndieGoGo or Kickstarter on; it’ll probably spill past this point as the discussion continues, but I just came in on the thread a couple pages back, so this will put you in the middle of the part I’ve been in on.

I wanted to repeat my comments here that I posted there (as well as keep an anchor to go back later):

In response to the suggestion from another commenter that you should open your project to non-domestic supporters, I completely agree.  For DragonQuest, which has a big international audience, being readily accessible outside the US was important, and it’s paid off. More than a third of the contributions (in total dollar value) to the Wilderness project to date are from outside the US, coming from 3 different countries, so far.

I also understand that Kickstarter is less easy for non-US supporters, which is one of the reasons I went with IndieGoGo, though it sounds like IndieGoGo has some other drawbacks.

It was also suggested that you have separate domestic and international perks. Mine won’t be too expensive to ship, and I think international shipping looks to be less of a premium than what I originally thought it might be. If you have a strong international appeal and the perk levels warrant it, you might consider eating or splitting the international shipping costs, to make it more appealing. I haven’t officially announced it, yet, but I’m contemplating splitting the international shipping upcharge with my supporters.

Beyond ‘Wilderness’

February 1, 2012

The ‘Wilderness’ adventure fundraiser has made the basic goal, but I’m really hoping to get to twice that level, in which case I’ll be producing a larger (32 page minimum) adventure. If you’re still thinking about contributing, there’s a week to go, and your support would be greatly appreciated.

I’m thinking about taking a bit of the money from the fundraiser and creating a publishing house to produce DragonQuest material (and other stuff, too). I’ve revised the Antherwyck House name I used on the original Poor Brendan’s Almanac when I first put that together (though I’m not absolutely committed to that name). For now, I’ve also used the name on the revised Water Works I’ve been working on.

We could buy a domain or two, get hosting somewhere, form an LLC, and start making a line of DQ stuff available. With online distributors around and POD for people who want to buy hardcopies, there’s not much that would require labor, other than producing new material. With Poor Brendan’s Almanac, The Water Works, and the Wilderness adventure, we’d have three items in our catalog to start out. It’s not a huge inventory, but it would be more than a single adventure, so we’d have some presence from the outset.

Although there haven’t been thousands of people flocking to support ‘Wilderness,’ there are enough supporters that we’ve been able to meet a modest crowd-source goal. That shows that we do have an audience, and if we build on that base, it might be possible to expand things.

It’s looking a ways ahead at this point, but would another fundraiser to gather general support for starting a new DQ-oriented publisher make sense? Something to think about.

The Wilderness in Microscope

December 23, 2011

I’m thinking about running an online Microscope game to set some of the backstory and history for the “Wilderness of A—”

I’ve been interested in Microscope since Thor pointed it out to me a few months ago. I bought a copy of it, but I haven’t had a chance to try playing it yet.

It struck me, a couple days ago, that I might be able to do an online Microscope game with specific focus on the backstory for the adventure I’m working on. So, I’m going to invite all the current contributors to participate in a world-building game.

I’m not sure if this will work well, or not, but in any case, I think it will help generate some ideas, even if I end up changing and revising things significantly from the game as it plays out. And it will be a chance to play a game of Microscope, as well. I’ll email the contributors about this shortly. If you’d like to get in on this, sign up as a contributor to the “Wilderness” fundraiser.

My previous posts on: Microscope|More Microscope

Microscope site

Bonus for Holidays

December 20, 2011

The fundraiser for the DQ adventure has already gone more than halfway towards it initial goal, with 51 days remaining. The ‘hot start’ target to get the entire base goal by the 15th wasn’t reached, but that was a long shot anyhow

I mentioned on the dq-rules list that I hoped to still have a holiday piece for those who have contributed.

What I’m thinking of doing is gathering together and formalizing the Rank Point system I have used a few times to start off new campaigns or one-shots for conventions where I didn’t want to be stuck with beginning characters. Since “The Wilderness of A—” is going to be designed for mid-level characters, and people may not have existing campaigns, I think it would be good to have a framework for quickly giving players a way to assemble characters with more experience than beginning characters would have.

You could certainly do something like this by just dumping 8000 XP (or whatever amount you’d like) on everyone and letting them go to town. But this would be a quicker, shorthand version. Of course, it would be possible to abuse the system, but in more instances, I think it could be used to quickly get a new character, or group of characters pulled together.

My thinking is that there may be some gaming groups getting together over the holidays, and this could be tested out by a few different groups. The refined version will then be included in the final version of “The Wilderness of A—”

If you want to take a look at a preliminary version of this, before I clean it up, I’ve included it below the cut…

What’s That Map?

December 3, 2011

There’s a map occupying the homepage on the Wilderness of A— Fundraiser page; what is it and where did it come from?

This is a portion of the map from my Caldera campaign. The city at the center of the map is Gafton, where the campaign was based. It was just a black and white map, but I took a little while and added some color to it to make it more visually appealing. It’s a 5 mile hex scale; the scale of the DragonQuest strategic hex grid.

While I don’t think it looks too bad, this is NOT the location I’m looking at for the adventure. It’s just here as eye candy (and hopefully you find it appealing like that). If you can use it in some fashion in your own campaigns, that’s great.

But I do have some questions about the setting for the Wilderness adventure, and I’m interested in feedback from you, the potential players and GMs. Schematically, here’s an initial look at the kind of configuration I am looking at for the adventure right now:

The issue at the heart of the adventure is the need for goods from the Barony having to go down to the Frontier Port, then sail across the Ocean to the Port City, then travel overland back up to the Kingdom’s capital. A direct road would be quicker; that’s the Baron’s project, and, since there is difficulty, that’s why he needs the help.

The questions for discussion regarding the setting are:
* What kind of environment would fit in for most campaigns? Right now, I’m thinking of making it a combination of wasteland, forest, and mountain.
* Does the concept of a Kingdom at the edge of the known world and a frontier Barony fit for most campaigns? (Basically, are you going to be able to use this?)
* Should the adventure be located in relation to the Frontiers of Alusia?

Even if someone takes the Hero – World Supporter perk in the fundraiser, these are going to be valid questions, so I’d appreciate your thoughts about it.

Preliminary Corwdsource DQ Adventure Proposal

August 19, 2011

I am thinking about writing and producing a new DQ adventure, and I am looking at crowdsourcing models as a way to gauge interest and to generate enough support to make it worth doing. There’s no market for a traditionally produced adventure for DQ, but I think if I can crowdsource some support for it in advance, I can take the time to work on this. This is a draft proposal for comment and discussion.

If you are already familiar with Kickstarter, then you’ll understand the premise of this project. Basically, I’m looking to fund the creation of a new DragonQuest adventure. I’m going to see if I can get enough pledges to let me take the time to work on this project. If there is enough support, I will take the time to write and produce this adventure and have it completed by the end of the year.

In short, the Kickstarter model lets a creator get support for a project from aggregating a number of supporters who would like to see the project carried out. Rather than relying on a single patron, a bunch of people agree to contribute a small amount for a project to be carried out, assuming that enough other contributors also agree to help out.

Pledging to contribute doesn’t cost anything until the goal is met. If the creator’s goal isn’t met, no one contributes anything. Pledging only means that you are agreeing to contribute to the project if enough other people to also pledge to contribute. If the pledges fall short of the goal, then no funds change hands, and nothing happens. (If that turns out to be the case, I may revise the proposal, or I may just set it aside.)

If you are interested, you can pledge to contribute towards the production of the adventure. I’m not looking to match my freelance rates for what I do, but I am going to put time and effort into this.

Basic level pledges will get you an electronic copy of the adventure when it is completed. I plan to eventually make it freely available, but that will not be until some time (maybe 6 months or a year) after the supporters get copies. So contributors will get to have the adventure before it is otherwise available.

But there are also higher levels of support and involvement. If you want to contribute at a higher level, you can have some involvement in the design and configuration of the adventure. Contributors at higher levels can help select the NPCs, the setting for the adventure, and other elements. These premiums can also help make the adventure fit better with a supporter’s existing campaign. Higher contributions also make it more likely that the project will meet its goal and be able to be completed.

The goal is to get at least $1500 in pledges by September 30. If the goal is reached, then all pledges will be due, and work will begin on the adventure to be completed by the end of the year. However, if the goal is not reached, then no pledges will be collected, and the project will be dropped.

If you aren’t already familiar with my work in DragonQuest, I’m the author of the “Poor Brendan’s Almanac” supplement and the adventure “The Water Works.”

Premium contribution levels and benefits are as follows:

All paid pledges will be listed in the credits of the adventure.

Mercenary Level
$20 – Basic level pledge. Receive an electronic copy of the adventure at least 6 months before it is open to free distribution.

$50 – Print pledge. Receive an electronic copy as with Basic level, plus receive a hardcopy printed version of the adventure. (Non US residents will have to pay an extra postage premium).

$100 – Playtester pledge. Receive a copy of the draft adventure before final publication for review and/or playtest before the final version is released. Playtesters can provide feedback about the adventure to help improve the final release version. Those who provide feedback will be credited as playtesters in the final adventure credits.

Adventurer Level
Adventurer level supporters will get all of the premiums offered to Mercenary level supporters (printed hardcopy, etc.), as well as the particular premium selected. They will also receive one review/playtest copy of the adventure before even the supporter release and can provide feedback and commentary before the adventure is finalized.

$150 – NPC – Use an NPC from my campaign. An NPC in the adventure will be an NPC (or could even be a PC) from the contributor’s campaign world. (3 available)

$200 – Adventurer – Treasure Supporter. A specialty treasure to be selected in collaboration with the contributor for purposes of their own campaign will be incorporated into the adventure. (2 available)

$250 – Use part of my campaign world. Adventure setting will include places and features from the contributor’s campaign world. (2 available)

$250 – Adept – Magic College Supporter. The contributor’s choice of a College of Magic will be incorporated into the adventure in a significant fashion. This may include any college from the basic DragonQuest rules, Arcane Wisdom, or Poor Brendan’s Almanac.

Hero Level
Hero level supporters will get all of the premiums offered to Mercenary level supporters (printed hardcopy, etc.), as well as the particular premium selected. They will also receive one review/playtest copy of the adventure as the Adventurer level supporters.

$350 – New Skill Underwriter. Rules for a new skill will be developed for introduction and use in the adventure.

$500 – Magus – New Magic College Underwriter. Rules for a new college of magic will be developed for use in the adventure

$750 – Hero – Choose the adventure outline.