First off, good news.
Since I first posted about the new Kickstarter Project I’m doing with Cheapass Games a couple weeks ago, my previous kickstarter from last year has started shipping out.
By now, thousands of you have already received your cards in the mail:
— Monique (@dall625) February 26, 2014
(Monique’s decks and one of the limited edition bookplates.)
So far, the reactions have been great. And while I’m happy for y’all, this also fills me with a certain amount of envy, because I’m one of the thousands of you that *haven’t* gotten my package in the mail yet.
Let me say this: be strong my brothers and sisters. Know that you are not alone, and know that the folks at Albino Dragon have been furiously shipping stuff out. It’s just that there are, quite literally, thousands of packages to send, and many of them have *lots* of individual items that have to be picked and packed. It takes time.
But rest assured, they’re on their way.
* * *
The current kickstarter is clipping along nicely. As I type this, we’ve crested over 106,000 dollars. Which means that we’ve just unlocked the 105K stretch goal: adding another limited edition bookplate to the project.
(Lanre, drawn by Shane Tyree.)
We’ll only be doing a single, limited run of these, exclusively for this Kickstarter. They’ll be individually numbered adhesive bookplates printed on high-quality archival paper.
Right now, anyone who pitches into the kickstarter at the $80 level or higher gets everything listed in that level, *plus* one of these bookplates.
I’ll be signing it too, of course.
* * *
Right now there are there are two decks set in my world. The core deck (from the commonwealth) and the Modegan deck. (From, y’know, Modeg.) The art for both of these is being done by Shane Tyree, who did the art for the NOTW cards.
(So you *know* they’re going to be beautiful.)
There’s also other decks that we’ve unlocked in the kickstarter as well: a goblin deck, a pirate deck, and a barmaid deck all by different, lovely artists.
There’s also the Falling deck, which is actually an entire playable game by itself.
At $115,000, we’re unlocking another one of my decks, one based on The Princess and Mr. Whiffle.
This one’s drawn by Nate Taylor of course.
And at $130K, we’re hitting my fourth deck, the Faen Deck….
This one’s also by Nate, and you’ll be getting a sneak peek at the Twilight court. So Bast will be showing up there.
That’s right ladies. I’m going to put the kickstarter link right here, just in case you’re feeling a sudden, irresistible urge to click something.
Felurian will be showing up too. Which leads into the first of three recent conversations I’ve had with James Ernest that I’d like to share with you today.
* * *
I e-mailed James about a week ago. I’m paraphrasing a bit here, but this was the gist of our exchange….
Pat: Spent some time talking with Nate today about the Faen deck, which cards we’re going to include. What secrets we can hint at. He knows my world really well, so it’s easy.
James: Glad to hear it.
Pat: So…. Can I show a bare ass in the Faen Deck? In my opinion, there’s hardly any point in doing a Faen deck at all if I can’t show Felurian’s ass and some tasteful side boob…
James: I’m okay with bare ass and tasteful side boob. Heck, we could go with bare boob if you want.
It will require me to figure out how to label it properly for retail, but I expect the Faen deck will be limited edition anyway. So that’s not a huge concern.
Let’s make sure the NSFW isn’t limited to just one card, though. That seems like a wasted opportunity. :)
Pat: I love you.
Two things resulted from this exchange.
1. I emailed Nate and told him to take Bast’s shirt off.
2. I realized the Faen deck isn’t reflecting a strict social hierarchy like the Commonwealth and Modegan decks. (Nobility on the top, Ruh at the bottom in the Commonwealth, for example.) This deck is almost telling a story instead.
3. I immediately cut some of the weaker cards and added better ones like: “The Mortal Guest” “The Sithe” and “The Faerie Revel.”
It’s going to be so much cooler than I’d originally thought….
* * *
A few days after that, I had another e-mail chat with James:
Pat: Hey there. I just had a couple of ideas for things we could add to the kickstarter. [Pat launches into a 500-word bullet pointed list proposing about 8 different things.]
James: Those are some good ideas. I especially like [secret thing we might announce Friday]. That would be fun. I’ll need to talk to a few people to see if we can make that work.
Pat: What about [six previously mentioned things]? Also, I just had two new ideas! [Details.]
Pat: Oh, and I forgot. Here’s one more idea. [Idea.]
Pat: [Two minutes later.] I’ve kinda had a bunch of caffeine today.
James: Well, they’re good ideas. But they’d also be a lot of work…
Pat: I wouldn’t say a *lot* of work.
James: That’s probably because you’re really caffeinated right now.
Pat: That’s… possible.
James: Besides, I’d rather focus on the core of the kickstarter: the decks themselves. I want them to be as good as possible.
Also, some of the things you’re suggesting would make more work for the artists or complicate our shipping process. Or both. If that happens, it might delay the kickstarter itself, and I really want it to ship on time.
Pat: Wow. Yeah. You’re right. Let’s focus on the key stuff.
James: No problem. Not my first rodeo.
* * *
So by this time, you should see part of the reason why I’ve really loved working with James so far. He’s not just a great game designer, he’s a good businessman and a good communicator too.
But as they say, third time pays for all.
Pat: At the risk of sounding like the idiot I am, I have to ask a question. Looking at your math from the previous e-mail, it seems like you’re cutting me in for a percentage of the entire kickstarter. Is that the case?
Pat: Because I assumed I was only getting a percentage of the me-related stuff. My decks.
James: Nope. Our deal is that you get a percentage off the top. The core deck is based on your world. The other decks are, too. You’re making this something bigger and cooler, and I want to respect and reward that.
Pat: Are you sure about that?
James: Yup. Besides, your readers are remarkably cool and supportive of your projects. That’s a rare thing. You’re bringing the noise here, You get the big numbers.
Pat: Well. That’s terribly decent of you. Not just in the initial offering, but also in not slyly sliding it off the table right now when I was obviously clueless about it.
James: Well, thanks for giving me the chance to feel magnanimous in giving you what you already had.
What’s more, since I’m now making more money off this project than I’d anticipated, I’ve decided to give a piece of that to Worldbuilders.
So if you were looking for one more reason to jump in and play a little game with us, you just got one.
I’ll just leave a link here at the end of the post. Just in case any of you might happen to want it.