Zombies and High Fantasy – a chance for Aruneus to reach print

Just a few days ago I became aware of a website called Kickstarter.  They provide crowd-sourced funding for smallish projects based on a donate/reward scheme.  Someone donates to a project, when that project is complete they receive a reward of some kind.  It sounded interesting but they’re still in beta and only accepting a few new ideas to fund.  I dropped them a note with my ideas for Aruneus to see if anything would happen and surprise!  Something happened!

The Aruneus project was accepted and as of late last night is now live.  Having never tried to raise money for a project like this, let alone through a crowd-sourced method, I’m not entirely sure how this will work.  I hope to be successful and I’m certain that I’ll come away from the experience however it turns out having learned a lot.

I’m planning on being as open about the development of this world as I can be, including (finally) getting a wiki together and also talking about the development process as I work through creating this world.

Having said that, I’m a little unsure about how I should spread the word.  On the one hand, I want to get the word out far and wide and hopefully raise the money I’ll need to move this forward.  On the other hand, I don’t want to be a gigantic pain in the ass and alienate any online communities I frequent.  I’ll tweet about it a bit over the next few days and ponder what I should do. I’d also love to hear from anyone else out there over where the line is between interesting information and in-your-face-ass.

What’s my ultimate goal here?  To create and release one (and depending on the amount of content possibly two) source book for the Aruneus world.  It will detail the world’s geography, history, political climate, the effects of a massive die off due to undead hoard, and also introduce some new beasties.

In addition to background on the world, I’m planning a campaign which will bring characters from level 1 through level 20 (or pretty darned close).  So you’ll get a detailed world and a massive campaign to work off of.

Why the hell do you need $7000?!  Lots and lots and lots of reasons.  First, I can’t draw a straight line with a ruler.  To be a good sourcebook there needs to be some illustrations done by people with actual talent.  I’d be using a chunk of this money to give artists who may not have had much exposure but are interested in getting in to fantasy/RPG art a chance to make some money and get their artwork out there.

Second, editing.  I’m a very creative person.  I’m also grammatically challenged on some occasions and tend to write very long sentences. I’d be hiring an editor (also looking to get in to the game) as well.

Third through whatever, there are lots of miscellaneous costs.  Help typesetting for proper PDF and print formatting.  Printing out a couple of hundred copies for those who pay enough for a hard copy, paying a lawyer to make sure I’m not doing anything horrible to any copyright laws.  Let’s also not forget some software packages I’d love to have, like Campaign Cartographer for instance.

Lastly, this is taking up an increasing amount of my time.  While I work on this I’d like to pay myself a little bit so I can take some time from outside consulting gigs (not to mention my day job and this site) to work while not losing out on grocery money or my fund to save up for some new dice.

So there it is, all hanging out in the open like. . . like some metaphor that I won’t go into.  I’m always willing to talk about this project so feel free to comment or use our contact page to get in touch with me directly.

[tags]aruneus, rpg, role playing games, ben’s corner, zombies[/tags]

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