"An Elegy for Sivar" - WCRPG Campaign Discussion Thread

capi3101

Rear Admiral
I want to sincerely thank the six of you who pledged to back the Elegy Kickstarter campaign. Unfortunately, we came far short of the mark, so I'm sorry to say that Denis Loubet's artwork will not be appearing on the front cover.

Next steps then: as I mentioned in today's update, I think I'll go ahead with the plan to try to get some portraits of the characters done instead. I'll have to revisit Denis's site to check the rates and see what that campaign's goal is going to be, and I'll have to see if he'd be on board with that idea or not. I've got some things to set up obviously. Hopefully the goal of the new campaign will be substantially less that what I tried to set out to do this time around.

Down a bit this afternoon, but by God I sure as hell ain't out. Not by a long shot.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
I'm sorry it didn't work out as well... but...

In all honesty: the more I think about it, the more I just can't see how this could have possibly worked out. If you think about the audience you're going for, it's so specific and narrow, that six backers is actually not a bad result. I mean, of all the WC fans, most are not really active any more. Of the ones that are active, not everyone visits the CIC. The polls ran by the CIC get votes in the hundreds, even though voting usually goes on for a month or more. So, that's the number of people your Kickstarter was actually reaching. But of those people, most would not be interested in a non-digital RPG. Of the ones that were interested, not all would be willing to contribute money, and of the ones willing to contribute money to a Kickstarter project, not all would actually have money to contribute (as you can see by example of your own situation - would you contribute to this Kickstarter? :) ). And of the ones willing and able to contribute, some might still consider this particular project as an unnecessary luxury. I mean, a cover done by Denis Loubet is an awesome thing to have... but it doesn't improve your game in any way at all.

So, at the end of the day... six backers is pretty good. $400 is pretty good. Incidentally, your backers are quite generous, and you only would have needed 25 in total to fund the whole thing.

I wish I could offer some sensible advice for the future, rather than just an analysis of why this seemed pretty impossible to achieve, but I really don't know what you could really do. I suppose ultimately it comes down to this: get more people playing the game. They're your audience, after all, and your potential bckers.

Perhaps one thing would be to start writing after-action reports for your play sessions, in order to encourage more people to try actually playing the game. Another thing you may want to consider is to develop a second edition of the main rulebook. I had a look at it the other day. Nothing wrong with its appearance and stuff, but... it's seven hundred pages or something along those lines. Someone playing this game would probably want to have the rulebook printed out - but very few people would want to print a seven hundred page book. As I recall from my AD&D days, RPG systems typically divide up their rule books into multiple small volumes - the player's manual, the DM's manual, a separate reference book for the setting, and so on. Sometimes, there's also a very condensed guide for players who just want to jump in and start playing, with the assumption that they can always read up on the manual later. These are things, I would argue, that are more important to success than a campaign book with a cover by Denis Loubet, however pretty and cool that would have been.
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
A wise man once told me "You should aim for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll...probably die horribly in a big fiery ball upon re-entry."


I'll take writing a "second edition" under advisement, maybe after work on Elegy wraps up. It doesn't help that Lulu yoinked the print editions last year.
 

ChrisReid

Super Soaker Collector / Administrator
In all honesty: the more I think about it, the more I just can't see how this could have possibly worked out. If you think about the audience you're going for, it's so specific and narrow, that six backers is actually not a bad result. I mean, of all the WC fans, most are not really active any more. Of the ones that are active, not everyone visits the CIC. The polls ran by the CIC get votes in the hundreds, even though voting usually goes on for a month or more. So, that's the number of people your Kickstarter was actually reaching. But of those people, most would not be interested in a non-digital RPG. Of the ones that were interested, not all would be willing to contribute money, and of the ones willing to contribute money to a Kickstarter project, not all would actually have money to contribute (as you can see by example of your own situation - would you contribute to this Kickstarter? :) ). And of the ones willing and able to contribute, some might still consider this particular project as an unnecessary luxury. I mean, a cover done by Denis Loubet is an awesome thing to have... but it doesn't improve your game in any way at all.

So, at the end of the day... six backers is pretty good. $400 is pretty good. Incidentally, your backers are quite generous, and you only would have needed 25 in total to fund the whole thing.

I wish I could offer some sensible advice for the future, rather than just an analysis of why this seemed pretty impossible to achieve, but I really don't know what you could really do. I suppose ultimately it comes down to this: get more people playing the game. They're your audience, after all, and your potential bckers.
I don't think it really had too much to do with the RPG or lack of RPG players. If anything, I'd actually go out and say tying it to the RPG may have hindered as much as helped. "New Kilrathi Art by Original Artist" could be just as powerful - if not moreso - than a new "RPG cover art piece by Denis Loubet." People who are not interested in the RPG may have tuned this out completely but could potentially have been more curious if it were portrayed differently on its own.

Our front page polls aren't a very good indicator of much. Most people have always ignored them. Our Google Analytics show about 17,000 users came through last month (surely there's some double counting in there as well as many one-offs, but it's also not just a hit counter - we got over 100,000 "pageviews" in May). A better comparison is the George Oldziey WC Album Kickstarter where about 700 people each donated about $67. There's certainly a big core of WC fans out there willing to donate money to a cause they can get behind.

Crowdfunding is a new and dynamic field. It's becoming increasingly apparent that there's quite a skillset involved in driving a successful campaign. This will become increasingly critical as people get burned out on the concept and it loses its novelty. Posting weekly updates and hoping things pick up at the end is not enough to cut it. You need to start by building a convincing case to everyone what the thing is and why it's important (why they should care). A forums thread isn't enough to do this - it could be websites, videos, social media accounts, etc. Then all of these things need to be leveraged with near daily updates. There's a reason they limit the campaign to about a month. It's not a tip jar that gradually accumulates money - a tightly focused and intense campaign is the best way to go. And you need to have a month's worth of interesting things to say and do to keep your people engaged. Only a tiny fraction will just read your pitch and open their wallets. You need to hook people and gradually convince them over the span of a few weeks that your mission is serious and worth their investment. You need partners with a network willing to spread the word, celebrity endorsements, etc, and it has to be more than the CIC. We can only do so much promotion before it starts to turn off our visitors. There's lots to consider. :)
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
Morning, gentlemen - I've been up since about 1 AM local - it's about 9:30 now, and I'm hoping what I'm about to post makes any kind of sense.

This morning I was building an encounter map for the first Elegy mission using an online dungeon maker tool at pyromancers.com. It's a pretty slick little deal, especially for an online tool. Made this with it (and with a little bit of work in MS Paint):

tarakh_ga-encounter2map.png


Anyway, it occurred to me that I could be making a whole bunch of maps like these for Elegy, and that a fair number of them would be for locales of Kilrathi origin. I got to wondering - has anybody ever done an RPG tile set for a Kilrathi setting before? And if not, what kinds of objects do y'all think should be in one? What would one look like, stylistically?

The image above, incidentally, is supposed to be the flight deck of the Kilrathi Star Post at T'kon H'hra - you can see a Naktarg shuttle prepped and ready for launch there (the bit I did in MS Paint). The point of the encounter is to get from the entrance (around tile b16) to the shuttle's door (around tile r7) without getting caught by husuTerran'hra in the bay. This would've been a good spot to have had a Kilrathi tile set - I was limited by what was available. I would've preferred more of a brick red flooring and wall set.

Anyways, thoughts? Anybody out there have experience with building tile sets?
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
While I'm sharing design ideas over on the New 3D thread, I figured I'd go ahead and share some preliminary sketches I've drawn up for the three new Martina Nostra craft for the Elegy campaign - the Dirk medium fighter, Falchion heavy fighter and Claymore fighter/bomber. They kinda work like the Talon in Privateer, in that they're used by both pirate and commercial interests.

martina_nostra.png


I apologize for my hand-writing...

The general idea is that the three new fighters would share certain design components with the Razor, the original Martina Nostra pirate craft from WC4. Things like the upper engine cowlings, forward gun ports and fins are supposed to be the same on all of the designs (as a "cost-saving measure"), with the main differences being the general shape of the fuselage. Not wholly satisfied with the wing on the Dirk but I figured that would get worked out when the final models were built.

Anyways, share and enjoy. I couldn't tell you how soon I'll have finished versions of these on the site.
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
Howdy, y'all. Trying to kick off work on 2.3; unfortunately, I've discovered I can play KSP on my work computer these days, and I've found myself doing that instead of working on Elegy these past couple of days. Going to make for a shorter than usual update this Monday...

Chapter 2.3 is when Bloodeye and his group are supposed to take the base from the Morgan pirate clan, so I'm trying to work on the design of the Demon's Eye base. I've established in the setting material that the base was originally a Kilrathi mining base. To anybody's knowledge, has there ever been an attempt to design such a structure anywhere, at any time? Canonical, non-canonical, doesn't matter to me at this point - I'm willing to try to design the structure from scratch but I think it would make my life a good deal more difficult.

I'm also finding that I'm having a tough time articulating the victory conditions of the mission. Bloodeye and company take the base. Swell - how do they go about doing that? I mean, with 2.1 the group had to a) get aboard Ni'Rakh, b) fix the engine and c) get control over the ship's computer. I could do something similar again I suppose, except there's only been one mission in between that one and this one. Don't want to get too repetitive if I can at all help it. I'm also wondering how much sneaking around will be necessary; I mean, Ni'Rakh is a Kilrathi cruiser, and I imagine if he just shows up at the base's doorstep that the Morgans will be on the defensive from the get-go.

I dunno. I can use some input, I think.
 

Whistler

Commodore
The novel Freedom Flight would make a good foundation on the environment of Kilrathi bases. That said, stealth might be a greater asset to the player team obviously. Include methods of quick-run-hide if they should invite a combat situation or trigger an alarm. Maintenance hatches, air ducts, crawlspaces, trellises, etc. Metal Gear/Splinter Cell-like.

If you're interested in keeping boo-boos from outright borking the team have at least one or two methods for escape in each encounter. Unless of course you want to punish severely for screwing up. :D

Take reference from point-click games; parts to salvage or things/codes/keys to find to progress.

I don't think you'll be able to get away from the basics. Things like locking out Engineering or disabling bridge/main-control from auxiliary control will still be likely targets. Other situations like the security room/barracks might need to be neutralized/disabled, power cut or restored somewhere. Perhaps they have a caged beast for some reason (thank you Judgment Rites), insert-mayhem-here.

Let your mind run wild and then try to explain it in your mind afterwards. It's space, anything can happen.
 

capi3101

Rear Admiral
I decided to use the Kilrathi Supply Depot from Wing Commander III for the basic layout of the Demon's Eye Base; I've spent the last couple of days working out dimensions of the interior. Quick question: does anybody have any idea of the general size of the Supply Depot? If it's relatively small, I might be making Demon's Eye too large. If it's big, I can believe it given that the Cats seem to be into making 22 kilometer-long starships at the time, I'll just have to make some design changes (something that large probably has a population of quite a bit more than 800 Kilrathi)...

EDIT: Ah, never mind. Ship's database says 1,600 meters in length (once again, should've checked there first). That's a damn big structure...Demon's Eye as planned is, in fact, a good deal smaller...
 
Top