Burning Teemus

So, Eddy and I started our talk today with the idea that Finns are more flammable. No real reason, just fits into some ideas we were exchanging about the balance we need, as creative people, between loving our work and yet not letting our lives be only about the work. Very tough balance, but anyone that sits in front of a computer all day knows how important it is to get up and move around, to exercise and eat well. Physically and mentally we are then stronger when we need to create and work on projects. And when you get happy solving problems with your work, it is really hard to not spend all day putting out fires. But you’ve got to wind down, decompress, feed your brain.

Along with the idea that we’re both really, really goal oriented, Eddy mentioned that he finds MMOs hard to consume regularly, as he has gotten into the habit of feeling damn satisfied when finishing a computer/console game and MMOs don’t have the same sense of completion to him. I suggested that was based on internally enjoying games in the same narrative sense that you do a book or movie. For me, MMOs are something I play sporadically and with various goals in mind as I play (see, it all comes together) so for me they are more like ongoing TV shows. And that led really quickly to why Dr Who works for both of us as it has mixed the elements of a serial and a TV show. No really, we talked for a stupidly long time about Dr Who.

Back to work: we talked about a blog post I put up last week on the Onyx Path web site: http://theonyxpath.com/behind-the-monday-meeting-notes/ This topic came out of a bunch of comments we got on last week’s Monday Meeting blog, and raised a lot of great questions and conversations. The gist of the OP blog, and the discussions, was my intention that these Updates below function as weekly snapshots as to where the projects are in the process of creating them and getting them into your hands, but that a fair number of you folks are seeing the Updates as announcements. This sets up an expectation that folks can come here to find out an absolute like “this book is on sale this week”, and while that info might pop up here, that’s really a side effect of the progress we’re watching. And part of why that expectation exists is the way we have to announce projects on a whole lot of different social media venues in order to “hit” all the different ways our fans get their info, and also because of the way I’ve phrased some of these Updates. As for the former, we’re ramping up and consolidating our media outreach and will keep doing that through this year, and as for the latter, I’m going to try and change my language here to avoid focusing on the end result even more than I have tried to do so far.

So with those points in mind (and if you get the chance to follow that link to read the blog post and comments I think you’ll get a better idea of what I’m touching on here):

God Machine Chronicle (nWoD) At CCP for their review.

Strix Chronicle Fiction Anthology (VtR) Strix is into Editing.

- Mummy the Curse - The single volume PDF and standard color PoD, as well as the “virtual box set” PDFs will be on sale shortly. Still waiting on a cover template from the printer as they had to go back and redo their quotes due to a mix up on their end; we’ll get those files out to start the creation of the traditionally printed KS version. CAS sent me his revised Mummy schedule so that we can work it into the larger release schedule.

- Exalted 3rd Edition:  We have everything ready except for a completed video with voice-overs from the Devs, art, graphics and cool music working together. The Devs are still in the Charms section, and have assembled most of the text we’ll be teasing with Updates throughout the Kickstarter.

- V20 Hunters Hunted 2:  New sections are in layout and we’re getting art for them. Rather than tacking them on at the end, we’ll be adding a chapter before the Appendix as that just works better for the flow of the book. Justin is reaching out to writers for the HHII Fiction Anthology and the KS backers are suggesting a title.

- V20 Anarchs Unbound is in editing and we are getting art for it. We’ve received photos from some of the Children of the Revolution backers who pledged to be models in AU, but not everyone yet.

- Deluxe Werewolf 20th Anniversary Edition:  We’re submitting the W20 PoD files for approval this week, and I’m expecting a new revised W20 Deluxe (both regular and Heavy Metal Edition) quote and then we’ll send the files to press! Mike Lee is three quarters-way through his novel.  The Storyteller Screen files will go off to press with W20. Bill has prepared the W20 Anthology outline and contracting prospective writers.  The Skinner is in Editing and Art Direction. The White Howlers Tribe Book is with a writer (the always delightful Jess Hartley) and the W20 Cookbook is being outlined. Check out some news here: http://whitewolfblogs.com/w20/2013/03/18/w20-cookbook-update-white-howlers-outline/

-Deluxe Mage the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition has been confirmed for September-ish 2013 and Phil Brucato has started assigning writers and is churning through writing his part. Art notes and contracts out to our full-page artist, once we have some feedback from him I’ll look a posting an art blog along with Phil’s developer notes.

- W20 Changing Breeds is almost out of Editing. Really.

- W20 Rage Across the World: Most of the art is in but a bit continues to trickle in.

- Guildhalls of the Deathless (MtC) is being written.

- Conventionbook: Progenitors (cMtA) revised layout and second proof this week.

- Mage Translation Guide is in Editing.

- W20 Book of the Wyrm is being written and red-lined. Check out the W20 blog notes: http://whitewolfblogs.com/w20/

- Trinity Continuum: we’re talking about the big, big picture stuff that will affect the entire Continuum as opposed to individual games/settings.

- Scion: some very impassioned creators sharing their ideas at this very early stage. Early next week we’ve prepared a special file for our Scion fans (something fun but which doesn’t distract any of our creative team from Scion 2).

- Demon: The Frutang: some example of play commentary from Black Hat Matt McFarland’s play test will be going up on the new Demon blog.

- Free RPG Day Project: Reap the Whirlwind, for VtR, is a combined 64 page booklet that combines a revised version of “Into the Void” and additional rules files from the Strix and God Machine Chronicles. This will be available at participating friendly local game stores in June, I think, and is currently being put into editing.

Reason for Drinking: As soon as I get the EX3 Kickstarter submitted, or Mummy: The Curse on sale, or W20 to press, I’m taking a slug for sure .  I really am. This week for sure.

  36 comments for “Burning Teemus

  1. AlexT
    March 26, 2013 at 1:18 am

    Looking forward to taking a slug with you, Rich. Keep up the awesome work.

    • richt
      March 26, 2013 at 11:39 am

      Thanks, I’ll imagine you out there somewhere lifting one when I do!

  2. Turalisj
    March 26, 2013 at 1:30 am

    I hope the Scion thing is a bit of a long needed errata ;)

    • richt
      March 26, 2013 at 11:42 am

      In all seriousness, we’ve got the new edition to cover those concerns. (Although I’m sure we’ll have our own errata to get sorted out :) ). This is something that I think folks will get a kick out of, will find oddly useful, but which was created completely away from the efforts of our Scion team.

  3. Oliver
    March 26, 2013 at 3:27 am

    This sets up an expectation that folks can come here to find out an absolute like “this book is on sale this week”.
    Translation: hordes of Exalted fan were getting ready to bust out the torches and pitchforks.

    - Exalted 3rd Edition: We have everything ready except for a completed video with voice-overs from the Devs, art, graphics and cool music working together. The Devs are still in the Charms section, and have assembled most of the text we’ll be teasing with Updates throughout the Kickstarter.
    Updates on what’s going without saying stuff like “the Kickstarter should be ready in X length of time”. Yay! (Actually, not yay, the KS still isn’t here, but you know what I mean. :P)

    • Chazz
      March 26, 2013 at 4:02 am

      I agree with this sentiment. Unfortunately, the delays mean I won’t get my Exalted physical book until I make it back to the USA in November.

    • Oliver
      March 26, 2013 at 4:13 am

      Since I’d missed the Onyx Path post, if I may offer my thoughts:
      Customer’s reaction when you say you’re having delays with the art or whatever: “Aw, that’s sad. But yay, I feel included!”
      Customer’s reaction when you say you’re pushing back your estimate one week: “HOW DARE THEY BREAK THEIR PROMISE BLAHBLAHBLAH *insert rage-filled rant here*”

      Certain parts of the simulation may be slightly hyperbolic. The point being, if I were you I’d be VERY careful talking about when something should happen because, even if you’re trying to be zen about the whole thing, it’s tough not be disappointed if it doesn’t happen as hoped. Think of it as a teeny tiny lie by omission, to keep a friend from feeling some of the misery you no doubt feel yourself (it’s not like I think you like delays anymore than fans do). But transparency is awesome! Just don’t get too specific on certain dangerous subjects. :)

      • richt
        March 26, 2013 at 11:44 am

        Hopefully, as you have already indicated, you’ll note the slightly altered Updates now that are going to try and steer clear of just that.

  4. Peter Boddy
    March 26, 2013 at 6:33 am

    I find that DriveThruRPG does very well at telling me when new books are available, as well as what’s on sale. I think people should check the little box on your page to allow DTRPG send them update. This won’t satisfy everyone, but I think it will satisfy a few folks.

    • Peter Boddy
      March 26, 2013 at 6:37 am

      I’ve been watching one thread on the WW forums with a bowl of popcorn in hand. A few reactions to the Mummy delays have gone from “When?” to “It’s taking too long! Not buying it now.” to “When?”. If I could capture the essence of Patience and bottle it, I’d be a multitrillionaire.

      • richt
        March 26, 2013 at 11:45 am

        If you do, send me a case.

  5. Discobutcher
    March 26, 2013 at 6:36 am

    Hi everybody,
    for me as somebody with a deep hatred of facebook, twitter and such the Monday Meeting Blog is the only reliable source of info about what is going on with my favourite game lines.
    Please continue the open communication – I think 3 weeks of “sorry for the delay of XY” is better then no info with a sudden “hey XY is here”.
    I feel more involved and in general better informed when I read something at least once a week – even if it is an anouncement of another delay.


    • richt
      March 26, 2013 at 11:45 am

      I don’t think you’re the only one. Thanks!

  6. March 26, 2013 at 7:22 am

    I recently (well, January) got addicted to Skyrim. I’m straight up like, at level 80. I know they are making an MMO for Elder Scrolls but…no. It isn’t the same thing! I actually have been thinking about the difference a lot, now that you mention it; I wrote a bit on Tor.com about it.

    • richt
      March 26, 2013 at 11:52 am

      Cool. I’m not sure how much consumers see the differences between MMOs and other computer games, but to me at least, and a lot of the MMO folks I’ve talked to, they are very different entertainment forms.

  7. March 26, 2013 at 7:45 am

    To be clear, I did use the example of “Oh hey, Teemu (my new boss) is on fire. I should do something about that,” which led to the natural conclusion that Finns are more flammable. That doesn’t mean I want to set Teemu on fire — just that, if he WERE on fire, I would need to put him out.

    I’m pretty sure it’s in my job description somewhere.

    • richt
      March 26, 2013 at 11:49 am

      And its even funnier because knowing Teemu, he would go on about his business, ignoring the fire, until he had time to “handle it”. But yes, sometimes I like to just give the punchline, and let people try and figure out what possible chain of conversation got us there. I need help.

  8. Bill Bridges
    March 26, 2013 at 9:36 am

    Demons aren’t Frutang — only GRONTOR is Frutang!

    • Austin Loomis
      March 26, 2013 at 11:36 am

      a) I thought it was Grontar.
      b) “Get out, Bill! You’re dead! Drew Barrymore forsakes you!” :)

      • richt
        March 26, 2013 at 11:52 am

        Oh, Bill…

  9. Jeremiah Rastegar
    March 26, 2013 at 9:47 am

    I just appreciate being able to get a glimpse behind the scenes about the people and process that goes into the finished product. Patience is a virtue and while this day and age everyone wants instant gratification, a little wait is needed for a really good product. Do not feel you have to hold back on what you want to say because some people have the attention span of a 3 year old. I’m an adult, most of us are adults; we can get over having to wait and will be happy to receive the product once it is finished.

    I would rather a product be good and take a long time to receive (say, like an 18 year old Macallan), than receive a quick-work, slipshod heaping pile of bleh (insert bad drink here).

    • richt
      March 26, 2013 at 11:53 am

      I’d love to receive an 18 year Macallan- where do I sign up? Are they doing a Kickstarter?

      • Stew
        March 26, 2013 at 7:42 pm

        The kickstarter is in the glass by my hand. I need something to get Changing Breeds done…

  10. Tiresias
    March 26, 2013 at 9:48 am

    Yeah, this format definitely works better. Except for the part about flammable Finns. That was just weird.

    • richt
      March 26, 2013 at 11:54 am

      Thanks- sometimes, you need some weird.

  11. Austin Loomis
    March 26, 2013 at 11:35 am

    Early next week we’ve prepared a special file for our Scion fans (something fun but which doesn’t distract any of our creative team from Scion 2).

    That is the sort of news for which Harry Knowles invented the phrase “multiple geekgasms”.

    Free RPG Day Project: Reap the Whirlwind, for VtR, is a combined 64 page booklet that combines a revised version of “Into the Void” and additional rules files from the Strix and God Machine Chronicles.

    Already looking forward to it.

    • richt
      March 26, 2013 at 11:56 am

      Glad on both counts. These are both products I wasn’t sure we had the bandwidth to accomplish, but our Onyx gang really wanted to do them and found the time.

  12. March 26, 2013 at 12:14 pm

    I the words “Scion 2″ and my interest is raised. I had been assuming that the team had been working on new material or an adjustment of some kind. Will we, instead, be able to look forward to an actual new edition of Scion? That would make me extremely happy instead of fairly happy as I had been.

    Editting together a video for Exalted must be a daunting task. The level of extreme action and energy players would expect of such a thing is only measurable on the “Kickstarter is losing bandwidth from people watching this video” scale. I’m sure the video editor will do his best. I’ll make a mental note to be sure to thank the individual personally on the Kickstarter page comments.

    • IanW
      March 27, 2013 at 1:08 am

      I’d be the one throwing the video together. I hope it appeals!

    • Yiodan
      March 27, 2013 at 8:12 am

      Yes. Its a new scion. Rethought from the ground up. We know very little at this point but everything I have read from the man in charge and richt has been quite encouraging.

  13. Sean Mattox
    March 26, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    I think the changes sound great Rich, and I look forward to future updates. While some may not care for it, I’m always curious and fascinated with seeing as much of the sausage-making process as possible. ;)

  14. March 26, 2013 at 1:14 pm

    Doctor Who will do that.

  15. Yiodan
    March 27, 2013 at 12:15 pm

    I’m 100% in agreement with this blog and the goals it has set out to achieve. Whenever trying something new, there will always be a need for adaptation. It’s normal for people to come in with the expectations set by what came before and this blog is the pioneer for an unexplored way of communicating with fans. Once used to this level of transparency and expectations have been adjusted, I’m convinced this brand new path, the Onyx Path, will prove itself.

    Official announcement or not, this is still the best and most accurate source of information anywhere on the webs on all things Onyx Path. Everything here is factual at the moment it is written. It just might not still be the case next week, and if so it will be updated. I prefer that over long term official annoucements that often also change anyway. Now I know why and I feel involved.

  16. Joe B.
    March 29, 2013 at 2:01 pm

    Will the Mummy KS backers receive a copy of the ST screen pdf that was just released in the virtual box set??

  17. Kyle
    March 29, 2013 at 6:23 pm

    Gotta say, while I personally am not super excited for Exalted….a buddy of mine was hardcore into it during first edition. I am planning on wrangling people to contribute on his behalf

  18. Stephen Webb
    March 31, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    So very true, lol. I sit in front of this machine I’d say the better part of 70 hours a week. If it weren’t for a nice park just down the road I’d be in trouble.

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