Prince’s Gambit & Its Final Nights (on Kickstarter) [Monday Meeting Notes]
Yes, we’re getting all crazy here at the end (or at least the end on Thursday) of the Prince’s Gambit casual card game Kickstarter, and we’re thrilled with how well it has gone so far! As I mentioned at the start, this is a very different kind of KS if only because it is a card game, and we’ve never done one of them on KS before!
So seeing how this KS compares and contrasts to our Deluxe KSs has been fascinating and we haven’t yet seen the end. The price point being so much lower ($19 plus shipping for the deck), shipping being estimated until we add it after the KS in BackerKit, it not being like VtES or other familiar cards games from the original WW days; all of these and more have provided interesting responses and data that we know we’ll be able to use in the future.
The Kickstarter is over on Thursday- so pop in if you can – it’s a really fun game and you can even watch Eddy and Justin and friends play through it at this link: https://youtu.be/4eZT40BlavE
We’ve been asked about this, so I was thinking it would be helpful to let you folks in on how Onyx Path has evolved these past five years, and particularly in terms of how we’ve improved our internal processes. I know I’ve mentioned this before, but maybe not with quite this emphasis on what happens behind the scenes.
For example, before our Office Manager, LisaT, was hired, I was the person getting in the freelance creator pay sheets as submitted by the art director and all our developers. Then it would take me a solid day to go through the sheets, find errors or other questions that needed answering, and get replies and write out all the checks. As you might imagine, trying to keep those two dozen+ payments straight and accurate every couple of weeks took up a lot of my bandwidth, but I stayed on top of it as best I could and made sure that even if I rolled late I always got the checks out.
Now, we have LisaT, who was hired specifically to make sure we didn’t let any freelancer linger unpaid as we grew and had more and more creators contracted, and the payments are happening much more smoothly even as their number every couple of weeks has greatly grown.
Similarly, Rollickin’ Rose Bailey was brought on to help our developers manage and complete their projects as we revitalized the Chronicles of Darkness lines with 2nd Editions and reactivated the WoD lines with the 20th Anniversary Editions. That’s a lot of lines just there, nevermind Exalted, Scion, Scarred Lands, Trinity Continuum, and Pugmire and Cavaliers of Mars.
We could only grow as we needed to because Rose stepped up, and even with her there helping on the development, writing, and editing side, I realized we needed another Onyx Path staff member in there connecting that work with finished books and projects getting into the right sales venues, and we were lucky to get Mighty Matt McElroy to come onboard late last year.
One of the very first things we three did together was to reconfigure our freelance writer pay rates by removing the 5 cents a word pay rate cap that had been in place for over a decade as a legacy of the original WW days. We could do that because we had grown as we needed to during the first five years, even if it was a clunky and inelegant growth process.
For developers, we scrapped the old model, also a holdover from old WW, of paying by the word, and instituted a single amount by project. Bonus amounts are now added for such things as if it’s a core book or we know we’ll need the developers to contribute to the Kickstarter.
For any of our freelancers, we also have created several different payment options, in terms of method of pay and the timing of when folks are paid.
We could make these changes, now that we can afford them, because of the oversight LisaT, Rollickin’ Rose and Mighty Matt can give to making sure these process changes actually work as intended. Which is, primarily, as an increase in the financial reward in working on these amazing projects.
Make no mistake, I’m not saying these changes will let our freelancers quit their day jobs, as we are still trying to make things work in the tabletop RPG biz mostly. But we have slowly built up the business so we’re at the point that we can replace legacy processes that I brought into Onyx Path from old WW (because I knew how all the pieces worked, and could be managed by a one or two man company).
BUT: even with all the above in place, if you have been unpaid for work you have completed for us under contract, I absolutely want you to know you can contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. We have a great team, but mistakes happen, so I’m here to help.
Another thing our great team here was able to do is to put together a plan to get more Exalted 3rd material flowing again!
We’ve got the first batches of releases to be released as monthly mini-releases in progress, as noted in the Project Progress list below, and a couple of tasty excerpts from upcoming books.
This week, our EX3 devs, Robert Vance and Eric Minton, have provided an excerpt from Arms of the Chosen. I give you: Gnomon, the Starmetal Wrackstaff Artifact: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B7FqViticwNuam9lbVJBWFhJM2s/view?usp=sharing
The Prince’s Gambit casual vampire card game Kickstarter is entering it’s final nights! We’re almost at the Stretch Goal for adding new art and then come the Assamites, and we’re hoping the 48 hour push gets us even to more cool rewards! So please check it out: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/200664283/princes-gambit-casual-vampire-card-game .
Designed by long-time Vampire: the Masquerade tabletop RPG developer Justin Achilli, Prince’s Gambit is a fast-paced social deduction game set within the world of Vampire, but which requires no special knowledge to play. Players must cooperate to gain the favor of the Prince while deducing who among them are secretly the traitorous Sabbat infiltrators.
Next, the Monarchies of Mau KS is scheduled to come after Gambit.
Looking for our Deluxe or Prestige Edition books? Here’s the link to the press release we put out about how Onyx Path is now selling through Indie Press Revolution: http://theonyxpath.com/press-release-onyx-path-limited-editions-now-available-through-indie-press-revolution/
You can now order wave 2 of our Deluxe and Prestige print overrun books, including Deluxe Mage 20th Anniversary, and Deluxe V20 Dark Ages!
Night Horrors: Conquering Heroes for Beast: the Primordial, PoD and PDF versions going on sale Wednesday!
This book includes:
- An in-depth look at how Heroes hunt and what makes a Hero, with eleven new Heroes to drop into any chronicle.
- A brief look at why Beasts may antagonize one another, with seven new Beasts to drop into any chronicle.
- Rules for Insatiables, ancient creatures born of the Primordial Dream intent on hunting down Beasts to fill a hunger without end, featuring six examples ready to use in any chronicle.
From the massive Chronicles of Darkness: Dark Eras main book, we have pulled this single chapter, Dark Eras: Beneath the Skin (Demon and Skinchangers 1486-1502 Aztec Empire). Ahuitzotl sits on the throne at the height of the Aztec Empire, overseeing his sorcerer-priests’ sacrifices and the endless flower wars his jaguar and eagle warriors carry out in his name to keep the altars well-supplied with victims. The gears of the Aztec Empire turn smoothly and inexorably, but not everything is what it pretends to be. Skinchangers take the shapes of animals to run the wilds or bring down human prey, the Unchained cobble together identities from stolen lives, and stranger things still lurk in the deserts and jungles beyond the walls of Tenochtitlan.
On sale in PDF and physical copy PoD versions on DTRPG! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/206028/Dark-Eras-Beneath-the-Skin-Skinchangers-and-Demon-the-Descent
From the massive Chronicles of Darkness: Dark Eras main book, we have pulled this single chapter, Dark Eras: Into the Cold (Demon: the Descent 1961 Berlin). East Germany erects a wall against its Western counterpart, turning West Berlin into an island within its own country. As the Cold War heats up, demons find themselves the targets of increasing human scrutiny, and begin to realize that the God-Machine’s plans didn’t end with the War.
On sale now in PDF and physical copy PoD versions on DTRPG! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/206081/Dark-Eras-Into-the-Cold-Demon-the-Descent
The splendor and horror of Rio is unwrapped! Cursed Necropolis: Rio for Mummy: the Curse is on sale in PDF and PoD versions: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/205257/Cursed-Necropolis-Rio
Beneath the splendor of Rio de Janeiro seethes a hotbed of occult activity. Over a score of mummies keep their tombs in Rio, their presence seeping into the soil and stones and souls of the city. Over all this reigns the infamous Teshra-Gemet, the pretender Pharaoh.
The city of Rio births marvels both bright and dark… and you never know which kind you have until it’s too late.
Cursed Necropolis: Rio contains:
- The secrets and schemes of Rio’s Arisen.
- New Utterances, from the perception usurping Horse and Rider to the cleansing fire of Baal’s Due.
- “The Serpent’s Tooth,” an all-new adventure to introduce players to the conflicts and power plays of Rio de Janeiro.
Beasts are added to Hunter: the Vigil with Hunter: Tooth and Nail, coming atcha in PDF and physical book Pod versions on DriveThruRPG.com! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/204066/Hunter-Tooth-and-Nail
Hunter: Tooth and Nail includes:
- Fiction and story hooks to bring these beasts of legend to your Hunter: The Vigil chronicle.
- New bestial Dread Powers.
- New Compacts and Conspiracies which hunt the monsters, but also sometimes hunt the zealous heroes that hunt as well.
The Secrets of the Covenants for Vampire: the Requiem 2nd REVEALED this Wednesday on DTRPG! Physical copy PoD version coming to DTRPG: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/199280/Secrets-of-the-Covenants
Continuing our individual Dark Eras chapters, we offer you Dark Eras: Fallen Blossoms on in PDF and physical copy PoD versions on DTRPG! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/205483/Dark-Eras-Fallen-Blossoms-Hunter-the-Vigil
From the massive Chronicles of Darkness: Dark Eras main book, we have pulled this single chapter, Dark Eras: Doubting Souls (Hunter 1690-1695 Salem). Immigrants and tribes struggled to co-exist on the Eastern Seaboard in the ever-expanding Colonies. Violent clashes, supernatural beliefs, and demonic influences spelled disaster for Salem Village and its surrounding towns, while others fought werewolves and vampires on the frontier. With so much at risk, only god-fearing men and women were deemed innocent — and those were few indeed.
Available in PDF and physical copy PoD versions on DTRPG: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/204372/Dark-Eras-Doubting-Souls-Hunter-the-Vigil
From the massive Chronicles of Darkness: Dark Eras main book, we have pulled this single chapter, Dark Eras: The Bowery Dogs (Werewolf 1969-1979 NYC). New York City in the 1970s. Crime. Drugs. Gang violence. Vast economic disparity. And werewolves. It’s a lean, ugly time to be alive, and the lone wolf doesn’t stand a chance out there. In the end, all you really have is family.
Available in PDF and physical copy PoD versions on DTRPG: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/203762/Dark-Eras-The-Bowery-Dogs-Werewolf-the-Forsaken
The Locker is open; the Chronicles of Darkness: Hurt Locker, that is! PDF and physical copy PoDs are now available on DTRPG! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/199275/Chronicles-of-Darkness-Hurt-Locker
Hurt Locker features:
- Treatment of violence in the Chronicles of Darkness. Lasting trauma, scene framing, and other tools for making your stories hurt.
- Many new player options, including Merits, supernatural knacks, and even new character types like psychic vampires and sleeper cell soldiers.
- Expanded equipment and equipment rules.
Hurt Locker requires the Chronicles of Darkness Rulebook or any other standalone Chronicles of Darkness rulebook such as Vampire: The Requiem, Werewolf: The Forsaken, or Beast: The Primordial to use.
From the massive Chronicles of Darkness: Dark Eras main book, we have pulled this single chapter, Dark Eras: Ruins of Empire (Mummy 1893-1924). Perhaps the quintessential era of the mummy in the minds of Westerners, this period saw the decline of the two greatest empires of the age: British and Ottoman. Walk with the Arisen as they bear witness to the death of the Victorian age, to pivotal mortal discoveries in Egypt, and to the horrors of the Great War.
Available in PDF and physical copy PoD versions on DTRPG. http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/178801/Dark-Eras-Ruins-of-Empire-Mummy-the-Curse
From the massive Chronicles of Darkness: Dark Eras main book, we have pulled this single chapter, Dark Eras: The Sundered World (Werewolf and Mage 5500-5000 BCE). At the birth of civilization, in the shadow of the Fall, the Awakened stand as champions and protectors of the agricultural villages spread across the Balkans. In a world without a Gauntlet, where Shadow and flesh mingle, the steady taming of the world by humanity conflicts with the half-spirit children of Father Wolf.
Available in PDF and physical copy PoD versions on DTRPG. http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/202272/Dark-Eras-The-Sundered-World-Werewolf-the-Forsaken-Mage-the-Awakening
Discussing GenCon plans. August 17th – 20th, Indianapolis. Every chance the booth will actually be 20? x 30? this year that we’ll be sharing with friends. We’re looking at new displays this year, like a back drop and magazine racks for the brochure(s).
In November, we’ll be at Game Hole Con in Madison, WI. More news as we have it, and here’s their website: https://www.gameholecon.com/
And now, the new project status updates!
First Draft (The first phase of a project that is about the work being done by writers, not dev prep)
- Exalted 3rd Novel by Matt Forbeck (Exalted 3rd Edition)
- Trinity Continuum: Aeon Rulebook (The Trinity Continuum)
- M20 Gods and Monsters (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition)
- M20 Book of the Fallen (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition)
- Ex Novel 2 (Aaron Rosenberg) (Exalted 3rd Edition)
- C20 Novel (Jackie Cassada) (Changeling: the Dreaming 20th Anniversary Edition)
- Pugmire Fiction Anthology (Pugmire)
- Monarchies of Mau Early Access (Pugmire)
- Hunter: the Vigil 2e core (Hunter: the Vigil 2nd Edition)
- DtD Night Horrors: Enemy Action (Demon: the Descent)
- The Realm (Exalted 3rd Edition)
- Dragon-Blooded (Exalted 3rd Edition)
- Arms of the Chosen (Exalted 3rd Edition)
- We were going to list Adversaries of the Righteous (EX3 Antagonists) and Hundred Devils Night Parade (EX3 Bestiary) here but since we’re doing monthly small releases with them, we figured that would just get annoying and confusing. So this week, they go here, but after that they just exist.
- Kithbook Boggans (Changeling: the Dreaming 20th Anniversary Edition)
- V20 Dark Ages Jumpstart (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition)
- GtS Geist 2e core (Geist: the Sin-Eaters Second Edition)
- Pugmire Pan’s Guide for New Pioneers (Pugmire)
- Trinity Continuum Core Rulebook (The Trinity Continuum)
- Scion: Origins (Scion 2nd Edition)
- Scion: Hero (Scion 2nd Edition)
- WoD Ghost Hunters (World of Darkness)
- W20 Changing Ways (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition)
- Signs of Sorcery (Mage: the Awakening Second Edition)
- SL Ring of Spiragos (Pathfinder – Scarred Lands 2nd Edition)
- Ring of Spiragos (5e – Scarred Lands 2nd Edition)
- SL Dagger of Spiragos (Pathfinder – Scarred Lands 2nd Edition)
- Dagger of Spiragos (5e– Scarred Lands 2nd Edition)
- Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition, featuring the Huntsmen Chronicle (Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition)
- Book of Freeholds (Changeling: the Dreaming 20th Anniversary Edition)
- BtP Beast Player’s Guide (Beast: the Primordial)
- M20 Cookbook (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition)
- CtD C20 Jumpstart (Changeling: the Dreaming 20th Anniversary Edition)
- VtR Half-Damned (Vampire: the Requiem 2nd Edition)
- Wraith: the Oblivion 20th Anniversary Edition
- BtP Building a Legend (Beast: the Primordial)
ART DIRECTION FROM MIRTHFUL MIKE:
In Art Direction
- Beckett’s Jyhad Diary – Waiting on the remainder of the art.
- W20 Pentex Employee Indoctrination Handbook – AD’d
- Dagger of Spiragos
- VTR: Thousand Years of Night – Contracted
- Cavaliers of Mars – AD’d(ish)
- Monarchies of Mau Early Access – Sketches incoming. Got McEvoy’s finished piece in.
- BtP Building a Legend – AD’d
- Wraith 20 – AD’d
- W20 Changing Ways
- Ex3 Monthly Stuff – AD’d
- Prince’s Gambit
- M20 Book of Secrets – Layout in progress.
- Pugmire Screen – Doing up the front.
- Pugmire Cards – Done, waiting for format from printer.
- Pugmire – Prepping files for press.
- M20 Art Book – Still in the queue…
- C20 – 2nd proof.
- V20 Dark Ages Companion – Sending to WW for approval.
- CtL Huntsmen Chronicle Anthology – At WW for approval.
- M20 Book of Secrets
- Ex 3 Screen – Shipping almost completed.
- Ex 3 core book – Shipping almost completed along with map and bookmarks.
- W20 Shattered Dreams – Shipping almost completed.
- Shattered Dreams Screen – Shipping almost completed.
- Beckett Screen – Shipped to shipper.
- Beast Conquering Heroes – PDF and PoD going on sale this week on DTRPG.
- Dark Eras: To the Strongest – PoD proof on the way.
- Dark Eras: Beneath the Skin – PDF and physical book PoD on sale!
- Dark Eras: Into the Cold – PDF and physical book PoD on sale!
- V20 Lore of the Bloodlines – PoD proof ordered.
- Dark Eras Companion – Files uploaded and processing.
- W20 Song of Unmaking – Inputting errata.
- EX3 Tomb of Dreams Jumpstart – PDF out to backers.
- C20 Anthology – Out to backers, gathering errata.
TODAY’S REASON TO CELEBRATE: US Tax day! Celebrate through your tears if you are from the US! Celebrate not paying our taxes if you are not!