Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Dwimmermount on the Horizon

I'm sure it'll come as no surprise to anyone who reads this blog to learn that I plan on publishing my home campaign's megadungeon, Dwimmermount, in a form usable by other referees. What may be a surprise is when I'll be publishing it and how I plan to go about doing so, though at least some of you have already puzzled this out -- not that it was exactly a secret. The gist of it is the good folks at Autarch, who produced the excellent Adventurer, Conqueror, King, have kindly offered to assist me in crowdfunding Dwimmermount through Kickstarter and, later, distributing the hardcover book that results, should the project be successfully funded.

The official launch of the Kickstarter will be at the end of the month. In the meantime, I can announce that the book's front cover will be illustrated by Mark Allen, with the back cover illustrated by Jeff Dee, and interior artwork by Mark and Jeff as well as other talented artists, such as Ryan Browning (who illustrated much of Adventurer, Conqueror, King) and Conor Nolan (conornolan.com). The book's layout will be by Adam Jury, who made the new edition of Thousand Suns such a thing of beauty. Backer rewards will include the PDF of the finished product; the PDF plus hardcover; both plus a separate map book in softcover; a vinyl play aid for tracking dungeon factions and the impact of the party's progress using wipe-erase marker; and handbound copies of the book signed by all creators. In addition, the first bonus goal of the project is the donation of original Dwimmermount materials -- maps, keys, character sheets, etc. -- to Tim Hutchings's Play Generated Map and Document Archive and the Science Fiction and Fantasy Research Collection at Texas A&M University.

I'm sure people will have lots of questions about this project. Some of them, I hope, will be answered over at the Autarch blog, which has a FAQ already online. Others I'll do my best to answer in the comments and in other posts over the course of the weeks to come. I'm very excited to finally get this project under way and I hope others share my enthusiasm.

18 comments:

  1. Great news! Congratulations, James! Can't wait for it.

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  2. Will it be system independent or Labyrinth Lord focused?

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  3. It'll be using Labyrinth Lord, which means that pretty much any flavor of old school D&D should be compatible with it without much difficulty.

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  4. This is great news; congratulations James!

    If I can ask a selfish question, what does the release of Dwimmermount proper mean for the Dwimmermount Codex volumes?

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    1. A question from someone who didn't follow this whole Dwimmermount thing very closely: What's the difference between Dwimmermount "Proper" and the Dwimmermount Codices?
      Also: Will "Proper" only be available in hardcover? No softcover?

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    2. The Dwimmermount Kickstarter project is the publication of the original mega-dungeon that's been the tent-pole for James' home campaign. The Dwimmermount Codices are books of house rules used in that campaign. The dungeon and Codices can be used together or separately, and as James says are useful for just about any flavor of old-school game. You're right, we do need a better term to distinguish the dungeon from the Codices than "proper"!
      Print versions: Autarch's experience with ACKS was that hardback was so much more popular than softcover that it made sense to focus on a traditional print run for hardback, and let people who wanted softcover get that through one of the many excellent POD services offered by the PDF sales partners. So that's our advice for Dwimmermount too, but we could be persuaded otherwise!

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  5. That's not a selfish question at all :)

    The megadungeon Kickstarter has no direct impact on the Codex volumes, except to the extent that, now that the Kickstarter is almost under way, I can again return to getting the others finished and ready for sale. This Kickstarter project has been in planning since October, more or less, and it's often distracted me from finishing things that should have been done a while ago. With luck, we'll see the first Codex available in the next few weeks, with others to follow thereafter.

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  6. I love the bit about archiving materials. So will stuff be sent to two different location, or is the PGMDA "at" the SFFRCTAMU?

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    1. PlaGMaDA will scan the originals and handle their digital curation and access to the public, then send the originals to Texas A&M which will curate the papers themselves and access for scholars.

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  7. Great news - I'm looking forward to contributing!

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  8. So Happy I'VE been WAITING on this for what to me feels like forever. I am in so IN.

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  9. Count me in for a kickstarter donation. I've looked forward to this.

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  10. This is fantastic news. I wish you well on your Kickstarter project. And to get Jeff Dee to do the back cover? Priceless! The Old Ones of RPG are quickly dying out.

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  11. That is totally awesome news.

    Sigh. And I finally figured out what I want my translation of St. Beatus of Liebana's Commentary on the Apocalypse to look like. It needs to look like a really handsome, readable gaming book like yours, and then the 150 Revelation "storia" illustrations would fit right in.

    It will never ever happen, probably; I'm only about half done; and there's probably way too many footnotes to make it work, and I sure as heck don't know anybody to do 150 illustrations; but it would be cool. And honestly, what's more practical when you're translating one of the great illustrated books of all time? A thick squat academic hardcover, or a thin tall gaming hardcover? A boring academic PDF, or a beautiful one? Even if I have to do without illustrations, as is most likely, beauty is surely better. (And good theology, too.)

    Sigh. Graphic book designers must have the best fun in life. And translating is fun. But checking footnotes is really getting me down, so just looking at your book has cheered me up. So does the thought of Dwimmermount. I will keep it in mind as a sort of inspiration.

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  12. Hey, thanks for getting the word out about TAMU's developing gaming collection!! More information about the collection can be found online at http://cushing.library.tamu.edu/collections/browse-major-collections/the-science-fiction-collection or you can email me at ccoker at library.tamu.edu. Cheers!!

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