September has been pretty exciting so far with a local business wanting some design work done. They want a “team mascot” idea and over the last couple of weeks I have been working with their manager to determine exactly what they desire in terms of font, size, and applications. This piece could end up on a variety of media that range from banners and signs to more custom work like decorative pins. This has been a multiple-step process and has been very exciting to see the design progress. Next week will be another round of design reviews in the hopes to settle on one particular layout. Then we will discuss final coloration and any other fine tuning before the final piece can be completed. Stay tuned here, and on social media, for a look at the final, approved design!
Yesterday (08 08 18) was a successful release of our newest tabletop game product! High Seas Encounters is a 40-page expansion for the True Agenda roleplaying game. Reception has been pretty good so far, with sales occurring both here and over at Drive Thru RPG. We also decided to bundle the basic game and the first expansion together to offer some great savings for anyone who has not yet purchased, and reception has been positive there as well. In addition to all of that, our launch campaign on social media is meeting with good success so far. While now might seem like a good time to let out a collective sigh, there is little time to relax! "Why is that?", you may wonder, well keep reading.
Everyone at the studios is committed to continuing to release game products and supplements well into 2019 and beyond. Already, work has begun on the 2nd expansion for True Agenda. In addition, preliminary work for our next full game has already started some months back, and we are also planning the release of a quarterly publication before the end of this year. This is a pretty hefty release schedule for our limited staff, but everyone is committed to seeing it through. We have done so much already in the nine months since our first product was released, but there is so much more that we want to bring to all of you.
...and there's gonna be trouble. Hey now! Hey now! The proofs are back!
Bad song parodies aside, we received the proof copy from the printer of our first expansion for True Agenda today! Everything turned out very well, and the front and back covers were spot on. Although I was a bit surprised at how dark a few pieces of the interior art ended up, I still think they are fine and fit the overall mood of the particular adventure they help illustrate.
Just a few short weeks now, and everyone will be able to get their copy, either from our website, or from Drive Thru RPG, in both print and digital formats. Links will be added to the website once everything goes live and we can start filling orders.
It has been quiet here lately. Let me clarify. The news on the studio website has been quiet. In the studio itself, work has been progressing nicely, and we are entering the final stages of our first full sized expansion for True Agenda. Our target date is easily in sight with plenty of time to ensure all the final proofs meet with our satisfaction. As far as updating the website, that is where we have not been as focused as we were in those first months following our launch last year. I just have to say, it happens.
As our business moves through its second year, things quiet down during those stretches of time between projects and product release dates. There isn't enough information yet to keep a semi-regular blog post or social media blitz running all the time. Now, while we try not to go more than a month between news releases (where'd you go April 2018?), we certainly want to keep everyone aware that we're still here even if we're just quietly working on stuff.
Having said that, we have just launched a better partnership with Google. The studio website should be appearing in more searches, which helps our overall visibility, which leads to improved search ranking, and so forth. It will take a few days for Google to do its thing, and then probably a few more before we start seeing meaningful data coming back to us. I suspect that in June this process will start delivering results. Still, it is great news for driving the business, because visibility is crucial out here in the electronic world. Stay tuned...
Yesterday, we celebrated our one year anniversary here at the studios. While the business would not actually begin in earnest until July of last year, our official website release, along with social media sites including Facebook, occurred on March 26, 2017. It has been an exciting year that saw the release last November of our first tabletop roleplaying game, True Agenda. It also saw the release of the first of many expansions, with another slated later this summer. There were also six special commission projects that happened last year, with the latest one having just finished up. There are so many more projects we have planned and cannot wait to share with everyone. Definitely stay tuned here and follow us on Facebook to keep current with everything going on.
The image to the right is the final design for a good friend of mine. His game shop is promoting an online, message based D&D campaign, and this is the design that will shortly become a poster for his shop. Check out the Griffons Lair on Facebook here, or if you are in the Erie, PA area, drop in and take a look.
The studios have had to keep everything nailed down while the March winds whip around. Even though we have been quiet here and across social media, things have been progressing nicely towards completing the first major expansion for our tabletop roleplaying game, True Agenda. The planned release date is still firmly in our crosshairs as the art and writing move along as expected.
The studios are also excited about the upcoming reveal later this year of our second game title slated for a 2019 release. Artwork has even begun on the cover design, allowing for some new design ideas that differ from what has been done so far. These ideas have actually sparked a new art direction for some of the images to be put into the True Agenda expansion. This is a win-win because who doesn't like seeing something new artistically?
Finally, Drive Thru RPG is having their GM's Day Sale that actually lasts for the next 10 days. The PDF version of True Agenda is one of the represented products, and is available for 33% off! This makes it a great time to pick up a copy for anyone who does not yet own it as this is the biggest discount offered to date.
Before diving back into the work surrounding the studio's tabletop game design, I wanted to get one of my projects completed. A good friend of mine, David Murphy, creates some incredible costumes, and not too long ago he made another one. This time it is an Imperial Naval Officer from Star Wars. He took several photos, and below on the left is one of those. I thought it was a perfect pose for a recruitment poster, but I wasn't sure exactly how I wanted to portray it. After spending some time brainstorming and surfing the Internet, I came up with the result you see on the right. It turned out rather well, and David was more than pleased with it, which is all that really matters. The success with this project makes me want to dive into more, which I promised myself I would do in between the tabletop game venture. I certainly do not want to pigeonhole myself into just one medium or end product. There are simply far too many end results waiting to be discovered!
Everyone at the studios has been very busy these first few weeks of 2018. We launched our first product of the year on the 18th of this month in the form of a mini-expansion for True Agenda. The True Agenda Resource Pack (one) is a nice, little add on to the core rules released last year in November. We went with a Pay What You Want (PWYW) format over on Drive Thru RPG even though we have it listed for $2.00 here on our website. The reception has been phenomenal so far, and it has only been out for a couple of days! There is also a valuable coupon included in the pages of this PDF-only product to get the upcoming late summer release of the first, full-sized expansion entitled High Seas Encounters.
We have lots more surprises in store for everyone in 2018 as we are really just getting started. We are looking to grow our game product line and have several more custom projects lined up as well. Everything kicks into a higher gear starting in February, so stay tuned!
While perusing the news headlines this week, I came across reports that the U.S. government has been funding an effort to identify and track UFOs. The main story broke in the New York Times and can be found here. While not as prominent as efforts like Project Blue Book and others, it is not surprising to learn that ongoing efforts have continued in the extraterrestrial search. Of course, this could easily turn into a promotion for the studio's new game release, True Agenda, like I did on Facebook, but setting aside marketing gimmicks for a moment, I found the article and attached imagery to be interesting. I won't turn this post into a platform for my thoughts on the existence of life "out there," but I certainly agree that these sort of efforts should continue regardless of whether or not the government feels we ought to know.
Now that things have calmed down from the stress and excitement of the November release deadline, I realize that we are now into December. Where does all the time go? Nonetheless, it was an exciting time for the studios to finally release True Agenda, and now work begins anew with the expansions. The first expansion is not slated until a late summer release next year, but there will actually be something else coming out first. A resource pack is in the creation process right now that will add a few more rules, weapons, and other exciting options to the game. It will be a digital only offering, since after reviewing sales data from the last week, digital files are by far the best seller. It really is no surprise in the early 21st century that most players want their games in electronic format.
In addition to this new information, and the expansion schedule for True Agenda for the next two years, another tabletop game is currently under consideration. While this is still in the very early stages, we could be looking at another game to be released possibly in 2019. More information will be forthcoming once we get into 2018, but we plan on keeping a pretty aggressive release schedule for the next couple of years.