Author Topic: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report!  (Read 36360 times)

Mister Andersen

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Re: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report!
« Reply #390 on: June 21, 2016, 03:37:01 PM »
Part of the problem however is that the lack of uptake that has necessitated Spellbound being put on the back burner is Spellbound itself being struck in development Hell and killing most of the range's forward momentum. While .PDF releases -- ranging from single classes to entire game lines -- are one of the most important things keeping minor players viable, there's no mistaking the prestige of a major release  and its power to both attract and hold interest.

When Spellbound drops, if there's any hope for the line I think we're all going to need to do some major evangelising to reignite interest.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2016, 12:22:28 AM by Mister Andersen »

azy

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Re: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report!
« Reply #391 on: June 25, 2016, 09:26:06 PM »
I'm more worried about spycraft 3 cause it is what brought me to crafty's products =S but Spellbound would finally complement my shadowrun-like setting better than the "spycraft version" or even the shadowrun does =o
GL Crafty, hope u guys finish both books soon at your own pace with the same quality that you always had

Salvatos

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Re: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report!
« Reply #392 on: July 02, 2016, 01:10:48 PM »
I often wonder if more player-created content would help the brand gain traction. You know how AD&D still has loads of player-made monsters, adventures, magic items and so on all over the Internet and people still play it even though no official content has been released in decades? I wonder if some of that wouldn't help convince people to give FC a try. Some people prefer to run premade adventures (especially when picking up a system for the first time), and while Crafty made a few, it's pretty obvious that we shouldn't expect more in the foreseeable future. And while crafting NPCs is really easy with Meadicus's tool, I'm sure there are those who wish there were a bigger bestiary ready to use. If copyright weren't an issue, it could even be fun to take old adventures we've enjoyed and convert them.

Takeru

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Re: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report!
« Reply #393 on: July 02, 2016, 09:18:09 PM »
I've always said one of the big reasons FC never caught on was the lack of post-release support. Crafty prefers Big Large Books with massive things, while games like Pathfinder subsist off of lots of tiny books that all add little individual things. There's a lot of content that just absolutely needs some love; the entire Industrial Era for one, the NPC builder for another, and the Prizes system for a third. But the only content it got was some classes, one add-on book (that was 75% about new settings), and a book of some okay pre-made short adventures.

The fan-made "Book of Holding" has actually got my player base re-invigorated with Fantasy Craft stuff because of all the new things it adds into the game that open up new avenues of approach when building characters and small things that pre-existing characters will love. You can be a Drake with an actually threatening breath weapon now!  ;D

Spellbound is an amazing concept. The magic system of FC is showing the pains of age and some decisions made just to be contrary That Other Game and is one of the areas that could most use an overhaul and reworking. I think the giant nature of the book is what ultimately is causing it to fail and FC could get a lot more push in other circles if there were smaller, easier to make books that provide new options to the game.

Crafty doesn't pay much attention to FC because it doesn't make the money, and it doesn't make the money because there isn't the groundswell, but a lot of the lack of groundswell is lack of anything new. Couldn't some sort of thematic mini-supplements be made in pdf format without causing too much loss in manpower on other projects? Just little things for different types of settings, don't have to create entire new settings with entire new backstories and themes and maps or anything.

 Just stuff like "Running a Psych Horror game? Here's some rules for insanity and some stuff to flesh out the Investigation system, along with some example prizes and some new NPC qualities and statblocks. Running a Pirate Game? Have some more swashbuckly Campaign Qualities and some basic Ship Combat rules and some stats for Crews for ships and how they work. Hey all you Classic Adventurers, here's our version of the Tomb of Horrors and some campaign qualities emulating the oldest versions of That Other Game." 

Bite sized chunks of awesomeness, like they did with the classes but something besides just a portion of the game you only think about when leveling up. Who wouldn't love some Steampunky Weird West stuff, or some form of naval combat that isn't just "Here let me borrow the rules from another game"?
You can literally make Mike Haggar in Fantasy Craft. I love this system.

Mister Andersen

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Re: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report!
« Reply #394 on: July 03, 2016, 04:04:15 AM »
The effective death of the "powered by fantasy craft" licence hasn't helped either, as without it you can't commercially release a product claiming direct compatabiliy with FC. That removes a significant incentive for 3rd party product creation -- as Pat and Alex have accurately said, it's $$$ that determines where a company's effort is focused -- leaving only fan generated content to bolster awareness of the brand beyond Crafty's own efforts.

While there wasn't a massive massive amount of material released through the licence program -- which although not generated by Crafty I have to assume still needed to be vetted by them just like any other licencing arrangement -- the adventures produced under it all did their part in keeping the machine going for us all.
« Last Edit: July 03, 2016, 04:15:53 AM by Mister Andersen »

Salvatos

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Re: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report!
« Reply #395 on: July 04, 2016, 07:59:51 AM »
I wasn't aware of that - I was just about to mention all those Kickstarter projects for third-party adventures or even settings for various systems that always seem to do strangely well (I always assumed few people would both care *and* trust third party creators, but I think I've yet to see one such project that wasn't already close to funding). I guess fanmade content is where it's at, then.

I think Takeru makes a very good point with frequent releases. Don't get me wrong, I asolutely love the fact that all the core rules are in the same book, but in any kind of creative project it seems easier to build a community and keep it interested and thinking about your product when there's frequent small releases, or at least some kind of activity and new development that people can look forward to in the short term (even if it's just contests or "Fan Fridays" or whatnot). And I think Crafty had the right idea with a staggered release for Spellbound (if that plan still stands); that way, instead of dumping one massive book and letting the hype die out in a matter of, say, a few weeks, there would be new content to talk about every week for a month before its collective hype even begins to wane.

Of course, if Crafty had time and resources for that, they'd probably use them to finish Spellbound first, which points back to a fan effort. Maybe something like a fanzine? I've never read an RPG magazine or any kind of fanzine, but it seems like it would be a good place for the kind of bite-sized original content Takeru suggests above. A project like that would serve the dual purpose of involving players in creating content (contributors) and receiving new content (readers). Things could also be compiled later on into Bestiary collections or thematic packs of character options and so on that would give players easy-to-grab add-ons to the system.

Crafty_Alex

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Re: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report!
« Reply #396 on: July 04, 2016, 12:10:07 PM »
This is an interesting topic, which I'm thinking of breaking off into its own thread, because there's a lot to be learned here.

For many years, we also thought "if you build it, they will come." Then came Pathfinder, which built it much bigger, faster, and more aggressively. That's the size of it. We built it and built it with FC, but with Pathfinder literally release the same day as FC, and the wounds the game suffered early (see f*cking, Mongoose), it put us forever on a back foot. Throwing increasing levels of effort at FC will not change the fact that Pathfinder exists, and in many ways has sucked most of the air out of the room.

Our most precious resources are time and attention, as it's just the two of us and we need to spin plates like running Kickstarters, developing board and card games, and most importantly investing that time and attention wisely in things that will generate profits for us to pay ourselves and/or grow the business. The question, ultimately, is whether the yield of time and attention invested in FC remotely equals time and attention invested in a board game, card game, MAG or Spycraft. Judging from the sales, the answer appears to be no. We do know that folks have a deep and abiding love of FC, and we want to respect that and will still release Spellbound, even though it's not the smartest investment of time and attention, because we don't want to leave you all hanging (nor do we want an albatross hanging around our neck).

On the plus side, Mistborn is the very first RPG Pat and I have released that has *not* been damaged by outside forces from the outset...and it does well, despite its relatively sluggish pace of releases. So I think RPGs can be profitable and popular today. But we've taken a lot of lumps with other releases, and we need to build in a way that will ensure and protect Spycraft Third from the damage FC and SC2.0 suffered out the gate. I am *literally* working on SC3 right now, and I think our plan once it's ready for Kickstarter will help you guys see how we plan to make sure the game line is healthy and as "bulletproof" as possible from the jump...as well as having a much better environment for future expansion and third party collaboration.

So TL; DR - SB is coming, and SC3 is too. Rest assured of that. But beyond that I can't really say.

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Desertpuma

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Re: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report!
« Reply #397 on: July 04, 2016, 12:47:38 PM »
Alex, I think I can speak for everyone when I say that we have full faith and trust in you and Pat to do what is necessary to keep Crafty Games not only afloat but productive. The quality you two produce with this company is tremendous. While we may seem impatient at times over Spellbound not being out yet, many of us, myself included, just want to be able to read it cover to cover and would rather you put out the quality we expect than rush it especially since keeping the company going is the true first priority.

Those of us on these forums who have been Crafty loyalists since Spycraft was still part of AEG are the most patient. We can only hope and wish that if Pathfinder had gone through the Mongoose bullshit and FC did not that it would have revolutionized the D20 fantasy market.

Keep writing, guys! We're keeping the faith!


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Salvatos

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Re: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report!
« Reply #398 on: July 04, 2016, 01:00:06 PM »
I did think this might warrant a different thread, but unfortunately I only thought about it after we had deviated...

I do get the feeling that the ball is in our court at this point, so to speak. Crafty have released a solid foundation for the system and whether they keep working on it depends on whether there's money to be made with it. That makes sense. Maybe we're not at a content creation stage anymore, but at a marketing stage - and if it's successful, we can reach another creation stage later. And as with most RPGs as far as I can tell, marketing is mostly word of mouth. There's a lot of systems out there, and most people who are interested in RPGs have already chosen one, so it's up to us who play Fantasy Craft to tell others why we chose this one and what it does better than others. The other option would be cross-marketing by getting people with an audience to feature FC in some way - things like an RPG show (like Wil Wheaton's Titansgrave) or a video game that uses the system or setting (like Shadowrun). But that's probably unattainable for indies unless Pat and Alex have very important friends :P

Aldus Vertten

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Re: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report!
« Reply #399 on: July 04, 2016, 04:14:49 PM »

So TL; DR - SB is coming, and SC3 is too. Rest assured of that. But beyond that I can't really say.


I'm looking forward to get Spelbound eventually, but I'm way more interested in SC3. SC is why i discovered you, and still is one of my favs ever. I think that SC has the kind of "prestige" that will allow you to make a great comeback when the kickstarter finally hits. And with how ks are working lately, it's really a great opportunity to make sure that you've  more material coming from third parties. Stretch goals are a great way to expand a game, with adventures written by other authors, to other settings getting books in the new system... this campaigns are a perfect way to expand and release a really strong new game line...

And now I'm really going out of the proper topic...



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SilvercatMoonpaw

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Re: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report!
« Reply #400 on: July 11, 2016, 08:40:21 AM »
To be honest by this point I don't really need Spellbound for anything, since FC just isn't getting much play anywhere.  Since I will probably never get a chance to use it in any great capacity I can afford to wait.

Kadrok

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Re: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report!
« Reply #401 on: July 14, 2016, 08:11:57 PM »
Is there somewhere I can read this sad tale? I'm a relative newcomer to Fantasy Craft, so I missed all the Mongoose stuff and whatnot.
Interesting discussion, but I think rule of cool could reasonably trump mere science in a game about magic powers.   :P