While we are aiming for a release of early 2010, we have decided not to adhere to a set release date but instead ensure a perfected product line. Putting out a product that is not as excellent as it could have been, simply to save a month or two, even a year, is a recipe for bad reviews, an inferior product, typos, and rules issues which afflict all subsequent supplements and adventures. Besides ensuring we get it right the first time, we have our concerns about the economy, about printers, mail order fulfillment, and into-retail distribution.
There is certainly enough to consider with publication alone, let alone game design, to make us take a deep breath and enjoy the process of RPG creation, play testing, illustrating, layout and web design without the panic of a set in stone deadline. Still, setting goals is of paramount importance in any project, especially one involving different people and elements. We are of course eager to see our dream realized, to see the physical bound books, to start promotions and getting out of the studio and into the RPG hobby’s eye, but first there are a few enormous steps between now and then….
The Mutant Epoch Hub Rules book, which is the main core book needed to play the game and includes character generation, game mastering tips, ‘monsters’ and tons more, as opposed to having these elements broken up into three books as many game systems offer, has been getting a few alterations in phrasing, rules and artwork additions.
Changes to the Hub Rules so late in the production process delays the release because we need to insert new sections of text, re-phrase rules, update tables to reflect late play testing tweaks, and add newly updated illustrations and then reflow the layout.
All in all, we are increasing the Hub rules book by about 25 pages for the PDF version and by about 50 pages for the print version. What’s the difference between these two formats? Our previous publication model maintained a focus on PDF sales of all our books and supplements, including the monthly magazine, however, since that time, we have seen a rise in the popularity, user ease and cost effectiveness of POD (Print on Demand) publishing, not to mention have found cheaper printing sources for our direct mail sales option.
In short, when PDF was our focus, we went with a leaner, more densely packed and printer friendly version of the game, knowing that both download considerations and inkjet home printing issues were of concern to gamers who bought and downloaded RPG products from Your games now RPG now and drive through RPG. Our new plan is to focus on printed books… but still have a PDF version with all the same content, but with a more printer and download size friendly format.
In other news, we have been getting quite a few emails from people wanting to be put on the TME inform list, which is basically a list of people we will notify when the game is released and where they can buy a copy. We have decided to expand this notification list to a news list, providing a brief update on the progress and selected images. If you are interested in keeping tabs on the impending releases of The Mutant Epoch RPG, fiction and art, simply email us with the words ‘TME inform’ or something similar in the subject line.