The greatness of B-movies brought to life at your table!
Latest Updates from Our Project:
Backers Only Manuscript Preview # 6
over 1 year ago
– Tue, Jan 22, 2019 at 10:49:04 AM
This post is for backers only. Please visit Kickstarter.com and log in to read.
Final Days: ADD ONS
over 1 year ago
– Tue, Jan 22, 2019 at 03:59:20 AM
Why read my words for information, when I can offer a much more direct source?!
Behold! Celebrated podcasters and actual play dramatists Red Moon Roleplaying will be starting their broadcast of Terror at Make-Out Point, ran by our very own Matthew Dawkins, on Wednesday 23rd January! If you're at all on the fence about They Came from Beneath the Sea!, here's a fine place to hear it in action, complete with sound effects and music! https://www.redmoonroleplaying.com/
Key Final Updates
COMPLETE MANUSCRIPT PREVIEW: Read the entire manuscript for the game now! Remember, though, while the manuscript is essentially complete and approved, please note that there will still be some copy editing and minor development and corrections made, so please consider this 95% finished. .
REWARD TIERS: your best starting point for figuring out which Backer Reward Level to choose to help support this project.
Today, I am going to talk about ADD ON reward options. Tomorrow I'll cover Stretch Goals, and Thursday, before the campaign finishes I will post an update with a Final Checklist & What Comes Next.
First Step: Reward Tier
The absolute best way to ensure that you're getting all of the available rewards you want from this kickstarter is to ensure you've selected the appropriate Backer Reward Tier, as detailed in our Reward Tier Update. Selecting the right Reward Tier covers about 95% of the options available to you. If you want the PDF only, make sure you've selected the correct reward. If you want the hardcover version, double-check your reward tier to ensure it's featured. If you wanted the Director's Screen, make sure it's included with your choice.
Once you've completed that important step, you're going to want to look at the extra rewards or any reward "bits" that don't automatically fall into your reward tier. That takes us to Add On rewards.
Step Two: Add-Ons.
If you've selected one of the "core" Reward Tiers, you've likely already included most of the rewards you most want. In addition to the rewards offered as part of the Reward Tier configurations, there are a few other possible rewards you may wish to add. All Add-On rewards will be described below.
Each add on includes an extra amount to add on to your total pledge amount. Remember that your total pledge amount includes all shipping charges and not just your reward tier level.
Using myself as an example, my MAIN CAST Reward Tier is a $50 pledge, but my total pledge amount is $60 (inclusive of +$10 shipping charges to Canada).
Reviewing the list of rewards with my Tier, I see that it doesn't include a Director's Screen. Since I think they look really useful, I'd like to add these on to my rewards list. As noted, the first step should always be to select the proper reward tier to see if there's one that offers everything you want. (For example, I should actually switch to the Director Reward Tier, as that offers everything I want).
So, I've decided to add a Director's Screen to my rewards list.
To update my Reward Tier, first I click MANAGE MY PLEDGE
Now I can update my TOTAL PLEDGE AMOUNT to include the cost of the ADD ON reward I wish to add to my rewards list. I click CHANGE YOUR PLEDGE
I can change the pledge amount to include my Add Ons. My new Total Pledge Amount is now $80:
$50 for the MAIN CAST reward tier
+$20 for the DIRECTOR'S SCREEN
+$10 Shipping to Canada
Once I've updated my amount, I can click CONTINUE
It's important to note that there is NO PLACE in your kickstarter reward tier pledge to indicate which add-ons you wish to include, or give any reason why you are adjusting your pledge to a new amount. You aren't adding items to a shopping cart in this scenario - instead, you're adding pledge dollars that you will assign once the campaign ends. With this in mind, you may want to make a note of which add-on items and the associated add-on dollar amounts you've included if you're forgetful like I am.
Once the campaign ends and Kickstarter processes the payments, I will send out a survey via Backerkit - a complex system of tools used to manage the back-end of the kickstarter fulfillment process. When you receive the survey, you will confirm your Backer Reward Tier and assign your pledged dollars to any add-on items that you wish to include. I'll repeat and expand on this information in an upcoming post about "What Happens Next?" in Thursday's update.
ADD ON REWARDS
The additional PDF reward can be added to any tier that includes the They Came from Beneath the Sea! PDF (anything higher than Background):
Note that physical rewards (hardcover books, Director's Screen) can only be added to Reward Tiers that already include the hardcover version of They Came from Beneath the Sea!, and therefore, appropriate shipping charges. Also note the different hardcover Add On prices for US- and non-US residents.
There's another potential ADD ON, suggested by campaign backer Karpomatic, that I hope we get to reveal. Keep this in mind in case we unlock this goal and open up this possibility:
At $38,500 in funding! - NEW ADD ON DECK - We'll be able to create a new Add On option. For +$15, you will be able to add a printed Quip & Cinematic card deck to your hardcover book purchase.
Again, we'll only be able to create that ADD ON if we achieve our Stretch Goal target and make the math work.
See the main Kickstarter campaign page for a description of all rewards.
Add Ons AFTER Reward Tiers
Again, your first step should always be choosing the proper reward tier. I've had a few backers ask about adding a second (or fifth...) hardcover copy to their Main Cast reward tier. You are much better off selecting the Multiple Reward tiers if you want additional copies (Body Double, Stunt Double and Acting Class).
It probably goes without saying that all funds are expressed in US Dollars, although Kickstarter displays the approximate conversion rate.
It Adds Up!
That should explain the process of Selecting your Reward Tier and increasing your TOTAL PLEDGE AMOUNT to account for any additional rewards you wish to receive. Since increasing your pledge amount increases the overall funding level of the project, add-ons can help us achieve stretch goal targets, so it benefits us all to suggest that you double-check to make sure you're getting all of the rewards you want.
Additionally, this may go without saying,please review your personal budgetand ensure you've selected the appropriate reward tier and add ons for your current financial situation. Kickstarter will begincharging your payment methodonce the campaign ends, so ensure you've budgeted correctly.
As we move through these final days of the campaign, please ensure you've chosen the correct Reward Tier for the rewards you want. And beyond that - please make sure you've adjusted your TOTAL PLEDGE AMOUNT to include the additional funds that will cover any add-ons you wish to receive.
On Thursday, just before the campaign ends, I will send an update detailing the steps that occur after the campaign concludes, including how and when to confirm your add-on rewards.
So, just like every update: Spread the word! Share your excitement on social media! Tell your friends! We're about to enter the rapid race to the finish line, so let's make sure that none of our friends miss out!
At $37,500 in funding! - NEW MARINE MONSTERS! - A netful of new threats and nemisises will be created and released as a Threat File! PDF, added on to the rewards list for all backers receiving the They Came from Beneath the Sea! rulebook PDF.
At $38,500 in funding! - NEW ADD ON DECK - We'll be able to create a new Add On option. For +$15, you will be able to add a printed Quip & Cinematic card deck to your hardcover book purchase.
At $40,000 in funding - ART BUDGET INCREASE - We'll increase the art budget for the They Came from Beneath the Sea! core rulebook, adding even more awesome B-Movie goodies!
Final Days: REWARD TIERS
over 1 year ago
– Mon, Jan 21, 2019 at 07:37:24 AM
We're about 96 hours from the conclusion of this campaign, and things will likely get pretty exciting as we get down to the wire. With that in mind, I wanted to touch on some of the basics over the next 4 days to make sure that everyone has got all of the information they need to support the project in the way that works best for them.
Review topics to cover over the next 4 days:
Final Checklist & Next Steps
Whether you're a new backer or have been with us from day one, these are good items to review to make sure that we all end up where we want to be.
(An aside, if you're a new backer, make sure you check out the MANUSCRIPT PREVIEWS that have been posted - the entire manuscript is available to review before the campaign concludes)
BACKER REWARD TIERS
Like it says right at the top of the campaign page, we've come together to help create a beautiful They Came from Beneath the Sea! tabletop RPG hardcover rulebook. To borrow an analogy that I've used in past Kickstarter campaigns, this works similar to the "Viewers Like You" support campaign from your local PBS Station (for those who get American television channels or watched Sesame Street): There are various levels of support that you can pledge to, and these come with various levels of rewards. Like getting a tote bag or t-shirt when you give money to public broadcasting to fund them doing their thing, you can get rewards for helping Onyx Path work on this project.
Let's review the Backer Reward Tiers to ensure that you've pledged to a Reward Tier that provides all the rewards you wish to receive.
First Choice: Digital Only or Hardcover + PDF
The main reward offered in this campaign is. of course, the main goal of the entire proposition: the They Came from Beneath the Sea game book. The first decision you need to make in figuring out your reward tier is whether you want to receive a digital PDF version or if you want the physical hardcover book.
PDF ONLY: PRODUCTION ASSISTANT and FEATURED PERFORMER are PDF-only reward tiers. So, if you're saving trees or saving shelf space, these are the reward tier options that you should begin with. The PDF will be fulfilled by our partners at Drivethrurpg.com - when it is ready, you will receive a link to add it to your DTRPG library and be able to download at your leisure.
HARDCOVER+PDF: the MAIN CAST reward tier includes the traditionally-printed physical hardcover version of this book. That means the books are produced in a large print run at one time, and will have the best production values, from color clarity and appearance to binding and materials. In addition, this option also includes the PDF version, so you will get a digital copy as described above.
The only Reward Tier that does not include the PDF version of the book is the BACKGROUND tier. You should select this Reward Tier if you want to read the manuscript previews posted in the Backers-Only updates (and continue to have access to them after the campaign ends) but do not wish to receive either a PDF or hardcover version of the final book.
Once your primary decision between PDF-only or hardcover + PDF (or neither) has been made, it's time to learn about the additional rewards you may wish to receive.
There are 6 additional reward options we'll cover before discussing Multiple and Premium reward tiers:
MANUSCRIPT PREVIEWS – All Reward Tiers include access to Backers-Only manuscript previews. With last Friday's Manuscript update, I have posted the entire manuscript across multiple sections. You must be a kickstarter backer to access these previews, as the link will remain in a backers-only update post. The manuscript previews are not available to those who pre-order the book at a later date.
EARLY ACCESS PLAYTEST PREVIEW - Our very first update, a stripped-down version of the manuscript including a scenario and characters to get you going. Checking out some of the Actual Play threads that have been posted online or shared to Youtube, it worked pretty well!
QUIP & CINEMATIC CARD PDF - A print-and-play version of the Quip and Cinematic cards to use in your game. The manuscript (and final book) will include everything in chart form, but having the Quips out and ready on cards that can be chosen, dealt, and played when required can simplify the process. With this PDF, you'll be able to print your own.
DIRECTOR'S SCREEN - a sturdy three-panel THEY CAME FROM BENEATH THE SEA! screen featuring evocative art on the outer side, and a selection of charts and other info on the inside to make the Director's job a little bit easier.
"AT COST" PoD OPTION: They Came from Beneath the Sea! – All PDF products will be fulfilled through our partners at DriveThruRPG.com, the largest RPG download store. For They Came from Beneath the Sea!, you will have the option of using DriveThruRPG’s Print-On-Demand service to purchase a physical, printed copy directly from their PoD partners at as close as we can get to just the cost of printing and shipping (this cost is not included in your pledge, and you do not need to increase the cost of your pledge to use this option). When the PoD versions are available to order (which will be some time after the hardcover has gone to print), you will receive links to purchase these versions of the book from DriveThruRPG.com. You DO NOT need to take advantage of this PoD offer as it does not affect in any way your pledge rewards.
"AT COST" PoD OPTION: Quip & Cinematic Cards – All PDF products will be fulfilled through our partners at DriveThruRPG.com, the largest RPG download store. For They Came from Beneath the Sea!, you will have the option of using DriveThruCARD’s Print-On-Demand service to purchase a physical, printed copy directly from their PoD partners at as close as we can get to just the cost of printing and shipping (this cost is not included in your pledge, and you do not need to increase the cost of your pledge to use this option). When the PoD versions are available to order (which will be some time after the hardcover has gone to print), you will receive links to purchase these versions of the card deck from DriveThruCARDS.com. You DO NOT need to take advantage of this PoD offer as it does not affect in any way your pledge rewards.
There's been a lot of churn - a lot of Reward Tier adjustments and changes by backers throughout the campaign, as budgets changed and parts of the manuscript were released, or options were contemplated. However, in these final days, it's best to ensure that you've selected the Reward Tier that offers you the options and rewards you want to receive and are ready to lock down. This timing - before the campaign ends - is the absolute most affordable and inclusive these rewards will be, and will save headaches and heartbreaks if fully considered now.
WAIT! What about special reward tiers?!
Right! In addition to our "core" Reward Tiers, we've got two other areas for consideration. These are Multiple Copy rewards and Premium Rewards.
If you are backing for yourself and a friend (or just want a second copy for your collection), the BODY DOUBLE or STUNT DOUBLE Tiers were designed for you. (The Stunt Double tier also includes a Director's Screen)
If you are the point person for your entire gaming group and need 5 copies of the hardcover, the ACTING CLASS tier is your clear choice.
And, finally, if you are a retailer interested in making this available in your store, a special retailer tier, the CRAFT SERVICES (Retailer), is open to you upon prior approval from Onyx Path (please email RichT@theonyxpath.com prior to selecting this reward to confirm your status).
Premium Reward Tiers
These special reward tiers offer some enhanced interaction with the setting, from naming characters, serving as inspiration for interior illustrations, helping to create a monster, or playing in a special online session with Matthew Dawkins, the lead developer of this book. We've also got a tier that comes with a book plate sticker signed by as many of the creative team as we can wrangle together, and an option to become a "consulting developer" on a future Onyx Path project. These options are limited, however, and only have a few slots open for now.
So, with all of that said - consider your Reward Tier selection. Are you backing to receive your copy of the hardcover version of The Came from Beneath the Sea!? Have you considered which additional rewards you're most interested in and selected the configuration that best works for you? Did you jump on one of the limited premium reward options?
Make sure your Reward Tier matches what you're looking for - or, at least, covers most of what you're interested in. Tomorrow, we'll cover Add Ons and talk about how to tweak your Reward List to ensure you're getting anything that's missing from your list.
And, with that, the final countdown begins. Let's lock in our Reward Tiers and keep working towards growing the project so everyone has a chance to join in. DO NOT MISS OUT! And on to the next Stretch Goal!
Night of the Day of the Whirlpool
over 1 year ago
– Sat, Jan 19, 2019 at 11:45:45 AM
Night of the Day of the Whirlpool
It was pitch black and the man had no idea where he was. But Clain Hoake swam like a man who needed to swim. And he did. Worse, he didn’t know who he was. All he knew was he couldn’t hold his breath forever. It was like he was at the bottom of a vast well.
Light showed ahead and he swam for it, down to the bottom, into a tunnel off the main “well.” He emerged into light and quickly broke the surface, gasping for air, trying to get the bearings he’d never lost before.
It was a vast underground grotto, a complex world of strange phosphorescence, cave systems, cliffs, and pools of water. If he didn’t know better, he’d swear it was the center of the Earth.
“It is the center of Earth!” A voice boomed off the walls.
“It’s… like you can read my mind,” exclaimed Clain.
“I can read your mind!” came the voice, which was becoming annoying. The figure stood on a rock projection, wearing a helmet covered in spark plugs. “I… am Dr. Bundolph Laig.” The man clapped his hands and immediately grotesque nightmare shapes surrounded Clain. “Meet my squidiots, as I call them.” The title fit; a strange evolution merging man and squid. Obviously of limited intelligence, they plodded to carry out Laig’s will.
Clain sampled food off the large shell on the stone table, seated on a living cushion that was some kind of mutated balloonfish. “What am I eating?” asked Clain in disgust.
“I farm everything from the sea so that is… something from the sea, I’m not sure — but it’s very good for you.” Laig went on to explain how he’d fled King Clam’s destruction, seeking refuge in a massive hole opened by the underwater earthquake. This led to the center of the Earth where he met his squidiots, commanding them to scuttle ships for lab equipment. Bitter revenge against humanity drove him now and he would soon unveil his greatest experiment of all.
Just then a warning sounded, which was actually an excited dolphin, and in the largest grotto pool something rose to the surface: a miniature submarine. A hatch opened and up popped Karsly Morbin and Captain Hemp Mavwell.
“Is this the center of Earth?” chirped Karsly.
“Well. What a pleasant coincidence. My old enemies. How nice of you to join me,” gloated Laig. Escorted by squidiots, the surprised pair were brought to Laig.
“I’m Clain Hoake and I don’t remember anything,” offered Clain helpfully.
“Aren’t you a famous canner?” asked Hemp.
Though it sounded familiar, Clain’s amnesia held. Karsly and Hemp had been investigating reports of missing lab equipment. They had their answer.
With great flourish, Dr. Laig revealed his masterpiece, the Funnelizer, which could create an underwater whirlpool that would lift up the horrors of the deep and rain them down on Coastal City to exact his revenge.
“Underwater whirlpool?” puzzled Hemp. “How can you see water if it’s in the water? I mean—”
“Silence!” shouted Laig, being anything but silent.
“What horrors?” wondered Karsly with scientific curiosity. “Your squidiots?”
Dr. Laig laughed heartily. “Come! You shall have a front-row seat.”
“Normally that would sound good to a sports fan like me,” said Hemp, “but this is one game I’d rather miss.”
The sub rose to the surface just off the coast of Coastal City. Laig readied a remote-control device while squidiots kept hold of Clain, Karsly, and Hemp.
“You won’t get away with this,” growled Clain, who seemed to remember it was the thing to say.
Laig grinned. “Behold!”
“Stop saying that,” said Karsly. “Why do you master villains always need an audience?”
“It appeals to the showman in me,” chuckled Laig. “I spent a formative summer helping out on puppet shows.” He flicked a switch and the ocean began to rumble. With explosive fury, bursting from its surface, came a funnel of water rising hundreds of feet into the air, carrying within every dreadful aquatic nightmare, spinning round and round.
“What hellish seafood is this?” barked Hemp with loathing.
Clain perked up… Seafood…Cannery…Canner…
Laig laughed, “The center of the Earth is lousy with things like this!”
Something clicked in Clain, who took advantage of the distraction and jumped into the sea. This time he swam like a swimmer with a memory. The memory of a canner.
“Let the fool go!” barked Laig to his squidiots. The funnel of water towered over the city. Laig hit a switch and it began to bend toward it.
Clain quickly reached shore and immediately warned the authorities. Above them, the massive head of the vortex was lowering to just above the rooftops. Evacuation was underway, and the National Guard quickly called in.
Hemp went for Laig’s remote and squidiots lunged, struggling to hold the rugged Navy man. But Karsly took advantage and snatched the remote from Laig’s evil grasp.
Meanwhile, Clain and National Guardsmen battled grotesque writhing sea life in the city streets: crustacean things with sharp stingers, sharks with legs, floating jellyfish horrors…
Before Laig could get the remote back, Karsly pulled a switch and immediately the funnel stopped releasing its monstrous rain of terror. Another flick, and the huge whirling mass began to draw back toward the ocean. Finally, Laig managed to grab the remote. But, unbeknownst to him, his squidiots watched their aquatic brethren being destroyed by Clain and the soldiers, and a sound almost like whimpering began to emerge from them. Before Laig could reverse the funnel again, the squidiots moved toward him as one.
“No! No! No, you squidiots! I warn you!” were his last words before his pathetic minions engulfed him, at last finding their self-respect.
The funnel of water returned to the ocean, with most of its sea life as well. Clain joined Karsly and Hemp on shore.
“Good to have our city back,” smiled Karsly.
“Good to have one canner back,” smiled Clain, looking off somewhere important.
We hit another Stretch Goal yesterday, unlocking a new Threat File! with a netful of expanded floating foes! Let's keep it up! Do it for Clain and Karsly!
Final Week - Be An Aqua-Ambassador
over 1 year ago
– Fri, Jan 18, 2019 at 12:47:19 PM
We're officially in the FINAL WEEK of the kickstarter campaign. I've still got one final manuscript section to share on Friday and the final amazing fiction piece from Larry Blamire, but I'll also be sharing a bunch of book-keeping-type posts about Reward Tiers & Add-Ons, Stretch Goals, and What Comes Next, and this one, which is all about recruiting new backers during this final phase of the campaign.
First, let me say - we've crossed 170% of our initial funding target and have 650 backers participating in this project! We've unlocked SEVEN Stretch Goals and have our 8th in sight. And we did all of this right in the middle of the busiest time of year, full of distractions and time commitments. But, here we are - swimming just below the surface, a hungry shadow slowly moving toward the beach...
I mean, more like a school of fish. Yes, a positive and happy group all working together.
That's one of the awesome and inspiring things about kickstarter projects - you not only build the game, but you start to build a community around the project. I'm excited to keep adding rewards to this project -- especially additional monsters -- and hope to add even more! The final week usually picks up speed as we go along, and there's a ton of potential to add another 2 or 3 or even more rewards! But to get there, we've got to increase the number of backers pledging to this campaign. Thus, the topic for today's update:
Be an Ambassador
I know, this is something I've already said many times (and seem to say during every project!), but for this final week, you are officially a duly-deputized ambassador for this Kickstarter project. An Aqua-Ambassador, in fact.
I know I end every update post with "Keep spreading the word! Invite others to join in!" - but what does that mean, and how do you do it?
Easy answer - don't stop talking about the They Came from Beneath the Sea kickstarter until 1:01 PM next Thursday EST (when the campaign has ended). Yes, family and friends are tired of me talking about it (especially during the holidays! - "It Came from Beneath the Tree!"), but everything will go back to "normal" in just one more week, and they've learned to tolerate me during a kickstarter campaign (for now). But here's the thing - there are others around who haven't heard or don't know about the campaign.
What Excites You?
One of the things I've found about this game is how easy it's been to give the "elevator pitch" to my gaming group. For some reason, the "1950s B-Movie Sci-Fi Adventure" tag just seems to resonate, or paint a pretty clear picture of the game. Once you add in the fun stuff like Cinematics and Quips, I've found my gaming friends get pretty intrigued. They Came from Beneath the Sea! also seems to be on the table for fun one-shots and some more spur-of-the-moment gaming in the future. Everyone seems interested to at least try it - and I think that has a lot to do with the fun nature of the game.
Thumbs up to everyone who's shared a link to the kickstarter in an online forum, or posted an "I just backed this project" message to their social media - you've done all of the first steps that are critical during the first weeks of the campaign. Now, it's time to let others know why you are backing this project (and, therefore, why they should consider it as well).
That's the thing - for this final week, you don't have to tell people the kickstarter exists. Instead, tell them what's got you excited about the game. What makes this an fun take on the Storypath system? What kind of undersea adventure tales will you tell? What sources of inspiration are you running with? At this point, people may have seen the "Kickstarter now live!" posts. But the ones that always pull me in are things like:
It's easy, at first glace, to assume this is just a silly game or sci-fi parody that you may not use often, but there's SO MUCH MORE going on in this book than B-Movie tropes and rubbery monsters. The adversaries actually provide remarkable range and flexibility in building different kinds of stories, and the basis of the game - the Storypath system - is the same foundation used for Scion, the Trinity Continuum, Dystopia Rising: Evolution, so there are lots of pieces and parts that can be grafted on to other games. The idea of Quips seems pretty simple to integrate into the action-packed world of Trinity Continuum, I'm sure! Sharing these unique hooks - and the idea of growing a one-shot fun night into an ongoing adventure-filled campaign - helps grab others and get them interested. Those are the things that pull my interest when I'm reading about games online.
When I start seeing conversations that spin out of posts or ideas like that, I get intrigued about the game. And that's when I click on the link. So, share your ideas! What parts of the manuscript have stirred your imagination? What pop culture touchstones do you want to adapt for your game? What style of game are you thinking of running, and what threads from the book will you incorporate? What kinds of challenges will you throw at your players?
There are tons of websites related to rpgs or sci-fi stories or gaming in general. Now, all of those may not have forums for you to post on, or be an appropriate venue to share your ideas. But, if you are a member of any of those and feel like sharing your ideas about a new They Came From... game, these final days are the time to do so!
And, if you feel that They Came from Beneath the Sea! is maybe a bit of lightness or fun in a sometimes-too-serious hobby or a nice break from heavy emotional play, it's ok to point that out too.
Share the Links!
1) Don't forget to share a link to the kickstarter in your post (where appropriate).
2) Don't forget to tell us about your post! Come to the comments section and let us know so we can all go and contribute! I know I keep saying it, but really - these last days are key. Keep the enthusiasm high (hitting stretch goals certainly makes that easier!) and keep on inviting others to join in, either directly ("Come see...") or just by setting an example of your enthusiasm and interest.
We've achieved so much already - We've added additional content with the Threat Files!, the Character Pack, and Adventure Scenarios, - but on these final days, we can take it to the next level! So, celebrate! Share the love! Share your enthusiasm! And be an Aqua-Ambassador for this final week... and let's see how strong we can finish and how much this project will grow over these final days!
Seriously, go read the Explorers of the Fathoms thread...