Monday, July 02, 2012

Jim Raggi is the craziest

I swear to Grodd, every time I hear of Jim Raggi's lastest scheme for his Lamentations of the Flame Princess publishing outfit I think to myself "dude's finally gone off his rocker".  A boxed set RPG in this day and age?  Publishing suicide.  Update Carcosa as a flashy hardbound?  Who needs a deluxe version of a niche little weirdo product like that?  Crowdsourcing a hardbound version of the LotFP main rulebook?  Who the hell is going to kick in on that?  (Me and several other people, it turns out.)

Hell, just starting a new game company is a pretty crazy ass thing to do, much less "Hey, I don't really speak the local language, but I think I'll start a publishing outfit in Finland anyway."  It's like he's always charging headfirst into some wall but instead of hitting it and crumpling, he leave's a Raggi-shaped hole as he smashes through.  He continues to give the one-finger salute to the haters who want him to fail.

Raggi's plan for the month of July is to crowdsource nineteen different modules from nineteen different authors with nineteen different artists assigned to the project and then shepherd to publication all the individual products that get funded.  Madness.  If anyone but Jim Raggi proposed it, I would say it was an impossibly stupid thing to try, but clearly the man has an established track record of making awesome things happen.

Below is a list of all the people involved, with links to their individual campaigns.  You can see how the funding is going for all the individual projects by checking out this page.

Escaping Leviathan by Aeron Alfrey
The Seclusium of Orphone by Vincent Baker (art by Cynthia Sheppard)
Strange and Sinister Shores by Johnathan Bingham
Towers Two by Dave Brockie
The Unbegotten Citadel by Monte Cook (art by Eric Lofgren)
The House of Bone and Amber by Kevin Crawford (art by Earl Geier)
Of Unknown Provenance by Michael Curtis (art by Amos Orion Sterns)
Machinations of the Space Princess by James Desborough (art by Satine Phoenix)
Horror Among Thieves by Kelvin Green
We Who Are Lost by Anna Kreider
The Land that Exuded Evil by Cynthia Celeste Miller (art by Rowena Aitken)
Pyre by Richard Pett (art by Michael Syrigos)
I Hate Myself for What I Must Do by Mike Pohjola (art by Joel Sammallahti)
Broodmother Sky Fortress by Jeff Rients (art by Stuart Robertson)
Normal for Norfolk by Juhani Seppälä (art by Rich Longmore)
Poor Blighters by Jeff and Joel Sparks (art by Mark Allen)
The Depths of Paranoia by Jennifer Steen (art by Jason Rainville)
Red in Beak and Claw by Jukka Särkijärvi (art by Jason Rainville)
The Dreaming Plague by Ville "Burger" Vuorela (art by Juha Makkonen)

There's a lot to take in here: Michael Curtis, author of Stonehell and The Dungeon Alphabet; Cynthia Celeste Miller, who will always have a place in my heart for writing d12-based RPG rules; Vincent Baker, of Dogs in the Vinyard and Poison'd fame but who I always think of as the guy who wrote kill puppies for satanJames Desborough, who featured heavily in the latest internet ragefest I got sucked into on Google+; Mike Pohjola, author of the Turku Manifesto; and Dave frickin' Brockie, a.k.a. Oderus Urungus of GWAR!  Hot damn!

And I'm on this list, too, with cool guy Stuart Robertson suckered into doing art for my project.  My module is called Broodmother Sky Fortress.  Titles for projects are not my strong suit (hence Jeff's Gameblog, one of the least interesting titles ever), so I have to give Mr. Raggi credit for helping me tighten up the name of the adventure.  I would have gone with an X of the Y Z sort of arrangement.  He suggested that was played out and that of all the possible title ideas I pitched him the words Broodmother and Sky Fortress were the strongest.  Here's the elevator pitch for the adventure:
You know what your crapsack campaign world needs? Giants made out of sharks and elephants, lurking in a haunted house in the clouds, ready to jump out of cyclopean shadows and murder your PCs right in their stupid faces.
So over the course of the next couple weeks I'll be talking about the basic concept behind Broodmother Sky Fortress, what I'm trying to accomplish, some old modules that got me thinking along those lines and why Stuart Robertson is a kickass choice for the illustrator this adventure.  I'm told video clips make for better crowdfunding campaigns, so expect a few videoblog entries.

In the meantime, if you are already onboard with Broodmother Sky Fortress, please go pledge.


  1. I'm looking forward to Broodmother Sky Fortress. That name just kicks ass.

  2. Anonymous7:26 AM

    I totally thought the same about this: "19 projects at once? That man's insane!"
    ...and than I read the names and ... wow. "Jeff Rients? Monte Cook? Micheal Curtis? Art by Satine Phoenix? I don't know that name... wtf? GWAR???" ;)
    Even though I won't have money to buy all of them, I'll invest a little spare cash into a pdf or two... Broodmother Sky Fortress most certainly will be the first...

  3. What's the name of Raggi's game company and publishing outfit?

  4. Lamentations of the Flame Princess.

  5. ... and then there were none.

    1. Hey, keep hope. My adventure may not get funded.

    2. If the boobs who buy these things have any sense you will be handsomely rewarded. That's not the point. Once upon a time you were a modestly shining star and now your lil red face has gone over to the rather crammed dark side.

    3. Oh Kent, you think everyone who works with Raggi has gone to the dark side. Of all the people, I would give Jeff the benefit of a doubt. It's that Monte Cook you have to watch out for.

    4. Kent, if Jeff was the last one who would you say was the Penultimate one?

    5. Anonymous1:39 PM

      I assumed the dark side in this case is 'going commercial' but I guess it could mean working with Raggi.

    6. My Fawwwwwther says your little red face has gone over to the dark side, POTTER!!!!!!!

  6. You happily got my $20.

    (And that was before I saw anything about "giants made out of sharks and elephants, lurking in a haunted house in the clouds." Hot damn!)

  7. I went in with the 'don't just send me one rulebook, send me FOUR rulebooks option' on his last campaign. It's a shame that he didn't manage to get Graeme Davis to move his proposed adventure over to the new campaign.

    My problem with the new campaign is that it is, well, mad. 19x$6,000 campaigns, interlinked by various options... Ambition and balls count for a lot, mind.

  8. Had to do all this right before I go on vacation too! Meaning, all excess cash must be saved for the vacation fund. Um, maybe not all the excess cash?

  9. I'm down for Brood Mother Sky Fortress.(Is there a bit of EC in this here LotFP?) Sharkephants Murderfacing from Cyclopean Shadows? By Jeff Rients? Take my money!

    Put this one over the top, people. ~8 years of gaming greatness, with humor, insight, and gregariousness, all for absolute zero $$. Time to throw some duckets Jeff's way for his efforts to awesome up RPGs(and the people who play them).

    On sheer merit, no one in the DIY D&D community deserves the cash influx more. And not just 'cuz he runs Encounter Critical and give actual play reports. Or for his appreciation of Synnibarr. Or for his fair-minded stance on play of all sorts. Or his self-evident better nature. Or even for the Wraeththu report. It's for the Gonzo(in the correct and pure sense of the term.). The homebrew campaigns. The gamestore sessions. The G+ games. The contribution of the expansion of the hobby period. And, of course, because both Jeff and I own a big 'ol D30 from the Armory. 30-Sided Adventures Forever!

    Thanx, man! You've entertained(and inspired!) the living hell outta me on the regular since I discovered the Gameblog back in '08 through the magic of the unseen, imaginary, deceased turtle of Rolemaster fame . The R. I. P. for the Killer cemented my respect, and I've been an avid reader and sometime commenter ever since.. It's still my gaming homepage after 4 years of trawling the Intartubes for RPG stuff, and I'm certain it'll be the Gold Standard from here on out. It's not for nothing I recommend RPG noobz to read the Gameblog from back to front to get their head right.

    1. I am greatly interesting in your policy of throwing ducklings at Jeff, and wish to know more.

  10. James Raggi is Professor Challenger of RPG-publishing world, naysayers dont stand a chance.