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A roleplaying game of gods and heroes, set in a modern world full of ancient myth.
A roleplaying game of gods and heroes, set in a modern world full of ancient myth.
213 backers pledged $21,003 to help bring this project to life.

Calling All Backers!

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Hey, backers! 

It’s been a long wait on Hero’s Journey, and friends: that sucks. We know it sucks. We’ve been hearing your frustrations about it, and we know something’s got to give. We’re not going to go into all the reasons for the delays right now; some you already know if you’ve been following us, and others are irrelevant because let’s face it, explaining them doesn’t help the book get out any faster. 

What we are going to do is talk about what we’re doing for you backers in the meantime. It’s been a long wait and you all more than deserve something to show for it.

You’ve given us some great suggestions for how to help keep you involved and get things to you faster, so today, we’re going to start putting some of those into action! You’ve been incredibly patient and we appreciate that deeply - so much so that we would throw an appreciation party if you weren’t in lots of different countries and we didn’t still have lots of work to do. So, to keep from having to make you be any more patient than you have to be, we’re looking for a way to help get HJ to you faster (like, real soon faster!), and we want your input on how to do that. Below we have two options for ways we can get HJ in some form out the door and into your hands sooner, and make sure that, as backers, you get rewarded for your investment and support even while the project takes longer than expected. 


In Option A, we’ll release the entire basic-level Hero’s Journey game directly to you, the backers who pledged for it, in a no-frills content-only PDF, so that you can immediately start reading and playing it. Since almost all the work we still have to do regards fine-tuning issues at higher levels of the game, the only things that won’t be included are higher-level powers, which we’ll continue working on while you check out the game’s backbone, character creation, and the kinds of sagas it can design.  You will still get all your promised rewards as soon as we finish the outstanding work and send the book to print, without having to wait for that day to get a look at the game you backed. 


  • Play Now! You can, if you so choose, start creating characters and even running beginning-level games as soon as you receive the material! All the rules for actually running a game, as well as powers for beginning characters and guidelines for GMs, will be immediately available to you. 
  • Talk About the Game. If you choose, you can discuss the game and give feedback on it via our blog or forum. As designers, we work hard to make sure nothing is broken and to playtest the game thoroughly, but there are hundreds of you with hundreds of extra brains out there, so if you want to bring something up before publication, you can. (Nobody has to be our free playtesters, though, so don’t think you do.) We’ll also all get the opportunity to talk about how things work in blog posts and on the forums with more freedom. 
  • Get Extra Stuff. Those of us designing player aids and extras that we were planning to provide for download anyway in the future will be able to get a jump on them since there will be people actively playing and able to tell us what they’d like, which means that those things can come out faster and already be ready to go when you receive the finalized book. 
  • No Change in Rewards. You will still get all promised backer rewards, including a shiny fancy book (or fancy art-filled and linked PDF), dice, prints, etc., as soon as we can go to press. You just get access to the game itself before then, so you don’t have to wait anymore to actually play it. 


  • Game Leaks. Although we will only release this information to backers who already pledged to get the book in some form, there’s always the chance that someone will, either accidentally or intentionally, leak it to the rest of The Internet. This would mean that backers didn’t have exclusive access to it anymore (although they would still get their much fancier physical or PDF copy at the end), and that we could potentially lose the opportunity for some other folks in the future to buy it, since it was already out there. 
  • Preparation Pause. There would be a slight slowdown in work on finishing the game for final publication, so that we could get the team together to throw together the material already finished in a decent format and then release it to all of you before moving on. 


In Option B, instead of spending even more time working on the outstanding fine-tuning issues remaining, we package up the game as it is now and send that sucker to print, producing a Hero’s Journey official core rulebook right away. The book would omit the higher-level powers and rules we are currently working on in order to avoid making you wait for them any longer, and backers would get all their rewards on a much faster timetable, with the material left out saved, expanded, and released later as a supplement for those who wanted it. 


  • Books Get Printed! We would be sending the book to print pretty much as soon as the art department can get the current material laid out and ready to go, which means there would be a real-live book in your hands much, much faster. 
  • Get Non-Book Stuff. You also get all your other rewards, which have been hanging out in boxes at our house, waiting forlornly for the book to be finished so they can see the light of day. If you’re a person who isn’t even getting a book, and only pledged for dice or something, you no longer have to wait around for the book you’re not even reading to be finished before you get them. (For those of you who aren’t getting a book, the only reason we haven’t sent you your other rewards yet is that we didn’t want it to be unfair to those who got your rewards and a book who would have wait longer even though they pledged more.) 
  • Future Expanded Material. Having more time to work on higher-level parts of the game will allow us to incorporate more material in them than was originally planned for the core book (for example, extra systems for specialized things like animal companions), so that the game unfolds more since we aren’t trying to rush it as much. 
  • Books Out in the World. Because the book will be officially released, it can also be made available to folks who missed the Kickstarter window or who might be interested in checking it out. 


  • Less Content. The book comes out right away, but has less content in it than originally planned - it will have everything you need to play at the Mortal level, but it will not have higher-level powers and will not go as in-depth into Immortal- and Divine-level specific systems and issues. It will still have extras achieved from stretch goals (for example, Fire powers), just at Mortal levels.
  • Editing Pause. Although the book would definitely come out faster, there would still be some delay while we went back and removed material and graphic design elements that referred to higher levels of play, before it could be released and we could move on to continue working on the next set of stuff. 
  • Level Cap. If you play and love HJ and your game wants to move on to higher levels, or you were a player who wanted to start at a higher level or convert a higher-level game from another system, you will not be able to do so right away, and you would have to get another book (with more cool stuff in it, but another book nonetheless) in order to do so. 

What we’d like to ask of you backers - all of you, whether you pledged one dollar or one hundred, although we'll be paying special attention to those who pledged for a book and are most affected - is which of these options you’d prefer we went with. You can leave comments here, or send us a message, or comment on the blog post over on the official HJ site - but let us know! We want to make sure we provide the one that the majority of backers want, and that we do it soon, so that you have something to show for your dedication while we trudge toward the finish line. 

We’ll probably be doing one of these two options above, but if you have a suggestion for a different way you’d like to see backers brought more into the loop and given more access (other than “finish the damn book”, which we agree with but are already working on as much as possible), leave that here for us, too! We’ll be watching this space and ready to discuss it if you do.

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    1. David Ford on March 27, 2016

      Option C is fine; I can wait a bit longer. You guys have been posting pretty regular production updates on the blog so I trust you are doing your best. I'd rather wait for a full release than have reduced content of any kind. Just keep us updated!

    2. Ezequiel Escanellas on March 26, 2016

      If I had to say, Option A or C, Or a fusion between the 2, Or atleast releasing it as a Demo, I have heard of the game and how many people have played it over time, but I have never seen how it works.

    3. Missing avatar

      Christopher Rowald on March 25, 2016

      Option C: "We'll release it when it is done, don't worry we haven't forgotten."
      Hands down this is the better option. We have seen such tremendous progress on the game that it would be a shame if you had to shift focus because of doubts. This is not a project that has gone silent for any uncomfortable amount of time. You have kept all of us in the loop more than I could have ever expected. I would hate for it to leak and have you guys loose future sales. And I would be saddened if the team gave us a product that they thought in any way does not represent their passion.

      Having said that, Option A is the better choice you presented. If only the mortal content leaks, then at least we can look forward to the high level games when that content arrives. It also has the best Pro of allowing you to collect more feedback. Don't forget we still support you.

    4. Shoeshine
      on March 24, 2016

      C or A. While I would like to play sooner, making A attractive, the loss in sales for you guys due to leaks is a concern. Option B is a complete non-starter for me, as it's essentially asking me to pay twice for what I already paid for, and would likely ensure I didn't back a future venture of yours or buy further products you put out.

    5. CJ Romer
      on March 20, 2016

      Option C with A as a second place.

    6. Missing avatar

      Kevin Williams on March 18, 2016

      I'm okay with C or A. I'm more interested in getting a book with all the awesomeness that convinced me to pledge in the (hopefully) near(-ish) future than getting an incomplete product now. The updates on your blog convince me that I'm not wasting my time waiting for ya'll to manifest your creative vision.

    7. Angel
      on March 18, 2016

      C is preferred, but A is also completely fine. I'm not concerned at all with "leaks" as how I play and enjoy my game is not at all influenced by whether or not someone else is playing and enjoying their game.

    8. Jack Pennington on March 17, 2016

      Just swinging by to vote: OPTION C

      I have no problem waiting. Good luck, and thanks guys!

    9. Anne Ruthven Creator on March 17, 2016

      Thanks to all the new votes! WOW, look at all those Cs.

      This is interesting, because we're getting a split vote between here and on the official HJ blog/forums. A lot of folks here said C, most folks over there said A. Still lots of backers left to weigh in, though!

    10. Missing avatar

      Steven Podsiadly on March 17, 2016

      Gotta go with option C myself. I definitely want the book as soon as possible, but I also want the end product to be as complete as possible.

    11. Oliver Peltier
      on March 17, 2016

      Out of those 2 choices, option A is preferable. But I also am up for option C

    12. Missing avatar

      Ryan Wittig on March 17, 2016

      Option C. You guys are awesome, and I'm happy to wait even longer if it means getting a complete, quality product that you guys are happy with. :)

    13. Missing avatar

      Tyler Drew on March 17, 2016

      tbh, I'd probably side with C as well. I have no problems being patient. But A is the preferable of the two, as at the end of it I'll still have a nice pretty finished book, instead of one that was cut off midway through.

    14. Missing avatar

      Emmet Taylor on March 16, 2016

      Toss me down for Option C. I wouldn't want to see the game put out without its third tier of play, and I totally understand the fear of leaks. Take the time you guys need.

    15. Candice Bailey
      on March 16, 2016

      I'm all about Option C - release it when it's done! :) I'm okay with waiting as long as that takes.

    16. Fatewalker on March 16, 2016

      Sorry posted in wrong place, Option C

    17. Missing avatar

      Walter on March 16, 2016

      option C; "we'll release it when it is done, don't worry we haven't forgotten", is fine with me. You have keep people in the loop. which i for one appreciate

    18. Anne Ruthven Creator on March 16, 2016

      Thanks to more folks for leaving their votes!

      Nova, thanks especially for your extra insight on your preferences - we can definitely see how wanting to play at higher levels would make the options here less than exciting, and we also definitely get not wanting the book to have less content than originally planned.

    19. Missing avatar

      novamarauder on March 16, 2016

      To further clarify my position, my preferred option would be C "We'll release a complete book when it is done". Both offered options are unpleasant since I'm highly focused in playing powerful characters, so I'm not much interested in a game that lacks rules for that. And I've waited so long for the book (and I won't say my patience has not been tested considerably, although to get regular insight in the development process thanks to your blog has been helpful) I can wait a little more. Given a necessary choice, I much prefer option A since it doesn't mutilate the book forever of one of the parts that appeal to me the most.

    20. Carl Congdon on March 16, 2016

      Option A, please.

    21. Jordan Springer on March 16, 2016

      Personally, I am a patient person and I know sometimes good things take time and it is not like you have been silent since the Kickstarter concluded. I rather wait for the full finished product but if I had to choose between either option, then I would pick Option A

    22. Missing avatar

      novamarauder on March 16, 2016

      If this is the choice I very much prefer option A since it doesn't reduce the content of the book, and I would deem a corebook without the high-level powers and rules as woefully and unacceptably incomplete.

    23. Anne Ruthven Creator on March 16, 2016

      Thanks for all the input so far, folks! We're keeping tabs on it. (Bless your hearts, people who voted C.)

      Thanks to Jason and Alex for letting us know about your misgivings, too - we know it's been frustrating. As first-time independent game developers, we definitely did not have the realistic timetable for this project that we thought we did, and we apologize that you all had to find that out along with us.

      We're glad you've all stuck with us so far, though. We'll keep the updates flowing!

    24. Roberto Rizzardo Trinkel on March 16, 2016

      Hi guys, wonderfull pictures. I don´t want to reduce te content of the book. So Option "A" or "Option C: we'll release it when it is done, don't worry we haven't forgotten", I have no hush.
      Keep the work in progress. Good luck

    25. Missing avatar

      Alex Villemure on March 16, 2016

      Like Stephen, I will choose the option that doesnt reduce the content in the corebook, so option A is my pick.

      To be honest, I am disapointed by the long delay this project suffered. When I first read the description of the campaign and saw the original delivery date, I had the impression it was like any other roleplaying kickstarter. You had a game designed and you needed funds to publish it. Now after reading throught you blog for near two years, it looks more like you start desining from scratch after the end of the campaign with just a global idea.

    26. Jason
      on March 16, 2016

      For the Record: both options are unpleasent...Though I do very much appreciate the sentiment behind them.Thank yu for your kindness in both your intent and your actions.

      If I had to pick...I would chose option A of the two...and I would be rather passionate in my outrage if it got leaked.
      Mind you, an option C; "we'll release it when it is done, don't worry we haven't forgotten", suits me fine.

      And I am somewhat invested in the matter; which reminds me...I'm more solvent now, should talk to you about the shipping costs again

    27. Preston Bruce on March 16, 2016

      Option A seems the best

    28. Missing avatar

      Stephen Dunscombe on March 16, 2016

      I'm in favour of any option that doesn't involve reducing the content in the book.

      I've got enough campaigns on the go at the moment; HJ will be sitting on the shelf for a little while regardless.