As I write this, we're at over $468,000. We've met every stretch goal except the film one at $500,000 which, when I originally created it, never thought we'd actually come even close to reaching. Incredible!
Backers should definitely read this before the Kickstarter ends. It's really, really important.
With less than 14 hours to go before this all draws to a close, I thought I'd talk a little about what you should expect in regard to this project after it ends. There's a lot of information here. I'm going to try to as clear and brutally honest as I can be, so please stick with me. It's all important stuff.
1. When Things Wrap Up (5 PM EST Monday, Sept. 17)
The Numenera Kickstarter ends at 5 PM EST on Monday. It's been a long, wild ride. Lots of fun. But the minute it's over, I'm going offline. Tuesday and Wednesday are the first true days off I will take in... well, in months. Getting ready for this Kickstarter and running it have been a lot of work.
As far as you guys are concerned, though, first and foremost, please be aware that once the Kickstarter is over, there is no mechanism in Kickstarter for refunds. Before it closes, be sure you're getting what you want. There will be no way for you to decide that you want your money back or don't want some portion of your order after the Kickstarter is over. That's not the way Kickstarter works. Your money--after Kickstarter and Amazon.com both take their substantial cut--will go immediately into the production of this game line. If this is a problem, please decrease or cancel your pledge before the Kickstarter ends. I know a lot of you are new to crowdfunding and I want everyone to be clear in how this works. It's important to me that you are happy not only now, but three, four, or six months from now.
For about a week after the Kickstarter closes, backers will be able to use PayPal to add more Reward Add-Ons at this page. The ability for non-backers to join in will be gone, however, as will the ability of backers to change backer levels. This is just for the last minute “I really want to get the bestiary after all,” kind of situation. Please keep in mind that we can't issue refunds, so choose carefully. And please use the same name and address on PayPal as with the Kickstarter so we can match up your order. This process will end on the 24th of September, at midnight EST.
2. In the Next Few Weeks
You'll be contacted with instructions on how to provide us with your mailing address for print products, your email address for ebooks, and the details of what Reward Add-Ons you desire. You'll also be asked about what name you want listed in the corebook, and what your favorite quotation is. If you've selected one of the Retailer levels, you'll be asked to confirm that you are an actual game retailer. If you have other backer level-specific information that we'll need, like if you're contributing a character or something, you'll be contacted separately about that.
You don't need to do anything until this happens. Not a thing. Just write your backer level and desired rewards down someplace so that when we contact you, you'll have it ready.
Don't panic if you don't hear from us right away. It's going to take a while for the funds to pass through the system and for us to process the data that Kickstarter gives us. Since the books don't come out until middle of next year, there's no rush. You might not hear from us for weeks. We have the time to do this right, so we're going to take it.
3. Going Forward (October through June of 2013)
Please don't use the Kickstarter messaging system to contact me after the Kickstarter is over. I won't be checking these regularly. Use this form.
I will send regular updates to all backers, letting you know how the progress is going, giving you updates about the game, the art, and so on. If you want even more, check in with montecook.com or numenera.com regularly for blog posts, design diaries, previews, and sneak peeks. I'm going to say this as gently but clearly as I can: it will be counterproductive of you to send me questions asking for personal updates beyond these public ones. I promise I'll always tell you everything I can. I want you to be happy, but keep in mind that every email I have to respond to is time that gets taken away from making this the best game I can. The correlation really is that direct.
November: Those of you getting playtester documents will see them starting in November.
December: Those of you contributing characters via the CONTRIBUTOR or ART LOVER backer levels will be contacted around this point so that we can work out the details of what you want to contribute. You'll have to be at least somewhat familiar with the basic game and setting to do this, but this information is on the numenera.com website now, and you'll likely have seen the playtester documents. Those of you contributing to the adventures or bestiary will be contacted later.
April-ish: Most of you will also get the anthology of short fiction ebook. This will be out next spring and will be delivered directly to the email address you provide.
4. Next Year (July of 2013)
The current plan is for the corebook to start shipping in late July of 2013.
PDFs: PDFs will likely be delivered in late July. They will be delivered as they are ready, and will probably go in this order: Numenera Corebook, Kickstarter exclusive adventure (The Nightmare Switch), Player's Guide, GM's screen, Numenera Fold-Up Terrain, Cypher Deck, First Adventure (Devil's Spine), XP Card Deck, Second Adventure (The Mechanized Tomb), Ninth World Bestiary, Creature Card Deck, Third Adventure (The Other Side of the Maelstrom), Sir Arthur's Compendium, and the Ninth World Guidebook. You might expect the first six or so in the first two months (July and August) and then on average one product each month after that, with a slight delay on the last two to ensure that they're really good. I estimate that the Ninth World Guidebook will be out by August of 2014. So many of you have basically bought yourself a year's worth of product.
Apps: I don't yet know how the app will be delivered, but I will let you know when I know.
Print Books: Depending on the realities of shipping times, you might not get your corebook shipment until early August. Hopefully, at least some of the other products will be available to ship at that same time, but we don't know what that will be at this point, and they may be shipped from different locations. Obviously, if we can combine shipments, we will. Personally, I hope that the Player's Guides, GM's screens, the shirts, and the first adventure will all be ready to go with the corebooks. Fingers crossed. Then, as with the PDFs, expect a steady stream of product headed your way (or your game store's way) after that, ending with the Ninth World Guidebook hopefully out in August of 2014.
Leatherbound Books: The leatherbound corebooks may be a few weeks behind the normal corebooks in production.
Numenera Theme Music: Hopefully this will also be available in July, if not sooner, as a downloadable music file.
Books to Libraries, Educators, and Troops: After the regular shipments, I will solicit worthy homes for these books. The application for libraries and educators will be on montecook.com and numenera.com. The books for troops will just go straight to bases. You can help me get the word out at that time to interested parties. And since people have asked, if you want to help me in these donations, you can do so by helping me cover the $3,000 or so in shipping this is going to cost. Again, I'm not asking you to do this, but some people have already volunteered to do so, so I will just say publicly that if you want to help out, you can do so via PayPal at any time. Send whatever amount you wish via PayPal to firstname.lastname@example.org and mark in the "message" field if you want it to go toward one donation or the other. It's not at all necessary, but obviously it's appreciated.
5. Beyond (2014...)
A lot of what happens after we finish all the products mentioned in this Kickstarter is up to you. As long as plenty of gamers want Numenera products, it will be a profitable business, and Monte Cook Games will continue to support it. There are two things you can do to help this to happen. First, go to your local gamestore owner and tell him or her about Numenera, and how interested you are in it. Get them to tell their distributor representative, to make sure that they order plenty of copies when the game is released. The second is to continue to help spread the word once the game launches, the way you did with this Kickstarter. Introduce your friends to the game. Use it to introduce new people to the hobby. In this way, we'll all benefit.
Thank you again for your support. I know I keep saying so, but I'm utterly blown away by the interest and enthusiasm that you guys have shown for this project over the last five weeks. It sincerely means a lot to me. Hopefully the best way I can show you how much is by creating a really amazing game and world for us all to enjoy.
Now, you'll excuse me. I've got some writing to do...