Alba starts out as a visual journey through ancient Scotland. From there it adds commentary, maps, games and more to take you further into the world of ancient Scotland. Just choose how far in you wish to go and stretch goals may add a few extras along the way.
Two colour rich traditional tapestries about Scotland have appeared during 2014. The larger is the Great Scottish Tapestry which offers a journey through the lives and history of Scotland’s people focused on relatively recent times. The similarly impressive Scots’ Diasporia Tapestry looks at the lives of Scots who left Scotland to make their way in the wider world.
Alba aims to provide a third tapestry with the advantages of digital media – and plenty of optional extra content to offer routes into exploring what lies behind the images. Alba takes a slightly different approach to the other tapestries in terms of concentrating on ancient and early Scotland and early international connections. As part of that the tapestry is maybe more about ideas, events and our relationship with the land than a portrayal of humans’ impact on the land.
- Alba is the original name of the first united Kingdom of Scotland. The project is centered around a digital tapestry of ancient and early Scotland up to and including the period when it was known to most (now) Scots as Alba.
- At this stage the content focuses on Scotland – once the inconveniently mountainous centre of a series of Atlantic civilisations.
- The tapestry, various games and quizzes, and a wider presentation of Alba sets out to invite anyone to take a factual or imaginative journey into past events.
- A set of 80+ hi-resolution, colour images sits at the heart of the project. These invite you to explore the history, lives and landscapes of early Atlantic civilisations. Each part arrives as a standard issue Acrobat PDF in US Letter size.
- The images present a blend of locations and events that form an open narrative. The story begins before Scotland was covered in volcanoes and dinosaurs – and continues through to the early medieval world of the Picts and the First Scottish War of Independence.
- Working with PDFs makes for easy viewing on most devices and inexpensive entry points. The images look good on a tablet but they are at their most effective when viewed on a reasonably large monitor or when projected. It’s highly recommended to adjust monitors slightly to ensure you are seeing rich colours and all the transparency effects.
* – Please note images are shared across versions. The page totals shown include the images.
** – Rewards/ tiers are cumulative – though some upgrades do replace titles if funded as shown below.
The tapestry offers a Scottish flavoured entertainment:
- For sticking on some music and soaking up the images.
- For an authentic, visual introduction to Atlantic history and culture.
- To reflect on how you understand or value Scotland or any other country.
- To illustrate and/ or to help to invent stories for kids; for round table storytelling; or for yourself.
- As a platform for a variety of quizzes, puzzles and straightforward games.
The Alba Kickstarter is arranged to serve up the images and light history first - if that's where your interests lie the games in the Stretch Goals are simply extras with no added charge.
Tabletop games are a great way to step into the past to try out life as a Pict or a Viking - but not everyone's cup of tea.
For gamers there's a choice between authentic gameplay - where life is often tough - and more imaginative angles tapping straight into rich mythologies.
Alba – Legends £1000
- Replacing and upgrading Alba – Mythology with a collection of old Scottish tales.
Alba – Treasure Hunt £1200
- A ‘treasure hunt’ puzzle with symbols and images to locate or decode.
- Colour cover – contents page – title page.
- 12 ‘puzzles’
- 24 pages.
- Medium font.
Alba – Valkyrie £1500
Taken together Alba forms a rich media setting for tabletop gameplay. Thistle Games’ already has a couple of well-received tabletop rule sets, (Treasure and Renegade/ Corruption) plus a selection of other gaming titles.
The game brings together features from both titles to present a game that dovetails with Alba and the Atlantic world. Valkyrie has been under development and testing over the last year, so there are a few surprises in there too.
- An adventure game/ RPG.
- Familiar core gameplay, e.g. skills and classes.
- Classes based on the Atlantic World. E.g. Sacral Knight, Celtic Monk, Valkyrie, . . .
- Images – 48+ digital cards.
- 80+ pages.
Further tiers – best not to get over-excited at this stage.
The KS page seems to be a bit slow - and the cards have become sort of wider. I'll add more images over at Thistle Games and link them in the updates here, which are set to public.
Risks and challenges
As one designer – plus playtesters and a bit of editing – it makes sense to allow for any hold ups. That’s why hundreds of hours of work have been put in beforehand. The plan is to start delivering far in advance of the given dates – with plenty of room for manouvre built into those. However, better to play safe on timings.
By concentrating on PDFs at this stage everything is open to correction and no one has to put down much cash to get a bundle of content.
Have I made this kind of stuff/ several e-books before – there’s a raft of free examples and finished titles over at my notepad/ the Thistle Games site.
May 2015 is the stated delivery for the core content. August 2016 is the planned delivery for Stretch Goals. Again, I'd have to be hoping to be well in advance of that.
Most files can all be sent by standard email attachment. Some may be better sent by Dropbox or GDrive.
In terms of publishing, the project is about continuing to improve Thistle Games' content and presentation - while keeping costs down.
If the KS goes well I can look to add more into Alba and start playing around with some technology options for next time round whether Alba related or another project.
The biography link kind of covers the trustworthy part.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (40 days)