“I can destroy you with but a thought!” The rat was dressed in a long leather coat bleached white. His temples bulged, and his eyes were bloodshot with concentration as he ranted. "Take one step toward me, and I will obliterate you with my mind!”
Halo kept her martial stance, her eyes never leaving the rat’s. “Then do so,” Halo said.
“I’m sorry?” The rat didn’t seem to have anticipated this.
“Destroy me,” Halo pressed. “With your mind. Go ahead, magician.”
“I am no magician!” the rat screeched. “I am a scientist! I have studied the ancient records of the Old Ones, and I know the true power of the universe! I have mastered 47 of the 100 Theories!” During his tirade, the rat’s bulbous eyes began to water, and he finally did what Halo was waiting for.
When the rat opened his eyes a fraction of a second later, Halo had leapt into the air. Her foot glowed with a blue aura as she kicked him in the snout. The pain was intense, and the rat could feel his fur and flesh becoming bitterly cold as the blue energy enveloped him. He tried to speak, to unleash his mental attack, but he couldn’t move. The ice cracked and popped as his eyes froze solid.
Halo nodded in satisfaction as the frozen rat fell over the side of the roof, and turned away from her opponent. She needed tell the Ruling Council that the cult of Labo Tor had infiltrated the monarchy of Korat.
"Welcome once again to a world of fantasy adventure in the ancient future. I’m Eddy Webb, and this is Blayze Rex von Rex. Lurking behind his experiments over there is Sabian Sphynx von Angora."
"We want to talk to you about Monarchies of Mau. It’s a complete tabletop roleplaying game that acts as a companion game to, and is totally compatible with, my first RPG, Pugmire. The Monarchies of Mau is a nation of cats tenuously comprised of six city-states."
"Anyway, they live in the ashes of our world far in the future, seeking danger and mystery. Think Three Musketeers meets Planet of the Apes, but with cats."
"These cats have been uplifted to use technology and language. Some cats acquire the remnants of human technology, believing them to be literal gifts of magic from ancient, god-like servants. Others seek to create an ideal civilization, using the Precepts of Mau agreed to in the heat of a terrible war."
"Enemies of Mau can either be monstrous, like demon-possessed zombies, or simply other misunderstood people, such as the dogs of Pugmire."
"The world is dangerous and mysterious, but the instincts of a good cat will always be true."
"My company, Pugsteady, is working with Rich Thomas at Onyx Path Publishing to expand on our Monarchies of Mau Early Access version (see below).
"We’re running this Kickstarter so we can make the best version of Monarchies of Mau that we can, adding more art and writing to make this a complete and amazing product. If funded, we will produce a full-color 7 x 10 hardcover book (about the size of a graphic novel), with around 200+ pages.
"One of the highlights of the Monarchies of Mau game include this evocative, mysterious, and family-friendly setting, presented from the perspective of iconic characters like Blayze and Sabian here."
"Monarchies of Mau uses a customized version of the 5th Edition rules from the world's most popular fantasy RPG. It's been redesigned for streamlined play, with an emphasis on cooperation and action over competition and violence. Creating heroic and cunning cats is easy, and there are a variety of callings and noble houses that give focus to a cat’s role in society and in the adventuring party. To help you with your decision, I’m providing a copy of Monarchies of Mau Early Access. It’s a playable version of Monarchies of Mau that has over a third of the material you can expect in the final book.
Monarchies of Mau is totally compatible with Pugmire and uses the same rules system. Mixed cat and dog games are entirely possible and can provide some great roleplaying opportunities!
"Once you pledge, you'll be able to look at the very first Backer Only Update here on this site and get the link to download the Monarchies of Mau Early Access PDF so you can start playing right away!
"As you can see, this is more than just a bare-bones document, but a glimpse into what the final book could really look like."
"With your help, we’ll be able to make a game that not only adults can play among themselves, but also something that people can play with their families.
"More than that, we want this Kickstarter to help us put Monarchies of Mau into stores. We love retailers, but we know that modern publishing methods don’t always make it easy for them to get books into their stores. With Monarchies of Mau, we want to try and get at least one print run of the game into their hands, so everyone can get a chance to experience it."
Eddy and Rich will be discussing Monarchies of Mau on various blogs and podcasts as this Kickstarter runs.
And here are some links to many of the Pugmire and Monarchies of Mau articles and interviews and gaming sessions in the US and around the world that Eddy has been able to amass:
- Media from Pugmire: https://www.pugsteady.com/pugmire-media/
- Our friends at Geek & Sundry covered us again! http://geekandsundry.com/monarchies-of-mau-brings-cats-into-the-world-of-pugmire/
- As did our friends at The Arcade! http://www.the-arcade.ie/2017/05/monarchies-mau-tabletop-rpg-pugmire/
- Nerd Approved talked about Mau: http://nerdapproved.com/gaming/monarchies-of-mau/
- Monica Valentinelli did a wonderful spotlight of Mau and Eddy on her blog! http://www.booksofm.com/2017/05/friendly-friday-cats-dogs-and-the-imagination-of-eddy-webb.html
- Gameosity named Mau as one of Jess's Fav Five Kickstarters of the Week! http://gameosity.com/2017/05/19/jesss-fav-five-kickstarters-of-the-week-51917/
- iCv2 mentioned Mau! https://icv2.com/articles/news/view/37585/feline-action-takes-center-stage-monarchies-mau
- Terrible Warriors did a spotlight episode on us! http://www.terriblewarriors.com/episodes/spotlight-monarchies-of-mau-kickstarter
- Across The Board Games mentioned us as part of their Fund It Friday! http://www.acrosstheboardgames.net/luke/fund-it-friday-may-26th-2/
- More Gooder Than podcast mentioned Mau (near the end of the episode)! https://soundcloud.com/moregooderthan/goodie-bag-episode-23-appetizer
Contribute any amount you want, bearing in mind the levels of contribution and their commensurate rewards over there on the right. If we hit our goal, you’ll get the reward that goes with your level of contribution. PDFs and Print on Demand versions will be made available first in the form of a coupon from our online sales partner, DriveThruRPG.
Monarchies of Mau will take multiple months from the closing date to print and ship. During that time we will be using Backerkit to process and deliver your pledge Rewards, Add-ons, and anything additional you wish to add on after the KS is over. Backerkit has been the back-end service for about a thousand Kickstarters and has a sterling reputation for customer service and security.
"Eddy here, with one last comment: Like our previous Kickstarter for Pugmire, we're still working on creating and developing Monarchies of Mau. So we’re offering a special opportunity to contribute to the world as I’m building it! Check out the tiers on the right – there’s one where you can use your cat as inspiration for a piece of art, or even as a completely new character to the Monarchies!"
You can Add-on the items listed below to any Reward Tier pledge that already includes a Monarchies of Mau physical book by clicking on your Reward Tier to the right, and then when you get to the pledge page that confirms your pledge amount, manually changing the amount of your pledge from the base Reward amount to that Reward amount plus the amount of each Add-on that you want as listed below :
You can add on additional physical copies of the Monarchies of Mau physical book to any pledge that is already shipping a physical book by manually adding the appropriate amount on the pledge page:
+ $40 for each additional copy of the Monarchies of Mau book (US/Canada)
+ $60 for each additional copy of the Monarchies of Mau book (non-US/Canada)
You can add on any of these game accessories to any pledge that is already shipping a physical book by manually adding the appropriate amount on the pledge page:
+ $10 for the Mau Dice Set, a set of seven ebon black dice: two d20s with special a Monarchies of Mau symbol in place of the twenty, and a die 12, 10, 8, 6, and 4. Cats love to bat things around!
+ $15 for the Mau Guide's Screen, a sturdy three-panel horizontal screen featuring the beautiful collage of Monarchies of Mau art on the outer side, and on the inside there's a selection of charts and other info to make the Guide's job a little bit easier.
+ $15 for the Mau Pin Set, a full color 13 pin assortment of the house and callings symbols.
You must type in the correct amount calculated by adding the base Reward amount and the Add-ons you want. It does not happen automatically. All Add-ons will be confirmed by you when you receive the BackerKit Survey some time after this Kickstarter is over.
If we have contributions beyond our target number, we've planned many added rewards for contributors. Our range of possible Stretch Goal awards includes additional material for Monarchies of Mau, a fiction anthology, an introductory adventure, a Fetch Quest Early Access PDF, and much, much more.
At $30,000 of contributions, once the Mau KS is over, we're going to offer an exclusive KS Monarchies of Mau shirt that says something like "I'm the Best Cat! I backed the Monarchies of Mau Kickstarter" on our RedBubble store for sale at the deepest discount they'll let us do it for a limited time after which we'll change the design -- and we'll tell you folks about it first so you can order one if you want. We estimate that you'll be getting about a $10 discount.
At $55,000 of contributions, we will create a Monarchies of Mau Introductory Adventure PDF - everything needed to have your first adventure facing the perils of the Monarchies of Mau! We'll send it to all backers who pledged for a reward tier that includes a PDF of the Monarchies of Mau core book.
At $70,000 of contributions, we will commission 3 short stories that will be combined with later stretch goals to create a Monarchies of Mau Fiction Anthology PDF/eBook that we will send to all backers who pledge for a reward tier that includes a Monarchies of Mau PDF. Included in these three stories will be a story written by Monica Valentinelli (Firefly RPG, Hunter: The Vigil).
At $80,000 of contributions, we will begin the Roll of Good Dogs and Excellent Cats PDF (working title). Ready-Made Characters for Monarchies of Mau and Pugmire, using the backer NPC characters featured in both core books, that we will send to all backers who pledge for a reward tier that includes a Monarchies of Mau PDF. We will start with 6 Excellent Cats drawn from both books.
At $90,000 of contributions, Dennis Detwiller (Delta Green, NECROPOLIS) will write an adventure which will be compiled with the Intro adventure to start a Monarchies of Mau Adventures book. How will his uniquely dark perspective bring dread and menace to the cats of Mau? We'll send a PDF to all backers who pledge for a reward tier that includes a Monarchies of Mau PDF.
At $100,000 of contributions, we will commission 2 more short stories that will be combined with later stretch goals to create the Monarchies of Mau Fiction Anthology PDF/eBook that we will send to all backers who pledge for a reward tier that includes a Monarchies of Mau PDF. Included in these two new stories will be a story written by Joseph D. Carriker, Jr. (Vampire: The Requiem, Sacred Band).
At $110,000 of contributions, we will continue the Roll of Good Dogs and Excellent Cats PDF (working title). Ready-Made Characters for Monarchies of Mau and Pugmire, using the backer NPC characters featured in both core books, that we will send to all backers who pledge for a reward tier that includes a Monarchies of Mau PDF. We will now add 6 Good Dogs drawn from both books.
At $115,000 of contributions, Eddy will work with Dave Grossman (Secret of Monkey Island, The Wolf Among Us) and their colleagues at Earplay to make several episodes of an interactive Monarchies of Mau audio drama that you can play on your mobile device! All backers who pledge for a reward tier that includes a Monarchies of Mau PDF will get access to this volume at release.
At $125,000 of contributions, we will add a third adventure which will be compiled with the first two adventures in the Monarchies of Mau Adventures book. We'll send a PDF to all backers who pledge for a reward tier that includes a Monarchies of Mau PDF.
This is Onyx Path Publishing's twenty-fourth Kickstarter, and the company has learned enough (sometimes painfully) to make some tweaks to goals, reward tiers, and prizes. This knowledge has been applied to Onyx Path's partnership with Pugsteady as well as the FAQ below:
Risks and challenges
Risk: Monarchies of Mau isn't created at all even though the goal is reached.
Solution: We have successfully shipped fifteen Kickstarter projects, Pugmire is being printed, and several more KS projects are headed to completion as you read this. All those books have taught us how the various pieces of the process works, sometimes painfully, and we have increased our ability to judge the various stages of delivery better with each KS. The Early Access PDF is finished and playable and we will be expanding that into the full book
Risk: Shipping costs soak up pledges that were meant to enable the creation of Monarchies of Mau.
Solution: Kickstarter shipping costs have continued to rise dramatically, but we are aware of that and were able to find ways to work with shippers to bring down those costs - unfortunately, only to some extent as we have also needed to up the shipping charges. Both methods allow us to be sure that shipping doesn't eat up the pledge money supposed to go to printing. Because of Kickstarter adding the option to their tools, we are able to be more specific as to shipping costs based on your country. These costs will be added to your pledge automatically by KS if you are outside the US. As always, local or VAT style taxes will need to be paid by the backer when appropriate and are not included in these costs.
Risk: The project will take a long time to produce and anger the backers.
Solution: We've learned many, many lessons with our previous Kickstarters and we're becoming much better at estimating the various pitfalls that will delay a KS project. We were able to deliver the PDFs for several of our last KS projects several months before the estimate, and recent Kickstarters started shipping in the month or the month before we estimated. That being said, backers need to be aware that they are enabling a process, and not a pre-order opportunity, and things do sometimes run slower than we want or anticipate with that process.
We've found that an open flow of communication between us and the backer community is vital so once the project funds we will deliver regular Updates on progress via Kickstarter as well as in our regular, weekly, Monday Meeting Notes blog at www.theonyxpath.comLearn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)