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Tephra is a steampunk RPG with a unique setting and a dynamic system. Help us get Tephra in your hands and at your game table.
374 backers pledged $22,821 to help bring this project to life.

Recent updates


Kickstarter Adversary Book: Completed!


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Rejoice: I’m Resigning!

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To all of our wonderful supporters,

As of last week, I have resigned as the sole owner of Cracked Monocle. In my place, Alex Whisenhunt and Jeffrey Wood - two amazing gentlemen - are stepping up to take my place, help me fulfill my obligations, and move Cracked Monocle forward. 

I have worked on Tephra for nearly seven years now. It has been a major part of my life - often, it has been the defining part of my life. I effectively dropped out of college to work on Tephra. Then, with wind in my sails and confidence as my companion, I started this kickstarter. Lo and behold, I wasn’t ready yet! 

But I don’t regret it. During those seven years, I built a community of friends and co-workers that have stood by me, supported me, and I have loved them. I have taught myself numerous skills, from business practices to design practices, and I would never want to give them up. I am proud of the person that I have become because of Cracked Monocle. I wish I could have done it without incurring as much debt and without upsetting so many people, but you live, you learn. 

I am slowly relieving myself of Tephra projects and helping Alex and Jeffrey build their new company. They are taking over Tephra, Espionage, Cracked Monocle, and a couple of side-projects that we’ve been working on. I am further giving them my resources and knowledge thus-far. These two have often been my backbone - their reliability has been a great source of strength. I look forward to seeing how they rebuild Cracked Monocle and grow what I started. 

Kickstarter - Final Steps

A few months ago, Alex and I rebuilt the expected financial needs for Cracked Monocle to complete its obligations and let their new company start debt-free. We discovered that we need about $3,500 to complete this Kickstarter ($2400 to complete the international backers and $1100 to complete the Kickstarter Adversary Guide).

Alex and Jeffrey will be helping me get through this over the next few months. With their help, we aim to be finished with everything by October.

The Kickstarter Adversary Book is virtually complete. We’re reviewing it right now and will be posting the PDF (to our $70+ backers) as soon as it’s done. 

Cracked Monocle’s Future

Alex and Jeffrey are lining up a lot of projects. While they’re helping me finish my commitments, they also have some brilliant ideas for expanding Tephra, growing the company, and getting Cracked Monocle running at full steam. But I’m going to let them make those announcements themselves. They’ve earned it.

It’s time for me to get out of their way and stop holding Cracked Monocle back. I’ve done what I can to get Tephra started and grow Cracked Monocle, but I hit my limit a long time ago and it’s just taken me a while to figure that out. I will always try to support Cracked Monocle, but I need to focus on other areas of my life, grow a little, and see what I’m capable of.

I’ll be making amends with all of you that are waiting on stuff, then I’ll slowly fade into the shadows of Alex and Jeffrey. Please support them, don’t hold my mistakes against them, and let’s have Tephra grow strong.

Cheers & Gears - not for the last time, but for one of the last,


PS: If you’ve sent me a message recently and I haven’t responded, please accept my apologies. I’m trying to wrap some things up and will be getting back with you shortly.

Finishing Adversaries!

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Hello everyone!

I wanted to drop in and let you know that I'm working on finishing up the Tephra adversaries right now. 90% of them are good to go (have owner approvals and everything), but we're revising the last 10% that had some design issues. I'm expecting it to be done within the next few weeks, and we've built a plan for getting them out.

In the meantime, Alex redesigned our site and it looks pretty spiffy. Check it out at!

Cheers & Gears, Daniel

(I'm trying a "short update" method. It's a little odd for me, but maybe that means I'll update more.)

A New Year, a New Tephra


I hope everyone had a fantastic new year! 

I know that many of you rang in the new year with a resolution of sorts. Some people resolved to spend their money more carefully, some people resolved to work-out, and some people resolved to stop giving money to good-for-nothing poorly-managed kickstarters. Sadly, you already made that last mistake.

Tephra's kickstarter has been an enormous learning curve for me, but I've explained the facts elsewhere. Recently, it's taught me about myself. When I'm overwhelmed or afraid of something, I cave in. I bury my head in the sand. Some of my closest friends are nodding their heads right now, going, "Yep, Daniel's real bad about that." But I've learned this about myself, and I'm fixing it. Right now, in fact. 

My new year's resolution is simple:

Stop being overwhelmed. Start being overwhelming. 

I'm going to start with the first half of that resolution here. I have been totally overwhelmed by (1) my mistakes with this kickstarter and (2) the difficulty of wrapping it up. But I'm no longer going to let that stop me from doing what's right and what y'all deserve. I'm going to take one step forward and another step, and I'm going to wrap this up.

I know I lost some of your trust. I know that for some of you (especially my international backers), I am never getting that back again. I'm sorry, that's all I can say. I'm truly sorry.

But I want to try. I want to earn back your trust, if I can. And I'm going to do it with both words and actions. 

On Friday, I sent the Kickstarter Adversary drafts to every Adversary-level backer. Many of them have already reviewed it, and I'm in the process of doing tweaks and edits. We're touching up on some problems, going through the edits, and I want to have this out ASAP. As soon as the final product is ready, I'll be sending it to the printers and getting a PDF copy out to every back at the $70 mark and above.

Second, I am going to start getting my international backers taken care of. Before I ship anything out, I will message you and make sure that your email is current. I can't guarantee how fast I'll get this turned around, but I want to do it fast. I'll be sending some messages tonight for just that reason. 

We're updating a lot of things in the company and preparing to release a lot of new products, but that's not why I'm writing this post. Once I get a little further in making amends, then I'll start talking about the future. 

Thanks for your support and patience. 


The Deserved Update

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