Forests in fantasy roleplaying games are dark places, full of secrets. With this project, we bring the Old Margreve to the 5th Edition of the world's most popular RPG. The Margreve is an ancient, enchanted forest that defends itself from those who come to cut its timber, poach its creatures, or steal its magic. Within its borders the Old Ways are strong, the word of the druids carries great weight, and griffons, dragons, and stranger creatures nest and hunt, undisturbed by humans, dwarves, or other lordlings.
Until your adventuring party shows up. Then things get really interesting.
The Margreve Kickstarter offers three main elements:
1) the Tales of the Old Margreve adventure campaign hardcover for the GM, with adventures from levels 1 to 10
2) a Margreve Player's Guide softcover book of new player options, including new races, druid and ranger subclasses and tools, backgrounds, and forest-themed spells.
3) (UNLOCKED!) a set of thick cardboard standups, the Margreve Pawns, which are similar to those created for Tome of Beasts and the Creature Codex. Here is a small sample of what that would look like; we anticipate producing 150 to 200 pawns (depending on stretch goals).
Together with some book-expanding stretch goals, this project provides new deep-forest character options and a full sequence of adventures to draw adventurers into the wilderness and keep them on their toes. Here's an easy reference for all the pledges and rewards.
WHY KICKSTART THIS?
Initially we debated this as a softcover adventure collection, but we soon realized that it was large enough and compelling enough to make into a hardcover volume playable in 5th Edition fantasy campaigns, together with a player supplement. Why not go big?
Kobold Press is doing something a little different with its digital offerings this time. We're putting our effort into the two print books, and possibly a custom set of pawns—and digitally, full sets of virtual tabletop (VTT) files. That means that we'll have the Old Margreve adventures and source material available on Roll20 and on Fantasy Grounds shortly after the hardcover and softcover volumes ship.
With terrific map management, full suites of digital tokens, pre-set monster stats, and more, virtual tabletops make it easier than ever to just sit down and play. The VTT packages for the Old Margreve will be extensive and include everything provided in the print edition—plus the flexibility and speed of online play. We're partnering directly with Roll20 and Fantasy Grounds, two of the leading VTT companies, to make these digital versions complete and powerful.
We have funded in 3 hours, so we can talk about add-ons! For those newer to Kickstarter, these are items you can either add to your pledge amount now or add to a pledge during the survey stage later. Here are the items current planned as available for add-ons:
1) Extra Copies of Tales of the Old Margreve Hardcover: Add to any pledge level for $40.
2) Extra Copies of Margreve Player's Guide Softcover: Add to any pledge level for $20.
3) (UNLOCKED) Margreve Pawns: Add to any pledge for $25 (with a notable increase in shipping cost--these are heavy).
4) Return to Castle Shadowcrag B&W Softcover: An adventure in the Margreve's haunted castle, for higher-level characters. Add to any pledge level for $15.
The designers on this project include lead designer Matt Corley plus contributing designers Dan Dillon, Jon Sawatsky, James Introcaso, and Wolfgang Baur.
They build on earlier Margreve work by Richard Pett, Ben McFarland, Tim & Eileen Connors, Dan Voyce, Michael Furlanetto, Wolfgang Baur, and others.
Shipping costs from the US to anywhere outside North America have risen sharply in recent years, so we are once again partnering with groups in Canada, in the EU, and likely in Australia (depending on the volume of backers there), and if so then Kobold Press will pay customs and import duties for those packages.
Our best guess for those Canada-friendly and EU-friendly costs right now are roughly $22 shipping for Canada and roughly $30-and-a-bit for shipping to the EU. We do not have an Australia estimate yet.
To calculate shipping to your location from the US, you can use the US Postal Service calculator and assume a Medium size flat rate box: https://postcalc.usps.com/
Our goals are primarily about improving the hardcover book by adding new material to the adventures, expanding the lore of the deep forest, and providing more player options.
That said, we also have several big goals to unlock: a poster map of the forest village that appears in several adventures, the set of custom pawns mentioned above, and more. Just the next 3 goals are shown; there are more waiting in the wings.
With your help, we hope to unlock everything and provide a full fantasy forest campaign!
Risks and challenges
We have a full manuscript for the Tales of the Old Margreve currently in editing, and we have designers working on the Player's Guide and artists on the art. However, there are always risks, and the largest risk for a small company like Kobold Press is a health issue or personal tragedy for one of our primary contributors, such as the publisher, art director, or lead editor. We can't plan around that, but we have mitigated it by having text and art and maps either complete or assigned.
In addition, our past projects have shown us that overseas manufacturing and shipping to locations outside the US both carry substantial risks, especially with respect to 1) tariffs, brokerage fees, and customs fees, and 2) increases in US postal costs. To address the first we partner with EU and Canadian partners, and we are hedging against the second by charging postage separately in BackerKit.
Based on prior years' trends, we fully anticipate another large rate increase by the US Postal Service on January 1, 2019. If it follows past years, it will affect shipping overseas to a larger degree than US shipping, where we expect a more moderate increase in costs. You can find US international postal rates for a 3 pound hardcover to 5 pound multi-volume package here: https://postcalc.usps.com/
On the digital side, please note that Roll20® is not responsible for the completion, quality, or timely delivery of this content; it will deliver the associated reward only if and when all digital materials are provided in a timely manner.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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