Update #9 - LIVE Hangout for Final Hours!
Update #8 - More FAQs Added
Update #7 - FAQs Added
Update #6 - NEW VIDEO!!
Update #5 - Backer Goal (25) Hit!
Update #4 - (Backer-only) Titles & Descriptions
Update #3 - Editor Volunteer Army
Update #2 - Stretch Goals!
Update #1 - We are Funded!
"Escaping Titan sounds like just another space-based RPG, but it's not..." Thegamersblog
"The purpose of this interesting sounding forum is to serve as a platform from where the studio can bounce ideas between gamers and actual scientist, covering STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) topics." mweb
"The truth is, while there is a "hard science fiction" movement in literature, there isn't much when it comes to gaming... Broken Crown Games is a company looking to change that with their upcoming title, Broken Crown: Escaping Titan." EMGnow
"It is actually a pretty cool idea, as there is a lot of demand for science fiction in the market right now, and as science fiction tends to be, there is not a whole lot of science fact involved." Explosion
"When science and gaming mesh the world becomes a better place" n4g
- AND MANY OTHER MUCH APPRECIATED ARTICLES!
THE SOURCEBOOK COLLECTION
If you’re a fan of science, science-fiction, or just deep, narrative-based RPGs (role-playing games), then this sourcebook collection should be right up your alley. We’re dedicated to creating a deeply immersive sci-fi world, and part of that immersion comes from the focus we’ve placed on modern science research and theory in order to make a plausible futuristic environment in which Escaping Titan’s story can take place.
This sourcebook collection gives early fans a unique look into how science content will be blended with fiction narrative to create the upcoming Escaping Titan title. In total, the sourcebook collection will have five volumes:
- VOLUME 1: Science Behind the Sci-Fi, Paleobotany Edition
- VOLUME 2: Science Behind the Sci-Fi, Neuroscience Edition
- VOLUME 3: Science Behind the Sci-Fi, Astrobiology Edition
- VOLUME 4: Science Behind the Sci-Fi, Astrophysics Edition
- VOLUME 5: Science-Fiction Shorts Based on Escaping Titan
Since I've already fielded these questions numerous times among friends, I thought I'd address them at the very beginning for everyone:
"So what is the purpose and value in getting a sourcebook then?"
I like to explain it like this way -- Have you ever watched a Spider-Man movie? Did you enjoy it? Probably. And yet most of you have never read the comics. Well, think of the movie as our game, and the comics as our sourcebook. Though the "movie" will still provide you with a great experience, you'll enjoy it and understand the events that much better if you know all the backstory from the "comics". And just as the comics in this example can be enjoyed without reading all other editions in the comic collection and without watching the movie... each chapter of each sourcebook volume can be enjoyed separately. So if you never plan on getting the game because "gaming isn't your thing", but science or science-fiction is -- then you can still enjoy our sourcebook!
"What's the rush? Why should I get these via Kickstarter?"
Well this one is easy -- Getting them during Kickstarter is important because we will sell them again elsewhere! As you'll see, volumes 1-4 are 'basically' available for free on our forums. However, unless we find a way to efficiently distribute our e-books, this may be the first, AND LAST, chance that we will offer for someone to get this unique look into our game's backstory. With that said, if we do find another distribution method, we will be increasing the cost of future sales (to cover loses from distributor cuts).
OK, that's enough of FAQs, let's get into the details...
Volumes 1-4 ('Science Behind the Sci-Fi')
The first four volumes will be composed from the content currently available for free on the Broken Crown Forums, found here. We make the 'Science Behind the Sci-Fi' panel because we’d love for people to look into the making of Escaping Titan, while also giving them the opportunity to learn a few fun facts in the process. Since science outreach is one of our goals, we’re intent on keeping this content free and available for all via our forums.
With that said, you might be wondering why we are asking you to pay $1 for that content, right? Well unfortunately our site is currently plagued with word ads from the host, and we’d like to purchase the ‘Pro’ version of forum hosting to get rid of these and give you, the fans, a more enjoyable experience while visiting our site. A $1 donation will go a long way in helping us make our forum experience become that much more enjoyable for future visitors; plus, as our reward for helping us enrich that experience, we will put your name out there so everyone knows you helped. That didn't seem like quite enough, so we also decided to let donors enjoy a ‘Science Behind the Sci-Fi’ volume of their choice, ad free and off-line, in PDF form!
So that brings us to Volume 5.
Volume 5 (Science-Fiction Shorts)
This volume is a collection of short stories (and possibly some novelettes) that are completely new content, never before released, and with no plans of becoming available for free in the future.
The entire collection of short stories will tie together into one theme in that they supplement the in-game Escaping Titan narrative in some way. For instance, some shorts will cover the Broken Crown event and help you understand why the game is based so far out into the solar system, while others will give you a stronger understanding of the actions and personalities of many major NPCs found in-game.
Volume 5 content is NOT covered in Escaping Titan, so these shorts are the only place you will learn these added plot details. Though not required to enjoy the final game, it will allow you to increase your emotional connection to the game's story, and in turn, provide you a much more immersive gaming experience.
And again, if you don't plan on purchasing the game - DON'T WORRY! The short story collection will be written separate from the game's narrative, and each short will have their own 'Start' and 'End', so each can provide a complete "experience" of the telling of a story - similar to my comic book example.
WHO ARE WE?
Broken Crown Games, LLC is a small independent game development studio with a mission of providing science outreach through “entertainment-first” video games. We began pre-production work (storyline, game mechanics, etc.) on Broken Crown: Escaping Titan early in 2012. After nearly a year into the project, our writer, Tyler, really wanted to make sure we were getting the science correct and ensure our science-fiction could be considered 'one day possible' (or at least plausible), so we enlisted the support of four volunteer PhD's to help us on our way. We didn't want to be shy about our close tie to scientific accuracy, so we created the 'Science Behind the Sci-Fi' panel where their work could be displayed. With that said, here is a look at the sourcebook team.
Meet the writers:
- PhD in Paleobotany
- Director of Education at the New York Botanical Gardens
- PhD in Neuroscience
- Professor at Wake Forest University
- PhD in Meteorology & Astrobiology
- Research Scientist with Blue Marble Space Institute
- PhD in Astrophysics
- Congressional Science Fellow for US Senator Chris Coons
Tyler Yohe, Science-Fiction Shorts based on Escaping Titan (Vol. 5)
- Degrees in Nanofabricaton, Life Science, and Biomedical Eng.
- CEO, Creative Director, and Writer of the Broken Crown series
This campaign is all about raising the funds so we can provide a more enjoyable community experience for our fans.
As you’ll notice, we have a very minor goal and reward costs. The reason is because this campaign is all about reaching out and generating a fan base for our upcoming game, and getting an idea of how much interest is out there in what we are doing, without breaking any banks. If you like what we’re doing, but can’t spare that dollar that’s fine! We understand, but appreciate the support, so just stop by our forums and say hi!
So where will the funds go that we do make if it’s just about building an audience? Well, obviously some of the funds are going to go toward physical rewards. However, since most of the funds will come from virtual rewards, we are putting the funds back towards improving our virtual presence. Our #1 goal out of this campaign is to purchase the Pro version of our forums and get those pesky ad words off our forums so fans can read the ‘Science Behind the Sci-Fi’ posts in peace!
We've tried to keep these relatively simple and self-explanatory. If you have any questions though, please feel free to ask (particularly before throwing $100+ dollars at us for tier 3 or 4)! Your support will make us extremely happy, so we want to make sure everyone is just as happy with what they receive in return for their donation.
Before I wrap things up, I'd obviously like to thank the four panelists for all their hard volunteer work, as well as my great team of volunteer game developers at the Broken Crown studio. However, there have been a number of other behind the scenes people who really made this dream possible so far. Wonderful people including Brandon K., Marissa H., Luke Peterschmidt of Funto11, and many others for volunteering their time to help us get things up and running, as well as the support of friends and family. So to all of you, thank you!
Finally, this campaign effort won't be successful if it wasn't for fans like yourself bothering to read this far :) So to all of you, please know that we truly appreciate the support, and from the bottom of our hearts, thank you!
KICKING IT FORWARD
We believe in Kickstarter as a platform for great crowd funding. As such, we pledge that 5% of the profits we make, should we be successful, will be used to support other projects on Kickstarter.
Risks and challenges
We were lucky enough to have minimal risks with this project, which also allowed us to keep our goal low, and in turn, keep the reward costs low for you as well.
Our 'Science Behind the Sci-Fi' panelists are already hard at work writing the 'Science Behind the Sci-Fi' volumes for the Escaping Titan video game. If you're curious about the writing quality, jump on our forums, check them out, and feel free to make some comments and suggestions! This Kickstarter is all about growing our community and increasing community interaction, so we truly want and appreciate feedback that helps us bring you a higher quality product.
However, the real challenge for us is not the writing of the sourcebook volumes, but rather publishing and distributing. We've taken a peek at a few self-publishers, and doing a full physical printing of the Escaping Titan Sourcebook Collection just didn't seem feasible.
Instead, we chose to go with an e-book so we could easily get the content to fans, without going bankrupt in the process. There is limited risk with the e-book route. Publishing is as similar to compiling everything into a single PDF file. As for distribution, since they are just digital files, we'll have multiple means of distribution that are simple and cost effective.
We haven't firmly decided on any particular form of distribution just yet, but options include anything from emailing the PDF file directly (likely the case for Kickstarter so we can get them to you as soon as possible), or possibly creating an online store and giving everyone a unique 'coupon' to download your individualized copy.
Eventually we will also look into distribution through sources such as Amazon and other e-reader marketplaces.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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