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A beautifully illustrated deck of cards with instructions on how to use them as a universal RPG initiative system
A beautifully illustrated deck of cards with instructions on how to use them as a universal RPG initiative system
89 backers pledged £698 to help bring this project to life.

About

£698

89

Firstly, these cards are rather nifty little tools intended for use with the existing Troika! RPG initiative system, requiring little explanation for those familiar with it. For those who aren't already wallowing in that luxurious role-playing treat and have no intention of joining us for fear of getting an unfulfillable taste for the good life, this is also a generic initiative system which can replace most I-go-you-go arrangements. 

If you are familiar with the concept of a chit-pull system then you might have some idea of what we're doing here. In broad terms the players, monsters, henchmen and hangers-on all have tokens representing them. When initiative is needed these tokens are piled up, shuffled together, hidden in a pit, or otherwise confused and secluded in a way befitting their form. In our case we'll be shuffling them and drawing in order, or piling and picking at them like an intelligent but capricious bird. Whoever owns the token drawn is the person who acts. Unless of course you draw the end of round card, in which case everything is scooped back up and started again. Oh, the uncertainty of violence.

There are further little wrinkles to it, tiny turns that add to the drama, but this is the flavour of it. 

The Melsonian Arts Council is a micro press publishing house which specialises in short works that startle and entertain us. Its output is by turns erudite, lucid and beautiful, or dumb, obtuse and ugly. We have previously and are still releasing peculiar zines, games and adventures.

Andrew Walter is an illustrator whose work has been featured in The Undercroft, Wormskin, and various other OSR products, as well as on underground metal and punk releases. He likes schlock horror and loud noises.

Daniel Sell is a writer and publisher of games and game-adjacent material. Troika! is his baby but he's certain it will grow up to hate him.

The cards are illustrated, the rules are written, all that's left to do is to fiddle with the proofs until they're satisfactory. With any luck this will be long before the project ends, worst case scenario it'll be soon after. 

That's right, we've turned to the dark side. These cards will be print-on-demand. We'd have liked to get them printed professionally but we'd be running up against the wall of a several thousand pound printing bill. But hey, unofficial stretch goal: get us to five figures and we'll make these things as handsome as you like. In the meantime, how will this work?

Once we have the final proofs we'll either feed your email in to DriveThruRPG and let you pick up your at-cost copy at your leisure, or else we'll get them imported (~2 weeks) and send them out manually from here while discounting you in a similar fashion. Easy-peasy.

For reference: the raw material cost will be around £3/$4. So in addition to your £6 Kickstarter pledge you'll be paying an additional £3ish for a total of £9ish plus postage. Speaking of postage...

So here's the thing, OneBookshelf only print and ship cards from the US. For many of you this will be great, hip hip hooray, cheap US postage and so on, but for others this will be a massive nuisance. Consider: postage inside the USA is in the region of ~$4, while the rest of the world is going to be about ~$14. Oof.

Don't fret extra-americanos! The entire point of this Kickstarter is so we can afford to import these beautiful bricks of joy into our fair country, where they will be treated to good old-fashioned manual distribution and digestible postage rates for the rest of us. 

For everyone's trouble we're offering these at a discounted rate while the funds are raised, so do get on board even if you don't stand to gain from the physical movement of property. The final pricing is still in the air, but it will be a nebulous bigger number.

Risks and challenges

The art is finished, the rules are in final layout, and the last lot of proof copies are flying about. Short of a sudden death there isn't much that can go wrong now.

However we've never fulfilled through DriveThruRPG before, so that might cause some issues. Those of you buying direct from them shouldn't have any issue, but there is potential for delays or minor catastrophes with the wholesale imported copies. They could fall in the ocean and cause a great fat delay. Who knows?

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £6 or more About $8

    Troika! Initiative Deck

    This will get you a code for an at-cost copy of the initiative deck and rules via DriveThruRPG or our own shop.

    Includes:
    • Troika! Initiative Deck
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    Estimated delivery
    50 backers
    £
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge £10 or more About $14

    Core + Deck

    This will get you a code for an at-cost physical copy of the initiative deck and rules via DriveThruRPG or our own shop AND a PDF of the full and handsome core rules of Troika!.

    Includes:
    • Troika! Initiative Deck
    • Troika! PDF
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    39 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (21 days)