The Slipcase Option: Notes from Gen Con
Dennis Detwiller reports on Gen Con 2017:
Gen Con 2017 was special in many ways. It was the 50th anniversary of the show, for one. For another, it was totally sold out for the first time.
They had a huge museum of roleplaying-related artifacts from the before-time, and guess what? You can be proud: Delta Green was in it (along with many other products I had a hand in, like The Unspeakable Oath, Primal Order, and Magic: The Gathering). Neat to be a fossil that's somehow still clawing away at the ecosystem (go, team coelacanth!).
We ran into the usual suspects. Shane Ivey, my stalwart creative partner, was there managing all things with a computer-like precision (that the computer was a first-generation Amiga color, you'll have to excuse). Simeon Cogswell, our layout guru, continued a long tradition of complaining while working too hard for too little money. Booth manager John Marron was happy at all times (despite our best efforts), perhaps because he inflicted the Bob Ross board game on us and managed to get me to play. Finally, Scott Glancy created a new look at the booth called “enturly,” appearing entertained and surly at the same time. Ross Payton and the RPPR guys were there, too (minus Caleb—boo!), and we tortured then endlessly. (Pro tip: Call Ross “Caleb,” he loves it.)
We even got in a bit of a Delta Green game. We played "Operation SUGARTOWN" with Ross, the Arc Dream team, and a few RRPR regulars. Though we didn't get to finish it, much fun was had. Look for the operation in a writeup on the Patreon next month.
At the booth, we had a bunch of Delta Green newly appearing in print (full color!), and they are gorgeous: Kali Ghati, The Star Chamber, and Observer Effect. They sold like hotcakes. I did pen sketches for any Delta Green Patreon backer that stopped by, and let me tell you, I didn't expect 60+ of you to be there—but it was great (though my hand may not agree, currently).
We had a magnificently packed Delta Green meetup (audio coming soon), where we spoke at length about the state of Delta Green, answered questions, and made some announcements.
The biggest announcement has to do with the form of Delta Green: The Role-Playing Game. We’ve been planning it as a single book, but it’s huge, and the cost of shipping it to ports far and wide called for careful consideration.
The options were:
- Print a single book with 500+ pages. That would have made the book so heavy that delivery to backers outside the U.S. and U.K. would have cost up to $50 on top of what’s already been paid.
- Or make Delta Green: The Role-Playing Game a slipcase of two books. That contains a 192-page Agent's Handbook and a 320-page Handler's Guide. The Handler's Guide is the giant manuscript we circulated a few weeks ago, minus the rules portions that appeared in the Agent's Handbook. So, one book has rules, sanity and character creation: the Agent's Handbook. The other has monsters, magic, creating your own Delta Green, and the timeline: the Handler's Guide.
We chose option 2 for a lot of reasons. Most importantly, it reduces the international delivery costs dramatically. Our international-fulfillment partners in the U.K. can ship two separate packages—one with with the Handler’s Guide; the other with the Agent’s Handbook and the slipcase itself—for far less than shipping a single package the weight of a single, huge book. It’s a weird vagary of the way the Royal Mail handles parcels.
In option 2, no one pays any additional shipping. OK, truth be told, there are additional shipping costs, but they’re modest enough that we at Arc Dream can cover them. Backers don’t have to pay anything extra.
The fans at the Delta Green panel were happy with the announcement, and so were we. It's the best of all worlds.
So, long story short, if you ordered the “Case Officer's Handbook” option, you'll get Delta Green: The Role-Playing Game: the Agent's Handbook and the Handler's Guide in a beautiful slipcase, delivered in two packages, at no further shipping cost to you.
Thanks for all who came out.