Bite Me! - a game of werewolf pack dynamics
A roleplaying game about badass werewolves and their emotional relationships
This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Thu, March 21 2019 7:01 AM UTC +00:00.
About the game
Maybe you were born this way, and raised as a wild creature. Maybe something bit you and you woke up with an itch at the base of your spine. Maybe your Change came on unexpected and violent, and you had to run away from home. Whatever the reason, whatever joy or trauma: you are home now. You are in the Pack.
This is a game about being a werewolf, in a Pack. The Pack is a deeply intimate and close family; like a family, sometimes it is full of love and happiness and sometimes it is brutal and dysfunctional. But love it or hate it, you can't ignore it – it will shape you. Fearless Alpha, dedicated foot soldier, pacifist scholar or rebellious cub - your relationship with the Pack is the cornerstone of who and what you are.
In Bite Me! you'll uncover the story of the Pack, exploring the relationships between Packmates, drawing out their loves, rivalries and betrayals. What are the cracks that could shatter the Pack and drown you in hate, and how much stress can those pressure points take before they explode?
Outside the Pack is a threatening world of violence waiting to rain down upon you: werewolf hunters, rival Packs - even a human with a smartphone and an instagram account could all mean a bloody end for you. The Pack will face powerful threats, forcing the Packmates to choose where they fight and die; the cycle of fractures which threaten to destroy the Pack and the inescapable pull of the Pack-family dynamic is the core of the game.
This is a game about struggling with the beast inside, deciding when you will fight, protect, murder, or mutilate - whether you do these things because you love the feral life or as a sacrifice to save the family you are bound to. What does it feel like to be a part of that family?
Bite Me! is built using the same Powered by the Apocalypse (PBTA) framework found in games like Apocalypse World, Monsterhearts and Night Witches, to name but a few. It's a simple system based on rolling two six-sided dice.
Seven Skins are available to play in the game:
- The Alpha
- The Cub
- The Enforcer
- The Fixer
- The Greypelt
- The Howl
- The Prodigal
The Pack itself will also get a playbook with powerful family Moves, traditions and culture reflecting the tight knit group you are.
What are other people saying about Bite Me!
"Just reading over the game text made my heart race; this is a game that will tell intense stories of emotionally charged family dynamics in a visceral way. " Meguey Baker (Designer of Psi Run, 1001 Nights and Apocalypse World)
"I’ve had a marvellous time playing Bite Me! Tough as nails werewolves and personal drama make a potent combination. The game encourages you to really go for it and embrace your inner wolf. It also encourages you to quarrel and bond with your packmates, and to expose your soft vulnerable underbelly. It's immersive and enormous fun. And I can vouch that Becky really knows her werewolves. I can't wait to get hold of the final product." Paul Mitchener (Designer of Liminal, Age of Arthur and Starfall)
"The game plays masterfully with both the temptation of the raw power of dealing with your problems as a wolf, with swift violence, and the fear of lack of control that inevitably comes with that." Senda Linaugh (She's a Super Geek)
Who am I?
I'm Becky, creator of Bite Me! and one half of Black Armada Games. I've produced and won awards for a number of games, including Lovecraftesque, the storytelling game of creeping cosmic horror; When the Dark is Gone, part of the Seven Wonders story game anthology and contributions to several other games including Trail of Cthulhu, Hillfolk, Liminal, Itras By and the Gauntlet Codex. I was bitten by the love of werewolves many years ago and I can't wait to share the game that's come out of it.
The Bite Me! production team
Why do I need your support?
I'm raising funds to pay for layout, art, copyediting/proofreading and a print run for Bite Me! If I hit my stretch goals I'll also be paying for a series of great creators to write extra content for Bite Me! which I'm paying at around 10 cents a word. As usual for Black Armada Kickstarters, I've included a 10% contingency fund. My starting target is £8000.
Tell me about the book
The book will include the rules to the game, which includes the seven skins and the pack playbook listed above. Plus I have downloaded my brain and written a guide on how best to GM a really tense, emotional and exciting campaign of Bite Me!
If you are interested in one-shot play, the book will contain a guide to how to write and run effective one-shot games of Bite Me!, including a quick-start scenario called Beasts of Bodmin - which will be the first of many if we meet our stretch goals.
The game will be released in a beautiful A5 size hardcover book with as many illustrations as our budget (and Vincent and Morrighan's time) allows. The exact size depends on the funds we raise, but you can expect it to be around 175-200 pages, give or take.
Can I see samples of the layout and the game?
Indeed you can.
This is a sample of the gorgeous layout and spot illustration work by Elizabeth Lovegrove and Morrighan Corbel
Here you can down load the full pack of skins, basic moves, pack playbook and MC notes page. If you back the game then you will have access to the unedited draft text so you can get playing straight away.
When you back the Kickstarter you'll get immediate access to the full draft rules, which you can find in the first backer update.
Can I get some Actual Play of this game?
The good folks at She's A Super Geek were kind enough to have me over to run two short sessions of play for them. Click on through and experience the scenario, the Beasts of Bodmin, first hand.
Share Bite Me!
Kickstarter campaigns live and die on how many people share them on social media. If you like what you see here, please share it with your friends. To make things interesting, I'm offering an additional reward tied to social media sharing.
I'll add up the number of reshares of the links below and, if we reach 500 shares, I'll release an extra scenario The Wolfshead, about outlaw werewolves in dark ages Britain.
You have to reshare on the same social media network (e.g. you can't reshare the Twitter link to G+) or else we'll have no way to count your entry.
If you add a picture of yourself in werewolf pose to the reshare then it counts as 20 reshares towards that target. Let me see your gorgeous faces!
A word on how I handle stretch goals: I will be paying my writers roughly 10 cents (or local equivalent) per word, on completion of the work. I have budgeted for stretch goals, factoring in pay for my writers, layout costs, and additional printing and shipping costs. If you're interested in how I'm managing my stretch goals, check out the "risks and challenges" section below.
At each of the first three stretch goals below we will also be increasing or improving the art in the book.
For the £14000 stretch goal we will also be producing a mobi and an epub version of the pdf document.
Why are your prices so weird?
The project is UK-based, so the prices are in pounds sterling. Kickstarter will automatically convert them into your local currency, which might mean prices that look a bit weird. Don't worry about this.
How are you handling printing and shipping?
I will be printing the books in the UK. From there I'll send one shipment of books to a delivery partner in the USA for fulfilment direct to US customers. Customers elsewhere in the world will receive their books from a UK-based delivery partner.
If you choose a physical reward your pledge does not include shipping. When we near the point that I'll be shipping your reward, you'll be emailed a link to a site where you can pay your shipping charge. This enables me to charge you the true cost of shipping, with no profit margin or contingency needing to be included.
It is not possible to predict shipping rates in advance, however based on current rates I estimate shipping charges will be around £5 for UK/US, £8 for EU, and £10 for the rest of the world. (That's about $6.50/$11/$13 US respectively.) Shipping for multiple books tends to be significantly cheaper per item - if you would like an estimate then drop me a private message.
I like that music - where did you get it?
Music and audio editing by YG Mitchell who can be found here.
Risks and challenges
Bite Me! is already written and playtested. There’s some editing to do and, if we get enough funds, our stretch goals will yield additional scenarios to add to the text. But the main text is ready to go.
I've got some great scenarios and a play aide listed in my stretch goals as well as additional art and other items. I treat these as a serious commitment. I will do my best to ensure that every one of them is delivered if at all possible. But I recognise that delivering through other people involves risk. I will actively project manage people who contribute material to my games and draw on Josh's expertise as a project manager as necessary. As a last resort I may publish stretch goal material as pdf downloads or ask another writer to take over producing the work in order to avoid big delays to the publication of the main product.
Another risk is the art. This carries the same risks as the scenarios, but unlike the scenarios, they're part of the core product and can't be published separately. My timetable is based on conservative assumptions about how quickly the art can be delivered. I'll monitor delivery of the art closely and work with my artists to adjust plans if there are major delays.
This is Black Armada's third kickstarter - the first one, Lovecraftesque, was delivered smoothly and our second kickstarter, Flotsam is proceeding on schedule and is close to being ready for printing.
As with our previous kickstarters here is keeping you up-to-date with regular, but not excessive, updates. Even when nothing much is happening you should receive an update at least monthly, to keep you informed on how things are progressing.
Brexit - unlike our previous kickstarters this one is being conducted over a period of real political uncertainty in the UK. Part of my day job is helping businesses to prepare for Brexit so as far as possible we have reviewed the risks and taken precautions on issues such as currency fluctuations, trading terms and port delays. We are as comfortable as we can be in our ability to manage Brexit.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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