Accessible and intuitive tabletop game platform for the spinning of collaborative, character-driven stories.
(closed-caption version of the video: http://youtu.be/tNQ_fdQakEo)
This Kickstarter project will fund our first production run for Bhaloidam, including
- 72-page, full-color, comic-format handbook
- Gameboard-style Lifewheels
- Sets of 3 custom dice
- Source and Potency tokens (90 tokens per set)
- Possibly more...
Every pledge of $9 or more not only helps us pay for the first production run, it also gets you early access to a PDF of the handbook (we will be emailing it to you within days of submitting it to our printer). Pledges starting at $18 serve as pre-orders for physical copies of the handbook, Lifewheel, and full game packs (postage for orders shipped within the continental US is free and you will get your copies before anyone else has an opportunity to buy them). And the largest pledges give you an opportunity to participate in the process by appearing in the handbook, or working with us to include comic book gameplay examples based on your own fictional worlds.
By pledging, you won’t just be helping us manufacture copies of Bhaloidam. You’ll also be joining an international community of storytellers by helping us provide Bhaloidam for free on our website (www.bhaloidam.com) so that everyone can join us in exploring Story, Play, and Community.
How We'll Spend the Money
First, approximately 10% of our funding will go to pay Kickstarter and Amazon Payments for providing this awesome service. That leaves us with around $25,000. Next, for the minimum order, we'll pay just over of $19,000 for the initial production run of books, boards, tokens, and packaging for the skein packs from Panda GM (they manufacture other quality games such as Pandemic and Tales of the Arabian Knights). Next, we'll spend approximately $5,000 for shipping and import fees to have the games delivered to Zakelro's doorstep. That leaves us with about $1,000 to spend on backer rewards (posters and 3d-printed hexaMini pawns) and mailing several hundred copies of Bhaloidam to our backers.
Thanks to the awesome folks at Panda GM, the estimated delivery dates we shared on the rewards are way too conservative!
We’re currently on track to deliver the PDF copies of Bhaloidam in January 2012. This means you’ll be ready for an entire year of spinning stories with your very own Skeins! And even more exciting, we expect to start shipping your physical copies of the handbook, along with the Lifewheels in April 2012! We’re incredibly invigorated by this possibility and our production schedule has gone into overdrive to make it happen.
What is Bhaloidam?
Bhaloidam is a time, a person, a feeling. Bhaloidam is a language, an idea, a place, and a memory. Bhaloidam is a modern expression of three timeless cultural forces: bha to tell, loid to play, and dam the tribe. In other words, Bhaloidam is where Story, Play, and Community come together.
Bhaloidam is an indie tabletop game from Zakelro! that is an open and accessible storytelling platform. With it you'll spin character-driven stories and weave them together with the stories of your friends. You'll exert your influence upon the storyworlds you create together, shaping its future and controlling your characters' destinies as you perform their successes and their failures.
Bhaloidam can be used to build any type of storyworld you and your friends want to explore. Sail the high seas as vicious pirates, uncover inter-dimensional conspiracies as government agents, solve murder mysteries as retired librarians, or scheme for power as members of the Elizabethan court.
Bhaloidam’s rules free you from context-specific actions, so your stories don’t need to revolve around combat, or even conflict. You can find yourself rolling the dice and using the rules to determine the outcome of a conversation, the impact of a musical performance, the success of a cunning plan, or any other action you wish to perform. This works because Bhaloidam provides you with thematic ways of Influencing the world and characters around you, and these Influences can be interpreted differently depending on the needs of the story and of your character.
This empowers a Skein (group of storytellers) to explore deeply personal stories together. And because each Spinner (storyteller) is in complete control of their character, they are encouraged to interpret their failures in ways that advance the story and provide opportunities for character growth.
The rules of Bhaloidam are powerful and flexible, but they are also intuitive enough that new players--young or old--can learn them and start spinning stories within 45 minutes. Through the use of iconic visuals we are even able to represent every game rule you need to remember on the Lifewheel itself. Each storyteller uses one of these colorful gameboards to keep track of their characters’ influence upon the storyworld, and the storyworld’s influence upon their character.
Bhaloidam can serve as a Spinner-only platform, meaning everyone has equal influence upon the story. But it can also serve a more traditional approach, wherein one person takes on the responsibility of creating the storyworld, writing the plot, and acting as final authority on the interpretation of the rules. We call this role the Weaver and encourage you to see this role as a support position rather than an authoritative one, helping the Skein spin the best possible story threads they can and weaving them into a compelling tapestry.
Bhaloidam is also a flexible and scalable platform you can build on. The clear and consistent rules serve as a solid base that you can add to as needed for your storyworld. We’re eager to hear what you discover while exploring Bhaloidam and welcome you to join us at www.bhaloidam.com to share the storyworlds you create.
Bhaloidam is a trademark of Zakelro! and all materials related to it are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/). If you are interested in using Bhaloidam in a project under other licensing, please contact us via email at email@example.com.
hexaMinis are the 3D, hexagonal characters that appear in the Bhaloidam handbook and supporting materials to help explain the system and show you ways to explore telling stories together.
Travis, Jo, and Alex are the original hexaMinis, and if you choose to be a backer at the $180 or $450 level, you will get to be a hexaMini too!
As we're learning, overseas orders of new product can take a lot of time! We're working to speed things up by choosing the right manufacturing partners and launching our Kickstarter project early and if we pull it off, you'll get the handbook and Lifewheels shortly after we do.
A PDF of the LifeWheel will be available as a free download at http://Bhaloidam.com, along with an online version of the handbook that anyone can access. You can use pente stones, small poker chips, or even Go stones as tokens.
Yes, it just might take quite a bit longer as we'll have to take on extra contract work to pay for the first production run, which will slow down the process of finishing up the handbook.
Yes, really! In fact, we're so serious that, as we state above, the entire Bhaloidam project is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial Unported 3.0 license. In plain English, that means as long as you tell people where you got your base system, and you don't charge people money for it, you're free to make and publish your own game using variants of the core rules, as well as use existing or modified versions of the Lifewheels.
We're hoping to have a launch party in Portland in late June, just in advance of hitting the road to unveil the for CONvergence in Bloomington, MN July 5th-8th. At the same time, we'll have copies available through online retail channels (stay tuned for details).
Because we believe in Bhaloidam too much to keep it from anyone who wants to tell stories together.
Almost done? We’ve only just begun! This handbook simply covers the core rules of Bhaloidam. We’ve already started working on the Spinner’s Handbook, which will share tips and techniques for running Weaverless storytelling sessions, resolving conflicts around the storytelling table, and creating rules for your storyworld on the fly. We’re also working on a Weaver’s Handbook, which will provide guidance for creating storyworlds using Bhaloidam, and the Weaver’s Storytile Toolkit, which... well, let us keep one or two secrets for now.
We’ve a few other games and ideas up our sleeves as well, so stay tuned!