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Help fill an old-school inspired box to bursting with books, miniatures & more! Become a part of the journey! OSR & Pathfinder Versions
Help fill an old-school inspired box to bursting with books, miniatures & more! Become a part of the journey! OSR & Pathfinder Versions
158 backers pledged $20,773 to help bring this project to life.

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$20,773

158

Funded!! Pathfinder Version Unlocked!!!

Scroll Down for Unlocked Stretch Goal Rewards.

Introducing Death & Taxes

 

Death & Taxes is Lesser Gnome's follow-up box set to Whisper & Venom. It was nominated for an ENnie, for those of you who are into that sort of thing. Twice!*

Death & Taxes is an adventure for 4-7 players using characters level 4-6. Although designed for classic rules, the ultimate goal is to create total conversions of the game for popular modern systems. Once the goals for project funding and the backer surpass the initial stretch goal targets all options are on the table, As backers, you will have a seat at that table to decide which one will happen first! Look for the results to be revealed in our Stretch Goals section as the campaign progresses. The Gnomes are ready start to translating Death & Taxes into Pathfinder/OGL and (we hope) fifth edition compatible versions.

The Premise

South of the Whisper Vale lies a land of gentle slopes with forests and greenswards. Small townships have sprouted alongside decayed municipalities. The area’s sparse populations are independent and self-reliant. Sporadic trade and a dim memory of avaricious rulers connect them.

The Auctor

On a gentle hillside sits an imposing stronghold known as The Auctor. It has remained empty and eerily pristine since the last noble family fled south. Its majestic rooms and corridors are shrouded in fear. Living memory recalls a time when the happy glow in its upper galleries was a thin façade to its real function.

An haute-coiffed tax collector arrives with his retinue of hairdressers, auditors of unusual size, a mason and a pack of gnolls. The collector carries important documents asserting his authority to tax the region. His orders are simple: Reclaim the Auctor and squeeze.

Mobs will form, tempers will flare, old scores will be settled and pounds of flesh will be exacted.

Welcome to the season of Death & Taxes.

Who is Lesser Gnome? Why should you trust them?

After having successfully completed Whisper & Venom's Kickstarter Project on schedule Lesser Gnome is jazzed to do it all over again. Death & Taxes can exceed the backer rewards seen in Whisper & Venom, provided the final pledge amount exceeds the projected expenses.

After living and breathing Whisper & Venom for 18 months we've learned a little something about projected expenses.

As always, our focus remains on the highest quality writing, professional design and the talents of the best freelancers available. No need to take our words on the matter. This link will lead you accolades, testimonials and even a sharp critique of a choice we made in design.

Still hesitant and want to be more sure of our releases? We have provided PDF downloads that allow you to examine our work. These are available for both OSR type games and Pathfinder- here is a link.

What’s Included?

If the project funds the box set for Death & Taxes includes:

  • 2 Game Books (Setting Guide & the Death & Taxes Adventure Book)
  • A color poster map by Alyssa Faden
  • Tax Collector & Goblin Herald 28 mm Miniatures and...

A potential plethora of planned stretch goals™ They say a picture is worth a thousand words :

Our first kickstarter project from funding goal to finish line.
Our first kickstarter project from funding goal to finish line.
 

Backer Levels

Although the Death & Taxes Kickstarter is designed around the boxed set, Lesser Gnome has provided (to maximize your self-actualization) many back levels. Pledges start at just $1!!!

IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT SHIPPING

Shipping & handling: Shipping charges will be invoiced at the end of the Kickstarter. Only the shipping cost will be invoiced. Transparency is important to us. We have opted to charge separately for shipping as part of our effort to provide individual backers with the best value. Every package WILL have the final postage fee printed on the label for verification. A tracking number will be provided when the reward ships. Estimated shipping costs are exactly that- estimates. The final weight of product is undetermined but most rewards are expected to weigh less than 5 lbs.

United States

Rewards for US supporters will be shipped via the least expensive parcel shipping available. The expected shipping for the majority of orders are described below: All Box-sets fit in USPS Medium Flat Rate Shipping Boxes (est. $12). Shipping on all US orders will not exceed the USPS Medium Flat-Rate box rate. In other words, pledge your heart out, we’ll make up the difference.

International  

International orders will be invoiced at actual postage cost. International postage requires customs forms. We are required by law to disclose the pledge amount on these forms. If you are unsure how expensive international shipping can be, please ask us for an estimate.

EXCEPTION- Backers worldwide can pledge for Death & Taxes: Compendium Hardcovers ($40 Bibliophile reward tier or as an add-on) and opt to have their books printed in the United Kingdom, France or Australia. A significant portion of standard shipping and customs fees are saved when using this option. Backers in neighboring countries can also save money (New Zealand is one of these). Contact Lesser Gnome for an estimate.

Backer Pledge Levels

$1 Well-Wisher - Watch the fun, read the updates and then realize you want to upgrade your pledge to a reward tier. 

$5 Postal Gnome - Get a handwritten note/personalized rant from Thopas. Choose the topic or ask for advice from a gnome whose lifestyle choices are best avoided. Can be added on for $5.

$15 Digital Gnome - PDF Copy of Death & Taxes for any ONE of the unlocked rule systems of your choice. Release Dates are staggered for each system following initial release. See FAQ.

$30 Retro Gnome Redux - Death & Taxes the way it would have been for those who aren’t that into things now. Death & Taxes printed and laid out in the classic style. OSR Only.  

$35 Cartography Snob – Who needs curtains when you’ve got a regional color poster map from world-renowned cartographer, Alyssa Faden? This behemoth measures a ridiculous (AT LEAST) 36” x 24” and comes lovingly packed in a heavy cardboard tube. We’ll also throw in an 18” x 24" folded poster map.

$40 Bibliophile – Get the hardcover, Death & Taxes: Compendium. Adds class to any bookshelf, nightstand or bathroom. Includes 18” x 24” map packet. (Note:  Fulfillment date dependent on system choice and availability FAQ).  

$40 Heavy Metal – Get just the metal (and resin) from Thop's Big Package ($70 level). Includes man-sized and smaller miniature stretch goals (huge figurines not included). The Mini Pack can be added on to existing pledges to swell the ranks of your 28mm army.

$50 Death & Taxes Retail Box Set – 2 booklets, the basic miniature set (2 Figurines) and a poster map

$70 Thop’s Big Package – Want more game? Get it here! A Deluxe Box Set that includes the Retail Box set & the majority of and-ons at no charge once they are unlocked (huge sized minis and very expensive luxury upgrades not included). See system choice FAQ.

$150 Retailer Set – Crush your competition with Lesser Gnome! Includes 2 Retail Boxed Sets (your of systems), 3 Hardcovers, 1 Retro Module and a complete set of figurines attractively packaged for your store. Must verify store ownership to qualify, contact us if you have any questions.

$175 Character Counts- Narcissus has nothing on you! You get Thop’s Big Package, all the stretch goals (including huge minis) and achieve minor notoriety. Have a setting-appropriate character written into the story as an NPC. Or, name a landmark, magic item or arcane spell (specifics chosen by you but subject to loose guidelines). Pledge money for FRPG fame, commensurate with your ego. Pay your way into literary and artistic immortality! Make visitors bask in the glow of a Lloyd Metcalf™ original that celebrates you. One quality article of Lesser Gnome Apparel chosen by Thopas for you. 

$200 Sine Qua Nog - Thop’s Big Package, all stretch goals, add-ons and all but the most bacchanalian upgrades. Includes a select piece of fashionable gnome apparel. Includes any ONE of the following: Hardcover (Death & Taxes: Compendium), Retro module or the full “Cartography Snob” reward level. Plus an extra Mini Pack from the $40 level. The cards are vague but they suggest more will be forthcoming.

$275 Thopas Maximus – The $200 pledge level without the annoying decision-making. Get all three four quality options (Retro module, Hardcover, Mini Pack and Wall Map). Includes fashionable items of clothing emblazoned with tasteful gnome flair that are perfect for any occasion. Your favorite divination technique also suggests that more will be revealed as the project progresses. 

$350 Gnome Time Machine - Miss the Kickstarter for Whisper & Venom by happenstance? Wish you hadn't? Need closure? Easy to do by making a pledge to the Gnome Time Machine Tier. Thopas Maximus level plus one of the few remaining Whisper & Venom Collector’s Edition Sets that contain the fruits of a Kickstarter past. This Tarrasque-choking reward level will make lesser nerds tremble and parcel delivery professionals apoplectic. 

$1200 - All of it and the signature painting from Lloyd Metcalf as well. Not one book, accessory, map or tchotchke will escape your master collection. See FAQ for details.

Let’s choke the Tarrasque!

$8,000 - Funded!! UNLOCKED
Extra Thopas Figurine added to every level $40 and up.
$9,000 - Dice, Dice Baby! - UNLOCKED
No box is complete without dice… Lucky for you, they will be included in every box set once we reach $9,000. 

$10,000 - Premium Paper -  UNLOCKED
Quality writing looks even better on top-shelf paper. Watch in awe as the words spring at you from the page. Be mesmerized by rich shades and colors. Best of all, it’s heavy!

$10, 750 - Get Audited - UNLOCKED
The Auditor is unleashed. The first huge figurine with a big weapon and a penchant for beating up tax cheats (amongst others). Free with all packages $150 and up. Available as an add-on for $15.

$11,000 - Tokens and Maps for Online Games - UNLOCKED
All rewards $15 and up will receive digital maps and tokens for virtual tabletop play (think Roll20).

$11,750 - UNLOCKED Hydra Unleashed!! Hydra miniature can added on for $20 making it less than $5 per head. Free with all packages $150 and up.

$12,000 - Winged Harridan UNLOCKED
This temptress flies into the Kickstarter, thanks in large part to Thopas, at $12,000. This add-on is included in Thop’s Big Package ($70) and up. Also included in the Heavy Metal Figurine Reward ($40) . Available to all backers for $10. Get two!!

$12,500 - Monster Cards with stats and attractive art! UNLOCKED

$13,500 - Siren figurine enters stage left UNLOCKED

$13,500 - Pathfinder Conversion UNLOCKED

$13,750 - Byrgh figurine crawls it way into $40 mini sets and all reward levels $70 and up UNLOCKED

$14,000 - Sylph Figurine flits into the $40 mini sets and all reward levels $70 and up.UNLOCKED

$14,250 - Custom d6 with handsome gnome profile on the six face added to all box sets $70+ UNLOCKED

$14,500 - The Archivist gates in to the $40 mini sets and all reward levels $70 and up. UNLOCKED

$14,750 - Custom d10 with another gnomes handsome profile on the 10 face to all box sets $70+ UNLOCKED

110 Total Backers - Free Bird of a Feather PDF for everyone with a pledge tier $15+ UNLOCKED

$15,000 Fear the Ungnome....Nogrod figurine unlocked for all pledge tiers $40+ UNLOCKED

$15,750 Torling warren guards swarm in. Three of them!! UNLOCKED

$16,000 GM map reference booklets added to all boxed sets

$16,250 Everyone gets a PDF of every version. Needless decision making eliminated.  

$16,500 Signature Dice Upgrade (Deluxe Box & Up) and Dice Bags (All Boxes)

$16,750 For whom the bell gnolls (first custom gnoll figurine) UNLOCKED

$17,250 For whom the bell gnolls, part deux (second custom gnoll figurine) UNLOCKED

$17,500 Fifth Edition Conversion* Option UNLOCKED

$17,750 Second Pack of three Torlings join the swarm.   UNLOCKED

$18,000 Hydra Fountain Terrain Set Added to sets $200+; add-on for all other pledge levels for $30. UNLOCKED

$18,250 Retro module will get an inner folio (like G123 or Q1 from back in the day)  UNLOCKED

$18,500 Gnoll end in site- 3rd Gnoll added to the pack  UNLOCKED

$19,000 Torling Pack completed (3 small figurines) UNLOCKED

$19,500 Gnoll 4 is coming to mess things up  

$20,000 Gamemasters book. The appendices, maps and GM notes from the adventure book will become their own published booklet similar to the setting guide (all boxed sets)

Maybe coming soon...More minis, extra content...have options, all we need is funding...

24 Potential figurines remain plus content upgrades, extra map booklets and sourcebooks; all of these are just awaiting funding!!!

 

This is just the beginning! After we surpass the $12,000 mark, additional content, miniatures (ten are already in production), versions and much, much more! 

Pathfinder fans! A Pathfinder Total Conversion will be unlocked at $13,500. We hired a professional to handle this for Whisper & Venom and it was great!

Fans of even newer systems! We are looking carefully at making a fifth edition version. More information will be forthcoming. UNLOCKED

Common Add-ons

  • Retro-Module $30
  • Wall Map $30-Rolled Up & Shipped in a Tube (Shipping Included for US Backers, International backers please contact me)
  • Death & Taxes Extra Box Set $50 (retail version)
  • Death & Taxes Compendium $40
  • Whisper & Venom Compendium (OSR) $30
  • Whisper & Venom Softcover (Pathfinder) $25
  • Extra Deluxe Miniature Pack $40
  • Plastic & Foam Miniature Case (Chessex) - $15
  • Quality Gnome Hat $18
  • Attractive Gnome T-Shirt  $20

Huge Figurines

  • The Auditor - $15
  • The Hydra- $20
  • Hydra fountain
    Unlocked Figurine Extras-
    NOTE: These are included in the most popular pledge rewards. Extras of everything are always nice. Stylish too!
  • Taxman- $8
  • Goblin Herald- $4
  • Thopas $2
  • Hryggan- $10
  • Harpy- $10
  • Swordsman- $8
  • Siren $8
  • Sylph $8
  • Byrgh $6
  • Torling Pack $10
  • Nogrod $5
  • More to be unlocked as funding dictates.

    Existing figurines from our store are also deeply discounted when purchased as add-ons. See update nine for more details.


    *Best Production Values and Best Miniatures Product. We didn’t win.

    Risks and challenges

    Why should I trust you with my money?

    The best reason is that we have proven we can do it. We are capable of delivering on a large, logistically challenging project without compromising on quality. Zach Glazar has backed over 100 Kickstarter projects. Most were successful, some were marginal and a few failed in a very public manner. Every single project he backed was a learning experience to make ours better.

    Outside of Kickstarter We bring our own professional experience to the whole process. Zach has a degree in Business Management. His professional background is in managing government projects and governing bodies. Also John has a degree in English Literature and a more experience than he ever wanted as a proofreader and editor. We will not bore everyone with the details here. We will answer any inquiry that helps allay any fears regarding project fulfillment.

    How can you guarantee my pledge reward? Truthfully we cannot. We did the next best thing though. We have alleviated much of the backers' risk. How? Simply by having started six months ago lining up the best freelancers and collaborators anywhere. We also have been paying very many of the fixed costs upfront. This investment by us, we hope, encourages investment by you in Death & Taxes.

    What are the risks?

    Nothing is certain in life (well, except Death & Taxes) and all the preparations and experience cannot thwart the power of unrelated events. Examples being very significant health problems (like death) or natural disasters (avalanches?). Those aside the biggest risk is delayed fulfillment. Thopas may be all-powerful but he does not own a printing company. He likes minis but has no interests in casting companies either. These ‘must use’ businesses are beyond our control.

    That said. We did it before with happy backers (please ask them!) and we will do it again.

    Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

    Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

    Support

    1. Select this reward

      Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

      WELL-WISHER - Watch the fun, read the updates and then realize you want to upgrade your pledge to a reward tier.

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      POSTAL GNOME - Get a handwritten note/personalized rant from Thopas. Choose the topic or ask for advice from a gnome whose lifestyle choices are best avoided. Available as an add-on.

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      DIGITAL GNOME - PDF Copy of Death & Taxes for any ONE of the unlocked rule systems of your choice. Release Dates are staggered for each system following initial release.

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      Retro Gnome Redux - Death & Taxes the way it would have been for those who aren’t that into things now. Death & Taxes printed and laid out in the classic style. OSR Only.

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      Pledge $35 or more About $35

      CARTOGRAPHY SNOB – Who needs curtains when you’ve got a regional color poster map from world-renowned cartographer, Alyssa Faden? This behemoth measures a ridiculous 36” x 24” (AT LEAST) and comes lovingly packed in a heavy cardboard tube. We’ll also throw in an 24” x 18” poster map for use at your table.

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      Pledge $40 or more About $40

      The Bibliophile – Get the hardcover, Death & Taxes: Compendium. Adds class to any bookshelf, nightstand or bathroom. Includes 18” x 24” map packet. (Note: Designate your choice of unlocked systems. Fulfillment date dependent on system choice. See FAQ).

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      Pledge $40 or more About $40

      Heavy Metal – Get just the metal (and resin) from Thop's Big Package ($70 level). Includes man-sized and smaller miniature stretch goals (huge figurines not included). Can be added to existing rewards to build the 28 mm army you have always required.

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      Pledge $50 or more About $50

      DEATH & TAXES BOX SET – 2 booklets, the two figurines and regional poster map. (Note: All box set rewards allow backers to designate a choice of unlocked systems. Fulfillment date dependent on system choice. Given date is for OSR version. See FAQ).

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      Pledge $70 or more About $70

      Thop’s Big Package – Want more game? Get it here! A Deluxe Box Set that includes the majority of stretch goal add-ons at no charge once they are unlocked. Huge sized minis and very expensive luxury upgrades not included. See system choice FAQ.

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      Pledge $150 or more About $150

      Retailer Set – Crush your competition with Lesser Gnome! Includes 2 Retail Boxed Sets (your choice of systems), 1 Hardcover, 1 Retro Module and a complete set of figurines attractively packaged for your store.

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    11. Select this reward

      Pledge $175 or more About $175

      Character Counts- Narcissus has nothing on you! You get Thop’s Big Package, all the stretch goals (including huge minis) and achieve minor notoriety. Have a setting-appropriate character written into the story as an NPC. Or, name a landmark, magic item or arcane spell (specifics chosen by you but subject to loose guidelines). Pledge money for FRPG fame, commensurate with your ego. Pay your way into literary and artistic immortality! Make visitors bask in the glow of a Lloyd Metcalf™ original that celebrates you.

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      Pledge $200 or more About $200

      Sine Qua Nog - Thop’s Big Package, all stretch goals, add-ons and upgrades. Includes a select piece of fashionable gnome apparel. Includes any one of following: Hardcover (Death & Taxes: Compendium), retro module, or the full “Cartography Snob” reward level. Plus an extra Mini Pack from the $40 level.

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      Pledge $275 or more About $275

      Thopas Maximus – The $200 pledge level without the annoying decision-making. Get all three fine quality print options (Module, Hardcover and Wall Map) and a Heavy Metal Mini Pack. Includes fashionable items of clothing with tasteful gnome flair that is perfect for any occasion. Your favorite divination technique also suggests that more will be revealed as the project progresses.

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      Pledge $350 or more About $350

      Gnome Time Machine - Miss the Kickstarter for Whisper & Venom by happenstance? Wish you hadn’t? Need closure? Easy to do by making a pledge to the Gnome Time Machine Tier. Thopas Maximus level plus one of the few remaining Whisper & Venom Collector’s Edition Sets that contain the fruits of a Kickstarter past. This Tarrasque-choking reward level will make lesser nerds tremble and parcel delivery professionals apoplectic.

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      Pledge $1,200 or more About $1,200

      All of it and the signature painting from Lloyd Metcalf as well. Not one book, accessory, map or tchotchke will escape your master collection. Message us for details.

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    Funding period

    - (34 days)