About this project
Funded! Now its all about filling it full of awesome.
Stretch Goals and Add-on Prices
Here are the completed and upcoming stretch goals...
Most stretch goals (excepting large printed posters, game books, dice and larger than man-sized figurines) are included at the $75 level but can be added on to any pledge level $15 or more.
Introducing Whisper & Venom
Whisper & Venom is Lesser Gnome's debut gaming product. It is an ambitious, high-quality adventure and regional setting bundled with first-rate accessories and additional materials designed to enhance its enjoyment. The goal from the beginning was to make the game as beautiful to read and browse as it is fun to play.
The principle product of this project is this...
Whisper & Venom is Lesser Gnome's debut gaming product. It is an ambitious, high-quality adventure and regional setting bundled with first-rate accessories and additional materials designed to enhance its enjoyment. Our goal from the beginning was to make the game as beautiful to read and browse through as it is fun to play.
Written as a tribute to the fantasy adventures and role-playing game accessories of the 1980's, Whisper & Venom has been intentionally designed to be useful to players and game masters of any fantasy role-playing system.
Why Did Lesser Gnome Choose Kickstarter?
Simple. We wanted to make the single best fantasy role-playing game product possible. One that was designed with old-school role-playing games in mind but interesting and exciting for any fantasy role-playing system.
Plus, without the support of backers like you who want to see deluxe versions of these kinds of games, it would be prohibitive to create in the way I wanted to see it sold. How did I want it sold? I wanted it with as many top quality accessories as humanly possible.
Mostly though I wanted miniatures. Enough custom sculpted figurines from the adventure itself that any Game Master would have what they needed for every encounter. When I was young I always felt role-playing game adventures adventures should have come with the figurines needed to play. Well they didn't. So I just had to do it myself- with the help of every single like-minded role-playing game fan I could find.
The funds raised coupled with my own already significant personal investment will be enough to ship a superb high-quality boxed game that I will be proud to have made and all of us will be proud to own.
After the project funds everything gets exciting. Stretch goals are what can turn an awesome adventure and setting into a truly tarrasque-choking, box-busting product full of accessories and miniatures truly worthy of the best old-school style gaming has to offer.
As stretch goals are surpassed new rewards become available and to higher backer levels most are included free of charge.
NOTE: The becoming available means they will be available. At every level with a $15 pledge or higher they are available inexpensively as add-on purchases for backers (and for extras if you already got one included as a higher pledge reward).
The Whisper & Venom Kickstarter Project is the culmination of two years of work and significant up-front financial investment on my part (my meaning Zach Glazar,the Project Creator). The intent was to produce the best fantasy role-playing supplement I could imagine. Not only top-notch game content, but the highest quality components and extras possible—which enhance enjoyment for both players and game masters significantly.
All in a single box for a fair price.
What are the pledge levels and backer rewards?
I want as many people as possible to play and enjoy Whisper & Venom. To ensure it is accessible and affordable it is being made available in many formats at different pledge levels.
Boxed Set Level Rewards-
Together, we can find out just how high the quality can be pushed on a product. If the funding level is met, you will receive a complete supplement—in a commercial-grade box with game-play enhancing extras. As the funding level grows the value of the boxed-set grows with it making every new backer intrinsic to the final product delivered to everyone. Better printing, better dice, monster cards and a whole lot more are planned as upgrades to the basic boxed version.
Once Whisper & Venom has reached its funding goal, the sky becomes the limit. A complete set with high quality maps, custom dice and (with enough support), a custom figurine for every encounter. This ultimate goal is simple and can be logistically accomplished considering the investments already made in the core product. It will take huge support from you to get there but I can assure you the final product will be awesome!
The details. Then more details. Finally even more details.
I am going to attempt to limit updates as much as I can. I have backed a large number of products and do not mind getting them. I do however want to keep people from turning them off so most of the project information will be in the comments.
I will also be updating my Facebook page regularly- it is here.
General Information Regarding Stretch Goals
The Stretch Goals for Whisper & Venom will alternate between added and upgraded components. In order to have a good chance of funding the original goal was intentionally kept low. Enough to cover the cost of producing a retail quality adventure in four distinct formats. It was important to me to provide an affordable an experience with Whisper & Venom as possible- even the lowest pledge levels without compromising on quality.
Upgrade stretch goals increase the quality of the delivered product with commitment to incrementally improve some aspect of the reward for every backer. Examples of upgrade stretch goals being considered for inclusion are things like higher quality paper for every print product, expanded content that improves the game play for all backer levels, switching to color dungeon maps and more.
Expansion stretch goals are new game pieces or components that will be available for free to backers at the deluxe level or higher. Miniatures fall into this category; other possibilities are custom dice, laminate encounter trackers or monster cards.
All the stretch goals will be available as paid add-ons to any backer pledging for a reward level above $15 or higher.
Did you say miniatures a couple sentences ago?
Yes I did mention miniatures, briefly, but I want to elaborate on them some more.
I have always felt that a complete adventure should include miniatures- ideally enough to provide game masters with figurines for every potential encounter described in the given text. There are solid reasons this has not happened commercially on a large scale before- risk. With crowd funding that type of risk is minimized by galvanizing interest and support before the truly daunting costs, printing and manufacturing, are incurred.
So if you, like me, ever wished for more truly deluxe and comprehensive product choices this is your opportunity to be a part of just such a project.
To give you an idea of the potential relating to stretch goals I present to you this four word synopsis...
A lot of miniatures.
What defines how many miniatures are in "a lot of miniatures"?
Your support is ultimately what determines how many figurines and other upgrades will be included in the final product. There will be at least four minis produced if we only fund without reaching any stretch goals.
There are 16 more than 90% completed sculpts for miniatures that are ready for early stretch goals. All that is needed in order for them to be included in the final product is your support. That is it- no waiting on sculpts, concept artists or other bottleneck inducing production details.
Past the 18 (yes, 18 plans are in place for as many more to be made on time as funding will support. They will begin the production process as the project support grows enough to justify hitting the 'go' button. I can promise the down payments on them will be made prior to the end of the project- in fact it will happen as they are unlocked.
I have money set aside for this purpose. There really is no limit to how many except backer support!
The figurines that already exist have been sculpted by top-notch sculptors (Tim Prow, Mark Evans and Nicolas Genovese). I can potentially include one for every adversary in Whisper & Venom with even more possibilities from the players guide! Yes, that includes local fauna, townsfolk, standard monster selections types and even adventuring gnomes!
Add-ons are available to any backer who has pledged for the $15 Level or higher. Why? To be honest one of the guys who truly made this happen was Matt from Center Stage Miniatures and miniatures is his (increasingly successful) business. The worst way to thank him would be to get into miniatures only crowd funding. As it is I am close enough.
Shameless side plug. If you want miniatures from an old-school company run by a great guy who cares about quality then Matt is your go to guy.
Who is behind this exactly?
An impressive list of details regarding freelancers, contributors and everyone else involved in this project can be found in the FAQ. Lesser Gnome's Head Gnome, Zach Glazar, is the author of Whisper& Venom and the project facilitator.
Although many people contributed talent, advice and support, the gnome behind the curtain for this project will be Zach (me) and any personal pronouns and commitments are his and his alone. Feel free to praise everyone else though.
So What's Your Story?
As a lifelong fan of fantasy role-playing I have always wanted to create a product that I would be proud to purchase myself. I am a pretty good judge, as I am a borderline compulsive consumer of games buying nearly every one I find. I am especially drawn to products evoking a classic feel of the fantasy games of my youth. I love the early adventures and accessories from the classic companies of the 70's and 80's. I still do. In fact, there is an overflowing closet full of products from my childhood that sit there as a testament to my happy obsession. On the shelves next to the vintage stuff are hundreds of modern offerings each carefully cataloged after having been read at least once.
What gets me most excited when I buy a product? Quality writing and top-notch accessories. When sales were at their apex for our hobby, the most exciting games and modules came in boxes loaded with poster maps, dice and amazing artwork of the imaginative places you could explore.
More in the FAQ
A wealth of information is available in the FAQ to answer any questions you may have. If you have any specific feedback or questions for Lesser Gnome please feel free to leave it in the comments. If you would prefer to ask personally or have a question best asked outside a public forum, please feel free to contact me via Facebook or email.
The earlier you support the better the value of your reward!
Risks and challenges
Why should I trust you with my money?
Simply because I am capable of delivering and I have already put forward a great deal of money to see this through. I have backed 60 projects and learned something from each that turned out useful in the planning and execution of the Whisper & Venom Kickstarter.
Outside of Kickstarter I have professional experience managing projects in government and multi-unit retail game stores (for video games). I won't bore everyone with the details here but if you want to know more please ask and I will fill you in.
How can you guarantee my pledge reward? In truth I can't. I did the next best thing by alleviating much of the risk of being a backer. How? Simply by paying for everything possible upfront so that no unexpected costs can get into the way of your positive experience with Lesser Gnome.
What are the risks?
Well in Kickstarter the risk to the backer is in not receiving all of the reward that matched their pledge level. For Whisper & Venom I have done everything in my power to minimize these risks for everyone in advance. Primarily this has been done in two ways. First by being finished with everything except manufacturing and backer collaboration portions (which are important but minimal in scope to the final) and, more importantly, by having paid for all miniature sculpts, art, cartography and editing for the core product already.
Yes paid for, in full, with my own money.
I have paid for all the creative inputs from freelancers, sculptors and editors already in order to guarantee all the funds received from this project are available for fulfillment.
If you haven't been shipped anything by January 30th of 2014 I will do everything in my power to make it right. Up to and including a refund on what you haven't received. I will even eat the Kickstarter fees.
What about the endless delays experienced by some other projects? Delays on things I do not, and cannot, directly control are an unfortunate possibility but I have a solution. It puts the risk on me and at the same time gives a pretty powerful in incentive to keep the supply chain humming. It is also quite simple
I am glad you are taking a look at the project and hope you become one of our backers.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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