The supernatural isn't romantic or glamorous. It's alien and horrific. Vampires and werewolves tear the flesh of innocent people. Ghosts pervert the memories and locations of their lives. Monsters with no connection to humanity pull themselves from the Unknown, hungry for misery and terror. This has always been the case, and humanity struggles to find a way to combat them.
In 1844, a group of like-minded people - curious, brave, and out of their depth - came together to protect humanity from the Unknown. Over the years, that small cabal has grown into an international organization. That organization has suffered repeated attacks from supernatural threats, and has faced attrition, infiltration, and the constant need for secrecy - but it endures.
It must. The Unknown won't stop. Neither can SAVE.
The Eternal Society is the first sourcebook for Chill 3rd Edition, and shines a light on SAVE - its history, its practices, and how it works in game play. The Eternal Society will be a 152 page full-color softcover book, and will include:
- Artifacts and firsthand accounts detailing the trials and tribulations of the Society.
- Details on the destruction of the SAVE Archives in 1989
- Information on the infiltration in 2000, and how Hayat Nejem brought SAVE back from the brink of destruction
- An in-depth exploration of how various types of SAVE headquarters operate, approach cases, and manage their envoys
- Discussion of what being a SAVE envoy does to a person, and why envoys carry on in their fight regardless of the cost
- Creatures of the Unknown, including old favorites like the betrayer and the ganabe, and new creations for 3rd Edition
- New Edges & Drawbacks for SAVE envoys!
- Four new cases to challenge your players!
If you missed our previous Kickstarter - welcome! Chill 3rd Edition was funded on Kickstarter in November 2014, and fulfilled in August/September 2015. You can see purchase the Chill core book in PDF from DriveThru RPG (here), and in hardcover from Indie Press Revolution (here). You can also purchase the Limited Edition Boxed Set directly from us (here)!
You can see a brief explanation of the game and how the core system works here, at our website.
We do have a couple of "traditional" stretch goals (that is, we hit a certain amount of money, the book gets a new bell/whistle), but we want to do something a little different with this Kickstarter. This is going to go by number of backers, rather than amount of money.
So here's the deal. Every 100 backers, we'll create a new case for free download on our site. The cases will be approximately 5000 words, and be written in the style of Cold Dark Earth (which you can download here, right now!).
But we need your help in finding these cases! So as the Kickstarter campaign progresses, we'd like you to supply photographs of the haunted places in your area. Take pictures of weird and creepy things, places, and situations that you encounter, and put them up on Facebook, Twitter (just tag @GrowlingDoor) or G+. Hashtag them #SAVEisonyourside, and we'll find them more easily. Our case writers will use these photographs as inspirations for the cases.
Here's an example!
We've got two monetary stretch goals, and they're both pretty awesome.
- At $17,500, we'll include a 10-page comic in The Eternal Society. When it's unlocked, we'll take a vote among the backers as to what character should be the star (we'll give you a range of interesting choices).
- At $22,000, we'll include full-color maps of the world, with important SAVE HQs and Unknown hotspots marked on them, courtesy of Stentor Danielson, the genius behind Mapsburgh (this goal is a little higher, monetarily, but that's because at this point we'd need to increase the page count of the book slightly).
Looking at the rewards, you may notice that we're not charging for shipping during the Kickstarter. This is because any money that comes through the Kickstarter is subject to fees, and we'd rather charge what shipping will actually cost rather than mark it up to compensate for those fees. We will charging shipping through BackerKit when the books are ready to ship.
Valid question! Here's where your money goes:
- Paying authors. We have a bunch of very talented people writing this book; you can meet them here. I need to be able to pay them for their talents.
- Paying artists. Same comment. You can see some of the artwork from Chill on this page, and we'll be hiring these artists again to help bring The Eternal Society to life.
- Paying for layout. Layout is a mystery to me; as far as I know it's done by magic. My wife informs me that's not the case, but in any event, it's probably better that we have someone talented to lay out our book. Enter Thomas Deeny, the same wizard who laid out Chill.
- Paying the editor. Normally, Growling Door Games co-owner Michelle Lyons-McFarland edits our books, but she's taking on the role of lead developer for The Eternal Society. Therefore, we need to allocate some funds to paying an editor.
- Paying for materials. Books cost money. Part of the money raised with this Kickstarter will go toward a print run, both to fulfill the rewards for backers and to send to retailers.
- Paying for the license. Growling Door doesn't own the Chill IP, and part of the funds from this Kickstarter are going to satisfy our contract with Martin Caron.
Risks and challenges
If you backed Chill on Kickstarter, this is going to look familiar.
Any Kickstarted project carries a risk, one that I like to call "the flammable cat." When I worked for White Wolf Game Studio as the developer for the Dark Ages line, we would occasionally say, when a book was delayed, that somewhere along the way a cat caught fire.
Obviously, no actual felines were ever combusted (not to my knowledge, anyway!), but the point was that with an endeavor like an RPG book, any number of things can go wrong. They're not anyone's fault - people get sick, have car accidents, relatives pass away, babies are born, and so forth - but they do slow things down. The trick to keeping things on track isn't to safeguard against the flammable cat. That cat is GOING to catch fire at some point.
No, the best plan is to have a fire extinguisher handy. To break the metaphor, what I mean by all this is that I'm sure something's going to go wrong or get delayed. As such, I've built a lot of extra time into the schedule. The writers are already writing on this project - the first draft of The Eternal Society is due on October 26, and I'll be posting excerpts as updates as they come in. We don't have all of the art contracted yet, but I have a number of artists lined up to work on the book, I know how fast they work, and we'll have plenty of time work with them even if something does go wrong in the interim.
The other shipping issue, for backers of Chill: We know that shipping was delay for European backers of Chill Third Edition. The company that did fulfillment for Chill was implementing a new system, and there were some bugs. If, when it comes time to ship The Eternal Society, that company has not resolved all of these issues to our satisfaction, we will not be using them for fulfillment.
It's also worth noting that we've licensed Chill from Martin Caron, and as with any licensed property we'll have a round of approvals. The terms of our contract, however, state that approvals have to be conducted in a timely manner, and I know from my interactions with Martin that he's just as keen to see this project realized as I am.
I don't anticipate everything going smooth, because as a certain space captain once said, it never goes smooth. I do anticipate that my team of professionals - writers, editors, layout folks, designers - can handle whatever cats catch fire. Growling Door Games has already delivered three roleplaying games, funded through Kickstarter, and I hope that you will join us for this one!
One other thing: Backers will receive the pdf of The Eternal Society before it goes on sale (I've labeled delivery for the pdf as "August 2016" for consistency's sake, but the truth of the matter is that we'll need it done in April if we're going to have it printed on time). The plan is to have the books shipped before GenCon 2016. However, if something gets delayed, we reserve the right to sell the game at GenCon. It's not economically feasible for us to turn down the opportunity to debut The Eternal Society at GenCon, even if the books haven't shipped to backers. We can promise that the game will not go into distribution until the books have shipped.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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