Thursday, June 26, 2008

Why Oz?

Before I answer the question posted above, I just thought you'd like a little progress report. Gillikin, Munchkin and Winkie Countries are complete and available for download on the Adventures in Oz website.

If you've been reading my blog, you'll notice that I have large areas where my weekly post is just a lot of hooey letting you know that I'm still here. And it's a lot of hooey and not interesting reading. So I've decided to change that. Every week, I intend to offer you something. A new piece of art, design notes, or Oz commentary.

Now to the big question: Why Oz? Why try to publish an Oz RPG?
It all started when I bought some trade paperback comic books at a used bookstore some time ago. They were collections of a series called "Oz" published by Caliber Comics. It featured a very gritty story set in a dark Oz that was conquered by the Nome King. An interesting story, with quite a bit of researched detail (including some things that I didn't get until I started doing serious research). However, it wasn't very "Ozzy."

That just begged the question in my mind: "What is Ozzy?" Since I'm an avid gamer, the answers to that question began expressing themselves as RPG rules.

Publication wasn't part of the initial goal, since it was largely intended as a thought experiment. But as I thought about it, and did some checking, it became more and more possible. The original stories had fallen into the public domain, so I wouldn't have to pay for a license. Print-on-demand technology has reduced the need to shell out for massive print runs at the outset like in the old days. My only real expenses would be minor business and publishing expenses, and whatever content I couldn't generate myself. This last one is turning out to be a killer because I am not an artist. A single piece of art isn't too expensive, but the amount of art that a project like this will take lets it add up quickly.

It was out of this interest in being published that I attended a seminar on game publishing at DunDraCon back in February. There were two main bits of advice that I took away from that: #1 Don't bank on success. It's unlikely, and won't make you a millionaire in any case. #2 If you're going to do it, do it. If it's going to succeed, it needs to do so in the marketplace. If it's going to fail, it should probably happen before it becomes your baby.

So I resolved to put nose to the grindstone and get this baby published by the end of the year, so I can appear at DunDraCon next year as a dealer. While my timing may not be as good as I'd like, my dedication to getting this done has not changed.

Next Week: Combat

1 comment:

Jared said...

Yeah, I was aware that the comic book series was called "OZ," but it had been changed to and concluded as "Dark Oz," which it seemed my viewers knew better, so I just called it that on the live show.

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