Yep, Zak S has a new RPG product out called Maze of the Blue Medusa, created with Patrick Stuart.
Now, what's with the pricing indicated in the title of this post?
It's not yet available in Hard Cover. Heck, it's not yet available in "Deluxe PDF" (hyperlinks and such)
The pricing is PWYW with minimal buy ins, so basically anything above the prices listed is a donation.
I purchased the "Simple PDF" earlier today ("Deluxe PDF" will be $10 or a $5 upgrade from "Simple") I have yet to read it BUT I will say it has two annoying features:
- it's a two page spread in layout, so you will not be reading this on your phone or tablet without lots of zooming and moving. Hell, let's be honest, you won't be reading this on anything but a large, wide screen monitor. I'm not sure what the font size used is, but my old eyes are straining at points.
|sample 2 page spread for review purposes|
- it has these dead RED hyperlinks throughout: more ▶
|sample for review purposes|
Room entries start with a spread offering an overview of each area—room descriptions too long to fit on that spread are marked “more ▶” and have longer descriptions on the following pages.Annoying and distracting. I guess when the "Deluxe PDF" is released, I will upgrade - assuming it is released as a standard 1-page spread. I really feel like I purchased some form of RPG "Crippleware." $5 for a PDF is pretty much an impulse buy for me but I would have been much happier with a $10 purchase that was easier to use and reference.
Onward to the pricing (review will be down the line, as this is about 250 pages of content.)
There is a whole breakdown of the costs involved in printing this book, which is why (I assume) it is going the preorder route:
For Maze of the Blue Medusa, Zak was paid an advance of $2000. Once the costs of the print run (around $28,600), designer payments ($3000), and Zak's advance are recouped, Zak and Patrick will receive 23% royalties on print and digital copies sold, and its designer (Anton Khodakovsky) will receive a 4% royalty on print and digital copies sold.The publisher is a not for profit. I'm assuming (dangerous word here) that the $28,600 for the print run must be raised by print preorders and PDF sales. You'll need about 600 pre-orders to go to print. Or 6,000 sales of the "Simple PDF". Or 3,000 sales of the "Deluxe PDF". Or a combination of the three. I expect it will be a while before it goes to print.
In many ways, this is a crowdfunded project without a funding end date or an estimate on delivery.
I can't recommend the "Simple PDF" unless you have a widescreen monitor to read it on. Thankfully, I do and will try and do a proper review of the contents of the Maze of the Blue Medusa in the near future.