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Friday, April 7, 2017

Torchlight - Digest Sized or Full Sized?



Not going to run this as a survey as answering a survey question doesn't allow one to explain their choice. Instead, I'm going to throw this out to the community at large:

Digest Sized or Full Sized when Torchlight goes to print?

Its an important question.

Some folks prefer digest sized because it is smaller, and thus more easy to carry around. Others prefer full sized pages for ease of reading and whatnot.

We are aiming for 32 to 40 pages (assuming full sized) per issue - probably twice that if we were to opt for digest sized. Which is an artificial page inflation, but when its PDF and POD, really, who's counting? ;)

I'm leaning towards full size, as the cover and some interior art will be in color, and I think that adventure maps will be more readable, but I do understand the arguments in favor of the smaller size.

Now is the chance to voice your opinion.

Oh, Torchlight content will include - adventures (long and short), encounters, locations, npcs, new monsters, new classes, magic items, rules hacks, micro settings and whatever else fits the bill. Where stats are needed, they will be supplied in both Swords & Wizardry Light as well as Swords & Wizardry Complete flavors and should be compatible with the vast majority of OSR rulesets.

20 comments:

  1. What is the practical limit for saddle-stapled publications in each size? I only ask because Old School = saddle stitched, in my mind. Just like the original booklets.

    If it's possible to do the content you envision in digest size while keeping the OSR form factor... But then, S&W and other OSR games come perfect bound or hardbound now, so maybe I'm just rambling.

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    1. Fight On! and Knockspell were / are full sized mags. So digest form isn't the only OSR form factor. Just adding this to note it.

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    2. If the intention is to produce a higher-end, magazine more like FO and KS were, rather than a zine-style release, then that answers the question right there. Got to go full-sized.

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    3. If you are stapling digest size ... I know you are limited to 42-48 pages before it becomes pretty ugly. No amount of page trimming is going to make that look good. And you will have a big bow in the publication. And at the larger size I think we figured out you could be losing 1/4 inch to some pages when trimming the outside.

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  2. To hit the old school vibe - I would shoot for digest sized.

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  3. I would prefer a full sized zine. While I do enjoy the smaller digest size if you are going to have color art and possibly maps I'd like to see those full size.

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  4. I prefer full-sized. My eyes are old enough that they appreciate all the reading real estate they can get.

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  5. I'd say that the WB version, and Charlie Mason's "Wizard Scroll" zine cover the digest market. Your initial concept of the printed Light "folder", followed by single sheet inserts was really cool. If you are going color, and a higher-end layout that syncs with Light (and Complete), I'd stick with full size for Torchlight. Really, Continual Light should be also. I was a little confused when I saw that was digest, and I'm not sure why it is, to be honest.

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    1. The idea is that you can print your own copy at home. So the PDF of Continual Light, at least, will be sized for digest printing. There are approximately a dozen "Alpha" releases of SWCL in the wild, printed by me. Most were handed out to a few special folks at Gary Con.

      Frog God Games is strongly considering doing a print run later this year of SWCL, to be distributed FOR FREE to the community (mail orders, conventions, Swords & Wizardry Legion, etc). We haven't discussed what format that will be, but I suspect that it would be full sized, as I dot't recall FGG printing anything digest sized prior.

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    2. I knew you'd done that (lucky bastards, going to GaryCon...) but wasn't sure if that was just a way to get some quick alpha prints and maybe the final product would be full-sized. That's for the update.

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    3. There MIGHT be digest sized copies of SWCL available at NTRPG Con to raise money for Doug's medical related expenses. If so, it will be a limited run, NTRPG Con exclusive, signed and numbered with all monies going to Doug's expenses.

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  6. I prefer digest, but with print large enough to suit my 45 year old eyes.

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  7. Is there room for a middle ground? What I mean is, offer PDF/POD in both formats but print in full size. I'm just spitballing, but these eyes needed my two boys, a couple of times, to read for me when I ran S&W Light the other night. LOLcry....

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    1. After further review (meaning you can ignore my prior comment), I just remembered I printed the Lo-Res rules in color but the Hi-Res were B&W. That's why the one part of the rules needed to be read by my eldest, as he could clearly make out the B&W rules. I should have changed them at the table, but I was distracted by the shiny (so shiny...). :)

      Please change my vote to Digest. (I'm probably getting bifocals eventually anyway.)

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  8. I like the digest size personally.

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  9. You may want to look at the cost to do POD. I do believe color in letter size is a bit more expensive than digest.

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  10. Full size, but to be frank either size is just fine by me.

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  11. I'm going to be different and suggest 6x9. For me, 6x9 hits a sweet spot for all formats. 6x9 PDFs look great 2-up on my monitor, they look great on my tablet, and they're readable on my phone without zooming (if the font is too small, I can flip it landscape and scroll, but still no zooming). In print, it's got enough room to do a good layout and provide details on a page spread, but is portable and easy to hold for reading on the couch. Takes up less space behind my Referee screen.

    The extra half-inch on each side from digest size is actually a lot of extra space. But, it can still be home printed in zine format, though the text will scale smaller.

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  12. I like 6x9.Crosses the streams and meets both sides halfway

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