Sunday, March 1, 2015

Kickstarter - Crypts and Things Remastered - (OSR Swords & Sorcery)

If you're like me, you remember supporting Crypts & Things on Indiegogo a few years back. It was a nice Swords & Sorcery reworking of Swords & Wizardry that really seems to excel with smaller groups. I ran a number of sessions for a pair of friends before real life intervened. They still dropped by NTRPGCon last June and are still itching to play again.

I love Crypts & Things but felt something was missing. Never quite could put my finger on it, but Newt seems to have his vision of what the revised Crypts & Things should be, and I like the direction he's going in:
Art. The art in C&T was done by various British Artists. While I stand by everything I put in the book, the overall tone was eclectic and a bit disconnected.  So David M. Wright, whose style exactly matches the tone of the game, is going to do the entire book. Therefore it will have a deliciously dark consistency and tone throughout.
Judging from the sample pieces of art, this is going to rock hard. Excellent choice.
Content. C&T Remastered will see a a full edit of the book and streamlining of the rules. There’s a few rules in C&T that I never use in my home game, because they involve a bit too much bean counting rather than simple Roll and Effect which I prefer. These rules have been recast into something more straightforward. 
Mega Gaming Fun. This is the overall effect of the above changes. Over the years there have been some kind words said about Crypts & Things which have made me painfully aware of some of its shortcomings. With the basic goal I’m seeking to address these issues and make it a much more fun game to play and the art even more evocative. 
Smoother gameplay? Less bean counting? I'm in :)

If you backed the earlier Indiegogo project, Newt has a gift for you if you back the current Kickstarter.

True confession - I was the first backer of this project on Kickstarter ;)


  1. As someone who backed Crypts & Things the first time around, I think it's worth mentioning that Newt stiffed some of his backers on part of that project and has never made good on it.

    Newt's game is good, and I don't doubt that he's improved upon it, but it's hard to support someone in a crowdfunding campaign when they've left supporters out to dry in the past.

  2. Replies
    1. aye, I don't know any details myself. would be interested in hearing them

    2. Newt promised those who pledged at the higher levels a print copy of the campaign book Blood of the Dragon, presumably to entice more backers and higher tier pledges. To explain what happened, I'll let Newt speak for himself, quoting from his final update to backers of the campaign:

      "My apologies if you were due a print version of Blood of the Dragon from me. I find myself in the embarrassing position that I can not meet my original stated intention.

      "I sat down last night to do the ordering and realised that due to me not factoring in the costs of printing and shipping of the module in my original costings for the preorder campaign, doing so would mean the campaign ran at a considerable loss. Which for D101 Games to run as a business I cannot allow.

      "If you want a print copy of the module it is on sale via lulu.com ( who are currently running a 15% discount )."

      Personally, I consider stiffing backers on one project and then moving on to others to be pretty shady.

    3. From the same annoucement:

      "I hope you can accept my apologies on this one and that it hasn’t lowered your enthusiasm for Crypts & Things and D101 Games. This was my first indiegogo campaign and I’ve learnt a considerable amount from the mistakes that I’ve made which will not be repeated."

      To put it in context Crypts and Things 1st ed was my first 'crowdfunding campaign' just over three years ago and more of a Pre-order since the main rule book was already done.

      Blood of the Dragon is a 30 page Adventure, which was offered as a Stretch goal, and was successfully delivered six months after the rule book was delivere and before I embarked on my next adventure in crowdfunding (OpenQuest 2).

      Yes I did go back on my original stated attention to give all print backers (about 78) a print free copy, but I simply didn't have the funds to do so. Without going into the fine detail it would have been catastrophic for D101 at that time. Overall that pre-order didn't make any money - directly (that came with sales afterwards) - because I hadn't factored in funds for art for Blood of the Dragon.

      It was a hard decision I didn't take lightly and even today it's one that I'm not happy I was put in the possition to take. Which is part of the reason why if you where a previous backer of C&T 1 you'll be getting a free 100 page adventure (Life and Death), as a thank you for backing last time.

      I learnt hard lessions on both C&T and OpenQuest 2 campaigns, which is why River of Heaven was run the way it was (and its just in the final stages of delivering the stretch goal) and why C&T Remastered is set up the way it is now.

      I do acknowledge people are going to look back at my past mistakes and judge me by them :(

    4. Newt, you're far from the first person to over-promise and under-deliver on a crowdfunding campaign. Tenkar has pin-cushioned quite a few of those people on this blog.

      But I haven't seen anyone with the temerity to come right out and say that they won't be fulfilling their end of the bargain on a funded project, then proceed to ignore that debt going forward, and then come back and ask for more money for a revised version of the very same game.

      Furthermore, it takes some real brass tacks to claim on under the Risks & Challenges portion of your Kickstarter page that you successfully shipped Crypts & Things the last time around.

      Do you really believe that a campaign where you renege on your promises constitutes a success? Why do you think that saying that "I made a mistake and I can't honor my obligations at this time" would allow you to ignore those obligations going forward?

    5. Personally I'd be happy to increase my Kickstarter contribution and earmark it for "fulfill old obligations".

    6. To clarify I mean that I think "I'm running this as a business" means that you really should be on the hook to fulfill obligations, but I also think that I want people making a go of gaming businesses, even as minor sidelines, and that like with indie videogames, I'm willing to support them.

    7. For what it's worth, my questions weren't rhetorical. I'd really like to hear Newt's responses. If he doesn't respond, I hope Eric holds his feet to the fire in the same way he has done to so many others in the past.

      If I had to guess, I'd say that Newt is probably a good guy, probably one I'd enjoy gaming with, but that he's made a compounding series of mistakes that he needs to make good on. I don't wish him ill, but I'd be lying if I said that this whole situation doesn't irk me, and I think it's important for people to be held accountable for their decisions.

  3. I backed River of Heaven (which came after C&T) and it went extremely smoothly, but I'd like to know what happened with C&T if you don't mind expounding.

  4. I backed C&T back then as well and don't remember any problems. Was it something with the higher backer levels? Would be interested to hear details as well.

  5. On a more posistive note the campaign is currently just over 50% funded :)

    Maximum thanks for all the backers so far :)

  6. I've backed the latest one and he's late in having a final pdf.


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