Thursday, November 23, 2017

Indigogo - LotFP Hardcover Referee Book - Last Update was 13 Months Ago, and it Wasn't a Feel Good One

I knew that the LotFP Hardcover Referee Book Indigogo project was going to be long in the tooth, but no update in 13 months (and the last update basically saying "I never should have crowdfunded this") is not a positive sign.

In any case, for those that missed +James Raggi 's last update on this project, here it is:

Yeah, 4 years now.

Edit: Hate to say it, but I really no longer have a use for this, having moved on.


  1. wow makes me not want to have anything to do with the game. I drop Castles and Crusades for shit like this.

  2. He did say it was due January 2019 in the original crowdfunding blurb. So he's not overdue yet.


    1. Technically not late... is not a very convincing kind of not late.

      Maybe the project is too ambitious and needs to be cut back to size. I mean, some creatives shoot for the moon and then don't know how to get themselves out of that particular mess.

  3. I still think he's good for it, and I've enjoyed every one of the 20 odd books he's published since it funded.

  4. I know I have all sorts of bias on this, but I am a firm believer in fair advertising:


    "So the actual delivery date is "When it's done." That isn't an option to enter into IndieGoGo for a delivery date though, and any reasonable guess is still pretty much blindly throwing darts. So why not January 2019 and poke fun at myself and others who have failed to correctly divine past completion dates?

    So... You either want the book, or you don't. You either trust that it'll get done, or you don't.

    If you don't want the book or don't trust that it'll get done, then backing this project is a bad idea no matter what date we stamp on it.

    If you do want the book and do trust that it'll get done, we've put together some incentives to get you to back now instead of waiting until it's properly released.

    It's up to you to decide whether those incentives are effective."

    If someone says "I'll sell you a cake for $20, but fair warning I may take years to get around to it with no fixed deadline", that sounds like a shitty deal... but if you then go ahead and buy the cake knowing those terms? I suppose given the time delay many adults now may have been children when they signed up, but otherwise you are being given exactly what was agreed upon to you in the exact manner you agreed it could be delivered to you.

  5. James set Jan 2019 as the completion date facetiously - I dont think he ever expected to still have this project open 4 ears later.

    My main concern? 13 months without an update. James pretty much said he's only going to update when there is something to say and if there is nothing to say in 13 months...

  6. This is one of those things that just baffles me. He's already published a previous Referee Book, he's published a couple dozen other books as well. Just get the darn thing done. LotFP is already a fairly popular system in the OSR, and I'm pretty sure that whatever he puts out will satisfy most of the backers, as well as those who are (or want to be) playing the game. At this point getting an actual product out there is much more important than making "the most awsumist book EVAR".

    1. As a backer of the project, I'm eager to see this project completed. Nevertheless, I'd rather wait for a masterpiece than get something that's pretty good now.

      Given Jim's track record - and I can't think of any OSR publisher who has impressed me more other than Kevin Crawford - I'm still confident about this project.

    2. @Jake Parker

      I'm confident about the project too.

      But I think Raggi should bear in mind the lesson of Axl Rose and "Chinese Democracy". The longer fans wait for something, the higher their expectations rise. After years of waiting, these expectations become unattainable.

      And by definition, anything that took too long to produce couldn't be a masterpiece anyway—the overlengthy production becomes a serious flaw. Most masterpieces are serendipitous. You can't force a masterpiece.

      All that being said, whatever he does come up with should still be pretty damn good.

    3. No, Keith, you are wrong. People backed this project because they want what it was offered, even if it takes a long time. It's 13 more month before you can say it's late. It's more important a high-quality product. You should have thought about it before sending your money. Raggi said as much. You didn't listen, you don't have the right to complain. Not until february 2019, at least.

  7. Raggi will deliver. One way or another.

    1. never said he won't but an update on the project page over a year later would be nice.

    2. An official update would probably be worthwhile, but it's worth noting that he has provided updates via email. I think I've received one every couple of months or so.

  8. 'Tenk demands inquiry into why no update posted yet explaining why a book not due for over a year has yet to be published!'
    This is like the fucking FOX News of RPG Land.

  9. Im still angry that I missed the campaign.

  10. Raggi will come through. I backed the Lamentations of the Flame Princess 2013 Free RPG Day Kickstarter, and I think it took two and a half years for the final books to get printed. But the quality was outstanding, and along with the printed books, I received seven or eight PDFs. So no complaints there. Omnia bona expectantibus eveniunt.

  11. I backed this crowdfunder in a big way ... actually I forgot it was Indiegogo since most of James’ later campaigns have been on KS. Not sure why it’s not done yet, but some of James campaigns have been like that, and I’ve always been super-impressed by the final product.

    I’m not sure whether the biggest issue is the other authors’ contributions running late, or James rethinking the game yet again. Anyway, overall I’m not really concerned about this shipping at some point.

  12. Assk and joo shall receive, apparently,

    "OK. Media-mandated update.

    First note about why no updates: Because if I don't have anything definite to tell you, I'm wasting your time and mine. I back a fair number of crowdfunding campaigns, and I hate 'just keeping in touch' updates. It's spam.

    As it was I was telling people at Gen Con "my part will be done by Spiel" and then at Spiel "by Dragonmeet" and now Dragonmeet's next week and it won't be ready by then. Hoping by the end of the year.

    Because one thing I've learned over the last few years is that saying "I'll have it done by x date," or that anyone else telling me "I'll have my thing done by x date," (you all think I like only having one commercial release for the whole year?) basically is wishful thinking, so why in the world keep telling people that when I am quite obviously full of shit with it?

    So that's why no official updates. If you're actually wondering if I'm still alive, I'm not hard to find either on social media or at conventions, but I don't consider it anything special to say anything on this specific website.

    So the FAQ:

    Why is it taking so long? Honest answer: I'm an idiot. Seriously. I'm going for an AD&D 1e DMG level of masterpiece. To give you an all-time great work of gaming. That's pretty much impossible to do on purpose, but even missing that mark it should be damn good. And writing such a thing, and not a workaday kind of thing, is significantly more difficult, and there are other excuses that aren't good excuses, and I'm slow as shit even at the best of times.

    Is the project dead? FUCK NO. It's coming. Pretty much every crowdfunding thing I've ever done has been late as shit, and that's not at all a good thing, but it arrives. (and after the Ref book stuff there's still odds and bobs from other campaigns to get to as well...)

    This is coming.

    Are you working on other things at the same time? Besides managing other peoples' projects (mainly just acting as traffic cop), not really except for the few weeks in Nov/Dec doing the Free RPG Day thing, which has just been monsters or spells, projects of disconnected items that don't need grand narratives. (yes, it's that time again... will be out of the way very soon.)

    So shouldn't there be some sort of penalty for this? OK, that's more a question I made up, but to let you know that every day there's no Ref book available, I'm losing quite a bit of income. Rules & Magic sales were up 50% between 2015 and 2016, and up another 25% for 2017. I have every reason to believe a Ref book would have sold similarly had it been available during that time. There has been a financial cost, so those of you into such things, you can enjoy that I've lost that while dragging my ass on the project.

    For those of you being patient, I thank you. For those of you not so patient, I understand, and I just ask that you keep your understandable discontent to less-than-mad-rage levels because it's all going to be worth it.

    Now for the audience distraction poll... one of the people set to be a "guest commentator" on the book is Frank Mentzer. He's been put into the naughty house recently. Is this a problem for you?"

    1. He's seriously delusional if he thinks he's going to produce anything on par with the original DMG.

  13. Having worked on Back to the Dungeon RPG with it's totally low to no budget and low production values because it's a zine and a game, I know what delays are. I can't imagine what you guys are going through with high production values! I also know how it sucks if you rush something and then it has shitton of mistakes that you now have to correct. Keep striving for that perfect production.

  14. Has Raggi ever failed to deliver? No, he has not. This blog post is rubbish. Besides: "So the actual delivery date is "When it's done." That isn't an option to enter into IndieGoGo for a delivery date though, and any reasonable guess is still pretty much blindly throwing darts. So why not January 2019 and poke fun at myself and others who have failed to correctly divine past completion dates?"

    Not late yet, ok?

  15. I poured more money into this campaign than I have in any other RPG or other crowdfunding campaign, because I wanted to force James to make the best book he could possibly make. It had goals that added content to the book, and I bought a number of them.

    I wanted and still want a book up to James's impossibly high standards. I still buy every book he puts out, sight unseen, regardless of price, because I know he is going to be putting out the best book he can.

    I've been let down by a lot of crowdfunding campaigns. I've never been let down by Raggi*, and I'd rather this miss the ridiculous target than it be a letdown.

    *I didn't like The Seclusium of Orphone but that was Baker's fault


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