Friday 17 May 2024

Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come - Post-Kickstarter Thoughts

Yesterday, the Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come concluded, having raised 152% of its original funding goal. If you helped make that happen, thank you. If you were late to the party, but would still like to place a Late Pledge, you can do so here.

I have now run 16 successful Kickstarter campaigns, but I have never done things quite the same way twice. I am always trying to refine the process, hoping to find the key that will unlock the greatest crowdfunding success. This time, that involves forking out a not insubstantial amount for targeted Facebook ads.

I don't feel I quite have the handle on such ads yet. Some appeared to do much better than others but I have no idea whether that was reflected in the actual amount raised. I still did a lot of promotion myself on social media and I wonder whether the Kickstarter might have raised just as much as it did even if I hadn't paid for any ads at all.

Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come is my most funded ACE Gamebooks Kickstarter to date, in terms of both money raised and number of backers who came on board, but Dracula: Curse of the Vampire comes a close second, and managed to make almost as much money with close to 100 fewer backers. Is that a reflection on the source material for the adventure, or the economic pressures of the times? I don't know.

What I do know is that my ACE Gamebook Kickstarters haven't gone viral yet, but neither am I willing to shell out thousands of pounds to a marketing agency on the off chance that their input might make a significant difference. When I spoke to one marketer, everything he said that his company would do were things I was already doing myself, although I would hope that they would do a better job with targeted Facebook ads than I did.

I will need to think carefully before I settle on what will be my next ACE Gamebook Kickstarter, but I have a couple of ideas that are both things I haven't done yet within the series.

However, for the time being, I have a new ACE Gamebook to finish and some artwork to commission.

"That is not dead which can eternal lie,
And with strange aeons even death may die."

Tuesday 14 May 2024

Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come - The Final 48 Hours!

We're into the final 48 hours of Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come on Kickstarter and are slowly creeping towards Stretch Goal #2.

It is at this point that anyone who clicked on the remind-me-later button will be receiving an email from Kickstarter, reminding them that they might what to pledge their support to Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come on Kickstarter, so it's quite possible we will see a surge in pledges over the next two days.

However, you can do your bit by sharing the link to the Kickstarter far and wide among your contacts too. With your help, there's no reason why we can't hit Stretch Goal #3 by 2:00pm BST on Thursday 16 May, when the Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come Kickstarter concludes.

Thank you for all your support.

"Defer no time, delays have dangerous ends."

Friday 10 May 2024

Gamebook Friday: The Globe, Arkham, and the NEC

I have three things to tell you about in this week's Gamebook Friday post.

Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come has one week left to run on Kickstarter and has already passed its first Stretch Goal. Everyone who backs to receive a physical copy of the book will also get a pack of 5 postcards featuring Heraldo Mussolinin's artwork from the book.

If you haven't pledged your support yet, check out the Kickstarter page here, and please share it widely among your social networks.

The Darkness Over Arkham, the first Arkham Horror Investigators Gamebook, was released by Aconyte Books and Fantasy Flight Games this week and has already garnered some glowing reviews.

Click to enlarge.

If you missed the interactive livestream launch of The Darkness Over Arkham with Jordan Sorcery, you can watch it now on YouTube.

You can pick up the global eBook here and, if you are in the States, you can purchase the paperback of the adventure, which will be coming to UK shores in July.

That said, if you are attending the UK Games Expo at the end of the month, you may be able to pick up a paperback of The Darkness Over Arkham at the Aconyte Books stand, where I will be doing a signing session on the Friday.

The rest of the time, you will find me at Stand 2-T21, which I am sharing with Sir Ian Livingstone, apart from when I am running the 'Write Like a Pro' workshop, with Darren Pearce, at 12:30pm on the Sunday.

If you're coming along, do stop by and say hello. Maybe I'll see you there.

Tuesday 7 May 2024

The Darkness Over Arkham released in the US and as a global ebook today

The Darkness Over Arkham, the first Arkham Horror Investigators Gamebook is published today by Aconyte Books, as a paperback in the US and as a global eBook*.

When a renowned professor is found dead, it’s up to the Investigators of Arkham to discover what occult horrors were behind his fate. Pick your path, Investigator, and collect allies along the way to hunt down his killer before they strike again. However, Arkham is full of mysteries, with many wishing to keep the truth buried, and who are hungry to usher in a new era full of death and darkness to devour the world you know it. Can you stop them before it is too late?

The book includes profiles for three Investigators - Agnes Baker the Waitress, Nathaniel Cho the Boxer, and Rex Murphy the Reporter - which can be downloaded here, so you don't need to write in the book itself.

You can order your copy of The Darkness Over Arkham here. And don't forget I will be livestreaming the opening of the adventure with Jordan Sorcery on his YouTube channel tomorrow, 8 May 2024.

* The UK paperback arrives 18 July 2024.

Saturday 4 May 2024

Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come - halfway there!

Today marks the halfway point in the Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come Kickstarter campaign.

It hit its funding goal within 4 days, which was amazing, but in the 7 days since it has only raised £1,230. I say only, but I am aware it is a lot of money. It's just a constant struggle to connect with new backers, and we have Stretch Goals to hit.

I have dabbled with targeted Facebook ads but have a feeling that for them to make a real difference, you really need to invest a lot more than I have.

I expect that pledges will pick up again in the last few days of the funding period, but this mid-campaign lull means that I am toying with running a future Kickstarter for even less time, perhaps just two weeks. But that's some way off yet.

You can help by sharing the project link with your friends through your socials. There will be someone you know who it just waiting to back a gamebook like Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come on Kickstarter. As someone else pointed out on social media, Kickstarter needs a Gamebooks sub-heading because otherwise he could easily have missed it.

Next weekend I will give the campaign another push but this coming week my focus will be on the release of the first Arkham Horror Investigators Gamebook The Darkness Over Arkham on Tuesday 7 May 2024, and the livestream of the game the very next day on Jordan Sorcery's YouTube channel.

Friday 3 May 2024

Gamebook Friday: The Darkness Over Arkham Livestream

On Wedneday 8 May 2024, at 7:00pm BST, I will be taking part in a livestream of my new gamebook The Darkness Over Arkham on Jordan Sorcery's YouTube channel.

The Darkness Over Arkham is released on Tuesday 7 May 2024 as a global eBook and as a paperback in the US*. So, if you're free, do stop by and help decide which path to take and, if you're not free, you will be able to catch it later on YouTube.

In other gamebook-related news, Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come is heading towards its first Stretch Goal on Kickstarter. It's almost halfway through the funding period so there's still plenty of time to get on board and share the latest ACE Gamebook Kickstarter with all your gaming friends.

In four weeks' time, you will find me attending the UK Games Expo 2024 at the NEC in Birmingham. I will be sharing Stand 2-T21 with Sir Ian Livingstone, so do come and find us in Hall 2. You will find more details about the UK Games Expo here.

* The UK paperback of The Darkness Over Arkham is out on 18 July 2024 but, it you're lucky, you may be able to pick one up at the UK Games Expo.

Friday 26 April 2024

Gamebook Friday - Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come

Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come has been funding on Kickstarter for three days now and, as of writing, is already 96% funded.

The most popular reward is the HAMLET paperback, with the KING LEAR hardback a not very close second, and the hardback + paperback PROSPERO reward third.

It has become clear that people are bravely and boldly backing this Kickstarter without knowing very much about the actual plot of the adventure. You can read the opening 25 sections here, but to tease you still further, the gamebook is divided into 5 Acts, which are as follows:

Act I - Ill Met By Moonlight
Act II - The Play's the Thing
Act III - Full Fathom Five
Act IV - Fair is Foul and Foul is Fair
Act V - Something Wicked This Way Comes

YOU can help Shakespeare Vs. Cthulhu: What Dreams May Come reach its funding goal by sharing the link to the Kickstarter page on your socials, but not just once - every day you can, please.

The Kickstarter concludes on Thursday 16 May 2024, in 20 days' time, but can we reach the funding goal before the end of this weekend? With YOUR help, we can!

Thank you for your support.