Thursday, June 21, 2012

Need Some Advice, Oh Brain Trust

This morning I finally finished the draft of the Roustabout's Guide to the Hill Cantons. I am a little befuddled now that I am in the active self-editing phase just where to take it.

In a nutshell the Guide was intended to accomplish a few goals:
1. put all the variant subsystems, alternative classes, and other gameable material for classic D&D I have been working on for the campaign and blog as a follow-up to the Hill Cantons Compendium.

2. compile all the setting-specific stuff that has at least some portability and utility to other people's games together in one place. So all the lists of unique equipment, special items, spells, horse breeds etc.

3. give an overview of the actual setting: religion, cosmology, sites of interest, etc.

My two intended audiences are: 1. the home group and Google Plus players both longstanding and new (there are always “special guest stars” coming and out) and 2. people who like to tinker and collect this kind of variant stuff (ie people like me).

Soooooo,here's my problem should I take all the things from the previous Compendium, clean them up and put them into a single booklet/pdf? Or release it as a second, separate booklet/pdf? Or some other option I am overlooking?

I know first world problem, but help me stop waffling puh-lease.  


  1. Do I get a vote? Single book, no bout adout it.

  2. I get to be the voice of dissent. I favor separate simply because I have a prog that lets me stitch pdfs together, so if I have them separate I can keep them that way or merge them into a single pdf at my whim. Options, always options.

  3. Mike D from Sword+1 blog did a great revised layout of the Compendium and has graciously offered to do the second version too so it will be a considerably spiffier edition if compiled together.

    And again the PDF will be free and the print version just above production cost.

  4. My advise is to kick it out the door. The imperfect published today is superior to the perfect published tomorrow. To borrow phrase from software industry "Release early, release often."

    1. Yes well manically clutching projects to my chest and reworking them until they are "perfect" is my MO apparently, so good advice.

  5. I would personally split the books, you've been planning on doing one and have spent time organizing it in a coherent way (even if not consciously), making sure the content all fits together and setting it up as a discrete 'product'.

    Well I guess I should say the degree of multiple vs. split publication is the degree of how much the above is true. Also are their length and printing cost considerations? If the split books/PDFs are only 10 pages each join them (it's likely cheaper?) but if one is large release the second as a supplemental PDF when it feels ready.

    Just my thoughts. Congratulations.

  6. Give them nothing! Let them suffer in their continued ignorance of the Most Magnificent Hill Cantons, ruled by the Most Splendid Rada, servant of the Most Puissant Sun Lord, long may he reign. Let them remain unquenched in their thirst for knowledge. Let them-

    Or, y'know, everything in one book for easy reference.

  7. One book, but if you find yourself faffing with it for more than a week compulsively tweaking and retweaking (my vice too) then say 'sod it' and publish as is.

  8. A single book, please. But it's your stuff, do it whichever way seems best to you.