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46709 Posts in 5588 Topics by 13299 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 44 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: Complete and Utter Noob Question - sorry in advance  (Read 2032 times)
drkrash
Member

Posts: 49


« on: June 30, 2009, 02:40:18 PM »

Hello everyone.

I'm new here, though I have lurked a tiny bit from time to time.

This year, I completed my first gaming book for an existing game line (Dread:tFBoP).  It has been a great experience and I have learned a tremendous amount.  (Rafael Chandler rocks!)

That success and those lessons have energized me to complete a game system I have been working on for way too long and get it out for publication.

It has been playtested by me and by my gaming group for a couple years, but I know I need outside input.

Two related questions:
1) How do I go about soliciting requests for playtesters?
2) This seems like an indelicate question but I can't deny it has crossed my mind: the playtest rules will eventually be part of a product for sale.  How can one determine the trustworthiness of playtesters to respect the intellectual property of the independent designer? Like I said, I feel kinda bad asking this question as a newbie to this community, but I was wondering nonetheless.

I suspect it will take me another 8-12 months to have the book in publishable form, so I'm not in a huge rush, but I'm eager to get started, especially to determine whether there are any serious holes in the rules.

Thanks for your help! I've heard good things about this community!

C
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Vulpinoid
Member

Posts: 936

Kitsune Trickster


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« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2009, 04:25:55 PM »

1) How do I go about soliciting requests for playtesters?

Just ask...there's usually a few people willing to try out new and undeveloped systems. You might need to ask in a few locations though, a lot of the people around here have little enough time to dedicate to their own projects...let alone troubleshooting other people's work.

Still, you'll never find anyone if you don't ask.

Quote
2) This seems like an indelicate question but I can't deny it has crossed my mind: the playtest rules will eventually be part of a product for sale.  How can one determine the trustworthiness of playtesters to respect the intellectual property of the independent designer? Like I said, I feel kinda bad asking this question as a newbie to this community, but I was wondering nonetheless.

Simple answer...

Have faith.

Complicated answer. If faith isn't enough, make sure you put copyright notices on your work. They don't cost anything, and they add a decent degree of protection (a lot of people might disagree, pointing you in the direction of Creative Commons). On the whole, a similar answer applies as for the first question. Most people who you'd be sending your work to for playtesting will probably fall into one of two categories.

(1) Those who are interested in trying something new because they've lost interest in the mainstream gaming market and the other products commonly available, but aren't motivated enough to create their own game.

(2) Those who are already developing their own games, and who might be interested in seeing what else is being developed at the moment. These are probably the playtesters who concern you, but most of them are too busy developing their own games in their own directions, and anything you might offer in your playtest kit either won't gel with the product they're developing, or they might be appreciative of one or two cool aspects that you've included.

It's all about mutual sharing. If you want a bit of input from the community for your game, then you've got to be willing to give a bit to the community.

Just my 2 cents...

V
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Jason Morningstar
Member

Posts: 1467


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« Reply #2 on: July 19, 2009, 01:45:04 PM »

Hey C,

Playtesting is hard and frequently unrewarding, so offer to playtest for other people.  Help people out and they will remember.  Reciprocity is a wonderful thing.  Talk to Rafael and see if he'd be willing to either help you directly or help you solicit others, based on the strength of your past collaboration and trust (He does rock).

As for your second point, nobody is going to steal your playtesty thing.  After it is published, then it will definitely show up on some torrent site.  If that bald fact is in and of itself problematic to you, don't publish in any form.

Some people design in public and encourage people to read their manuscript, share it, toss it around.  This is a great approach for many reasons.  Others are more cagey.  I prefer to keep my playtest drafts pretty low profile, and ask playtesters not to share them without asking me.  Of course if they do I am helpless to stop it, but really, anybody willing to engage in the grind of playtesting is already your friend.  They aren't going to be dicks, they are going to be awesome.
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drkrash
Member

Posts: 49


« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2009, 06:27:50 AM »

Thanks for the replies.

I think I might have been a little panicky-hasty when I first posted, as honestly, the very idea that I could actually publish my little game for real was a bit of a scary rush for me.  As I've gotten down to the grind of actually putting it together, based on what I now know, I'm a lot less ancy.

Jason, I also came to realize the very thing you mentioned: it's pretty much inevitable that if my game is any good (and probably even if it isn't! :)), someone will give it away online.  Once I came to that point, I accepted it and got over it.

I have some ideas for playtesting, and honestly, I think it's pretty well done being playtested anyway.

Thanks again.
C
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http://rpg.drivethrustuff.com/index....turers_id=2803

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