Words from the Wise (Guys)

Copyright Nicholas HM Caldwell © 2005

Edited by Nicholas HM Caldwell for The Guild Companion


To the eightieth issue of The Guild Companion.

Ransom Model in Action

In last month's editorial, I explained how the ransom or patronage model could be applied to producing role-playing products. I also hinted that there were several possible projects that TGC could achieve using variants of the model. I had a chat with the good people at ICE concerning these ideas and determined that a book of HARP characters (along the lines of the RMSS Player's Guide) would be a very useful product.

The intention of "HARP Heroes" (the current working title) is that contributors develop HARP characters using the official rules of HARP Revised, Martial Law, and College of Magics. The end result should be a couple of dozen fully-fleshed out and statted characters covering the entire range of professions and races. By using Jonathan Dale's amazing Excel spreadsheet, the mechanical processes of character creation will be accurate and relatively painless even for a full ten levels' worth of advancement.

As this project is being run under the ransom model, I first solicited expressions of interest both here and on ICE's forums. This was effectively the first stage of the ransom - if there weren't sufficient people willing to contribute, there was no point in even producing the contributor guidelines. Fortunately there was sufficient interest, the guidelines have been written and are now available. You can find them by visiting http://www.guildcompanion.com/resources/HARPHeroesSubmissionGuidelines.pdf and follow the current progress in terms of which archetypes are still available by visiting the Guild Companion Modules discussion forum.

Again, this portion of the project is being run via ransom model rules. Contributors have to check out individual archetypes and then have two weeks to produce a suitable character. Failure to meet this deadline means that the archetype becomes available again for someone else to have a go. My aim in doing this is to prevent enthusiastic people over-committing themselves and then failing to deliver, stalling the entire project. In addition to applying the ransom model to individual submissions, the entire project is under a content ransom. If we don't meet the target of 24 characters, then HARP Heroes won't be published.

We've already had several contributors sign out archetypes and, indeed, at the time of writing, I've received the first three complete submissions, so it's full steam ahead on this one. There's an open invitation for more contributors - anyone who gets a character accepted and published will receive a free copy of HARP Heroes. Think of it as writing up one player-character or non-player-character and in return gaining 23 complete characters. Prolific contributors will get some hard cash per additional accepted and published character. Give it a go.

The Order of the Iron Crown

Many of you who attend gaming conventions will have lamented the paucity of ICE-related events. A group of fans have decided that the time has come to change this. They have formed the Order of the Iron Crown, an unofficial organization that will promote Rolemaster, Spacemaster, and HARP at conventions worldwide, by running demonstration games and tournament events. You can find out more about them and their plans on their website at http://www.orderironcrown.com/. They are actively recruiting members, so if you are an occasional or a regular convention attendee, pay them a call.

TGC will be supporting the Order of the Iron Crown by publishing regular news features on the Order's activities and helping out on other matters as appropriate.

Farewell for now ...

I'll leave you to enjoy this month's articles. Our next issue will be published in November 2005, but until then ...

Keep gaming and have fun,
Nicholas HM Caldwell
General Editor for The Guild Companion