Hey Planarchs! Time for a basic update on official Planarch stuff, I think. After talking with a ton of smart, experienced game publishers (including Luke “Burning Wheel” Crane who edits the games section of Kickstarter and also handles publishing responsibilities for Dungeon World now), I’ve been gradually and painfully convinced that it makes a lot more sense to publish new Planarch stuff as a 6×9″ book (same size as Dungeon World) rather than a plastic box full of mini-booklets, mostly because of (1) it simplifies the logistics and costs immensely and (2) even more importantly, it enables me to publish additional Planarch stuff in the future without having to launch a separate Kickstarter every time for the $4,000+ it takes to do a print run of three Scoutbooks in a box. All those facts make total sense, but it’s taken me some time to make peace with it, since I love the original mini-booklet format (as I’m sure a lot of you do too).
In the meantime, I’ve been exploring a bunch of other options and even had some sample books printed to see how a different format would work (see the attached image of a 120+ page Planarch hardcover). I don’t know the exact details yet, but I’m getting excited about how this may also give me a chance to revisit the stuff in Dark Heart and flesh it out with more examples, more tables, more support, and the extensive experience I’ve had running and playing Planarch since I originally wrote it. The book could even include some more specific suggestions for running Planarch with DW, World of Dungeons, and a few other related AW hacks like John Harper’s upcoming Blades in the Dark. I often switch between DW and WoDu myself, depending on the number of sessions and tone of the game we’re trying to create.
In any event, the bad news in all this is that it’s probably going to take a little more time to put the Kickstarter together, despite my promises to have it done this summer. There’s a possibility we could Kickstart in September, say, for a delivery by late December, but it might also make more sense to Kickstart in January for stupid U.S. tax reasons.
In the meantime, since people have been patiently waiting for this, I think I might end up just going ahead and releasing some of the Planarch material that I already have finished, since it seems kind of silly to keep holding onto it for the next 3-6 months. So you may see some new Planarch stuff pop up in the meantime, in addition to some other small weird games by me.
In any event, thanks for being understanding as I’ve tried to work through all these details. I care about Planarch and its fans a lot and want to do it in a way that’s sustainable in the future, so both me and other folks (like you!) can keep publishing Planarch stuff for years to come. I have a lot of other weird urban planar fantasy ideas that I’d like to continue to play around with and I hope you do too.