The First Expansion: Live on Kickstarter!

Adventurers,

Scott and I are thrilled to share that The Horror is now live on Kickstarter - and will be shipping in time to arrive for Christmas! Copies are just $10, with flat rate $5 shipping.

Join us to celebrate the launch and play the expansion at GenCon booth #2962

The Horror includes a new "Persona" mechanic that adds roleplaying, storytelling and strategic depth. It's inspired by the Cthulhu mythos, and will be used in a wide range of quests - everything from family-friendly adventures to horror-enthusiast mysteries.

If you're at GenCon, come check it out at booth #2962!

We've only gotten this far through your support and feedback. A special thank you to all of you who've provided feedback, shared Expedition with friends and written quests.

If you'd like to help support the Kickstarter, please consider sharing it on social media today. Here are some example posts:

Expedition: The Roleplaying Card Game just launched its first expansion! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/toddmedema/expedition-the-horror @ExpeditionRPG #GetYourAdventureOn

Check out this RPG... it's half board game, half video game: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/toddmedema/expedition-the-horror @ExpeditionRPG #GetYourAdventureOn

I just backed a family-friendly tabletop RPG that's fun for all ages: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/toddmedema/expedition-the-horror @ExpeditionRPG #GetYourAdventureOn

Thank you for your support! And here's to many more adventures!

Todd & Scott

Expedition: An Exciting August

Adventurers,

Things are getting exciting at the Expedition Castle.

Last month, we saw several new features launching and new quests published (and winning prizes)

This month, we're launching the first expansion (August 17th) and going to GenCon! Read on for more:

The Expansion

Expedition: The Horror is coming along perfectly in time for its launch on August 17th. We've finalized all of the art with the artist, including this awesome logo. In an Expedition first, all of the enemy cards will have custom artwork on them!

expedition-card-game-rpg-expansion-logo-cthulhu

What all will be available in the Kickstarter? Copies of the expansion, as well as base game + expansion bundles. They'll both be available with discounts, so it'll be a great chance to pick up a spare copy for a friend or birthday present! There will also be 6-packs of the expansion and base + expansion bundles.

Parents: Note that even though the expansion is horror / Cthulhu themed, it's still the same level of age appropriateness as the original game. Expedition is a game of imagination and storytelling, and it can be as fun - or as terrifying - as you and individual quests make it.

You can download a free beta copy of the expansion here. If you're considering backing the Kickstarter, backing and sharing on launch day (August 17th) would be a huge help! Kickstarters that are able to fund within 24 hours get a lot of extra attention that will help us unlock more awesome stretch goals :)

App updates

This month's app updates include:

  • Improved setup rules for 1 and 2 player games
  • Improved the appearance of icons in the app
  • New server architecture for the quest creator, reducing load times by as much as 50%
  • Fixed several bugs

Quest contest winners

As a reminder, July's categories:

  • Best Mystery: Who dunnit? The suspense is killing us!
  • Best Family-Friendly: The funnest quest with an "Everyone" rating takes the cake here.
  • Best Romance: Whether it's a rom-com romp through the forest or a dramatic political romance, one thing's for sure: it's going to be an adventure!
  • Grand Prize

Each winner will get a signed pre-release copy of the expansion. The Grand Prize winner also earns $100!

Without further ado:

  • Best Mystery: Azure Agents Chapter 2 by GraphiteHelix. Why are the undead attacking Faeyvre, and how will you stop them?
  • Best Family-Friendly: Fishin' with Dad by Cory Smith. A timeless father-son fishing tale, and a great parent-kid adventure :)
  • Best Romance: This one's proven to be a challenge for quest writers! Nobody was able to claim the romance prize - so if you're looking for writing inspiration, this would be a great opportunity to try your hand at a new type of story.
  • Grand Prize: Dark Gifts (Part 2 of the World Breaker series) - Greg Miller has done it again, with another literary and adventure masterpiece set in the World Breaker world. Congratulations, Greg!

Expansion quest contest

To celebrate the launch of Expedition: The Horror, we're holding a quest writing contest that's all about the new Persona mechanic. There'll be two $50 prizes: one for the best use of Persona in a quest, and one for the best Cthulhu or horror story. The contest starts now and ends two days before the Kickstarter - September 14th at midnight, EST. We can't wait to see what you write!

If you haven't checked out the expansion beta yet, the rules and cards are available here.

If you haven't tried the quest creator before - or haven't used it in a while - make sure to check out the quest writing tool. We've made a lot of upgrades to it in the past few months, including spellchecking, collaborative editing, and a "notes" section.

GenCon

Expedition will be at GenCon booth #2962!

Besides copies of the game and t-shirts, we'll also have unique, free promo cards available each day in limited quantities. We expect them to run out quickly, so make sure to swing by early in the day if you want them! Even if we run out, we'd love to meet you, our fellow adventurers, in person.

 

Adventure onwards,

Todd & Scott

Expedition Loot Club and Playtest Log

Adventurers,

We're excited to share a way for you to earn real-world loot while doing what you love most: playing board games! Announcing the Expedition Loot Club!

Expansion pack development is kicking into high gear in preparation for the August 17th launch. Click here for a sneak peak of the new rules and cards that you can print and play at home.

Playtest Log

This week, we thought we'd try something a little different and share some insights from our game design and playtesting process.

Our goal with the expansion is two-fold: create more roleplaying depth, and more interesting mechanical options. Expedition's core philosophy is to be a simple a game that's fun for a wide audience - which means we want to avoid adding a lot of new complexity, while creating mechanics that are appealing to new and experienced RPG players, as well as players who enjoy roleplaying and those who prefer to focus on the mechanics.

To achieve that, we're adding a new "Persona" mechanic, including a new "Influence" class of abilities and new "Horror" enemies. Persona provides you with more roleplaying depth, allowing your adventurer's personality to improve or decline (your optimistic adventurer could improve to become courageous... or decline into being overconfident). These states also grant you a power (such as increased damage from being courageous).... or an affliction (such as making your rolls harder from being overconfident).

How do you balance such a broad-reaching mechanic? Especially one that adds a new type of card and new enemies, abilities, adventurers and loot?

You can try playtesting hundreds of times to uncover every possible mechanical possibility... but that's time better spent on adding more features to the app and quest creator!

Instead, we use a set of mathematical definitions to automatically balance the game. We assign each mechanic a value and a conversion rate to other mechanics, similar to currencies and exchange rates. For example, losing one persona is worth two health, and gaining one persona is worth three health. Then, by going through the abilities and multiplying their effects' values times their chance of succeeding, we can arrive at an "expected value" for playing each ability. We go through and make sure that all abilities' expected values are similar, and voila!

This frees up our playtests to focus on the feel and interactions of the game. Sometimes, even though an ability is balanced correctly, players still shy away from it because it doesn't seem worthwhile. Or, they discover an overly-powerful combination with another ability or loot. We also use playtests as a chance to make sure players are playing in a good direction. For example, we generally want players to be progressing in combat, attacking and dealing damage rather than continuously healing. While you could set up the balance so that healing is just as easy as damaging, that would lead to a pretty boring game where combat never ends because you aren't dying... but you also aren't dealing damage!

We're excited to hear what you think of the new expansion. Click here for a sneak peak, and visit ExpeditionGame.com/kickstarter on August 17th to be taken directly to the Kickstarter. The Kickstarter will include discounted copies of the base game when purchased with an expansion, so it's a perfect chance to share the adventure with friends!

 

That's all for this week - if you found the playtest log interesting, let us know on Facebook / Twitter / Reddit and we'll make sure to share more in the future!

Todd & Scott

Expedition Monthly: Shirts, prizes and more!

Adventurers,

We've got a hilarious new quest available: "Flipping the Bird" for 2-6 players. Congratulations to The Unpublishers on winning this month's quest writing prize!

There are now more that two dozen quests available in the app, with more being added all the time. As you play community quests, make sure to rate and review them to help other adventurers find and enjoy quests - and give our amazing writers feedback :)

Speaking of quests, July's writing contest is bigger and better than ever: there are three categories, and the winner in each category gets a signed pre-release copy of the new expansion pack. Plus, the grand prize winner also earns $100!

The three categories:

  • Best Mystery: Who dunnit? The suspense is killing us!
  • Best Family-Friendly: The funnest quest with an "Everyone" rating takes the cake here.
  • Best Romance: Whether it's a rom-com romp through the forest or a dramatic political romance, one thing's for sure: it's going to be an adventure!

Publish your quest using the Expedition Quest Creator by July 31st for a chance to earn $100!

The Expansion: Launching Soon

The first Expedition expansion is on its way! It'll be launching on Kickstarter on August 17th, on the first day of GenCon. We'll have a special stretch reward if we can hit the funding goal on launch day - simply point your browser to ExpeditionGame.com/kickstarter to be redirected to the page on launch day!

Expedition T-Shirts: Now Available

Expedition adventure swag is now available! Visit our teespring store to adventure in style - and comfort!

expedition-t-shirts-swag

 

Until next month,

Todd & Scott

Quest Creators: Collaborative, Real-time Editing

Storytellers,

Just a few days left in this month's writing contest! Publish a new quest by the 30th for a chance to earn adventuresome prizes!

This week, we're excited to share that collaborative, real-time editing is now ready for prime time! Just like Google Docs, you can now seamlessly share quests with friends so that you can write, edit and test quests at the same time.

To start collaborating, simply share your quest's Google Drive file with a friend using the Google Drive sharing interface and open the quest in the Quest Creator like normal (open the file in Drive and select "Open With -> Expedition Quest Creator"). Voila! As always, if you have any questions or run into any issues, you can reach us via the chat bubble at the bottom right of the screen.

Downtime transparency report: The quest creator was down this past Thursday between approximately 10am and 5pm, and for a few brief periods this weekend. We sincerely apologize for this unplanned downtime. The outage was initially due to a Heroku service outage, but our attempts to fix the issue broke other parts of our deployment process. We learned several ways that we can further improve the reliability of the Quest Creator code, including tools to roll back changes in production and a dashboard to monitor production health. We've also improved the Quest Creator error page so that you to contact us and monitor the Expedition Twitter feed in case of future errors.

Until next week,

Todd & Scott

Quest Creators: Free expansion beta, new features!

Quest Writers,

We brought Expedition to Origins this weekend and players love it - especially the huge variety of adventures available to them :) We're excited to grow this community together with you. Without further ado, we have some updates for you!

Expansion: Want free beta access to the new expansion? Email your address to Todd@Fabricate.io and we'll email you the PDF!

New feature: Notes. In the bottom bar, there's a new tab called "Quest Notes" that allows you to keep track of your notes. This is great for whole-story notes (like settings and character backstories) that you could need to reference while working on any part of your quest.

New feature: Major Releases. When you publish an update to your quest, you can now set it as a "Major Release", which resets all ratings and reviews. This allows you to go back and fix major issues (or make major improvements to) a quest without having to worry about getting permanently locked into ratings for an older version.

Card Creator update: although our focus has been on improving the app and quest writing experiences, we still managed to sneak in an overhaul of the Card Creator that makes it faster and easier to use. It's still in beta, so let us know what you think! http://betacards.expeditiongame.com

Contest: this month's quest writing contest ends on June 31st! If you publish your quests early, that'll give you a chance to get feedback and polish your quest, increasing your chances of winning one of the three prizes :)

Until next week,

Todd and Scott

Quest Writing Weekly: Contest, Genres and Reviews

Writers,

Four updates this week:

There's a new contest! You have until June 31st to write a quest that incorporates "double billing" to win prizes - including an Expedition shirt! Bonus points if it's in the romance, mystery or horror genre :)

Quest creator feature update: when you publish, you can now set your quest's genre and content rating (i.e. what age level it's appropriate for). Make sure to go back and update your existing quests to make them more discoverable!

The first Expedition expansion: It's launching August 17th at GenCon! In the coming month, we'll be giving you early access to the expansion so that your quests can be at the top of the list when players get their hands on it. Sneak peak: it's horror-themed, so start brainstorming those terrifying, gruesome and unsettling ideas ;)

App feature update: The app's quest search interface just got a major upgrade - users can now sort by highest reviewed, and filter by content ratings and genres.

How are quest ratings handled? As you know, players have the option to rate a quest after they play. Once a quest has received a reasonable sample of ratings, we consider it to be well-reviewed, and users will be able to see the average rating and number of ratings in the app. This prevents the Amazon "one review" effect, where a single one- or two-star review causes an otherwise good product's launch to get lost into oblivion. We're still tweaking how reviews are shown (especially after you fix a cause of negative reviews in your quest), so please let us know if there's anything we can do to make the rating system more fair.

Expedition-companion-app-quest-search-results.jpg

Until next week,

Todd & Scott

Expedition Monthly: Quest Winner and New Features

Adventurers,

Scott and I just placed the order for the second print run of Expedition - and it'll be twice the size of the original run! (2,500 copies) It's not common for a studio's first game to be successful enough for a second print run, and we couldn't have done it without your support. Expedition is here to stay and will keep growing and improving - thanks to you!

Quest Winner

May's quest-writing competition just wrapped up, and the winner is "When the King is Away" by JanoNath and Cory Smith - a fantastic adventure where you play as either a street gang or the city guard, wrecking or preventing chaos. Without a doubt, this is worth playing through twice to experience both sides of the story. Congratulations, JanoNath and Cory!

June Quest Writing Challenge

We have a new quest writing contest for the month of June! And, for those new to quest writing, we just added a chat window to the bottom right that makes it easier than ever to talk with us and get your quest-writing questions answered - check it out at Quests.ExpeditionGame.com

expedition-rpg-roleplaying-game-t-shirt-swag-apparel.jpg

June's contest also has an exciting new prize option - Expedition t-shirts! If you're one of June's three winners, you'll get to choose between a copy of Expedition, a t-shirt (pick between Magic, Melee, Music or Ranged) and a dinner with us at GenCon.

June's theme: Double Billing. Mistake? Misdirection? Who's paying who.... and for what?

Write your quests and publish them by June 31st at midnight for a chance to win!

New Features

Rolling out this week to the web, Android and iOS apps:

  • Improved quest search UI to make the perfect quest easier to find, including the new ability to filter by genre and content rating (kid-friendly, teen or adult).
  • Quest ratings: for quests with enough ratings, the quest details page will now show their rating score + number of ratings.
  • Better display of network-related errors to users

GenCon

Expedition is heading to GenCon on August 17-20th in Indianapolis! We'll be at booth #2962 in Entrepreneur's Avenue, and we're hosting several events. We'll also be bringing prototypes of the first Expedition expansion!

 

Until next month,

Todd & Scott