Friday, October 22, 2010

The Weekly Offworlder

Notes on the Harren People

Harren (har-en) are a race of seafaring people native to Rynaga. Ages ago, Harren were among the first to traverse the oceans and master the art of seaship construction. Their skills as negotiators, diplomats and barterers has helped them carve out an esteemed reputation as honest merchants and reliable transporters of valuable goods.

Harren society is lead by a form of government based on monarchy. However, every 100 years rule shifts from one family to another chosen by the people. On Rynaga, each race has a capital city or home city as it is called. These cities represent the complete culture of the given society. The island of Syleen is the home city of the Harren and is well-known as a place of beauty and relaxation.

As a people, Harren are free-spirited and spontaneous. They have a love of music and possess a rich heritage of crafting stringed instruments. Traditionally, each Harren seaship sets sail with its own group of musicians, commissioned to sing, play their instruments and tell epic stories to passengers. It's no wonder most people intent on traveling by seaship secure passage on Harren ships.

In terms of appearance, Harren stand four to five feet tall and have beige, green or blue velveteen skin. They're well-suited to life at sea, able to stay submerged in underwater for up to three hours at a time. Harren are also very fast swimmers and are known to fish underwater for sport.

I must say that I have not spent much time with the Harren people so far. They rarely tolerate being inland for more than a few days and I have not made it out to any islands yet. Either way, they are well spoken of as a people and while they may be small in physical appearance, their love of life and appreciation for all that is beautiful on Rynaga inspires others to great deeds.

-Safe travels!

Monday, October 11, 2010

RinCon 2010

I want to thank everyone who came out to support our demos, tournaments and products at this years RinCon gaming event in Tucson. We had a wonderful time demoing games, talking about the world of Rynaga and most importantly, getting to know all of you a bit better.

Congrats to Melissa who was the winner of our first ever Iconica tournament. She was undefeated during demo play and went on to win three straight matches to be our tourney champion on Saturday!

Sunday was equally exciting when a challenger named Mark, new to Iconica, entered Sunday's tournament and won a close victory against runner up Scott. Their battle was one to remember.

A couple of comments we received really reinforced our belief that Iconica is something special in the gaming world:
"I've been gaming for 15 years and I can say Iconica is game that is not only different, but fun." -Chris
"You guys have created a game with so much potential. Keep doing what you're doing." -Ed
"The art style drew me in, the gameplay kept me playing." -Chrissy
Thanks again everyone! We're excited about what's coming and look for information on Iconica Scenario cards very soon.

-Safe travels!

What We're Working On

I want to give some updates for different projects we're (Specimen) working on around here. A big THANK YOU to everyone who is supporting this project with resources, time and as patrons. I don't take it for granted.


Rather than releasing individual cards for Iconica Series Two, I plan to release this as a complete set, all at once during Q1 of 2011. We decided to go this route partly based on feedback from gamers and collectors as well as some research we gathered on buying patterns and merchandising. Shipping costs add up for individual sale items, especially for our overseas friends.

The main driver for this however is that will give us the chance to craft additional content and even reduce paper usage and waste. It's important to me to make sure we're doing what we can to be sustainable.

Does this mean there will be no new Iconica coming up? No! I'll be releasing a set of Iconica Scenario cards as free PDF downloads. Scenario's will be a great way to experience Iconica in an RPG-like setting. More info soon.

The Lost Lamp - Book One

As some of you may know and as mentioned in this Weekly Offworlder post, the main character (Solan) in our first book Prelude, has been missing for some time now. I'm working away on a series of books that will not only solve the mystery of Solan's disappearance, but ultimately set the stage for something grand.

I'll have more information on this project in the coming weeks.

It's important to me for people to know what we're working on, but more importantly how we do it. This project is completely self-funded, so development times will be stretched occasionally. However, having said that, it's full steam ahead.

-Safe travels!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

RinCon AZ

This weekend we'll be in Tucson for RinCon!

The plan is to be running Iconica demos every hour on the hour and to also hold two small tournaments - one on Saturday and one Sunday morning. We'll also be testing some new elements of Iconica as well!

You can learn more about RinCon here. Hope to see you there.

-Safe travels!