Monthly Archives: July 2013

BoHM UPDATE…

Over at the Kickstarter, I’ve added another couple of updates.

The first is simply a modification to the iMetal Stretch Goal so now we only need to exceed our goal by $1000 to open that one up. The second, posted today, includes new Reward Level Upgrades, a hardback version of the book and a Metal Master (our fancy term for GM) screen with an included 32 page adventure: War Pigs!

All of these were requested by backers, so if there is something you’d like to see us produce, let us know in the comments. You don’t ask, you don’t get!

Also, Jeff has provided us with some more WIP art! Let him know what you think!

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“YOU CAN’T DO EVERYTHING. YOU’RE NOT SUPERMAN YOU KNOW…”

Spider-Man_368PyxurzSince I started grad school and my list of capabilities have grown, that line from Spiderman becomes more and more of a truism every semester. I have lots of projects and a lot of ideas, but I do not have lots of time, mutant superspeed abilities or (despite my most fervent wishes) a TARDIS.

So, at this point, I would like to give a shout out to some of the folks without whom I’d be incapable of doing more than completing a single project every few years.or so:

Tim Shriver

My main man programmer. He’s bringing BoHM to life and helps me out when the strange, alien language of programming starts to drive me insane. Seriously, coding is some sort of Cthonic Sorcery-Science and only one as talented as Tim can truly understand it without their sanity becoming forfeit.

Jeff Laubenstein

Not only is he doing something that I have very little skill in in, but he is doing it in a way that brings the images in my head to life like nobody else can. A giant amongst artists in my book, his unique take on game worlds, including his recent sketch for BoHM, has me excited for the work he’ll be producing for us in the future…

Ricky Meisner

Dude. You literally rock! Ricky loves music and without him, there is no way I could put together a soundtrack for the game. I mean, I’m a passable sound designer, but my instrumental and arrangement skills are pretty minimal. Ricky is like Jeff, only acoustically instead of visually, realizing the sounds in my head with the barest of descriptions.

Kara Phillips

Kara did some of the initial visual design for BoHM, I based a lot of my iconography on some of her concept sketches, and it is her Metalhead and Titan shown in the video on the Kickstarter. She is one of the absolute nicest and most upbeat people I have ever met and a great friend who never fails to keep me from getting too serious about life. Seriously, she’s a wonder.

Michael Andreen

Mike is one of the best sound designers and voice-over artists I’ve ever worked with. You can hear his mellifluous tones on my radio play, The Improbable Adventures of Dylan Darby (he plays the title character). He also worked with me on adapting the Conan story The Phoenix on the Sword and, had we the time and resources, he would have been a brilliant Conan.

Jim Weaver

Michael once told me that I was the hardest working man he knew in the department, but Jim makes me look like a brain-dead slacker. Jim is not only motivated beyond what should be normal for mortal men, but he also boasts one of the widest and deepest knowledge bases I’ve ever seen on game production, 3D modelling, animation and a host of other skills. The man’s a friggin’ genius and without him, my Raaargh!!! project wouldn’t have gotten half as far as it did. Jim, YOU DA MAN!

Anngelica Renae

Another Raaargh!!! team member the project could not do without, she has the greatest eye for visual design a speed at accurately producing environmental models with the right look and feel for a specific thematic design that staggers the mind. Like Kara, she relentlessly cheerful and as uplifting a person as anyone you could ever be around. She’s dedicated to her craft and her friends, which is pretty much the main thing I look for in a fellow artist.

David Chiu

This young man, another one of my Raaargh!!! team members, is one to watch out for. The Karkarias and Ftaghn models were ultimately his builds, and he is currently working on creating models for BoHM miniatures, should we reach that goal. He is quick and talented and his work on our monsters was fantastic.

Tom Mays

Tom is my best and oldest friend in the world. My brutha from anutha mutha. He is also a spectacular writer and we have collaborated on a number of projects, including the Dylan Darby series. Almost everything I do I run past Tom for his opinion, and it is his knowledge of physics that I tapped to come up with the underlying structure of the BoHM universe so that it has a ring of verisimilitude (or as much verisimilitude as a game about rock & roll warrior wizards in the 31st century can have).

My Professors

All of the folks above are or were so essential to completing some of my projects, that I owe them a debt of gratitude, especially as I am privileged to work with what have to be some of the best of the best in their fields. But even when it comes to the things I do myself, it is the instruction of the following professors over the last three years that has taken my basic skills and developed them into something more worthy of consumer attention as well as giving me even more fuel for my creative fire.

Frank Dufour

My sound mentor, whose ability with all things auditory I will never be able to scratch (due to my rather diversified skill set), but who has opened my mind up to new areas of sound design and ecological psychoacoustics that I would never have even considered without his patient instruction.

Tim Christopher

Tim has pretty much been my main game design professor for almost an entire year. He oversaw the development of For Glory! as an independent study project and is currently overseeing my thesis and another independent study in which I building a mobile app for hybridizing a very complex table-top game. The man loves games of all types and we are kindred spirits because of this. We actually spend as much time jawing on games  and game design for fun as we do for class. One of the best at UTD and I highly recommend him if you enter the ATEC program there.

Adam Brackin

‘Doc’ (as we call him) is, like Tim, a gamer at heart and loves everything to do with the entire gamut of games and game design. His class on trans-media development (which I took with Mike Andreen) was one of my favorite because you actually make stuff in it. He has also encouraged some of my more academic interests, which have always taken a backseat to my more design oriented focus, and that has helped shape many of my current designs a great deal. Plus he’s fun to play games with, a true geeks’ geek when it comes to popular culture, and very giving of his time.

And Most Important of All…

Angelo Lombardi, my business partner and gaming buddy for a great many years now. Without him, I would not have a business. Period. He is the firm rock on which the company stands and his business acumen allows me to get on with designing cool stuff for the lot of you without having to deal with a plethora of very uncreative things fighting for my limited attention. Plus, he designs a pretty mean set of game mechanics as well. Angelo is the greatness. Nuff said.

Without all of the above folks (and many more I’m probably forgetting), I would be incapable of realizing some of my more exciting projects. I am but one man, and in this day and age, it takes a village to make great entertainment. These folks are my village…

THE ROTTEN ONE…

Behold the first pencil sketch from Jeff Laubenstein for Barbarians of Heavy Metal: the Patron Saint of Punk, The Rotten One (click for a larger image)…

Rotten Sketch 2

It’s a WIP, but you can already see why Jeff was the only artist who could truly realize the bizarre world of the 31st century.

The Kickstarter is almost 40% of the way there after a little over a week and still going strong. Whatever reason you have for not backing BoHM, never mind the bollocks and forget your holiday in the sun! Make a submission to our pretty (oh so pretty) product if you want to be anarchy! God Save the Queen!

THE VORPAL MIND REBORN….

GideonLargeWelcome to The Vorpal Mind blog, the personal blog of Nathaniel Torson, co-owner of Jabberwocky Media!

For those of you who followed me on the Blogger version of this blog, welcome to my new home, where I’ll be posting from now on. The reason for the move is threefold:

1. Blogger was getting up my nose., Ever since Google took over and the interface has changed, it hasn’t worked worth a spit. Image placement is a pain, the fonts randomly resize, the interface was buggy as hell and hard to customize properly, etc. Even for a free service, it is pretty damned poor. I had to find something else.

2. Everybody important that I know uses WordPress and they love it, so I decided to rebuild the company website in it for ease of use.

3. Since my company website was also being reborn as a WordPress powered website, it only made sense to keep all my thoughts and work under that same digital roof with a consistent look and theme.

So here I am. I’m going to keep the old blog open until I can migrate the articles over here, but until I do, you can still find them at: http://vorpalmind.blogspot.com/

THE JABBERWOCK IS REBORN….

Jabberwocky Productions is no more. We left is dead and with its head, we’ve come gallumphing back as Jabberwocky Media LLC!

What this means, in a nutshell, is that we no longer do freelance web or multi-media design. We are, instead, totally focused on the design and production of games, both digital and analog, as well as any emergent trans-media products that pop out of those designs, such as novels, audio-plays (and interactive audio plays), comics, whatever.

Here are a few new projects in the works:

BARBARIANS OF HEAVY METALBoHMBook

Currently in Kickstarter mode, BoHM is the Table-top RPG of Rock & Roll and Giant Robot Combat in the 31st Century. It is a unique product in the RPG industry in that we are releasing it not only as a book, but as a Digital Boxed Set that allows you to play the game completely from your tablet. Everything you need to join your friends for epic adventures in the Metalsphere is contained in a single app, including dice, character generators, GM tools, the lot. Take it anywhere and play anytime.

We are planning on an April 2014 release for BoHM for those who join in the Kickstarter and a general release in August of that year. You can find more info on it here.

FOR GLORY!!!

The Barbarians of Lemuria Boardgame, For Glory!!! puts you in the character of a hero seeking BoLBGMapV3fortune and glory as you traverse the lands of Lemuria. This will be a massive game with two playable maps (one for small groups of 2-4 players and the other for 5 to 8), 12 different characters to play, over 400 cards including encounters over six types of terrain, exotic treasures, wily companions, mysterious sorceries and more.

The game is in its final prototype form and only awaits final art and some final playtesting. The Kickstarter for For Glory!!! will start sometime in the Fall.

THE PIRATE GAMEAaarghShip

Designed by Angelo Lombardi, this is a game of dueling pirate ships. It uses a unique worker placement mechanic to represent you as the captain assigning your limited crew of scurvy dogs to the various tasks needed to send your opponent down to Davy Jones locker!

A deceptively simple game that is easy enough for the whole family to play while still keeping things interestingly tactical for the adults, it will come with two ships, two miniature pirate crews and two decks of cards, enough for two courageous captains to conquer the waves.

It is currently in development for a 2014 release…

QUESTIONS AND COMMENTS? TAKE IT TO THE FORUMS…

We now have functioning forum boards for those of you who have questions, want to talk about one of our games or just have ideas you want to share in general. You can find the forums here.