The longevity of Tunnels & Trolls is remarkable. As the second role-playing game to reach market (1975), the game opened the door of possibilities:
The fans have remained loyal to the game for 37 years, through multiple editions and translations, weathering criticism of the game for being too light-hearted, or shy in world development, and the ups and downs of fortune in a multiform hobby that offers countless alternative opportunities, both tabletop and electronic. When the Kickstarter for Deluxe Tunnels & Trolls (dT&T) was announced, fans from around the world stepped up: the new game reached its funding goal in just over 36 hours. In less than a week, funding is over 200%, and there are another 25 days to go.
WHO'S WHO ON THE NEW EDITION
Ken St Andre, the designer of T&T, envisions a new edition that remains true to his original concepts, empowering players with strong, simple core rules and optional elaborations, while adding the best ideas from later editions. The Trollhalla.com website has kept him in touch with the fans over the last 12 years, so changes to be made receive due consideration before implementation.
One significant addition to the rulebook will be description of, and chronology for, Ken's Trollworld, the world environment played "back in the day" and further developed by Ken in the years since. Working with Ken will be designer Bear Peters, drawing on Bear's collection of maps, stories, and lore that have been tucked away for decades. Whole continents previously unknown are being fleshed out with their unique Kindreds and histories.
Liz Danforth, illustrator and editor/developer of the well-loved classic Fifth Edition is on board to reprise all those jobs. In addition to artwork created for the recent French edition (http://tunnels-
Although not part of the original team from the 70s, Steve Crompton brings years of experience as an illustrator, publisher, and graphics designer to the project. His hand and eye are responsible for the outstanding appearance of the recent French edition that inspired the Fellowship to reunite with the game's original publisher, Rick Loomis of Flying Buffalo Inc.
CATCHING THE BUZZ
The fans of the game have showed up with bells on to share their memories of growing up with T&T, and they continue to express their warm approval of the prospective new edition in blogs and forums. Below are just a few examples:
In the Comments section of the Kickstarter, many amazing stories of how the game touched people's lives are being shared. The sense of community is strong, and has profoundly affected the fans and the design team alike. Liz Danforth spoke of the inspiration and impact of the fans' words in her own blog (http://www.lizdanforth.com)
Perhaps Big Jack Brass (the Whartsonhall blogger, above) encapsulates it best of all:
"The Kickstarter does two ... important things: the surge of giddy support lets the people behind it know that there are hundreds of gamers out there who absolutely love and cherish the work they did and are doing now; and the new edition is something younger gamers can engage with more easily than something from 1979. It’s time to share the wonder and let others build their own magical memories."
If you can help us spread the word, we would be grateful. If you have a blog or podcast and would like an interview, or if you know someone who does, we would be happy to oblige. With new stretch goals (milestones)
Trollhala, Ken St Andre's online T&T community: www.Trollhalla.com
Deluxe Tunnels & Trolls Kickstarter Link: http://www.kickstarter.com/
Ken St. Andre: email@example.com (Twitter: @Trollgodfather)
Rick Loomis (Flying Buffalo Inc): firstname.lastname@example.org (Twitter: @buffalorick)
Liz Danforth: email@example.com (Twitter: @LizDanforth)
Steve Crompton: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bear Peters: themancalledbear@