The Alexandrian

Legends & Labyrinths - Dream Machine ProductionsTo make a long story short: Legends & Labyrinths is simply the most blighted project I have ever worked on.

Over the last two months there are three major new woes to add to the pile: I had another artist pull a vanishing act. The printer I was going to use for the books went out of business and quotes I was getting from other companies made it clear that printing the books was going to cost a lot more than I’d originally budgeted. (Penalty for being 18 months overdue.) And then I had one of my previous artists crawl out of the woodwork and threaten to sue me because I didn’t pay him for art he never actually made or delivered. (Or I suppose maybe he did make it and just refuses to attach it to an e-mail so that he can get paid. I don’t know.)

You can’t really make that last one up. But you do have to deal with it.

Now that the “artist” has been dealt with, however, I can move forward. Unfortunately, the “forward” direction in question is not a particularly positive one: Taking a deep assessment of the product I promised in the 8-Bit Funding campaign and comparing it to the product I’m actually capable of delivering at this time, I’m not satisfied with the results. I could push forward and deliver something that would technically fulfill the promised rewards, but I wouldn’t feel comfortable standing behind its quality.

Which means that I’m officially cancelling the project as it currently exists.

That’s the bad news.

The good news, for backers at least, is that your money — as I’ve indicated in the past — was never in jeopardy. The only money that was ever withdrawn from the project fund was to pay for the art from Viktor Fetsch, Alex Drummond, Bonnie Tang, and others. I’ve restored those funds from my personal accounts and refunds will be going out.

Here’s how that’s going to break down:

Registered Adventurers: These backers have already received their full rewards, so they won’t be getting refunds.

Warriors, Prowlers, Conquerors, Lord of the Labyrinth: These backers will be getting full refunds.

Labyrinth Exemplars: Exemplars will be getting full refunds, but if the final version of the game ever appears their characters will still be used in the SRS sidebars as promised.

Legend in Your Own Time: These backers will receive full refunds, but they will also receive a digital copy of Alex Drummond’s art depicting their adventuring party. If the final version of the game ever appears, this art will also appear in the rulebook.

And, of course, backers will obviously get to keep all of the bonus PDFs and other digital rewards which have already been delivered to them.

As this suggests, I have not completely given up on the idea of L&L appearing at some point in the future. But it was time to, regrettably, declare the 8-Bit Funding project a failure.

If you were a backer of the project and you have not received an e-mail concerning your refund, please check your spam filters and then contact me ASAP at legendsandlabyrinths@gmail.com.

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7 Responses to “Legends & Labyrinths – Fat Ladies Singing and Towels Being Thrown”

  1. Neal says:

    Justin,

    “The good news, for backers at least, is that your money — as I’ve indicated in the past — was never in jeopardy. The only money that was ever withdrawn from the project fund was to pay for the art from Viktor Fetsch, Alex Drummond, Bonnie Tang, and others. I’ve restored those funds from my personal accounts and refunds will be going out.”

    Sounds like you’ve had a string of unfortunate events well beyond your control, and yet, the great integrity to refund everyone’s money for the project out of your own pockets. Obviously, that isn’t how most in this industry seems to conduct financial affairs, so you should be commended.

    As far as being threatened with lawsuit from a non-performing (con) “artist,” I hope you have no intention of paying this character. Any threats of a lawsuit would probably require this person to document to a judge, that he/she delivered actual goods and any claims to the contrary would be a frivolous lawsuit, or an attempted malicious prosecution.

    Maybe the best way to legally deal with characters like this is to make sure you give them the lack of recognition they deserve, while giving a recommended list of quality artists that performed as promised, at fair prices, and with good worksmanship. Which artists have you had good experiences with, have good prices, perform on time, etc? However, if it doesn’t create legal problems, are there artists you would mention for others to save themselves bad experiences and that they should avoid?

    Sorry for your setbacks and ‘blighted experience,’ with this project. Have you any plans for a next project, I’d be interested to hear? I’m only getting back into gaming after a long hiatus, and this blog and a few select others I’m reading, have a lot of good ideas for refereeing games.

    Neal

  2. Andrew says:

    Is there a way to get a look at the black book beta that already exists?

  3. Justin Alexander says:

    @Andrew: Check the site on Friday.

    @Neal: Oh, believe me. That particular artist is getting me best Gene Wilder. 😉

  4. Justin Alexander says:

    Quick head’s up for backers: I’m going to be processing the refunds in batches because that’s both easier and less likely to result in errors. So if you haven’t immediately gotten your refund within 30 minutes of sending me your e-mail, please don’t panic and send me 8 more e-mails.

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  6. 1d30 says:

    Sorry it didn’t work out. I can imagine how much work you put into it and how much you emotionally invested in its success, only to have it ruined because a bunch of clowns can’t get their act together and do their part to make money with you.

    Side note: that fifth comment from the towel spammer is just incredible in context of your post.

  7. Justin Alexander says:

    Heh. I’d missed the towel spammer. I’m tempted to just leave it there after stripping out the spam links. A little surreality never hurt anything. 😉

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