orchid hunting in the victorian era – a tabletop rpg for zine quest
ORCHIDELERIUM

goal: $515 / ends: saturday, february 22, 2020 12:22p pst. / created by luke earl

Project image for Orchidelirium

here we have a project with an absurd plot: hunting rare orchids in 1865 for a company called j. carmichael & associates. absolutely delicious. the flavor of the setting is just so compelling.

the game utilizes playing cards, so of course my curiosity is piqued, and the art work is gorgeous. there are two additional chapters to the game planned, expanding on the universe, and it feels like the kind of intellectual property that will…blossom…in the future into a larger piece. can’t wait to see how this bizarre premise plays out!

funding expectation: another zine i’m sure will fund promptly!

a tiny role-playing game about heroic destiny and tragic fate — played without pen or paper!
VANQUISHER

goal: $600 / ends: friday, february 21, 2020 6:27a pst. / created by plastic idolatry

Project image for Vanquisher

a tiny ruleset paperless 2d6 rpg featuring a compelling challenge mechanic. daring, bold, and desperate actions with a cost of hubris all resolved with single rolls. and the cover art is magnificent!

funding expectation: almost there!

a fantasty tabletop rpg urban campaign setting in zine format.
LYREBROOK

goal: $671 / ends: tuesday, february 18, 2020 9:20p pst. / created by nathan quadrio

Project image for Lyrebrook: Campaign Setting #zinequest

a fantasy rpg urban setting (different from urban fantasy, in ways) with some really awesome flavor. expect heavy world-building, rich lore, a developed urban setting, political intrigue, and two distinct pantheons! obviously i love urban settings, allowing for roleplay that is more topically relevant than more rural fantasies can emulate.

my main feedback here is that i’d like to be able to more readily see some of the art samples, and the author could really benefit from a website or at least social media link!

funding expectation: given last year’s track record, i think virtually all of the zinequests will fund. the writing here is a real treasure!

a tabletop rpg about time-traveling wizards risking it all to stop the robot apocalypse.
MAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE

goal: $900 / ends: tuesday, february 18, 2020 8:53a pst. / created by jordan

Project image for Mage Against the Machine

a gm-less game about time-traveling wizards, robot apocalypse, temporal anomalies…did i mention time travel? it’s a small project with a big premise, exploring risk, memory, and loss. count me in!

funding expectation: just about there, will definitely fund.

a small rpg zine about gay witches who work in a restaurant, based on the tunnel goons system.
DISH PIT WITCHES

goal: $500 / ends: sunday, february 16, 2020 8:58a pst. / created by fenced forest

Project image for Dish Pit Witches

as a food service industry worker who’s queer and pagan, how could i not?

the game checks all of our generation’s obstacles at once: low wages, exploitative work environments, entitled customers, rage-quitting, stress, and not having time to play our favorite rpgs. i looked through some of the creator’s library, lingering on CURE LIGHT WOUNDS, a tiny lyrical poetry mini meant to add flavor to another game, and it is just beautiful. if this is their writing style, DISH PIT WITCHESwill be well-worth the read.

a lot of my design projects have been born of the limitation of time around work schedules. we can’t play rpgs like we did when we were kids, so we need new kinds of rpgs entirely. the nature of this game allows for fun short sessions that have the capacity to span longer periods easily with little commitment. i can’t wait to see how the author pulls the mechanics together.

funding expectation: obviously, already funded!

fantasy hideouts (and the npcs who run them) for adventuring parties.
SAFE AND SOUND

goal: $800 / ends: sunday, february 16, 2020 8:50a pst. / created by livelygold

Project image for safe & sound: a ttrpg zine

obviously THE VIOLET SANCTION is also in purple ink, so it’s really cool to see this project! the color is simply stunning!

this zine is a gaming supplement, providing a variety of homes, hideouts, and extraplanar zones for fantasy characters to occupy their time, npcs for them to meet, and even quest hooks based on the locale. the art and maps look great in the purple, especially the demiplanar creature in a cloak of stars, and the project is really straight forward. i’m excited to get my hands on it and see how the risograph printing looks in person!

funding expectation: like most of the zines, this is already funded!

a zinequest roleplaying game about the heir and her escape from a palace coup.
PALANQUIN

goal: $453 / ends: sunday, february 16, 2020 10:00a pst. / created by genesis of legend

Project image for Palanquin RPG - Zinequest

the driving force of this game is a royal female protagonist, which is always great to see, and the cover art is a woman of color as well! it’s awesome to see diversity in projects like this, that are creating experiences outside of the traditional D&D sphere of roleplaying (boring). it’s a single session game, with one player taking the role of the heir, and the rest are bearers escorting her to safety. the zine doubles as a character sheet, so each player is recommended to have their own copy, which i personally enjoy. there’s a bundle pledge tier for picking up 6 copies of the game for about $23, which is a steal!

i’ll definitely be picking up a set to play with my friends. i’m especially looking forward to learning more about the game’s mechanics.

funding expectation: already funded! the zinequests are hitting stride quickly!

fey mayhem, as powered by the apocalypse.
A TOUCH OF GLAMOUR

goal: $1,030 / ends: sunday, february 16, 2020 8:00p pst. / created by mahar mangahas

Project image for A Touch of Glamour - the ZineQuest Launch

well, ZINEQUEST 2 is officially here! the first zine we’re backing is A TOUCH OF GLAMOUR, a pbta urban fantasy of fey trying to avoid exploitation by modern humanity (because, clearly). i love the stylization of the art and the beautiful contrast on the black and white cover. the system is lightweight, laid out, and ready to print. they’ve kept the project tight, with only one pledge tier (print); i would recommend adding a digital format to pull in potential backers who may be a bit hesitant to invest in a fledgling creator. similarly, there are no stretch goals, so the project will be likely fund and then have an easy fulfillment cycle.

funding expectation: they’re already almost there, right off the bat! it’s exciting to see traction for this campaign and this project so quickly.

it’s the last day of january, which means a recap of all of this month’s backed projects! obviously this is the first time we’ve ever done this, but this will be our standard practice. this gives us a chance to revisit projects, see what was successful or not, highlight stretch goals we’re particularly excited by, etc.

THE LONGEST ROAD ON EARTH: funded!

TABLETOPS AND TENTACLES: funded!

MY WORK IS NOT YET DONE: funded!

RUINS OF THE LORN KEEP: funded!

THE HERO’S JOURNEY 2E: funded!

MANEKI NEKO ENAMEL PINS: funded!

BLACK NOIR: 25% with 34 hours to go, which probably means this project will need a relaunch.

LIBRETÉ: funded!

THE FORGOTTEN RITES OF THE MOLDERING DEAD: funded!

SKULL AND CROWN CARDS: unfortunately this project needs a major rework to find success, despite the cards being amazing.

OATH: with 3 days to go, they’re almost to a million!

PROHIBITIONISTS: funded!

HERRLOF: funded!

2 WOMEN 12 GAMES: funded!

HERE TO SLAY: currently at a million and a half!

RUBI: THE WAYWARD MIRA: funded!

STEAM HIGHWAYMAN III: funded!

with february comes ZINEQUEST 2, and the blog will focus primarily on zines that are participating. we’ll be putting together a spreadsheet compiling the 2020 entries for reference, and providing support to this niche, indie campaign! we’ll also be launching our own project, the prologue chapter of THE VIOLET SANCTION!