[Ribbon Drive] on sale. Pay (cost + what you want to).

edited July 2010 in Directed Promotion
Last year, I published a game called Ribbon Drive. Here's some information on it:

I’m going somewhere, and I want you to join me. I’m going to a place that always seems just past our reach. It’s a mixture of myth and hard, biting reality. This place, it smells like familiarity, and yet it beats the heart like first times do. It’s wedged between a mix tape, a throw-away comment and a shifter. It’s going to take a lot of open road to get to.

But open road’s all we’ve ever really got, anyways.


In Ribbon Drive, we collectively create a story about a road trip. We do this in the comfort of a living room, over the course of 3-5 hours. We each create a character, one of the people going on this road trip. These characters are our individual jobs; each of us will roleplay one character’s decisions and actions. We’ll share the responsibility of narrating the obstacles and scenery that comes up all around us. Ribbon Drive creates stories about letting go on the open road, and we all work to both further and complicate this agenda during the game. It draws inspirations from road movies like Wristcutters, Everything Is Illuminated, y tu Mama Tambien, Little Miss Sunshine, The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things and Thelma & Louise (and, to a lesser extent, Two Lane Blacktop, The Doom Generation and Wild At Heart). Our ultimate goal is to create a thought-provoking, meaningful experience. We let the music guide us. We let the road throw us curves. As our characters, we rethink our attachment to the future.

Right, so...

The physical product is really pretty. It's sold as a booklet + compilation CD, in a DVD case. The entire book is full colour, featuring the photography and layout of Kevin Allen Jr. Whilst pretty, the cost of the game has been a deterrent for some (as its retailed for $30CDN). And I hate the idea that the price tag would turn people off. So I'm doing two things to combat that:

1.) In the future, I'm doing away with the boxed set, and just releasing a book. I'm in the process of laying that out right now.

2.) For the rest of the current print run (of which I have perhaps 50 copies), I'm offering a super cool sale. It's a sale where you pay [cost + what you want to].

[Cost + What You Want To Pay]
Here’s how this works: it costs me about $9 to ship the game anywhere in the world. And producing it costs me $8 per copy. So, the cost portion is $17.
Figure out how much you want to pay me on top of that. A buck? Five? Ten? Combine [cost + what you want to pay], and click the button below. Enter that amount, and the game is on its way!


Bonus: if you order the game between now and whenever the boxed set sells out, I'll send you the new version PDF when its finished. The rules will all still be the same, but it'll have new photography, new layout, and include in the B SIDES section 2 hacks of the game and some new appendice information.

Comments

  • edited July 2010
    And more info on the game!

    Images of the product:
    imageimage


    Some sneak peak pages:
    imageimage


    Some AP & reviews of the game:
    Death of an Artist
    Review at Claw/Claw/Peck
    Bite-Sized Review by Robin D. Laws


    Some sound bytes:

    "This game of external and internal exploration easily grabs this year's indie production value prize. If you've ever yearned to run a game of Two-Lane Blacktop, Ribbon Drive is your muscle car."
    Robin D. Laws

    “If you like music or driving, trees or memories, small towns or long silences, people’s faces, or summer roads that stretch on more endlessly and elegantly than language can give credit for — this is the game for you.”
    Daniel Wood

    “Ribbon Drive inverts the tradition of a soundtrack for a story. Instead, it creates a storytrack for music. Effortless innovative, intensely captivating, and a little bit profound. It’s a brilliant game.”
    Ben Lehman, author of Polaris and Bliss Stage

    “So… Ribbon Drive. The most emotionally touching con gaming experience I’ve ever had.”
    Christian Griffen, author of Beast Hunters
  • Joe,

    Shouldn't cost be $17?
  • Posted By: Mark CauseyJoe,

    Shouldn't cost be $17?
    Whoops! Yes. Thank you for pointing that out, Mark.
  • Sweeeeeeeeeeeeet. Done and done. I've been excited about Ribbon Drive for a while now Joe but never gotten around to getting myself a copy.
  • Just glad to use my CPA superpowers. Good luck on the sale!
  • Everyone should buy this game. I have never played a game of Ribbon Drive I would describe as less than "really good", and most would qualify for "amazing" with very little difficulty.
  • Joe, you should save me a copy and give it to me next time you're in Vancouver. You can keep the shipping money as PROFIT!
  • I doubt my songs (two on the CD!) will be included in the print-only version (that doesn't even make sense!)
    and neither will Charlie Gilb's, so if you want to hear 'em, do your math and give him money.

    [This is kind of a lame follow-up promo to Daniel's heart-felt promotion... whatever. i have nothing but love for this game.]
  • This game is super good! I have played it many times, and it has always been fun.
  • Setn $30CDN your way. Very excited.
  • How localizable is this game? Like, is it steeped in North American cultural references etc? Or can I easily take it to the frozen north of Europe, or some wine-soaked French country road?
  • Matthijs, I think it'd transfer well. It's not steeped in references.

    It does require somewhere that you can drive for a long way. It'd be hard, I think, to play it set in England. And the drive should be for pleasure. You couldn't, say, do a trip to the North Pole.

    French vineyards would work well, I think. You might want to widen it, so that you could go across Europe. You need the feeling you could drive anywhere.
  • Posted By: GrahamAnd the drive should be for pleasure.
    Our drive was to the funeral of our father. And one of my favorite recent road trip movies is The Lucky Ones, where the trip wasn't for pleasure. And if I remember Little Miss Sunshine correctly, their road trip wasn't either. I actually like those situations better where people are stuck together not for fun, but by some kind of necessity. It leaves more room for drama.
  • Our drive was to recover our sister from a cult of religious wack-jobs. I don't think the reason for the drive needs to be for pleasure, but there does need to be something pleasant about the driving, that makes it more appealing than getting to some place.

    And the travel should be sufficiently easy that you've got time to talk about your stuff, without having to worry about fighting polar bears, crossing chasms, evading cannibal tribesmen and such.
  • Posted By: MatthijsHow localizable is this game?
    Good question.

    Looking at the list of source movies, they take place in: California; Somewhere in America; An afterworld that vaguely resembles the American Midwest; Eastern Europe; Mexico; All across America; A weirdo psychobilly redux of the underbelly of America.
    Posted By: MatthijsOr can I easily take it to the frozen north of Europe, or some wine-soaked French country road?
    Definitely, definitely.
    Posted By: GrahamIt does require somewhere that you can drive for a long way. It'd be hard, I think, to play it set in England.
    Graham, I'd argue with you on that point.
    It'd be fine for a game to be about a Londoner couple who visit Cambridge for the weekend, on their honeymoon, and have their relationship go to shit.

    Most of the times I've played, the game has had lots of driving.
    But that's actually not essential.

    What is essential: lots of being together with nothing to do but talk and think; lots of new scenery; being outside one's comfort zone.
    Posted By: StevenOur drive was to recover our sister from a cult of religious wack-jobs.
    Dude!!

    Steven, have you posted about that anywhere?
    Could you?

    I'd be really pumped to learn about what songs set that up, as well as how the trip went for you guys.
    Posted By: Christian GriffenOur drivewas to the funeral of our father.
    F. That game was definitely the biggest tear-jerker of all the ribbon drive games i've ever heard of.
    I'm pretty sure three people were crying afterwards.

    I'm glad that the other two RD games I played that weekend were a bit more light-hearted (runaway kids searchin' for freedom; take-some-prisoners hicks tryin' to escape the law).
  • edited July 2010

    Dude!!

    Steven, have you posted about that anywhere?
    Could you?

    I'd be really pumped to learn about what songs setthatup, as well as how the trip went for you guys.
    I didn't but fortunately others are more diligent than I am. One of the other guys wrote it up here. It was a terribly good game.
  • The game I played in went really well too, and there was something about it that got under my skin -- I had a dream about it later that week. I've had that happen with ongoing campaign games, but never for a one-shot.

    Graham, I agree with you that I don't think the game itself suffers from being set or played outside of North America, but I think it is an essentially North American game, in the same way that the cosy mystery is an essentially British genre -- the open road and the love affair with the automobile seem to me to be essentially American and Canadian. That doesn't mean it can't work elsewhere, of course.

    As far as setting it in England - you don't have the distances so that you can say "After spending two full days on the road, we're in Cambridge." But it's not distance that's important, it's time in the car together. Maybe you're on a tour of artisan cheese producers, so you're not going a great distance, but you've got a lot of places to stop and 45 minutes to an hour in the car in between each of them. (I have done this in real life, only it was with artisan wool producers, and it wasn't in England. But there was a *lot* of relationship processing that went on in that car.) Or you're a bunch of New Age true believers following ley lines, or architecture buffs looking at what the Victorians did with Norman churches.
  • Posted By: cwilburBut it's not distance that's important, it's time in the car together. Maybe you're on a tour of artisan cheese producers, so you're not going a great distance, but you've got a lot of places to stop and 45 minutes to an hour in the car in between each of them.
    For a 100% exactly this example, that fits 100% to Ribbon Drive, see the movie Sideways. Paul Giamatti (a mopey wine expert with stillborn writing career) and Thomas Haden Church (about to be married dreamy man) go on a tour of wine country, as a sort of bachelor party. Most of the movie takes place in this one little town, where they both find sexy women to get entangled with. Paul has self-confidence issues! Thomas struggles with infidelity and doubt! Both give up on what they'd been clutching so furiously to.
  • edited July 2010
    Joe!

    I just got Ribbon Drive in the mail today! Yay! I am very happy.

    Many thanks.
  • Posted By: 14thWarrior
    I just got Ribbon Drive in the mail today! Yay! I am very happy.
    Glad to hear it!

    This sale is going to keep on going until I sell through my current print run, which is the last print run I'll be doing as a booklet + compilation CD kit.

    The CD is pretty freakin' dope. It features work by The Butcher's Bag (whose lead singer, Charlie Gilb, is a story gamer from around these parts), XOX (aka, Jackson Tegu, also a story gamer from around these parts), Darkest of the Hillside Thickets, some folk punk, some dance punk, some other stuff. 11 songs in total, one of which was written specifically for inclusion on the CD*.

    *Yes, that's right. Someone** wrote a song about Ribbon Drive.

    **Rhymes with Mackson Megu.
  • Hackson Regu, the legendary progcore artist?! But I thought he died in a fishing accident in 1997!
  • My copy arrived yesterday - thanks! Reading on the bus to work this morning.

    Per
  • Is it wrong that I want to start creating copious quantities of music compilations now? :D
  • Posted By: 14thWarriorIs it wrong that I want to start creating copious quantities of music compilations now? :D
    Leo,

    This is a common symptom of having recently read Ribbon Drive.
    I know at least ten people who constantly have "a ribbon drive mix that I'm working on."

    This becomes even more common after having played the game, when you "get" how the first three tracks of that first mix work.
    It'll make it hard for you to listen to a stand-out song without immediately trying to construct that situation-generating trio for it.
  • Posted By: Ice Cream EmperorHackson Regu, the legendary progcore artist?! But I thought he died in a fishing accident in 1997!
    No no, it must be secretive afro-polish jazz artist Braxton Prezhu.
  • Posted By: skinnyghostsecretive
    I think you mean secrete-ive.
  • Posted By: jackson teguPosted By: skinnyghostsecretive
    I think you mean secrete-ive.

    ALL PRAISE TO THE SLIME MOLD
  • Posted By: skinnyghostPosted By: jackson teguPosted By: skinnyghostsecretive
    I think you mean secrete-ive.

    ALL PRAISE TO THE SLIME MOLD

    Uh, assholes? I'm trying to do business here.

    KTHNX.
  • Posted By: McdaldnoPosted By: skinnyghostPosted By: jackson teguPosted By: skinnyghostsecretive
    I think you mean secrete-ive.

    ALL PRAISE TO THE SLIME MOLD

    Uh, assholes? I'm trying to do business here.

    KTHNX.

    BEWARE! AN UNBELIEVER! THE SLIME MOLD SHALL CONSUME YOU ALL!
  • All's I'm saying is that I want to hear the slime mold break it down on the drums, please.



    Topically, I have made approximately twelve Ribbon Drive mixes, three of which have been the primary mix in a game I've played (and two of which ended up being used in games I didn't play in, which is almost as awesome but not quite.) Since I tend to make two mixes every time I am planning to play the game, and the odds of one's mix being selected is fairly low, I imagine this situation is only going to get worse.
  • Don't make the slime mold break it down for nothing.
  • Posted By: JohnstoneDon't make the slime mold break it down for nothing.
    Separate is always better when there's slime molds involved.
  • Posted By: Ice Cream EmperorSince I tend to make two mixes every time I am planning to play the game, and the odds of one's mix being selected is fairly low, I imagine this situation is only going to get worse.
    In my experience 3-4 mixes get used in a given game. So, if you're playing with 3-4 people total, and each brought a single mix, then there's a fairly good chance that every mix will see at least a fair amount of play. In a 5-6 player game, it's unlikely that every mix will see the light of day.

    ...unless there are a lot of detours.
  • Has anyone ever gone back to the same mix within the same game? (clearly veering off topic, but too blase to start new thread just now)
    i haven't.
  • Posted By: jackson teguHas anyone ever gone back to the same mix within the same game?
    Yeah! I think this has happened in two games I've been in. Typically, it only happens if there are only 3-4 players (and thus cycling through all mixes happens naturally in 3-4 hours) or if there are lots of Detours (wherein the mix gets switched out for the next one).
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