To the one hundred-and-thirty-eighth Briefing and first scheduled Briefing of 2022, and a very happy and healthy new year to all of you.
My Christmas reading was novellas – so the complete series (to date) of Penric and Desdemona novellas set in the World of the Five Gods (by Lois McMaster Bujold), the two completely unrelated novellas The King’s Justice and The Augur’s Gambit (by Stephen Donaldson), and the trio of Dunk and Egg novellas forming A Knight of the Seven Realms (by George RR Martin).
A Retrospective on 2022
2022 moved from the pandemic to the horrors of the Russian invasion of Ukraine and a cost-of-living crisis at varying severities across the world.
The website hosting of the site at www.ironcrown.co.uk has been without incident. In December, we had some trouble with the domain name and we are pushing very hard to transfer it to our hosting provider.
In terms of HARP, the print master for HARP Garden of Rain was duly finalised and it was released in softcover and hardcover. HARP Beyond The Veil was completed and was published in pdf and print. HARP Subterfuge has been published in pdf, but its print publication was delayed by RMU layout work.
For RMU, all of the artwork for RMU Spell Law and RMU Treasure Law was successfully commissioned, and art was already arriving in December for RMU Creature Law. As we hurtled towards the end of the year, everyone here became very focused on RMU Core Law (previously known as RMU Arms and Character Law) and there was much to-and-fro’ing to get it to completion. I described the runup to its launch at Dragonmeet – before the month was out, RMU Core Law was in the top 10 best sellers for 2022 on DriveThru (despite having been only published in December) and had already achieved a Gold metal ranking – it’s now a Platinum seller. A big thank you to everyone who has purchased a copy of RMU Core Law
In the software domain, we released our first ERA for Spacemaster Privateers dataset and ERA as a whole received upgrades so that it would work with RMU. The first ERA RMU dataset for RMU Core Law has already been released and the second dataset (ERA RMU Spell Law) is ready to launch as soon as RMU Spell Law is released in pdf.
Looking to our hopes for 2023 in terms of new products.
In RMU, the next big thing will be RMU Core Law moving from pdf to print. I know there have been requests for consideration to be given to fans who have been early adopters of the pdf such that they are not disadvantaged when the print copy comes out by being unable to utilise the pdf&print bundle discount offer. I will create a discount code when the time comes and Colin will circulate that through his various Social Media Channels (suggest you sign up for the newsletter emails if you have not already.) There are errata fixes being made to the interior text and we have identified some art that looks like it wants to misbehave in print. Raymond Gaustadnes has very kindly offered to rework the cover art for RMU Core Law. For those fans lucky enough to be able to buy one of the proof copies at Dragonmeet, your hardcover copy has just become a very limited edition and the softcover proof copy is unique.
RMU Spell Law will follow – there is already a very advanced pdf layout requiring another round of my eyes checking that the fixes have saved correctly. RMU Treasure Law has an early pdf layout. RMU Creature Law is accumulating artwork and we would expect all of its artwork to be with us by end of March.
In HARP, we will be bringing HARP Subterfuge to print. We have HARP Steampunk ready for editing (Phil Masters, its author, has been incredibly patient with me) as is The Tales from Banecroft adventure module. A full draft of HARP Dark Harvest Dark Hunt (the sequel to HARP Garden of Rain) is expected mid-2023. Our adventure modules will continue to be statted for HARP and Rolemaster wherever possible, but stats for RM2/Classic and RMSS/FRP will be phased out of print books.
A nearly full draft of HARP SF The Corporate Worlds arrived as the new year dawned, so there is going to be a race to see whether it is the Corporate Worlds or the Poseidon Gambit which is the first to be released.
The Cyradon refresh is ongoing and an additional setting book is being commissioned. It is probable that we will seek to make Cyradon work for both HARP and RMU.
I hope that we will be able to bring Priest-King of Shade and Night of the Third Moon at least to publication. Piecing together Terry’s final manuscript, Shadow World: Emer IV, is still underway.
In software, you should expect additional ERA datasets for Spacemaster: Privateers and for RMU. What I would also like to see is major progress on virtual tabletop support for RMU and HARP. There have been various offers to work on these and so I am hopeful that this can be made to happen.
ICE will be present at Gen Con 2023 and if I can finesse the timings, we will endeavour to launch a RMU book at Gen Con. We will also be attending Dragonmeet and may launch a new book there too!
It will be a busy year and an exciting year.
Until next time
Please stay safe and keep gaming.
Director, Iron Crown Enterprises Ltd
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