Director’s Briefing – July 2013

Welcome to the twenty-fourth Director’s Briefing and the seventh scheduled for this year. Rather than delay this Briefing, expect to see a short unscheduled Briefing to announce the release of HARP College of Magics in the next few days.
HARP Martial Law and AutoHARP Reminder
In case you have not heard, HARP Martial Law is available in pdf but the discount coupon enabling you to buy it at 5 USD rather than the normal price of 12 USD will only be valid until 10th July. The coupon link is HERE so don’t delay.
We have made some adjustments to the example style to darken it and are applying some residual errata corrections. I will send a note through the OneBookShelf system to let purchasers know when they can redownload the pdf – so you should check your settings to ensure that you can receive notes from Guild Companion Publications. The master print files will then be uploaded into the OneBookShelf system so HARP Martial Law ought to be available in print as both softcover and hardcover by the end of the month. The extra content that we added to the enhanced version combined with the different OneBookShelf binding specifications means that this version will be perfect-bound. No more staples!
Also speaking of introductory prices, AutoHARP Fantasy and AutoHARP SF will also come off their introductory prices, so if you want to snap up two more bargains, follow these links:
Corporate Update
As this is the halfway point of the calendar year, this is as good a time as any to report that our accountant has crunched the 2012 income and expenditure figures and calculated the final outcomes. GCP Ltd. made a sound profit in 2012 and we have duly paid our corporation tax. As always, Aurigas and all our freelancers continue to be paid in full and on time. The company’s profits are fully reinvested in the business, ensuring that we have the financial reserves to fund the design and development of new products across all of the game lines. The GCP business model is therefore continuing to work successfully, and we are typically in the top 2% of active publishers on OneBookShelf in any given month.
We are, however, still in the process of restoring the game lines to their former greatness in terms of sales because it’s sales that make everything possible. When GCP took over the management of the lines, all of the product lines could be considered to be in a critical condition to use a medical analogy. I think it is fair to say that HARP Fantasy/HARP SF and Shadow World have moved out of intensive care and are now in a stable condition. For Shadow World, the early editions, Emer 3, and third-party sourcebooks to come, the prognosis for a full recovery looks good. For HARP, we have ongoing work on the Bestiary and I have been rebuilding relationships with freelance writers, who have legitimate grievances with the previous incarnations of ICE, and I am hopeful that this will lead to new HARP sourcebooks. Indeed, getting HARP back to a place where I am no longer named as the lead writer on every project is a positive indicator that HARP will also make a full recovery. Cyradon is receiving significant care and attention so that we can create a flow of supporting products – releasing the base book followed by nothing would simply put it back in intensive care. Which brings us to Rolemaster, which has not yet completed its RMU beta treatment.
The reason for that is simple – lack of time. No one who works for Aurigas or GCP is full-time. Everyone is essentially freelance with day jobs, and that includes me. So there are only so many hours in the commute, the evening or the weekend that I or anyone else can work on the products. This unfortunate reality is a direct consequence of the low level of sales that we inherited from the previous licensee, and until we get the sales back to preMjolnir era levels (say RMSS levels), the situation is unlikely to change. I’ve had to ruthlessly prioritise my GCP time to get each of the other lines into a better state and have stayed with those lines to ensure that they don’t have a relapse.
The good news is that I have the RMU manuscripts on my tablet PC and that due to a new job, I now have two hours on a train every weekday that can be used for GCP work. I’m looking forward to getting Rolemaster out of intensive care.
Until next time
Expect an unscheduled Director’s Briefing for the special discount for HARP College of Magics.
Best wishes,
Director, Guild Companion Publications Ltd.