Monday, April 23, 2012

Judging a Book by Its (New) Cover

Those of you who have been waiting for a proper OVA update need wait no more. Here it is, the new cover! (Click to see it in its full-size glory.)

Even though this isn’t final, hopefully you all will find lots to love in the revised cover design. Like the rest of the book, the cover illustration is done by talented Niko Geyer, and you may even notice a new look for Wise Turtle Publishing itself!

The Kickstarter for OVA (previously mentioned here) is slated for late June/July, just in time for the game’s 7th anniversary. I’m still tinkering with the pledge premiums list, so if you have an opinion, be sure to let me hear about it! What sort of things would make you back at a higher level, and what would you pay for it? Gauging consumer interest will be very useful before jumping in the crowd-funding deep-end!

Keep checking by, as I will continue to post OVA updates leading up to the Kickstarter, including a look behind the curtains as I finalize the typesetting of the rules.


  1. Seriously beautiful timing on this. If it had been a month ago, I wouldn't have had the money to participate in a Kickstarter campaign. If it had been a week ago, I wouldn't have caught it on Twitter.

    I am going to go comment on that Kickstarter thing like now.

    There is wisdom here and it has a distinctly turtley feel to it.

  2. How much would you have to pay to help design one of the game's signature characters?

  3. ixloriana: Good to hear! Hope to see you when it gets going!

    The History Follower: As you may have noticed in the cover, the game already has all of its signature characters designed. These archetypes have been carefully chosen to represent a plethora of anime tropes and are fully integrated throughout the game's illustrations.

    So as nice a thought as it is, designing one of the signature characters isn't possible. But keep watching for the kickstarter - maybe there will be something else ALMOST as good!

  4. A wonderful and strangely nostalgic cover there! (Does it look like faded anime/game store posters, a Final Fantasy Tactics cover? I haven't put my finger on it...)

    Is the basic release a color softcover, domestic manga dimensions? I'd pay more for a durable hardcover color of this beaut. If, in addition, it had a dust jacket with hidden omake beneath, even more. Depending on how thick the book is, and looking at the current OVA B&W softcover price (~$15), I'd expect $20-30 for the above.

  5. Yes, I very much was trying to convey classic gaming and anime collages in the cover. Glad you picked up on that!

    The book is actually the larger Japanese manga size, A5 (5.8" x 8.2"), not the smaller American manga digest size (5" x 7.5"). A dust jacket is planned, but hardcover is not. It's not really feasible to do an additional small print run (less than 1000) of a full-color hardcover, and to keep the book affordable I'd like to keep the main run in paperback.

    The current price of the paperback is actually a steal, priced at that point because it's A) not available to distributors who require a steep discount and B) because I'm aware the book will be out-dated soon and I wanted to cut current players a deal on it. That said, I REALLY would like to price the upcoming revised edition at $25. This may not be possible, but it's what I'm aiming for.

    How much is a hardcover edition desired? I see the request pop up now and again, but it seems it would just be annoying for a book of this size and length. 400 page Letter-sized tomes can be left open, but when you're looking at 140-something pages at A5, it just seems like you're devoting half the book's thickness to a cover that's stiff and hard to work with.

  6. For larger books, hardcover has a nice, tactile feel and supposedly firmer binding, but it sounds like OVA's not very hefty, and my current OVA book's binding is still perfect, so I'm personally fine with softcover.

    My true desires (inner color illustrations, play and advice examples in the form of a short series of manga frames in B&W or color) sound less like kickstarter extras and more like part of the release.

    I would pay around $25-30 more for a noncollectible FFIX Tetramaster-like game with OVA characters. Two stats, arrows, a simple, random terrain element, art.

    ...Or around $11 more for cards that had some game peripheral function like Paizo's Plot Twist Cards.