IDEA: New instant FF mini-adventures

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Laurence
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IDEA: New instant FF mini-adventures

Postby Laurence » Fri Oct 14, 2016 5:44 pm

So here's a crazy idea that would draw new players into Fighting Fantasy and also provide value to existing fans:

Short single-shot adventures with the basic FF game system built in. Release a series of them as cheap PDFs.

The selling point is that it's an instant alternative to your usual RPG. (*cough* D&D *cough*)

Essentially, the pitch goes like this:

Need a new pick-up game for tonight? Check out this awesome fantasy adventure. It's only a few bucks.

Oh, and by the way, it also comes complete with characters, combat system, monster encounters and score sheet. You can download it right now and start playing in five minutes.

From a marketing perspective, I’d put the emphasis on the adventure itself: brilliant cover art, grabby title, interesting story hook.

The game system becomes almost a free bonus. What you're really selling is the invitation to go on an exciting adventure.

Look closely at the original books –- it didn't matter whether you knew how to play FF or not. It wasn't complicated, so there was no intimidation factor, no learning curve. You just picked it up and started playing.

People are brand loyal. It's a proven fact. (As a marketing copywriter, this is something I deal with daily.) So, de-emphasize the brand. Don't imply: “Hey, you need to switch from your existing game to Fighting Fantasy!” Instead, imply: “No matter what you play – even if you don't usually play RPGs – you can play this too. It's quick, fun, and a real bargain.” Lower the barrier to entry into FF.

I'm looking at Legend of Zagor right now and thinking how it could be an amazing multi-player adventure. Simple characters, simple game system. Do a one-night version of that.

So my idea is basically this:

Offer people a quick, interesting dungeon or wilderness adventure using the basic FF rules. SKILL, STAMINA, LUCK. Nothing fancy.

Maybe include a MAGIC score for wizards and/or priests. But no magic points. Just handle spells the way they did in Citadel of Chaos and other FF books: choose a handful of spells, and you can cast each spell once.

Existing Advanced Fighting Fantasy players could, of course, skip the basic rules and use these adventures in their AFF campaigns.

But even someone who's never even heard of FF could start playing in five minutes.

It's not a "quick start" pack. It's not a sample of a bigger game that you need to buy. It's self-contained. All you need (say it with me, now) is two dice and a pencil.

My idea is that each adventure would stand alone ... or you could string them together in any order to create a campaign. And that, my friends, is how you get people hooked on a good game. 8)
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Re: IDEA: New instant FF mini-adventures

Postby shintokamikaze » Fri Oct 14, 2016 7:02 pm

Or you could just cut out the middle man and come up with your own simple combat system. write some adventures and stick them on drive through rpg :P
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bottg
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Re: IDEA: New instant FF mini-adventures

Postby bottg » Fri Oct 14, 2016 7:51 pm

shintokamikaze wrote:Or you could just cut out the middle man and come up with your own simple combat system. write some adventures and stick them on drive through rpg :P


That is true, but the FF name/logo/history is a grab to many. I think that Maelstrom Domesday/Humanish/Sorcerers are excellent games, but AFF outsells them by some margin on the webstore, almost certainly due to the FF heritage.

"New Game System A" might sell some, but the same product with the FF logo on would sell many more.

This is a good idea though!
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Laurence
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Re: IDEA: New instant FF mini-adventures

Postby Laurence » Fri Oct 14, 2016 9:01 pm

I'm thinking the target audience for this particular product is someone who likes to play games, and wants to try something new with a minimum of effort.

Maybe they have kids and need something simple. Or they just aren't interested in investing a lot of time learning yet another complicated RPG system.

But they do want something quick, easy, and fun.

Once they get a taste of FF, and realize how much they like it, they may go looking for more FF (or AFF!) branded content.

Voila, new Fighting Fantasy fans. (And customers!)

Please indulge me for a moment as my marketing brain runs wild here. If you have a series of small, self-contained products, it's easy to give one away as a sample to help push sales of the rest. For example:

- bundle one with other Arion game products as a promotion (buy these paper miniatures, and get a quick new FF adventure to go with them)
- bundle one with indie RPG products from other manufacturers
- give one away on Free RPG Day
- offer one free as an incentive to sign up for promotional emails
- send one out as a free sample to gaming bloggers
- offer one as free content for a popular gaming newsletter or website

I'm not advising giving them all away, obviously. But “first in a series free” is a tried and true sales technique. So it's a thought.

BTW, bottg, if you need someone to do the writing, just say the word! 8)
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Re: IDEA: New instant FF mini-adventures

Postby Nuvole! » Fri Oct 14, 2016 9:40 pm

I actually though about writing a series of one-off, introductive, amateur adventures using a simplified AF2 ruleset.
It is one of my *too many* projects... supposed to be a seven adventures bundle to be fully playtested, with playtesting I'm stuck at third adventure and with writing a bit ahead of it but not much... and I haven't progressed for a while.
I'm sure that sooner or later I'll complete it.
If we all write up our amateur adventures and share them on the net, perhaps we'll find a bigger number of AFF2 players around... :idea:
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Nuvole!
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Re: IDEA: New instant FF mini-adventures

Postby Nuvole! » Fri Oct 14, 2016 9:43 pm

Laurence wrote: bundle one with other Arion game products as a promotion (buy these paper miniatures, and get a quick new FF adventure to go with them)

I like this option a lot.
I think Graham hasn't explored joining in a synergy what are perhaps the two most successful parts of Arion Games. Although I suspect there may be issues with rights or similar...
He's a real Nowhere man, sitting in his Nowhere land, making all his Nowhere plans for Nobody.
shintokamikaze
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Re: IDEA: New instant FF mini-adventures

Postby shintokamikaze » Sat Oct 15, 2016 12:07 am

bottg wrote:
shintokamikaze wrote:Or you could just cut out the middle man and come up with your own simple combat system. write some adventures and stick them on drive through rpg :P


That is true, but the FF name/logo/history is a grab to many. I think that Maelstrom Domesday/Humanish/Sorcerers are excellent games, but AFF outsells them by some margin on the webstore, almost certainly due to the FF heritage.

"New Game System A" might sell some, but the same product with the FF logo on would sell many more.

This is a good idea though!

yep, FF is dear to the hearts of many :P
shintokamikaze
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Re: IDEA: New instant FF mini-adventures

Postby shintokamikaze » Sat Oct 15, 2016 12:14 am

shintokamikaze wrote:
bottg wrote:
shintokamikaze wrote:Or you could just cut out the middle man and come up with your own simple combat system. write some adventures and stick them on drive through rpg :P


That is true, but the FF name/logo/history is a grab to many. I think that Maelstrom Domesday/Humanish/Sorcerers are excellent games, but AFF outsells them by some margin on the webstore, almost certainly due to the FF heritage.

"New Game System A" might sell some, but the same product with the FF logo on would sell many more.

This is a good idea though!

yep, FF is dear to the hearts of many :P


Wow I never knew FF was your big seller :shock:
Nuvole!
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Re: IDEA: New instant FF mini-adventures

Postby Nuvole! » Mon Jul 24, 2017 3:49 am

Nuvole! wrote:I actually though about writing a series of one-off, introductive, amateur adventures using a simplified AF2 ruleset.
It is one of my *too many* projects... supposed to be a seven adventures bundle to be fully playtested, with playtesting I'm stuck at third adventure and with writing a bit ahead of it but not much... and I haven't progressed for a while.
I'm sure that sooner or later I'll complete it.

Still progressing... slowly.
He's a real Nowhere man, sitting in his Nowhere land, making all his Nowhere plans for Nobody.

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