January has been busy.
This month, I've been working on finalizing the game manuscript. I gave everything an editorial pass myself. Then I sent it to professional RPG designer Rob Schwalb to review and he provided an in-depth critique. I'm currently working my way through his comments and making more edits.
I expect to hand the game over for professional editing sometime between mid-February and the end of February. While that's happening, my layout guy, Mike, will begin formatting the final document in InDesign. I've given myself plenty of buffer for this process. Mike will have nearly three months to lay out everything I have ready to go before the Kickstarter ends. Once the game funds (fingers crossed), I'll get the artists working on the rest of the illustrations.
Beyond my wrestling with the game's words, I've gotten some of my artists rolling this month on some additional artwork for the game. This is likely the last push of artwork that will happen before the Kickstarter.
First up are a few logos for the fictional companies featured in the game, done by Jen Sorrell. These logos will appear within the company write-ups. (There are eight total in the game.)
Apex Telecom is a telecommunications company that mines and sells its clients' information., hence the "A" looking like a cell/radio tower.
Bidwell Enterprises is an industrialist company with strong ties to the military. The logo is simple and straightforward, featuring five stars like a General in the corporate world.
Next is a piece of artwork that will appear in color on the back cover as well as in b/w inside the book. I've decided to think positive and assume M&A will fund at least to the point of the Magic and Monsters stretch goal content making it into the game. This illustration features a fellow firing off a mind-affecting spell and a little homunculus perched behind him. It was created by Beth Varni.
Here's a second piece of artwork that will appear on the back cover in color as well as in b/w within the book. This one features a fist fight between to coworkers. Things can get a little brutal in the "anything goes" corporate world of Murders & Acquisitions. This piece was done by Becca Gowdy.
In addition to artwork, Jen Sorrell is also my graphic designer. She's working on chapter titles for the game. Here's a look at two of them. The chapter titles will look like the game's title logo, with some fun bits on the keyboard keys.
So there you go. That's all for now. In February, I'll be focusing on finalizing the manuscript, getting editing and layout underway, and then...diving into creating a Kickstarter page and getting my video editor going on a fun video for the Kickstarter.