RE: The B/X Companion
Okay, folks, I've sold two-thirds of my print run so far...that's not bad considering the fact that I'm not advertising, I don't have an active forum presence on any of the gaming sites (Dragonsfoot, RPG.net, ENWorld, whatever...), don't have .pdfs or a box set, and have no distributor for my game besides myself and the U.S. Post Office. Heck, I haven't even had a review by Maliszewski yet (probably because he hasn't bought a copy. Am I supposed to send him a gratis book? I don't even have his address!).
Anyway, two-thirds gone...and I'm not bragging about that 'cause it was only a small print run and I'm not trying to make a living off the thing like Raggi, this is just enough to cover my costs and do a couple more print runs. BUT...I HAVE had reviews (in print and YouTube)...generally pretty good ones...and there's one thing I've completely NOT heard word one about.
The new magic items.
Excuse me - I have heard "there are new magic items." But while folks have talked with interest and excitement regarding the monsters, the high level class options (especially for thieves), the mass combat system, and some of the new spells...no one's mentioned that I added a whole new category of magic item to the game!
I suppose this is somewhat my own fault. I kept a few things "under wraps" as purposeful surprises (for example, the "new Bard class" in Part 8 - though this was picked up and mentioned in reviews)...and I suppose there are a LOT of new magic items for folks just thumbing through the book (six pages of text descriptions...nearly 10% of the book!).
But really...no one noticed the new category?
Well, as I said, I kept some things under wraps...though I did hint at the "unrevealed category" in a couple past blog posts while writing the thing. Well, anyway, it WAS supposed to be a surprise, but now that the book's been published (and purchased!) the secret should be out. Hell, I'm just surprised it isn't already.
Well, when you say it like that JB, it's kind of anticlimactic. Yeah, I guess so, but as I said, I'm not trying to brag right now. Especially when many of the magical books in the Companion (more than half, actually) are similar to magical tomes and manuals found in the 1st edition DMG. However, I wouldn't mind a little feedback on the other 10 or so...frankly, I wouldn't mind knowing what folks think of the fact that I added books at all to the game. And as their own category no less (took a few percentage points off of scrolls to make room). After all, these certainly weren't present in Basic or Expert (or Labyrinth Lord for that matter)!
So please, folks, drop me a line (or a comment) and let me know what you think. I always thought that in a game where a low intelligence score meant your character was freaking illiterate, it would be cool to take advantage of that little game mechanic by putting some genuine readable treasure in the game.
After all, that's kind of how I look at the B/X Companion itself: readable treasure.