Thursday, July 16, 2009

Blog hits 1000 and some new stuff appears....

Hey, we have some new reviews turned by Geoff – the Revenant and the Nemera. I have bundled six of the Draconis vehicle writeups and sent them off to the proofreader. Jeff will perform his usual sterling job and return them, hopefully, by Sunday.

David White is gone but not forgotten. I have not heard from Eriance on the Fafnir and the Culverin, but it may take a while, so patience is the key. Lee has turned up a very good sketch of the Cortes light infantry support tank and JP is thumping away on the Blackjack. Mike has re-started the Cheyenne III and we are making excellent progress.

Meanwhile, traffic here has bumped up a bit since the new art was posted – we’ve nearly a thousand hits by the time of this writing and that means this blog is performing its job. I have feedback from my associates that indicates they read each update and that equals timely communications with my fellow artists, writers and proofers. It also means other folks are stopping by to have a look at what you fellows are turning out.

Since no one (except the proofers and artists) can see what we have written, this increased traffic can only mean that the art has stimulated interest in the project. That is good for the artists and good for the TRO itself. Google the phrase ‘TRO: 3063’ and you will see what I mean. Word is getting out. I have also noted several folks on the various Battletech forums expressing an interest in vehicles and ‘Mechs from this period. With Catalyst Games currently working like a gerbil on amphetamines to keep pace with their ambitious production schedule, there probably isn’t going to be anything new in the Civil War era for a while.

That I know of.

I know what the rest of you know - precious little. Like any other fan publisher, I can only hope that this TRO fills a genuine gap and does it well enough to satisfy the fanbase. And of course, I fervently hope Randall and his hard-charging crew do not come up with something in the next year or so which will knock what we have written into a cocked hat. But that is the risk you take when you work outside of the established circles. What makes this TRO different is that we did not begin by trying to invent new history for the BT universe.

Of course, this happened anyway on a small scale – I mean, really, where in canon does it state the production name for the Draconis Combine’s newest toy, the heavy PPC? (I know at least three people reading this are going to raise their hands….) Anyway, we took the name of existing equipment (the Hellstar, produced by New Samarkand Metals) and extended it. Thus, a PPC with a harder-hitting stream of particles became the NeutronStar PPC.

But we did try to blend what is in the TRO into the existing framework, so folks could get the maximum use out of it. Yes, I know – I covered this in an earlier post. Bear with me. We don’t want to tell our version of the BT story, we do not want to invent a new timeline, we simply want to get some good ideas for new vehicles out there. And of course, ‘Mechs.

The ‘Mechs were originally going to be a small addendum to the TRO, something to keep interest stoked in what was otherwise intended to be a helping of love for conventional arms. But this is BattleTech and the big stompy robots grew on us. So now they are a third of the volume – but they still follow the same guidelines as the vehicles. That is, they are useful, likely additions to the battlefield with writeups which illustrate how they got there and how you might use ‘em.

Yeah, well, I guess the proof is in the pudding. No matter how many edits we make, no matter how much research we do, no matter how many glitches the proofreaders catch, no matter how much excellent art we pack in, it will be you guys out there, you fans, who will be the final judges as to whether or not we are successful in our mission.

On a final note, I see the button on my blog offering to ‘monetize’. That means place advertising on my blog which pays me a few pennies for each hit. Or something like that. However, while at least two people have suggested I use that to offset my own costs, I believe it would be tantamount to making a buck off Catalyst Games’ intellectual property, and you all know how I feel about that. Never gonna happen.

Hope you enjoyed your ad-free visit!



Jim said...

I've been sending you a few emails about the Forge commission and anything else on the list, seems I'm not in the loop now :P

Anonymous said...

Rutro, looks like I have some work ahead of me to get proofreads back by Sunday.

And as one who has seen some content and artwork that is not public... the public is missing out!!

I think this TRO is going to go big once it is officially released.


Anonymous said...

I'll take the credit for suggesting to post "teaser" artwork in the blog. :)

Capt Kampson