This interview is part of a series focusing on candidates in the running for the 2014 ENnie Awards. The Gen Con EN World RPG Awards (the “ENnies”) are an annual fan-based celebration of excellence in tabletop role-playing gaming, with voting beginning 7 a.m. Central on Sunday, July 20 through 7 p.m. Central on Wednesday, July 30. The winners will be announced at Gen Con, the Grand Hall at the Historic Union Station on Friday, August 15. To vote, see http://www.ennie-awards.com/vote/. In this installment I interview Simon Rogers, Managing Director of Pelgrane Press.
Michael Tresca (MT): Tell us about your company.
Simon Rogers (SR): Established in 2000, Pelgrane Press Ltd is a publisher of award-winning tabletop roleplaying games, including the 13th Age by Rob Heinsoo and Jonathan Tweet, Trail of Cthulhu by Kenneth Hite, The Dying Earth and Ashen Stars by Robin D Laws. Pelgrane Press is also the home of the webzine Page XX, The Birds comic, and music for RPGs by James Semple and fellow composers.
MT: Has your company been nominated for any ENnies in the past?
SR: Yes, indeed we have, in every year from 2007 to date except 2009.
MT: You’ve got quite a few nominations this year!
SR: Pelgrane Press has achieved fifteen nominations in eleven categories for nine products in this year’s ENnie award. More details here: http://pelgranepress.com/site/?p=15591. You can find out more on the website for each product here:
- 13th Age: http://www.pelgranepress.com/?p=9764
- Hillfolk: http://www.pelgranepress.com/?p=12306
- Blood on the Snow: http://www.pelgranepress.com/?p=12312
- Eternal Lies: http://pelgranepress.com/site/?p=949
- Eternal Lies Suite: http://www.pelgranepress.com/?p=3372
- Dust and Mirrors : http://www.pelgranepress.com/?p=13715
- Page XX: http://www.pelgranepress.com/site/?page_id=45
- The Noteboard is something different altogether http://www.thenoteboard.co.com/. The Noteboard :
- is durable, portable, and infinitely rewritable
- folds up map-style from 35″ x 15″ to 5″ x 3″
- is made up of index card-sized rectangles in a 7 x 5 calendar grid
- has a blank side and a gridded side (Great for D&D and BattleTech)
- comes in an eraser-pouch with a dry-erase marker
- is compatible with all dry-erase and wet-erase markers
- is made in the USA!
MT: What distinguishes your entries from your competitors?
SR: I don’t really consider other companies products in this fashion. For a start, they aren’t competitors, but colleagues. We have our own approach to creating games, but I have to say the quality of the other nominees is exceptionally high this year. We always aim to make an impact and create something novel with every release, but with consistent quality and useability. Hillfolk and GUMSHOE both changed the way many people game, and 13th Age takes the traditional d20 fantasy, adds personality and an nod to the indie movement.
MT: What products will you be producing for the remainder of this year?
SR: For 13th Age The Eyes of the Stone Thief, an epic 13th Age campaign; Shadows of Eldolan, an adventure and The Book of Loot. For Night’s Black Agents we have Dracula Dossier and Dracula Unredacted, for Ashen Stars Accretion disk. Trail of Cthulhu has Mythos Expeditions and Soldiers of Pen and Ink. And of course TimeWatch, which brings me on to our next question
MT: Have you participated in any recent Kickstarters? Are there any upcoming Kickstarters on the horizon?
SR: Our last major Kickstarter was TimeWatch from Kevin Kulp, who was co-nominated for Best Writing in Owl Hoot Trail. It turned into an amazing big old colour hardback and supplement. Towards the end of the year, we’ll be Kickstarting Dracula Dossier and Dracula Unredacted, and I hope we can push to get a facsimile of the original Dracula, with British secret service annotations in the margins.
MT: What do you think of the new edition of Call of Cthulhu?
SR: I think it’s really good. It took courage to push for novelty with this fantastic game but Paul Fricker and team did just enough – I really like the new resource management options which perhaps are a nod to GUMSHOE.
MT: Will you be at Gen Con? Where? Will any new products debut at Gen Con?
SR: We will. With any luck Shadows of Eldolan, The Book of Loot, Mythos Expeditions and if we are lucky 13 True Ways will be there, as well as others.
MT: Where can we find out more about your company online?
MT: Anything else you’d like to share?
SR: We have a lovely ENnie sampler for download from the website, or you can get it from dtrpg.com.