Thursday, September 5, 2013

[Q&A] Peter Cakebread & Ken Walton (Pirates & Dragons)

[19:04] <+PeterCakebread> It's late here, so apologies for slow responses, the coffee will kick in any minute... Howdy! Hi Folks, I'm Peter Cakebread, co-author of Pirates & Dragons.
[19:03] <+KenWalton> And I'm Ken Walton, co-author of Pirates & Dragons. (It might be late here, but we still know who we are).
[19:05] <+MANDEM> Can I introduce myself too? :)
[19:05] <~Dan> (Are you part of the Pirates & Dragons team? :) )
[19:05] <+KenWalton> Well, tonight we're here to talk about our new RPG, Pirates & Dragons, which just relaunched via Kickstarter a couple of hours ago. (Link:
[19:05] <+KenWalton> Go for it MANDEM!
[19:05] <+MANDEM> (Yes.)
[19:05] <~Dan> (Then please do!)
[19:05] <+PeterCakebread> Go MANDEM!!!
[19:05] <+MANDEM> Hi, I'm MANDEM, and I (we) did the cover art for Pirates & Dragons.
[19:06] <+KenWalton> Our game, yes... It goes like this...
[19:06] <+KenWalton> They came from Albion, from Gaule and Esbania and Batavia, in search of the treasures of the New World. They found a menace older than mankind – dragons! In their mountain lairs on the Dragon Isles, giant beasts – old and wise and malevolent – sit on their piles of gold, surrounded by their zombie minions. The natives have found ways of appeasing or evading t
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[19:07] <+KenWalton> Ah, that doesn't work - obviously I can't paste the blurb, but you can look at the KS. (It's late, I'm not at my best!) :-)
[19:07] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, Phantomssiren! Here for the Q&A? :) )
[19:08] <~Dan> (No problem, Ken. It cut off at "evading t")
[19:09] <+KenWalton> Hi Phantomssiren - another, soon to be P&D artist... :-)
[19:09] <+KenWalton> We really didn't just invite all our friends along!
[19:09] <~Dan> Excellent. :)
[19:09] <+Phantomssiren> Hi :)
[19:09] <+PeterCakebread> Pirates & Dragons is a D100 game, powered by our Renaissance Deluxe system, where you get to play pirates, operating in the hazardous Dragon Seas.
[19:10] <+PeterCakebread> We've just relaunched the Kickstarter tonight, and we're nearly at our initial funding target.
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[19:10] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
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[19:11] <+KenWalton> Hopefully, this means we get to hit our stretch goals!
[19:11] <+KenWalton> (done)
[19:11] <~Dan> Thanks, guys!
[19:12] <~Dan> Does anyone have any questions to start us off?
[19:12] <+BPIJonathan> So whats the world of the setting, is it an alternate Earth like C&C?
[19:12] <+BlasterKyubey210> For one, what's the basis of Renaissance system for everything else
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[19:13] <~Dan> (Question pause.)
[19:14] <+PeterCakebread> It isn't the Earth, as we know it. While the Uropan cultures (Albionic, Batavian, Gallic, and Esbanian are the default Uropan cultures) are inspired by Europe, and the Dragon Isles, loosely, on the Caribbean, it is a fantasy world.
[19:15] <+PeterCakebread> Blaster, can you elaborate? Renaissance is our D100 ruleset.
[19:15] <~Dan> (English, German, French, and Spanish?)
[19:15] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[19:15] <+PeterCakebread> Dutch, not German.
[19:15] <+BlasterKyubey210> Ah, Renaissance System, what's that about, sorry
[19:15] <~Dan> (I was close!)
[19:15] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[19:15] <+BlasterKyubey210> d100 I know that much
[19:15] <+Abstruse> (By the way, I'm Darryl aka Abstruse from Ain't It Cool News Tabletop...which you'd posted the Kickstarter a bit earlier and it would've been in this week's column :p )
[19:15] <+BlasterKyubey210> Sorry, been interested in BRP since Call of Cthulhu so... I guess something to think about
[19:16] <+PeterCakebread> Renaissance system is based on Newt Newport's Openquest (which is based on MRQ1), adapted for gaming in the early modern era.
[19:17] <+PeterCakebread> Hi Abstruse - perhaps next week? :)
[19:17] <+KenWalton> Our original Renaissance rules, used in Clockwork & Chivalry, are very grim and gritty, but we've tweaked them for P&D to make them more cinematic.
[19:18] <+KenWalton> <done>
[19:18] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[19:20] <+Abstruse> You actually listed the thing under Tabletop Games instead of just Games, so there's a high likelihood of it :p
[19:20] <~Dan> Can you give us some examples of the tweaks?
[19:20] <+PeterCakebread> Cool!
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[19:22] <+Newt_Newport> Hello there!
[19:22] <+KenWalton> Players get to use "Doubloons" to give themselves good skill rolls, and there's a Swashbuckling skill which allows characters to perform amazing stunts, like in the movies.
[19:22] <+KenWalton> Hi Newt!
[19:22] <+PeterCakebread> Hi Newt :)
[19:22] <+BPIJonathan> (Hi Newt)
[19:23] <~Dan> (Welcoem to #rpgnet, Newt_Newport! And howdy, FGF!)
[19:23] <+PeterCakebread> There are also Talents, that allow characters to do shiny things.
[19:23] <~Dan> Such as? :)
[19:25] <+PeterCakebread> They're basically big skill/attribute/character boosts.
[19:25] <+KenWalton> Being extra good at marksmanship, catching bullets (that's a high level one!), being good at lying, not getting drunk...
[19:26] <+Abstruse> (Failed that roll already...)
[19:26] <+PeterCakebread> You usually only get one Talent, to start with, but you can get more as you adventure.
[19:27] <+KenWalton> Oh, and magic - Islanders get to have spells because of their magic talent.
[19:28] <~Dan> What is the magic system like, and how powerful is magic?
[19:28] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[19:28] <+KenWalton> <done>
[19:29] <+KenWalton> The magic's more streamlined than standard Renaissance, much easier to cast in play.
[19:30] <+PeterCakebread> You get daily spells (the amount of which can be increased by rituals).
[19:30] <+PeterCakebread> You have to keep on the good side of the Island Spirits, or you lose your magic.
[19:30] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[19:31] <+KenWalton> The Dragon Islanders (Dragon worshippers) have unpleasant magic, a lot of it necromantic, and have to perform sacrifices to get more power.
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[19:31] <+BPIJonathan> So you cant cast spells if you are off the islands?
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[19:32] <+PeterCakebread> Yes, you can. But you have to follow the taboos of the spirit of your home island.
[19:32] <+KenWalton> <done>
[19:32] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[19:33] <~Dan> Can you give us some idea of the scale of magic, though
[19:34] <~Dan> ?
[19:34] <+KenWalton> The average Islander has a few little spells (lighting fires, healing, that sort of thing), shamans have a lot more.
[19:35] <~Dan> Are we talking "fireballs and lightning bolts" magic?
[19:35] <+KenWalton> The longer you study, the more powerful spells you can learn. Ancient dragons may well be very powerful.
[19:36] <+KenWalton> Yes, some of it, at higher levels - though just as likely temporary blessings on weapons to make them better, that sort of things.
[19:37] <~Dan> Is there any magic native to Uropa?
[19:37] <+PeterCakebread> No.
[19:37] <~Dan> What was the thinking behind that?
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[19:39] <+PeterCakebread> The Uropans have other shinies though, and there are magic items lying around in the ancient Adalantan ruins.
[19:39] <+PeterCakebread> We wanted the Uropans to be like Europeans, arriving in a new world where they found dragons and magic!
[19:40] <+KenWalton> Their technology is in advance of the Islanders, but dragons are scary! :-)
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[19:41] <~Dan> Are there no monsters in Uropa, either?
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[19:41] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, three-rik!)
[19:41] <+PeterCakebread> And the Islanders are scary too, because they have magic, but they aren't used to dealing with cultures like the Uropans.
[19:42] <+KenWalton> Monsters are few and far between in Uropa - many of the ones in the islands were created by the Adalantans for their own strange reasons, thousands of years ago.
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[19:42] <+KenWalton> <done>
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[19:43] <~Dan> Speaking of monsters, what can you tell us about the dragons?
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[19:45] <+PeterCakebread> The dragons are not to be trifled with! Younger dragons are driven by base instincts; older dragons are powerful, magical, unknowable beings.
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[19:47] <+BlasterKyubey210> So the Columbus expy really got the horns for this, did he?
[19:47] <~Dan> Do they breathe fire?
[19:47] <+KenWalton> Younger dragons are often hunted by Albionic dragon-hunting ships. The bigger, older dragons could destroy a ship without thinking about it, but tend to spend their time in their mountain lairs
[19:47] <+PeterCakebread> The older dragons have managed to settle on their own island (although some of the largest islands have more than one dragon). There they rule, perhaps alone, perhaps over an undead army, or perhaps over a Dragon Tribe.
[19:48] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[19:48] <+KenWalton> Yes, they do breathe fire - which is why black teak (a fireproof wood) and firesilk (fireproof sailcloth) are so highly prized.
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[19:48] <+KenWalton> <done>
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[19:49] <~Dan> What sorts of techniques do dragon-hunters use?
[19:50] <+KenWalton> Harpoons, same as whalers, and specially protected ships.
[19:51] <+KenWalton> There's good money to be made from dragon oil and fireproof dragonscale armoured products, plus dragon meat is a delicacy in the old country. (an acquired taste)
[19:51] <+KenWalton> <done>
[19:51] <~Dan> Are dragon hoards the source of wealth in the New World?
[19:53] <+PeterCakebread> Not the only source of wealth - there's treasure aplenty to be found! But they are immensely valuable.
[19:54] <~Dan> Are there any civilizations on the Aztec/Mayan scale?
[19:55] <+KenWalton> The Adalantans *were* on that scale - if not much higher - but all that's left is ruins, after an epic war with the dragons.
[19:55] <+PeterCakebread> Uropans extract wealth from the lands they've colonised, and through trade and piracy. If the characters aren't up for taking on a dragon, they might steal a pirate hoard, loot a merchantman, explore an Adalantan ruin, trade with the Insect People, or find other ways to expand their coffers.
[19:56] <+KenWalton> there may be civilisations like that to the east of the Dragon Isles, but that's out of the developed game world.
[19:56] * ~Dan nods
[19:56] <+KenWalton> It's possible that Adalantan civilisation still exists, through some sort of portal in the Storm Circle, but that's for a future supplement...
[19:57] <~Dan> Is it assumed that the PCs will be pirates?
[19:58] <+KenWalton> Yes - the game is set up for the PCs to be the main crew of a pirate ship. (Very similar to the way characters are set up in Airship Pirates).
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[19:59] <+KenWalton> <done>
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[19:59] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[19:59] <~Dan> Do pirates in the setting normally stick to, well, piracy? Or is exploring ruins and the like equally a part of the business?
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[20:01] <+PeterCakebread> It depends on how you want to play the game. We've made sure that there are plenty of options, and lots of details on pirate life.
[20:01] <+KenWalton> <done>
[20:01] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
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[20:02] <~Dan> What other sorts of monsters are to be found in the New World other than dragons and zombies?
[20:03] <+three-rik> Giant squid?
[20:03] <+KenWalton> The sort of things you get in Ray Harryhausen movies - giant insects, moving statues, insect people, huge crabs, sea monsters, ... yep, giant squid!
[20:03] <~Dan> Dinosaurs?
[20:04] <+Abstruse> Swordfighting skeletons?
[20:05] <+three-rik> Ichtyosaurs?
[20:05] <+PeterCakebread> Dinosaurs? Ooh, GM secret - nothing in the core rulebook, but the Storm Circle cries out for pulp adventure...
[20:05] <+KenWalton> Swordfighting skeletons - definitely!
[20:05] <+PeterCakebread> Swordfighting skeletons, you bet!!!
[20:05] <~Dan> And what is the Storm Circle?
[20:06] * +Abstruse always liked SINBAD over CLASH, to the chagrin of many of my colleagues.
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[20:07] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, Quentin!)
[20:07] <+PeterCakebread> The Storm Circle is a chaotic maelstrom of a sea, where only the brave dare venture. It is the result of the ancient war between the High Adalantans and the dragons.
[20:07] <~Dan> (Everyone, this is Quentin Bauer, author of Raiders of R'lyeh. :) )
[20:07] <~Dan> (Quentin, meet Peter Cakebread and Ken Walton of Cakebread & Walton. :) )
[20:08] <+KenWalton> I watched a lot of Sinbad when we were developing the game :-)
[20:08] <+PeterCakebread> Greetings
[20:08] <+Quentin> Hey guys.
[20:08] <+KenWalton> Hi!
[20:09] <+KenWalton> <done>
[20:09] <~Dan> How much detail to you go into regarding ship-to-ship combat?
[20:09] <+BPIJonathan> Is magic fueled by anything, like ley lines for example?
[20:10] <+KenWalton> Ship-to-ship combat is there, but the emphasis is very much on the characters.
[20:11] <+KenWalton> Islanders petition the island spirits for their magic, Dragon Islands extract magic from the island spirits by force, backed up by their powerful dragon masters.
[20:11] <+KenWalton> <done>
[20:11] <~Dan> So what function (if any) do magic points serve?
[20:12] <+KenWalton> We don't have magic points. :-)
[20:12] <~Dan> Really? Huh. :)
[20:12] <+BPIJonathan> So I guess they serve no function :D
[20:13] <~Dan> What is casting based on, then?
[20:13] <+KenWalton> Characters can cast a certain number of spells a day, but can petition the spirits for more if they really need them.
[20:14] <+KenWalton> Characters have a MAG stat which effects how many spells they can cast and the maximum power of those spells.
[20:14] <+KenWalton> <done>
[20:14] <+three-rik> Do you suppose there's enough content for the game to serve as a decent toolkit for "generic" pirate fantasy?
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[20:17] <+PeterCakebread> Yes, the Renaissance Deluxe system is very much rooted in the golden age of piracy era.
[20:18] <+three-rik> OS suppose one was to downplay the parts about the dragons and Adalantans, there's still plenty of useful stuff in there
[20:18] <+PeterCakebread> With a little tweaking you could easily use the character generation to create generic pirate fantasy games.
[20:18] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[20:18] <+KenWalton> One of the nice things about the system is that its very easy to swap bits in and out without breaking it.
[20:19] <+KenWalton> So if you don't want magic, you can ignore that chapter.
[20:19] <+KenWalton> Or you could swap Uropan skill sets for your own historical skill sets without changing the whole character generation.
[20:20] <+three-rik> I didn't catch the first part of the chat. Has the system already been discussed?
[20:20] <+KenWalton> You could even swap out the swashbuckling combat for the gritty combat system from Renaissance Deluxe, and it would still work.
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[20:21] <+KenWalton> Yes - we've discussed it some, but what do you want to know, we may not have covered it!
[20:21] <~Dan> How well would magic from Renaissance Deluxe fit into the setting as Uropan magic?
[20:21] <~Dan> (Howdy, Silverlion!)
[20:21] <&Silverlion> (Hi)
[20:21] <+Quentin> When you guys get a chance, and if this needs to wait until the end that will work, but I’d like to know how to support the game. I was late the party, so to speak, but love this whole concept and want to back it.
[20:21] <+PeterCakebread> Dan, it would work fine if you wanted to import it.
[20:22] <~Dan> Feel free to re-post the link, guys!
[20:22] <+KenWalton> The Kickstarter link is (Link:
[20:22] <+three-rik> I personally probably wouldn't need to tinker with the more cinematic system much, I was more talking in terms of setting-toolkit
[20:22] <+BPIJonathan> (Link:
[20:22] <+KenWalton> Thanks! :-)
[20:23] <+KenWalton> We're 88% funded after just a few hours!
[20:23] <+BPIJonathan> Woot!
[20:23] <+KenWalton> <done>
[20:23] <+BPIJonathan> (Kickstarter is going to allow me to be buried in a paupers grave)
[20:24] <+Drakkar> hah
[20:24] <+Drakkar> at least you get a grave
[20:24] <+Drakkar> ~
[20:24] * +Drakkar too deep in the kickstarters
[20:24] <+KenWalton> You should probably start a Kickstarter to get yourself a really splendid pauper's grave!
[20:24] <+Drakkar> i'm opening an auction for limbs next
[20:24] <+Drakkar> ~
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[20:24] <+Quentin> Thanks!
[20:24] <+Drakkar> incidentally we need more pirate rpgs
[20:24] <+PeterCakebread> A grave, in my day we dreamed of a grave... No, stop it!
[20:25] <+Drakkar> so i'm totalyl going to back this
[20:25] <+Drakkar> totally*
[20:25] <+BPIJonathan> Captured by pirates is good.
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[20:25] <+BPIJonathan> (or Murdered by pirates is good)
[20:25] <~Dan> Does the game lean toward merry swashbucklers or bloodthirsty cutthroats? Or is that totally up to the players?
[20:25] <+KenWalton> <done>
[20:26] <+Quentin> Backed.
[20:26] <+three-rik> Or both?
[20:26] <+BPIJonathan> Does it allow for games in the spirit of Captain Blood or The Sea Hawk?
[20:28] <+PeterCakebread> Thanks, Quentin.
[20:28] <+PeterCakebread> Totally up to the players (and GM) whether merry swashbucklers or bloodthirsty cutthroats. The emphasis is on swashbuckling, but players will be players (hopefully in a PotC way).
[20:28] <+three-rik> Monkey Island?
[20:29] <+Quentin> Thank you, guys. You guys make great games, and I can’t wait to see the finished Pirates & Dragons.
[20:29] <+KenWalton> Jonathan - do you mean the movies of Captain Blood and The Sea Hawk, or the novels? If the novels, I'd probably swap out the P&D combat system and use the Renaissance Deluxe system instead,
[20:30] <+PeterCakebread> Thanks again, Quentin, and Monkey Island, I love Monkey Island. I am Rubber... again, stop it!
[20:30] <+KenWalton> It's a loooong time since I've seen the movies, i can't remember how swashbuckling they are!
[20:30] <~Dan> Are dragons the Big Bads, or is it more nuanced than that?
[20:30] <+BPIJonathan> Was thinking the movies, Im a big fan of Errol Flynn
[20:30] <+three-rik> are glue
[20:31] <+BPIJonathan> But the novels would work, and thanks for the answer.
[20:31] <+KenWalton> "I'm a big fan of Errol Flynn." "You are glue"? What sort of insult is that? :-D
[20:31] <+three-rik> I am rubber, you are glue
[20:32] <+three-rik> never mind :)
[20:32] <+PeterCakebread> Did Ken say we're 88% funded, we're 96% funded. I'm shaking, I'm shaking...
[20:32] <+Quentin> You guys got this.
[20:32] <+BPIJonathan> Someone help these gentlemen over the hump tonight :D
[20:33] <+PeterCakebread> Lol
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[20:33] <+TQuid> Any Fate nerds here?
[20:33] <~Dan> (Howdy, TQuid! Q&A in progress. #rpgnet2 is open for general chat. :) )
[20:33] <+Abstruse> You're £74 from funding.
[20:34] <+BPIJonathan> (Q&A going on TQuid, use #rpgnet2)
[20:34] <+BPIJonathan> (Sorry Dan)
[20:34] <+KenWalton> <done>
[20:34] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[20:35] <+BPIJonathan> Thats $115 in real money :D
[20:35] <~Dan> Did you see my question about dragons being the Big Bads?
[20:37] <+PeterCakebread> No, I didn't, Dan. They are the big bads...generally....but this is a C&W game. Dragons don't all behave the same way, and of course there are other strange cultures among the Dragon Isles/Storm Circle.
[20:38] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[20:38] <~Dan> Are there any nonhuman species other than the Insect People?
[20:40] <+KenWalton> There are Low Adalantans, who are bestial semi-human descendants of the ancient High Adalantans - blue cannibals.
[20:40] <+KenWalton> And because every island is different, there's scope for more.
[20:40] <+KenWalton> I wouldn't be surprised if there were lizard men out there somewhere!
[20:40] <+PeterCakebread> We've scoped out a lot of the islands, but the map is huge...
[20:40] <+KenWalton> <done>
[20:41] <+three-rik> how much of the book is taken up by information about the dragons and the Adalantans?
[20:41] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[20:42] <+PeterCakebread> The dragons get an entry comparable with the cultures, there isn' t a great deal of information in the corebook about the Adalantans.
[20:43] <+three-rik> OK, so if I wanted to downplay them a bit, make them somewhat more obscure, there'd still be plenty of useful stuff there then?
[20:43] <+KenWalton> The Adalantans are the big mystery culture of the world - kind of like the Ancients in Traveller. We know more than we're currently telling, though you can get clues from their ruins, and the kind of magic items they leave behind.
[20:44] <+KenWalton> Oh, yes, plenty of material!
[20:44] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[20:45] <+KenWalton> Its a 300 page book, there's lots in it.
[20:45] <+three-rik> This may already have been discussed: did you base the islanders on any historical examples?
[20:45] <+three-rik> caribbean tribes for instance?
[20:46] <+PeterCakebread> We obviously researched the real history of the Caribbean, but we decided to populate it with our own tribes.
[20:47] <+KenWalton> They're more the tribes of pulp adventure than anything real.
[20:47] <+three-rik> I see. Any vegetarian cannibals among them?
[20:48] <+PeterCakebread> Yes, no doubt, there will be some island's native spirits who detest meat-eating.
[20:48] <+KenWalton> <done>
[20:48] <+PeterCakebread> <done>
[20:49] <~Dan> Looks like we have just over 10 minutes left in regular Q&A time. Is there anything you'd like to mention that we haven't brought up?
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[20:52] <+Abstruse> BTW, you're £34 short of funding.
[20:52] <+BPIJonathan> How effective is Cannon fire against Dragons?
[20:52] <+BPIJonathan> Again, thats $54 in real money :D
[20:52] <+PeterCakebread> We'd like to say a big thank you to you, Dan, for hosting the chat, to everyone who turned up to chat with us, and to everyone who has backed the Kickstarter. We're always available to answer any questions, hit us up on our website, Kickstarter, or facebook group.
[20:52] <+KenWalton> Cannons can be pretty effective against dragons, but only if you can persuade them to stay still :-)
[20:53] <+KenWalton> <done>
[20:53] <+BPIJonathan> The cannons or the dragons?
[20:53] <+KenWalton> The dragons - cannons tend to be pretty sedentary...
[20:54] <+PeterCakebread> BPIJonathan, so close....
[20:54] <+Abstruse> You're a bit over two sales away from funding in around two hours. Congrats.
[20:54] <+BPIJonathan> Peter, thats just one hardcover away from being funded.
[20:54] <~Dan> I'd like to thank Ken and Peter for staying up late/getting up early to chat with us!
[20:55] <~Dan> Does anyone have any other questions, or shall we let our guests get some sleep? :)
[20:55] <+KenWalton> Staying up late!
[20:55] <+PeterCakebread> Sleep is for the weak.
[20:55] <+KenWalton> Pleeeeese.... :-)
[20:55] <+Abstruse> Funded.
[20:56] <+Abstruse> You're at £2006
[20:56] <~Dan> Congrats, guys!!
[20:56] <+KenWalton> Yay!!!
[20:56] <+PeterCakebread> Woot!
[20:56] <~Dan> That's a great note on which to wrap up the Q&A, I'd say. :)
[20:56] * +Abstruse pours celebratory shots.
[20:56] <+Quentin> Congratulations. Now onto the next goal!
[20:56] <+KenWalton> Indeed!
[20:56] <+BPIJonathan> all we have to do is make them push those slaves harder to get that book out faster.
[20:57] <+KenWalton> Thanks everyone!
[20:57] <~Dan> As always, I'll have the log posted shortly and will send you the link, guys.
[20:57] <+PeterCakebread> Upwards and ever onwards. Thanks, Dan :D
[20:57] <~Dan> No problem!
[20:57] *** Silverlion has quit IRC: Ping timeout
[20:57] <+PeterCakebread> Thanks everyone :D
[20:57] <~Dan> Have a great evening!

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