Offensive language, part 1
Neuroshima RPG game is the most offensive book you’d ever read in your life if I ever went crazy and decided to translate it into English.
Don’t worry. I am not that crazy. I won’t translate it. Let me tell you a story, though. Its first part comes today, the second will follow on Wednesday…
So I was in my twenties and I had serious financial problems. Portal Games was a small company struggling to survive. I was in debt, I had bailiff problems, I had no money in my account and I had a ton of debts a ton of creditors to pay off. I was in serious trouble. We were publishing a magazine about RPGs, we were publishing some small indie RPG games, we were trying our best to earn money in the RPG industry but already owed printing houses a lot of money, and piles of unsold products were piling high in our storeroom.
It was 2002, for three years I had been facing constant financial problems, three years of enormous stress, sleepless nights, unpaid invoices and working 24/7 without a single break and without a single dollar in my account. It was September 2002 when I told my closest friend, Michal Oracz, that I was tired and I was ready to try one more time to live our dream but then I was done. We decided that Neuroshima RPG will be our last try.
“It’s going to be a success or we are done here.”
We were working like crazy. I was writing like a madman. After 16 weeks of working all days and nights long, with almost no sleep, we wrote a book of over 500 pages. Never before had I written so much great stuff in so little time – and I’ve never done it again. With the amazing ideas and imagination of Michal Oracz, with the amazing faction chapters by Marcin Blacha and with me being the best fucking RPG writer on this planet, we compiled an amazing book and finally, at the end of that year we had a printable version in our hands. It was unbelievable material, funny, provocative; full of ideas, adventure hooks, jokes; the way it was written made it different from each and every other RPG on the market. It read like a damn good novel, you started reading page 1 and couldn’t put the book away until you finished the last page.
Trust me, I know how to write. And these were my best writing days. I fought for my dream come true.
I had no money to print it, though. We had the material, we did not have the money.
Do you want to know how people dealt with this problem before the KS? I had an honest heart-to-heart conversation with Michal Oracz. I told him that we’d print 3000 books. Back then, it was 3 times more than an average print run of an RPG book in Poland. We both knew that I had no money to pay for it and that the sum stated on the invoice will be too large to somehow just wriggle out of it. The plan was simple enough – I’d just order the books and pray for a miracle to happen. Either we created a bestseller that would be going like hot cakes, or we would be fucked, Portal Games would go bankrupt and our dreams would be over.
In late January I sent the files to the printing house knowing that that was it. I paid them a small amount of money in advance and didn’t tell them that it was all I had. That and my hopes. I knew that either this was going to be the best RPG out there, or I had just screwed up my whole life.
Guess what! Neuroshima RPG was a huge success. People were buying it like crazy. Within a few months we did a reprint. Over a couple of years it became the most popular RPG in Poland superseding D&D, Warhammer RPG, Cyberpunk and Call of Cthulhu. We wrote the best RPG in Poland.
I didn’t screw up my life. I have lived my dream.
to be continued…
edited by Piotr,
thank you Piotr!
Talk about stressful with finances. I am happy Portal made it and this is a fascinating story. Can’t wait for part 2!
Great post, Ignacy! My favorite blog post in a long time and I am looking forward to Wednesday’s follow-up on this adventure.