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The Gamers / The Gamers: Dorkness Rising / The Gamers: Hands of Fate


And a big thank you!

[quote]Zombie Orpheus Entertainment

When we started up Zombie Orpheus Entertainment and talked with people about our business plan, they thought we were crazy. You’re going to give away your content, online, for free? You’re going to let the fans take it, remix it, and share it with impunity? You’re going to rely on voluntary fan contributions to make more content? You’re insane!

You know what? You people, the fans, the believers, are the future. Working together, you accomplish the impossible, the improbable, and the unthinkable. And today, you funded The Gamers: Hands of Fate.

We set a bigger film funding goal—$320,000—than any other successful Kickstarter movie project in history and we made it! We are the fourth highest funded movie on Kickstarter ever, with four days to go in the campaign. And we’re going to make a hell of a movie, because all of you believed in us.

Here’s to many more years of making movies that are Creator Distributed, Fan Supported, Creative Commons, and free to be part of human culture, not locked away in DRM-laden vaults. We make these movies for you, not for the advertisers. We make these movies for us, not for the studios.

Orpheus is stretching his desiccated hand from the grave and saying “I live again!” We are Zombie Orpheus, every one of us, and we have only begun![/quote]


And here’s the Mound of Dead Bards mini!

[quote]Zombie Orpheus Entertainment

Mound of Dead Bards, minus the weapons you can stick into it when you assemble and paint.[/quote]


Why YOU should support Hands of Fate, by Trin.

[quote]Dead Gentlemen Productions

Trin gave us this lovely video to share with all of you. Let’s spread the word![/quote]

[video width=425 height=344 type=youtube]s-VusuSblxo[/video]


Stretch Goal #2 down!
Next up, Stretch Goal #3!

[quote]Dead Gentlemen Productions

‎$340,000. There aren’t enough of us to keep up with all of you. Stretch goal #3 details coming soonish.[/quote]


You just know they will!

[quote]Zombie Orpheus Entertainment

Is it bad that we want to live stream this?

[quote]Trin Miller

I solemnly swear that if The Gamers: Hands of Fate reaches 346k by 7pm (PST) tomorrow, thus making it the 2nd MOST FUNDED KICKSTARTER FILM EVER, then I will sing a silly song of thanks and put it on youtube. I have a miserable cold currently so my voice alternates between a tiny squeak and a throaty growl which will make it extra fun. Yes, I will take song suggestions. Dead Gentlemen Productions Zombie Orpheus Entertainment[/quote] [/quote]


[quote][size=5]Stretch Goal #3 - At $380,000, AEG Will Produce a “Romance of the Nine Empires” Game[/size]

Update #25

ZOE and AEG are proud to announce that

If we reach $380,000, AEG will produce the 15th Anniversary “Romance of the Nine Empires” Boxed Set, a fully playable card-based set!

The 15th Anniversary Boxed Set will feature factions seen in the movie, and be a stand-alone card-based game you can pull out and play on game night. All backers will receive the first opportunity to pre-order the game. The set will include player-designed cards from the $250 reward levels.

Yes, you heard us right: Your designed cards are going IN THE GAME! Additionally, we’ll add your name and a fictional date of the story event you “won” to the side of the card and feature it in the game.

Backers who pledged for THE HUJEM CRUSADE, the SUNKEN PYRAMID OF IXHASA, and/or the GRANDMASTER OF RENOWN will have their cards and characters included in the game as well!

The game will be based on fifteen-years of a fictional CCG back-story and populated with killer cards from various sets released in years past including those won as tournament prizes, cards created when competing player factions attained dominance, and even limited convention exclusives and “mistakes” (like broken cards!).

Finally, if we hit this target, every backer who is receiving shipped items will also receive a random card from the game, signed by us!

Can we reach this goal in only two days? Let’s find out![/quote]


[b][SIZE=“6”]DAY 48

[b][SIZE=“6”]DAY 49

[b][SIZE=“6”]DAY 50

We’re almost at the end!
Can we hit the next stretch goal before it ends?!
Only 24 hours to go and currently at $361,304


[quote]Zombie Orpheus Entertainment

Only a few hours remain. This is your last chance to pledge for this historic and record-breaking campaign. Help us, Dead Gentlemen Productions, and Alderac Entertainment Group make a new, fully playable card game featuring the factions seen in the movie!

Pledge $100 to receive:
• a signed limited edition of The Gamers: Hands of Fate DVD
• an annotated PDF of The Gamers: Hands of Fate screenplay
• a Hands of Fate full-size poster featuring original Wayne Reynolds’ artwork
• a black and white soft cover edition of The Shadow’s Dungeon RPG module
• an exclusive miniature of The Shadow
• a DVD of Gamers Live 2012
• an HD download of The Gamers: Hands of Fate
• your name in the movie credits
• lifetime access to The Gamers: Hands of Fate Supporters group at

Or pledge $250 to receive all of the above and name a card used in the game!

Campaign ends Friday, September 7th at 8 PM PST.[/quote]


[quote][size=]The Final Hours – Thank You! [/size]

Update #26

Thank You

What an incredible ride this has been! At every stage you all have stunned, amazed, and left us speechless. We are so humbled and overwhelmed by your support, your belief in this project, and your passion for a project that is truly Fan Supported and Creator Distributed. Seeing the news today about how Knights of Badassdom—a project on which many of us worked—is in distribution limbo for at least another year really brought home how important it is to us that our own projects not get tied up by the studios or networks. You make it possible to release our work without studio interference, for which we are unspeakably grateful.

We can’t wait to release The Gamers: Hands of Fate online under a Creative Commons license so that anyone can share it, remix it, and make it their own. Here’s to many more years of participating in free and open culture, thanks to your support!

The News

THE GAME: As you have probably noticed (if you’re obsessive refreshers like us), the Romance of the Nine Empires game has been unlocked! We reached $380,000 early this morning and the game is going to be made. We can’t do preorders at this time, as there are too many details to work out before we know a retail price, but we’ll make sure that backers are first in line to preorder when the game gets closer. Expect more updates about that in upcoming months.

THE NEXT STRETCH GOAL: We’re aiming low this time, $385,000 to unlock a Brother Silence miniature which will be included for anyone who pledged $20 extra for the full set. Additionally, $385,000 pledged will make us the most funded movie Kickstarter ever! This is so far above and beyond what we imagined possible for a little movie about gaming that we’re a little bit stunned. At this time of writing we are less than $2000 away from that goal with ten hours remaining in the campaign.

FUTURE STRETCH GOALS: After $385,000, we’re calling it. No more stretch goals, just celebration and watching the final pledges come in as we count down to 8 PM!

BONUS REWARDS: We’re going to drop a few unique campaign-related exclusives throughout the day, starting with the 6’x2.5’ banner (pictured below) that we used to promote the Kickstarter at conventions this summer. Christian Doyle has agreed to sign it, so we recommend not giving it to small children or people with weak hearts: the man has a reputation.

THE PARTY: We’ll be getting together with the cast and crew at an undisclosed location tonight to celebrate. Per requests from the comments, you can expect us to record a raucous song-and-dance number for you, which we’ll edit and release exclusively to backers.

PRODUCTION PLANS: There are several pieces that we can’t announce quite yet, but expect to hear big news about a weekend in November once we get more elements in place. We expect at this point to be shooting through November, with a break for Thanksgiving. (And this being a movie, plans can always change up until the moment we call “cut”.)

GAMES IN THE MOVIE: We’re going to be seeing some awesome games and gaming products in the film, which we’re very excited about! Even more exciting is that, since the sponsor rewards went untouched, we had the freedom to reach out to our favorite companies and designers to build the world of gaming seen in the film. This is not an exhaustive or final list (we’re probably missing people), but expect to see at least the following in the movie, in addition to Pathfinder and Romance of the Nine Empires:
■ Monte Cook’s Numenera, with a movie cameo from Monte!
■ Gaming Paper
■ Savage Worlds
■ Brushfire
■ Deliria: Goblin Markets
■ And quite a few more. After all, we have a game store to fill!

JOURNEYQUEST: Since many of you already backed JourneyQuest last year (and everyone is probably sick of updates), here’s just a quick word about our final two episodes. They’re going to be late. Managing this campaign turned into a full time job this week and we’re behind. Also… we’re reshooting a big fight from episode nine tomorrow. The opportunity to fix a weather-related problem from that horrific March shoot came up and we’re taking it. It will make a huge difference in the quality of the final project. (And if you’re not watching JourneyQuest yet, go catch up! We’re super-proud of our other fantasy comedy show!)

WAFFLES: You get them. Yes, you. And you. And you over there. Every single one of you. Waffles. Go. Treat yourself. You deserve it!

On behalf of everybody at Zombie Orpheus Entertainment, Dead Gentlemen Productions, plus the movie support teams at Gen Con LLC, Paizo Publishing, and AEG, thank you! We’re going to make a hell of a movie![/quote]


[b][SIZE=“6”]DAY 51

[b][SIZE=“6”]DAY 52

[SIZE=“4”] 52 Days, 4,311 Backers and $400k+!![/SIZE][/B]

[b][SIZE=“6”]Final Update:[/SIZE][/B]

Thanks to the generous support of over 4000 fans, The Gamers: Hands of Fate is funded!

[b][SIZE=“4”]ACHIEVED! $325,000[/SIZE][/B] – Every supporter who has pledged $100 and above receives a kickstarter-campaign-exclusive miniature of The Shadow.

[b][SIZE=“4”]ACHIEVED! $340,000[/SIZE][/B] – Every supporter who has pledged $100 and above receives a DVD of The Gamers: Live, plus every supporter gets to see the online video early. See the trailer here.

[b][SIZE=“4”]ACHIEVED $346,000[/SIZE][/B] – Mini Stretch Goal: Hands of Fate is now the second-most funded film on Kickstarter ever and the most-funded narrative feature!

[b][SIZE=“4”]ACHIEVED $380,000[/SIZE][/B] – AEG will produce the 15th Anniversary “Romance of the Nine Empires” Boxed Set, a fully playable card-based set! Additionally, every supporter will receive a card from the game, signed by us.

[b][SIZE=“4”]ACHIEVED $385,000[/SIZE][/B] - We will produce a Brother Silence miniature. The $20 set of minis will include Brother Silence at no extra cost.

[b][SIZE=“4”]ACHIEVED $400,000[/SIZE][/B] - Exclusive The Gamers: Hands of Fate embroidered patches for every contributor!


Looks like we got beat out by a mere $300+

[quote][size=5]Kaufman and Fan Cred: Two Most Funded Films, Back-to-Back[/size]

Last Sunday, Charlie Kaufman’s Anomalisa ended with $406,237, becoming the most funded film project on Kickstarter to date. His success followed closely on the heels of another: a fantasy comedy web series called The Gamers: Hands of Fate, which held the title of Most Funded film for a brief two days after ending with $405,917 on the Friday before.

The two projects broke the record back-to-back, one by building on an established history of industry acclaim, the other by tapping into a thriving, underground community of likeminded fans. Both deliberately chose to sidestep institutional methods — and the funding that comes with it — in order to go directly to their respective communities. And both succeeded wildly. Here’s how:

[size=5]**Charlie Kaufman’s Anomalisa

Backers: 5,770
Pledged: $406,237
Goal: $200,000**[/size]

A critically acclaimed filmmaker with an established reputation (not to mention massive fan following) for pushing the limits of narrative and form, Charlie Kaufman pitched Anomalisa as a true passion project, calling it “the film he had always wanted to make” He then approached Kickstarter as a deliberate alternative to an established Hollywood system that he felt would compromise his creative vision. Truly, both his subject matter and medium were somewhat unconventional — a middle-aged man crippled by the mundanity of his everyday life, rendered in stop-motion animation — but fans were thrilled to give the beloved auteur free artistic reign.

The team also doubled down in the project’s final days, posting updates and offering a slew of limited new rewards that helped pull in over $23,000 in the last twenty four hours of funding time. (The tweet from Stephen Colbert didn’t hurt, either.)

[size=5]**The Gamers: Hands of Fate

Backers: 4,331
Pledged: $405,917
Goal: $320,000**[/size]

The Gamers didn’t have a Hollywood pedigree. In fact, they had been turned down again and again by a television industry disinterested in their commercially unviable subject matter. When they came to Kickstarter, it was to tap directly into a loyal and highly active fan base that they knew existed (after all, they were part of it). Hands of Fate was their third successul Kickstarter project, but its exceptionally strong showing of support was built on more than just fan fervor — it was also the reputation for follow through, community, and consistently satisfying content that the team had established with their first two projects.[/quote]


[size=5]OH MY![/size]

[quote]Zombie Orpheus Entertainment
about an hour ago

As we’re working on set design for Hands of Fate:

Ben – "These need to be double-d doors."
Blue – “So they’d have really big knockers?”[/quote]


Looks like they actually made the local Seattle news tonight!

-video in the link-

[quote][size=5]Seattle movie maker sees dreams ‘kickstarted’ by fan-funded website[/size]

Posted on September 14, 2012 at 6:30 PM

Ben Dobyns was viral before viral was a thing.

In 2000 he made videos for fun with friends from Pacific Lutheran University. Not long after, “The Gamers” was a cult sensation in the online fantasy gaming world.

“It was a viral internet hit long before YouTube,” said Dobyns from his studio in Seattle’s International District.

He and his friends were swamped with requests for a sequel. They had spent $500 of their own money and a big budget wasn’t in their future.

Twelve years later, the moviemaking landscape has changed, thanks, in great part, to, a web site where fans fund business ventures they believe in. Call it “Capitalism meets democracy in action.”

“If you like it, you can keep us going. If not, you can cancel us,” said Dobyns.

Dobyns put out a request for donations. This week, those contributions topped $400,000 - sending his cult fantasy film to legendary status. Although internet fame is fleeting.

“We were the most funded video project ever on Kickstarter…for almost 36 hours,” Dobyns said. Academy Award winner Charlie Kaufman beat them by just $300.

Dobyns believes that’s good news.

“It raises the bar for everyone out there,” he said. “There are people out there who will support people like us, and that’s important.”[/quote]

Ben’s having a fit about it though…

-quoted from their FB comments-

[quote]Ben Dobyns

Witnesses will back me up that I spoke clearly and succinctly about the fans and the collaborative process. I’m so sorry that this comes across as being all about me. (Also, I will refrain from starting a flame way about economics, capitalism, and the collective nature of our business plan.) Anyway, sorry everyone![/quote]


[quote]Nov 9th - 11th, 2012

Doubletree Southcenter, Tukwila WA

Begins Friday at Noon, ends Sunday at 2pm

Three days of gaming, filming and fun in the Pacific Northwest! (Attendees get to be a part of the GAMERS 3: HANDS OF FATE filming experience.)

24-hours of nonstop games, films and fun![/quote]

[quote]Zombie Orpheus Entertainment

We’re doing this. Because we’re totally insane. And because it’s going to be awesome! Come join us for… ZOECON 2012!

Email heading out to Kickstarter backers shortly with information about pledge levels and tickets. Here’s the summary:

• Blue Robe JQ2 backers and up receive VIP passes to the JQ2 premiere on Friday, November 9th
• Hands of Fate backers at $999 and up receive full passes to ZOECon
• Much more info in the forthcoming email, but in short, if you pledged for those levels, hang tight and don’t order tickets yet[/quote]


The official ZOEcon announcement.

[quote][size=5]Announcing ZOECon 2012![/size]

Update #28

Hello, everybody! After much work to pull pieces together, we’re ready to announce a major new project for ZOE and DG— ZOECon 2012, our very first convention!

This is something we’ve dreamed about for years now, a chance to get together with friends and fans to hang out, play games, watch some cool movies, and have a big party. But not too big. In fact, we’re limiting ZOECon to just 250 tickets. That helps us keep it small, personal, and fun.

Here are the key details:
■This is a real convention, running November 9-11 in Seattle. We’ll have 24/7 gaming, panels, screenings, free snacks and drinks, signings, awesome swag, and more.
■We’re inviting creators of ZOE-affiliated shows to come out, screen, hold panels, and party as well.
■We’ll be premiering JourneyQuest Season Two the evening of Friday the 9th. (Those of you who pledged for tickets to this during the JQ2 campaign, yes, you’ll receive a VIP invitation to the screening.)
■We’ll be shooting the LARP scene for The Gamers: Hands of Fate the afternoon and evening of Saturday the 10th at the convention. Backers who pledged for appearances in the LARP, this is your definite date.
■Backers who pledged $999 or more to Hands of Fate will receive free passes to ZOECon for the entire weekend. (Those will arrive in a separate email soon.)
■All ZOECon attendees will have the option, but not the obligation, to assist us as background extras as our cast and crew shoots scenes from Hands of Fate at the convention. The shooting schedule will be posted at the con and attendees will be able to sign up to join us for various shooting blocks at their leisure. Plus, we think that some guests will really enjoy just watching the moviemaking process!

While this is designed as a local convention, out-of-town guests are more than welcome to join us. We’ve negotiated a spectacular room rate ($119 for up to four people) that includes free hot breakfast and wifi, free transportation directly from SeaTac Airport is available, and we’ll have a team of ZOE and DG members on site to help orient travelers. Tickets are limited to 250 and are available now at Early Bird tickets are $150 and include a ZOECon 2012 t-shirt, massive swag bag, collectible pin, 24/7 snacks, sodas, and coffee, and as many fun events as we can fit into three days. We hope to see you there!


(updated online as your questions come in):

Am I invited to the Con? Yes, anyone is welcome to get a ticket while they are available.

For free if I’m in the LARP day? Yes, anyone who pledged for Hands of Fate at $999 or above receives a free pass to the entire convention as an additional thank you for the extraordinary degree of support.

And when you say I might have pledged for tickets already… how do I know whether I did? Blue Robe supporters and higher from the JourneyQuest Season Two campaign will receive VIP tickets to the premiere screening on Friday night. Those supporters do not need ZOECon tickets to attend the screening, but must purchase convention passes if they wish to attend the rest of the weekend.[/quote]


I smell a Red Card!

"Let’s hope the… | Facebook

[QUOTE][B]Zombie Orpheus Entertainment[/B]

‎"Let’s hope the impact of striking a chord is never diminished" - Matt Vancil[/QUOTE]



[quote]Zombie Orpheus Entertainment

We sent the Hands of Fate surveys this morning.
A disturbing number of you have requested that we draw dinosaurs on the boxes when we ship.
People, we are at our dinosaur limit.
Please limit future illustration requests to unicorns, rainbows and waffles.[/quote]


[size=5]Gaming Schedule - ZOECon[/size]

[quote]Zombie Orpheus Entertainment

The ZOECon Gaming Schedule is now posted on the site! Keep checking back as more gaming events are added.[/quote]


[quote]Zombie Orpheus Entertainment

This The Gamers: Dorkness Rising fan-created poster is awesome! [/quote]


Relentless: The Game of Non-Stop Zombie Carnage by Crucifiction Games — Kickstarter

[QUOTE][B]Zombie Orpheus Entertainment[/B]

Copied from Crucifiction Games, who has an awesome idea:

–We here at Crucifiction Games would like to send our thanks to Zombie Orpheus Entertainment for their support of our Kickstarter. In order to make this even more fun please post in the comments which ZOE characters you would like to see zombified and included in the card set.[/QUOTE]