October 5, 2015 by crew
Purgatory Miniatures materialised one sunny day driving through Suffolk, England. I mean, it literally materialised, it came from nowhere and just filled my head with utter nonsense initially but it did have an underpinning theme.
However this was not the traditional angel versus demons escapade, it needed to be something more. Something different, so with this idea in my head I spent the best part of a week endlessly writing and researching different ideas and concepts.
Initially there was no plan. The plan was quite simply “I have an idea and I think it might work”.
Settling On A Vision
Once I had decoded my own work (I swear Doctor’s scribbles are more legible next to mine) I set about establishing anchor points for the project. These would be my code and every time an idea or new possibility came about, I would check against these to “stay on target”.
- To make models that were fresh, unique and that painters would enjoy
- To appeal to gamers and painters by having a game to support the models
- Establish a breaking point, stick to it and operate ethically and honestly
The latter of these was fundamentally important. This is a self-funded project so there was a limit or stopping point where I would review my progress against spending in line with likelihood of any success.
Initially it was unnerving. I fondly recall my first forays into Deviant Art, where I pitched my concept and waited to see what would come back. I got over one hundred responses to the advert which was humbling and I responded to every single one. They had taken the time to submit works or requests and I gave my time to respond with thanks and in nearly all cases with reasons why I had not chosen them.
Feedback is crucial in this industry and its value is nigh on indeterminable. I chose three artists in the end and I am still very pleased with my choices and we have a fantastic working relationships.
It was at this point that I’d chatted with my best mate. We’d know each other for nearly twenty years and though he was not ‘in the hobby’ he was fascinated with what I was up to. The creative possibilities snared him almost immediately and since that point we agreed to go into business together.
The World Grows
Explaining my ambitions and goals we quickly agreed on what we wanted to do.
Alongside the three core foundation stones was that we would…
- Create a recognisable brand
- Enter the market
- Attend an exhibition to raise awareness (Salute)
- Go to crowd funding
It was more detailed than that but our business plan is realistic and is solely dependent on our ability to fund the project and to deliver high quality models.
Meeting regularly we started character creation and for this we have rules. The character should be recognisable. People should be able to relate to each one and the character creation should be undertaken at polar opposites of the norm. For example…
Noah is a biblical character (people can relate), he has a story and that was the ark and rescuing two of every creature. What if our Noah was fed up with Earth and had refused his master? What if Noah is trying to reset the clock again but doesn’t have the power? What if Noah was a big game hunter? (Polar Opposite)
By applying that simple approach we have created some great characters that are now made real by the artists. Most importantly they are characters that bring a set of coloured pencils to a fresh canvass, because they have a history, it’s just up to us to change their future.
We moved on to find some very talented sculptors, we have written a BLOG Post on this which was received very well as we laid bare our experience with this part of the project to help anyone else going down this path. After two months we are now in a position where Purgatory has a model released and in the market place, with a second almost complete and a third booked for the coming months.
During all of this we reviewed our core values. We reviewed what we were doing and why. Where we doing things right? Had we succeeded in quality and uniqueness?
It was here that we decided right away that we wanted to be a company that rewarded people for their help, commitment and support because without it, we expect we would still be looking for a sculptor. For example every model we release will have a painting competition with two categories where the winner of each category will get the next model in the line free.
The gaming system would not be locked in either. By this we mean that we don’t want models trapped in sets where you have to buy the box for one model. Furthermore our aim became to have a completely compatible gaming system, where no matter what faction you wanted, if you liked that one model from anther faction, you would be able to use it positively.
We will invite people who have purchased our models and supported us to have an active role in games testing, we want you to have a say.
The Next Step
The game is now in development. We now have a better understanding of the process and are focusing our efforts on fresh ground. In the last week alone over twenty major characters (including two full factions) have alpha rules ready.
The game rules are also now beginning to form. The game is designed to be fun, simple and effective with a huge slice of humour chucked into the mix. We are moving away from the starchy and firmly heading towards giggles with your mate, over the gaming table in the man cave.
Now would be a good time to go back to the start. What is the aim of project? Where did it come from? And where is it going?
The idea started as a bit of fun and the aim of the project is to have fun whilst bringing exciting models to the market alongside an interactive and enjoyable game for you to have fun with.
As for where we are going? Well, we will be at Salute in 2016 and are booked in, already planning. By that point we will have at least three, maybe even four models on display and available to buy.
We are aiming to have some early rules available for play testing and if we are successful at Salute and receive a positive response we can assure you that we will be continuing on through 2016 ready for a Kickstarter project late 2016 or early 2017.
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"I chose three artists in the end and I am still very pleased with my choices and we have a fantastic working relationships..."
"What if Noah is trying to reset the clock again but doesn’t have the power?"