So I've just re-read what I wrote from last year:
"One year from now, I visualize Invisible City Productions as
a small-to-medium sized publishing house with a reputation for producing
well-designed games and distributing fringe 'zines and novels. I picture
the Invisible City Productions web site as a well-written and reliable
source for information on the 'zine community, with a games section
known for its nifty free games and information about upcoming Invisible
City Productions game releases. Lastly, I hope that we'll be known as a
community for artists, authors, and designers -- a place where these
people can come to share and spread their creations while getting the
credit that they deserve."
We've kept to our promise to deliver one free game each month, and
the 'zine section of the website is robust and well-read. Downloads of
game files continue to climb and word about the site continues to
spread. We haven't produced a single commercial release yet, but our
business plan is finally finished and we're working on the layout,
proofing, editing, and production details for our initial game releases.
We've got a good plan for where to go from here and for what we want to
accomplish. Even though we didn't reach my goal of bursting onto the
gaming scene within a year, I'm confident that we'll get there soon -- I
just didn't realize that setting up ICP, learning everything there is to
know about manufacturing and distributing board games, holding a
full-time job, staying in a serious relationship, and maintaining a
semblance of a life would take as much effort as it has. (Go
So, I think that we've learned a lot over the past year.
Coordinating our (Sharon, Jeremy, and myself) efforts to get the Game of the Month ready
and released has been a lot of fun and a good learning experience to
boot. It has improved our respective skills and honed our ability to
get projects done on a regular basis under deadline conditions.
Engaging in a repeating project that incorporates all facets of an
organization is something that I'd recommend to any organization looking
to improve their teamwork skills.
Outside of ICP, life has been great. Sharon and I are doing well in
our "real-world" jobs at Dell and Apple; we're engaged and due to wed in
late August of 2001. Austin has been just fantastic for us since moving
here in August of 1999 (You can read all about the trip to Austin in our
House-Switch Project (Boy, that's not a terribly dated
reference, is it?).), and continues to get better (except for our
recent issues with rainwater leakage in our most former apartment).
We've got friends, and hobbies, and all sorts of neato stuff to keep us
Yep. Life is good.
So, where do I want to go from here with ICP? Well, I still want to
see us produce and distribute at least one board game this year -
ideally Inevitable, but I'd settle for getting Psycho Killer out by
October '01 (but making that deadline would be problematic at best - I'm
going to have to settle for an '02 release). Perhaps a retail copy of
Run or RYB... There
are a lot of changes and improvements that I'd like to make to the web
site. I want to set up procedures for the recruitment of art, stories,
games, and other projects from sources outside of ICP (although we're
not going to be ready to do these things until we've learned how to do
it ourselves). I want to set up a fun and rewarding support structure
for fan boosters. I want to ensure that all levels of customer
(wholesaler, retailer, and consumer) can make their thoughts heard and
effect change on ICP. I'm here to have fun and be successful, and I
want to ensure that everyone involved in ICP gets what they want out of
it as well. Our customers and designers need to understand that they
are also our partners, and I want all of us to share our successes with
There are games where everyone can win. With a little work,
Invisible City Productions can be one of them.