Binding World Update #1 – A Peek at the Helltamer

Work has been slow on Binding World as my time has been taken up with my day job at Monstercat and my other venture, Streamer Showdown, which just aired its pilot episode two days ago.

Those that have signed up for the newsletter and specified that they would like to help proofreading should check their emails.

I have the first versions of the compendium classes written and ready for playtesting, as well as a solid foundation for the three dungeon starters.

Each dungeon starter has a base of Questions and Impressions which are used to set the scene and build the foundation of the story. On top of that are the Discoveries, Dangers, and Custom Moves that they have. Those are quite a bit of fun to write, and I’ll include some of them in a future update. For now, though, let’s look at the Helltamer.

http://happy-mutt.deviantart.com/art/Hell-333773863
Hell by Happy-Mutt

The Helltamer Preview

The Helltamer compendium class is for a character that has a supernatural connection to hell, a connection they use to harness hell’s energy. That energy is then unleashed to cast hellspells.

The Helltamer is a spell-casting class that works a bit differently than the Wizard or Cleric. Rolling dice isn’t required to cast a spell you know. Instead, the Helltamer rolls when they use the move Servitae Infernum, which gains them inferno they can spend to cast spells.

If you spend 1 inferno you cast a spell you know. Each spell also has an infernal ability that bolsters its effect. If you choose to attempt to use the infernal effect, then you are required to roll.

As an example, here is the spell Blaze of Souls: The ground breaks and cracks at the target location, releasing a gout of flames from below. Anyone caught in the blaze takes 2d6 damage ignoring armor.” It is essentially a fireball with no flight path but its infernal ability makes it a little more interesting: “Infernal: The souls of the damned reach up through the flames, holding targets of your choice in place.”

The Helltamer can choose two spells to start with when they unlock the class. There are currently 5 spells, but that number is very fluid. Learning a new spell is something you can do once per level, and it requires you to roll. Roll low enough and you’ll encounter one of the drawbacks of being a helltamer: corruptions.

Corruptions are physical changes to your body brought about by toying with the power of hell. Every time you attempt to learn a new spell, or open yourself up to gain inferno, you risk gaining a new corruption. They can also manifest as a hard move from the GM.

Players are free to pick their own corruptions, but a list and generator table is provided for inspiration. You could gain serpent’s pupils, grow horns, be branded with demonic runes, and more.

If you’d like to take a look at the Helltamer in its current form, as well as the Medium and the Bloodbinder, please sign up for the newsletter on the Binding World landing page and mark the checkbox to help with proofreading.

 

Binding World Landing Page – Newsletter Signup Form

While a lot of work needs to be done on the actual project, I decided early on to create a landing page for Binding World. You can view the page here.

Binding World Landing Page
Binding World Landing Page

The main goal of the page right now is to gain subscribers to the newsletter I created for Binding World updates. Subscribers will be given updates about the project and, most importantly, be notified when it’s available for purchase.

As an incentive I’m going to give anyone who signs up for the newsletter a 20% off coupon to buy the PDF from Payhip when the product launches. People signing up can also indicate that they’d like to help edit and proofread the text. If they do I’ll give them comment access on the Google Doc.

The Tech

The website is a very simple single-page app. Here’s what I’m using

  • NodeJS for the server
  • ExpressJS and Jade for the HTML structure
  • Bootstrap for the styles
  • Heroku hobby plan
  • MailChimp for the newsletter

Advertising

When I first created the page I decided to buy some advertising as a test. I went with Facebook and Reddit for their ability to target very specifically.

For the Facebook ad I targeted everyone in Canada, United States, and Germany who speak English aged 20+ and who have Dungeon World in their list of likes. I set up a daily budget of $5, but I accidentally left it running and spent $30.36 total. The ad, shown below, was seen by 459 people and clicked 25 times.

Facebook Ad
Facebook Ad

For the reddit ad I purchased an ad on the /r/DungeonWorld subreddit with a budget of $5. I’ve so far only spent $4.61 and I’ve got 58 clicks from 10,727 impressions. I also got one comment from feyrath (hi feyrath!).

reddit ad
reddit ad

Here are more detailed stats on the reddit ad:

If I decide to spend more money I’ll definitely be going with reddit over Facebook since it has a Cost Per Click of $0.08 while Facebook had a CPC of $1.21.

Results

The site has been live since Sept 26th and here are some highlights from Google analytics:

  • Sessions: 145
  • Users: 115
  • Pageviews: 155
  • Bounce rate: 93.10%

The bounce rate is very high, and I’d love to get that down.

During this time I’ve got 16 subscribers to my newsletter. One is me and 3 of them are friends I recognize, so that’s about 12 people I don’t know who signed up to know more about the project. If just one of them buys the PDF then I’ve met the goals I specified here.