The Saving Throw returns from its week off bearing sad news for any fans of Big Eyes, Small Mouth or A Game of Thrones fans, or fans of any Guardians of Order products. Yes, if you haven't heard the bad news already, Guardians of Order is going out of business. While Big Eyes, Small Mouth looks like it still has a future, the future for the A Game of Thrones RPG is uncertain.
The contest is moving into its final weeks now. With the new scoring introduced last week, new participants still have a shot at the prize, so join now if you're interested. We have contest entries from Carabbit and Macstorm this week. Macstorm brings us a story about the final battle in his message board RPG, and Carabbit tells us about an ill-fated fight with a troll on a bridge.
And with that, it's time for the column...
Gaming Tip of the Week
"When bribing an enemy with money doesn't work, you could always try a pan of cookies. Hey, it might work... then again, probably not."
On August 1, Mark MacKinnon, the president of Guardians of Order, posted a letter announcing that Guardians of Order had "more or less immediately" ceased operations. This follows a web post made earlier by author George Martin which broke the news of the company's closure early. George Martin is the author of The Game of Thrones books upon which Guardians of Order's roleplaying game published under the same name were based. Mr. MacKinnon has stated that the company's debt, the softening tabletop RPG market, and the drastic shift in exchange rates between the US and Canadian dollar were partially to blame, but also takes personal responsibility for not reacting to the unfavorable situation more quickly, instead trying to continue on as usual.
The company reports that Big Eyes, Small Mouth Third Edition is finished and will be published by another company; this company was not named. Guardians of Order is trying to find another company to take The Game of Thrones RPG, so the future of that game is uncertain.
On July 31, Pokemon USA, Inc. announced that the 2006 Pokemon TCG World Championships would be hosted in Anaheim, California. Players from more than 30 countries will compete for various prizes and Pokemon merchandise. Additionally, the top sixteen players in each age category, 10 and younger, 11 to 14, and 15 and up, will win scholarship awards worth more than $100,000. This event will be from August 18 to 20 at the Hilton Anaheim.
Steve Jackson Games has decided to experiment with using "print on demand" technology which allows for cheap publishing of small runs of books, such as few hundred to a single copy. At Gen Con Indy, a special print on demand edition of the upcoming title GURPS Bio-Tech will be available. The edition will be softcover with the interior pages in black and white, while the standard release will be hardcover and in full color. A similar edition of GURPS Mysteries will also be available, though this edition will also be available in the company's Warehouse 23 online store as well.