Geek subscription boxes seem to be everywhere these days. But Swansea-based company Only Tabletop are hoping to bring something a little different to the table.
I caught up with Anthony from Only Tabletop to chat about his board gaming subscription box, TROVE.
Geeks in Wales: In a nutshell, what is Trove?
Only Tabletop: TROVE is a not-for-profit, customisable subscription box for tabletop gaming with a specific focus on niche/indie gaming and supporting indie craftspeople/makers.
Geeks in Wales: Subscription boxes seem to be everywhere these days, especially since the popularity of Loot Crate. What do you think sets Trove apart?
Only Tabletop: I think Trove finds its place in this growing world of subscription boxes in a few unique ways.
The first and foremost of these is the bespoke quality to our boxes – there will never be a standard box. We take preferences from customers so that we can tailor the content to best fit their tastes.
The second key element is the nature of our content. Only Table Top is a retailer of niche and indie games and we believe in supporting small enterprise while introducing new worlds to gamers and this carries on to Trove.
Working directly with an array of artists and makers we aim to bring you games that support small businesses and champion high quality and original ideas.
Finally, I’d say it’s our “not-for-profit” model for Trove. It’s this that allows us to condense so much into the box. This isn’t about money, it’s about games and the fantastic people who create and play them.
Geeks in Wales: Did you decide from the outset that you were going to support indie designers and publishers rather than the traditional subscription box route of securing licensed products from established publishers, or was this something that came about later?
Only Tabletop: Funny enough this all started with a love for Carcassonne and abject horror at realising that most people we knew had never heard of the game and generally thought of anything beyond Risk as some curious world they would never be exposed to.
It was at this point where we realised that we wanted to make a box that would be half a retail bundle of great niche-yet-established games, and half undiscovered territory.
So yeah, it’s at the very core of Only Table Top and it will always be our model.
Geeks in Wales: The main game that the initial box comes with is Tempus Nautica. Can you give a little more info about the game?
Only Tabletop: It’s set in a universe where time has become a commodity and one that has been mined to exhaustion. You’ll need to take control of one of five characters, from three species with distinct interests, and follow their particular aims to win in this space faring, time manipulating game of adventure, hijinks and combat.
What this makes in a game is a fast-paced game to help you lose your friends. It’s has a D6 roll-and-move system with a degree of customisability that we believe will be challenging enough to engage veteran gamers while being engaging with non-gamers too.
It’s not just for board gamers either, as Tempus Nautica expands in a roleplay system. The Trove box features two quests and the standalone version will also be the launch platform for a squad-based strategy game.
Geeks in Wales: Do you plan on going with a different theme for each box?
Only Tabletop: Yes, each box has a theme which we feel holds the boxes together and gives you a chance to opt out of a box with no fine or fee if you don’t care for this quarter’s theme.
The four themes across 2017 are Steam, Revolt, Science and Horror, all of which we are already having so much fun preparing for.
Geeks in Wales: If you could give one piece of advice to someone about running a Kickstarter campaign, what would it be?
Only Tabletop: I’d suggest ensuring that you generate as much interest as possible beforehand and are able to break down all the elements of your Kickstarter for people to get a really good idea of what they can expect.
Some key points:-
- People love pictures and videos. Show them everything you can.
- Setting a low target can damage customer confidence surprisingly.
- Make postage free if at all possible.
- You will be spammed by bots and interested parties – learn to filter as there are some very important messages you might skip over.
This is our first Kickstarter and it’s been a heck of a learning curve. I wouldn’t launch another without a video and a larger social network that’s for sure.
Saying that, we’re stoked to see what happens over the course of the campaign and to package together our first run.
Geeks in Wales: Where can people find more information about Trove?
Geeks in Wales: And one for fun: If you decided to dress up in a costume for a convention (and expense wasn’t an issue) what would your dream costume be?
Only Tabletop: Well, I once spent spent a good month building a cardboard ARM commander from Total Annihilation but I reckon my next cosplay is a a custom that’s been in my head for a while. It’s some sort of rough ‘n’ ready galactic ranger, a weird amalgamation of Malcom Reynolds, Boba Fett and Bravestarr.