I have tried to donate every year to the Jack Vasel Memorial Fund Auction. So far I’ve only missed one. This year, in addition to a few other games, I’m donating a print copy of Mars Colony: 39 Dark. The high bidder gets a copy shipped to him or her. If you’re in the U.S., shipping is free. Otherwise, I pay the first $5. Please bid generously as all of the proceeds go to the Memorial Fund.
In case you’re wondering what the Jack Vasel Memorial Fund is, here’s a description from the board:
The Jack Vasel Memorial Fund was started in April, 2011, in memory of Jack Vasel, son of Tom Vasel. Tom is an influential voice in the board gaming hobby, and the community rallied around him in his time of need. Amazed by this generosity and kindness, Tom was determined to help others who might undergo similar tragedies. The purpose for which the Fund is formed is to collect and provide financial assistance to members of the public who are part of the gaming community and who have suffered personal hardship. It is our hope and prayer that the Jack Vasel Memorial Fund will provide Jack with a legacy to help out the entire gaming community. The Fund is recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charity.
I also recommend reading a few of the stories posted by people who have received help from the Fund. I assure you, they will tug at your heartstrings.
I was surprised at just how difficult it was to come up with 32 different fringe groups for the 39 Dark Kickstarter reward. It wasn’t that there was a lack of groups. Rather it was difficult to choose 32 groups that, as a whole, represented a sufficiently multi-national swath. I also wanted to amass a collection of groups that represented both the right and left, extremist and peaceful side of protest. I’m sure I’ve failed on at least one front, but I’m nonetheless happy with the collection. What I realized was that it’s impossible to capture the spirit of protest around the world in a simple deck of cards. But I also realized that I can make some pretty darn interesting combinations from the deck I did create. Available now for purchase.
I have been hard at work on my new game, Mars Colony: 39 Dark. It is a sequel to the original Mars Colony set at some unspecified time after the events surrounding Kelly Perkin’s attempt to right the Colony. This time, the Savior is a new character, Lane Perkins, who is the leader of an underground protest movement fighting against the growing corruption in the Colony government. I think you’ll like it. I know I’m excited about the project.
For now, here’s an excerpt from the game’s introduction:
A solar day on Mars is 39 minutes and 35 seconds longer than on Earth.
You, Lane Novak, are a native Martian, born and raised. Once a trusted government insider, you have been tapped by the Martian uprising. A group calling themselves “39 Dark” is protesting for change. They are in need of a talented leader with a history of making the voice of the people heard. The current system is broken, and the everyday citizens that have joined the ranks of 39 Dark are looking to you for guidance and strength. You are obviously in over your head, but you have the potential to make good on the promises you have already made. You must calm the schisms that threaten to divide the movement, guide the loyalty that is fomenting in the streets against the Colony government, and force Mars Colony to change for the better before apathy and entrenched interests doom it to its current path. This is no easy task. You will probably fail, as has everyone who has tried before. But for now, you are the hero to be. A traitor to some, but a beacon for many.