[Crowdfunding is the in thing for obtaining money to fund a variety of projects, with Kickstarter being the most prominent of these sites. With new projects going live daily, it’s a chore to keep up with, let alone find, interesting genre projects. The Crowd Funding Roundup will be our effort to bring projects we think are interesting to your attention so you can, if you so choose, decide to help out. These posts will be a collaborative effort between James Aquilone and JP Frantz.]

Z*Con Pre-Production Fundraiser

What’s it about?

Z*Con is feature length film about four teen podcasters who are trapped at a comic convention when the zombie apocalypse breaks out. They use social media to share what’s going on inside with the outside world. It’s kind of like Goonies meets Shaun of the Dead set in…well….a comic convention.

Why it’s interesting: Zombies are big right now and Z*Con continues that trend by adding zombies to the convention circuit with a dose of new media thrown in for good measure. A couple of things are interesting about this project. First, this Kickstarter is only for the pre-production costs. Things like cameras, makeup, storyboarding, concept art, and the like. There will be two other Kickstarters to cover production and post-production costs. That’s unique as far as I can tell. Secondly, once the film has been released, proceeds will be donated to three different charities.

Five Little Zombies And Fred

What’s it about?

Five Little Zombies And Fred is a not-for-children children’s book, written and illustrated to speak to the child in every one. It tells the story of our hero Fred who finds himself in the middle of the zombie apocalypse. Will he survive with the help of his friend the Mountie? It is written by Jules Sherred and illustrated by Matt Schubbe, with songs written and performed by Errol Elumir and mixed/mastered by Chris Cogott, and video by Andrew Edgar.

Why it’s interesting: I don’t have to remind you that zombies are big right now. Here we have a (not for) kids book about zombies, and a boy named Fred. You can potentially receive an epub and physical copy of the book, along with the music. There are also a lot of interesting extras for pledging higher amounts. I’m rather intrigued to see what happens to Fred that makes this not for kids under 10. Hmm…

Solforge

What’s it about?

SolForge combines all of the strategy and depth of a traditional trading card game experience with the convenience of online and mobile gaming, trailblazing a new category of games, the Digital Collectible Game (DCG). Players will be able to experience Solforge absolutely free and can grow their collection just by playing the game.

Build your own decks to play against your friends, compete in online tournaments, and explore a rich fantasy world in a single-player campaign mode in which your actions can affect the direction of the story.

Why it’s interesting: Soulforge is, in part, developed with the help of Richard Garfield, of Magic: The Gathering fame. Magic is the iconic collectible card game (which ate much of my money) that paved the way for all the other games of its type. As stated, a completely digital CCG gives the developers a chance to do something different. Soulforge could be that difference. Cards that become more powerful as you play with them is a pretty cool idea that would be very difficult to implement in the analog world. That alone has caught my eye. Add in the fact that I like card games (yes, even CCGs) and I’ll be watching this project closely.

Project Giana

What’s it about?

Project Giana is the grandchild of The Great Giana Sisters, a Super Mario Bros clone made by the now-deceased founder of our company in the eighties. Of course, Nintendo didn’t like that, and the sisters got pulled off the shelves. Project Giana derives its name from our protagonist, a little girl stuck in a dream world. For Giana’s twenty-fifth anniversary, we wanted to do something of our own, with full creative control and no “dumbing down”. We’ve stuck to the classic core gameplay, but we’ve also expanded it with something new. Don’t worry – it’s not a random idea out of the blue, but builds on the central theme of our heroine transforming from “cutie” to “punky” within a dream world. You can now switch between both forms at will – any time, anywhere, and each form has its own abilities.

Why it’s interesting: All I have to say is that this game looks awesome. The art direction is stellar and melding platformer elements with the ability to swap “worlds” and abilities could add some extra challenge. And only $10 gets a you copy of the game.

Antiquities and Tangibles: A Short Fiction Collection

What’s it about?

A new collection by award-winning science fiction and fantasy author Tim Pratt, with an original story and author notes.

Why it’s interesting: his will be Tim Pratt’s third collection of short stories, following Little Gods and Hart & Boot & Other Stories. He says Antiquities and Tangibles will “include at least one new, never-before-published original story, plus story notes and an introduction. The final products will include a DRM-free e-book in assorted formats and a trade paperback edition.” For $10 you get the e-book. For $30, you’ll also get a signed trade paperback copy. For $500, Pratt will write a poem for you and send you a handwritten copy on “nice paper.”

Necronomicon: Cthulhu Mythos – A New Miniatures Line & Dice

What’s it about?

A set of 15 miniature figures of the creatures from H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos.

Why it’s interesting: A Cthulhu that fits in the palm of your hand! A Nyarlathotep you can carry in your pocket! A chainsaw-wielding Hastur! What else could you want? All miniatures are cast in lead-free pewter and are unpainted. For $9, you get a Lovecraft mini. Cthulhu, Dagon or Shub-Niggurath are $22 each. The complete set of 15 is $125. But you’ll have to act fast, the Kickstarter campaign ends Saturday night.

Molly Danger

What’s it about?

A graphic novel about the world’s most powerful 10-year-old superhero.

Why it’s interesting: Molly Danger is the first solo creator-owned project by comic book artist and writer Jamal Igle. He’s drawn for Action Comics, 52, Iron Man, Spider-Man and Supergirl, among many other publications. Molly Danger is his attempt to bring back fun, magic and “genuine good” to comics. For $25, you get a hardcover copy of the book, plus the PDF version.

Birds of Lore

What’s it about?

Birds of Lore is an illustrated book about a special “Mythologist” who can and will go to any length to catch a glimpse of the birds that he knows are more than mere legends.

Why it’s interesting: Birds of Lore is like The Big Year for fantasy geeks. As the creators say, it’s “the closest you can get to mythological bird-watching.” The breathtaking art was influenced by medieval bestiary books, illuminated manuscripts, Victorian design and a “general obsession with creating weird and memorable pages.” For $25, you get a paperback copy of the book, plus your name in the thank-you pages. There’s a limited-edition hardcover version for $50.

Out of Print eBook Jackets for iPad, Kindle Fire and Nexus 7

What’s it about?

A new line of Out of Print eBook jackets for iPad, Kindle Fire and Nexus 7.

Why it’s interesting: Love books? Real, physical books? With these e-book jackets, you can get the benefits of the new technology while keeping the look and feel of those dinosaurs known as hardcover books. The cases are made like the real deal, with book board and book cloth, and assembled by hand at the oldest bookbinder in the country. The covers even fold back completely for one-handed use. There are 10 to choose from, including Slaughterhouse Five, The Great Gatsby, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and A Clockwork Orange. Cover prices range from $40 to $45.

Filed under: Crowd Funding Roundup

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