The End of Dresden Lives

Well folks, we have some disappointing news, plain and simple. After a whole lot of thinking, talking, budgeting, and planning, we’ve made the difficult decision to cancel the Dresden Lives project. This wasn’t an easy choice by far, because we were looking forward to it ourselves! But at the end of the day, we feel like it was the only choice we could make, and we’d like to tell you about how we got to this point. It boils down to three key issues.

  1. Dresden’s kind of a big deal.

The world of the Dresden Files is freegin’ awesome! It’s also big and complex and interesting, and we know how important it is to get it right. As fans of Jim’s books, we wouldn’t settle for anything less. That’s why Evil Hat’s Dresden projects have historically taken more resources, manpower, and time to bring them to press. Of course we bring our A-game to all of our material, but in this case the novels are so full of chlorofiends and reanimated dinosaurs and Denarians and things that we want to use in our games right now please, and it takes extra work to make sure that our version matches up with Jim’s vision. Which brings us to our next point.

  1. We need to plan better, and we’re working on that.

Evil Hat has grown by leaps and bounds, and we’ve got more projects on the table than we ever have. But over the past couple of months, we realized that we bit off more than we could chew. And that included multiple Dresden projects at the same time, with all the extra A-gaminess we needed to bring to them in terms of art production, editing, marketing support, operational support, and so on. As we continued to plan, we realized we don’t have enough A-game to bring to all our current projects, and bringing the B-game isn’t an option. Something had to go. Which brings us to our last point, sadly.

  1. The Lives line is the most logical thing to go.

We’ve never wanted to be a one-trick pony, and that means branching out in new directions rather than being exclusively the Fate company. With that in mind, we’ve released a few board and card games, dabbled a bit with the Apocalypse engine, and partnered with a variety of folks to bring new cross-overs and new ideas to your table. We’ve already expanded into a lot of new territory this year, and adding another is going to make it even harder to bring the A-game. Because we haven’t yet brought a LARP into market, that’s the most logical cut. We need to work to develop our current territory before we forge forward again.

So what does this mean for Dresden Lives? After all, aren’t the lovely people at Phoenix Outlaw running it already? Yes, they are, and we hope they’ll continue to run events as a fan work like they did in the beginning. Stay tuned to their site for updates! We have nothing but love and respect for Shoshana and Josh and all their people at PO—designing LARPs is hard! We had no idea how hard it was until we dug into it. At the end of the day, this was a business planning decision. A tough and poor-tasting one, to be sure, but one we felt we had to make in order to insure that every product we put out there is as good as it can be.

As for the Lives line in general, we may look into it again sometime in the future when we have the resources to—you guessed it—bring our A-game. You can bet that we’ll let you know if that happens.