We have a mantra here, at DocPalindrome.com:
‘Be creative, make a thing.’
I say it at the end of each Doc Palindrome Podcast and I reiterate it as often as I can when I write. Whenever I encounter something that exemplifies this philosophy, I like to draw attention to it. This sometimes leads me to spending time sifting through various crowd-funding projects on the many options for building capital for a project through engaging with the audience. Often, I find projects I dig and, sometimes, I fire off an email to see if I can talk about it my fancy website. Sometimes, they approach me, which is the case with the Wartune novel.
A turn-based strategy MMO, Wartune launched three years ago as a in-browser game developed to enrich the play experience through incredible skill depth, spectacular animation, player-verses-player and guild-verses-guild play, massively epic boss battles, and exciting background stories. The goal of Wartune, from the beginning, was to deliver a fully-immersive gaming experience utilizing the best of strategy, turn-based, and MMO genres and continually engage those who play it through daily events and rewards. One of the key components of Wartune, right from the beginning, was an exciting and unique world background in which the players may take part. Certainly it isn’t the first MMO to offer the opportunity to join the battle between good and evil, but establishing a background that gave purpose to this battle is what sets Wartune aside from many other games. All of these factors have led to 10 million registered players across 30 countries, 100,000 of which play the game each day.
To further develop the background of this world, they recently launched a crowd-funding campaign on Indigogo.com entitled, ‘Browser to Book: The Wartune Novel.’ Building upon the established foundation of the browser game, the Wartune novel will detail the background of the world, telling the story of a young prince whose idyllic life has been swept away by war and the race against the clock for the youth to accept his fate and earn his crown before a god’s quest for ultimate power succeeds at the cost of all of humanity.
‘Players not only clear dungeons and level up, they have become part of the story.’ Says project leader, Ever Chan, ‘There are quite a few players who have been asking to know more about Wartune’s universe. They wonder what influence their decision have, and where all the characters came from. They ask why they need to defeat Yaros, and who will be the real savior. That’s why we’ve decided to publish a novel.’
Penning the as-yet-to-be-named Wartune novel will be a relative newcomer, Chioma Osifo. A teacher from Nigeria, Chioma has had years of experience writing novels, biographies, and memoirs as a scribe-for-contract. Offering a sample of her writing, the Wartune team found her through a website featuring freelance writers. Her initial outline and samples were enthusiastic, emotional, and unique. The challenge of working on a project like this is one that Chioma is excited to undertake, with the hopes that her characters will be compelling and will resonate with the fans.
With an expected release date of the Second Quarter of 2016, the Wartune novel will be available through all major eBook platforms in English. At this stage, there are still a great deal of opportunities to be a part of funding for the Wartune novel; the chance to discover the world of the game anew. If fans demand it, Chioma’s Wartune novel may precede an entire series that expands the universe far beyond the boundaries of the game.
This is what excited me about this project. Sure, the millions of players may enjoy the game, but developing media beyond the browser adds dimension to the experience. Over the last decade, the idea that nü-media formats have the ability to cross platforms and become something more than the original content has gone from being thought of to be insane to an idea that is embraced by the audience. With the coming release of a film based on the mobile game, Angry Birds, the idea that format is not the final form of a piece of intellectual property has kind of come full circle.
The first truly popular form of entertainment was the written word. By the time of the 19th Century, the idea that a series of novels, plays, or short stories could serve as a means to tell a tale about a singular character or world had become something that was commonplace. With the advent of radio and motion pictures, the first tales to cross the bounds of media were those that the audience had gravitated towards from the beginning. To this day, when people think of The Wizard of Oz or Frankenstein, the first thought is generally the image made famous by the remarkably popular feature films.
And now, Wartune makes the jump to a new form of media, but the oldest form of entertainment. Development of this property as a novel means more than just another means to profit from the world-building done by the creative team behind Wartune, it means making a universe richer, more exciting, and capable of developing far beyond the powerful, engaging MMO it has become. Anyone who knows me or has been paying attention knows that I have a fascination with world-building. This project, without objection, qualifies as doing just that.
It means taking a ‘thing’ and using it as leverage to build a totally different ‘thing.’
For the third anniversary of Wartune, the developers sent t-shirts to their most dedicated players. Launching the Wartune novel project means continuing to build layers upon layers of content to enrich the lives of fans around the world. It means giving an opportunity to a writer whose work may have, until now, gone relatively unnoticed. It means more than universe-building, it’s storytelling.
And isn’t telling a story the whole point of entertainment, anyways?
The goal of all of entertainment is to escape from our familiar lives and discover something new. By triggering our imaginations and opening our minds, novels, comic books, movies, television shows, games, and every other means of engaging with entertainment allows us to grow. Perhaps, in our escape, we see some aspect of ourselves or our lives reflected back. When this occurs, the escape has managed to ‘level up,’ enriching our lives.
And, who knows, when this happens, maybe then it’s time for us to tell our own story, build our own world, and ‘make a thing.’
For more information, please visit:
Wartune Official Website: www.wartune.com
Facebook fan page: https://www.facebook.com/Wartune/