Coyote & Crow: Stories of the Free Lands

Coyote & Crow: Stories of the Free Lands

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Coyote & Crow Games
about 1 month ago

Project Update: Stories of the Free Lands Has Been Delivered!

The day has finally arrived. You should all be receiving an email notice soon that Stories of the Free Lands Volumes 1 and 2 have been delivered. 

In each of the two zipped folders I just sent out links to,  you'll find five playable PDF Stories, along with the bonus cover art, the art from our fan art contest, and a bonus motion graphic from artists Seth Rutledge.

I owe some thanks. Obviously to all of the writers and artists who contributed to Stories of the Free Lands. But also a big thank you to Rachel Savicki and Francita Soto. Francita did the layouts and she was so gracious about taking direction over a period of time that was so far out from our original estimates. And Rachel was originally hired to just be a copy editor. But when we had to change up our original project lead, she stepped in and developed the HECK out of these Stories. 

For everyone involved, this was supposed to be a small scale, yet unusual challenge. After all, most artists were only contributing one stories worth of pieces, each writer only had to put together around 5000 words each. When I set this project in motion, we were originally planning on these releasing at the same time as the Coyote & Crow RPG was supposed to be hitting retail shelves.

But writing for even an RPG with an established history can be a challenge and the uncomfortable truth was that none of us, even me, had extensive experience writing or playing Coyote & Crow. We were all green when it came to the nuances of what makes a good playable Story in Coyote & Crow. 

And now, here we are. Volume 1 & 2 are done. Let me be a little open with you here. This project nearly broke me, nearly broke my spirit. The damage that that our previous project lead and our event coordinator caused wasn't just financial, or just time. It was an emotional whiplash that really sapped me for quite a long time. The delays in putting this project together were just an endless string of paper cuts between my fingers. No one thing that would have stopped me, but in total, there were so many that I almost couldn't continue.

Yet, there were some things that helped me keep moving forward and I want to mention them here.
  • The amazing fans on our Discord
  • The progress we've made with our new tabletop game, Wolves
  • The tireless work from Francita and Rachel
  • The incredible time I had at Indigipop X and getting to be around so many funny, kind, creative Natives
  • Getting nominated for a Nebula Award and winning TWO Tabletop Awards
  • Starting work on the next Coyote & Crow book
Along with a slew of slowly evolving positive things in my personal life. 

So yeah, we made it! And now that you have them, I'm so excited for you all to start playing them. For all of the writers and artists of these stories to get the accolades they deserve. I hope you like them. They're funny, and scary, and exciting, and intriguing, and sweet. There's a wealth of Indigenous knowledge in these stories - often hidden between the lines. I hope you absorb it, without even knowing you have. I hope these Stories launch or grow your Coyote & Crow Sagas and that they help you start writing your own Stories.

But we're not done!

Coming soon, we'll have another Story for you from Allen Turner featuring art from Tate Allen. That should be arriving in your in boxes in just a few weeks.

And Wolves, our new board game, is going to be coming to Kickstarter in just a couple of months! I'm really proud of this game and what we're bringing to tabletop.

There's more as well. Partnerships we'll be announcing in the coming weeks and months, new merch, another game, organized play - so much! The takeaway is that the future is looking bright for Coyote & Crow. Your support of Stories of the Free Lands helped make that possible.

Wado/Thank you
Connor Alexander

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Coyote & Crow Games
2 months ago

Project Update: April Update

Osiyo folks! (Hello!)
Great news to report. Based on our current projections, we're going to be able to deliver Stories of the Free Lands to backers by the end of April. That's right, both Volumes are heading into the final stages, and I'm feeling good about being able to hand them over to you all by the end of this month.

What you'll be receiving is a notification from BackerKit that your downloads are available. You'll come back to your pledge page here on BackerKit and you'll find your download available. If you ever lose it for some reason, you can always come back to the page and download it again.

Each Volume will be a separate zipped file and contain the following:
  • Five playable stories in PDF format
  • 1 piece of art that act as 'covers' for the volume in JPG format
  • A copy of the fan art that won our fan art contest in JPG format

The bonus story from Allen Turner is coming shortly after that and will be a separate download. We'll have a separate notification and download link for that story, which will come as a single PDF.

Once that happens, we'll be moving on to our next campaign for our new board game Wolves. For the handful of stragglers (a surprisingly small number of backers - thank you!) that haven't filled out your surveys  yet, we'll check back here monthly to see if you've completed them. Remember, you only have through August of this year to fill them out and then we'll consider your pledge abandoned.

I'm so excited to get these stories to you all. We've put a lot of love and effort into them and now we just need you to tell us all how these stories end.

Best wishes,
Connor Alexander
A Scene From "Whispers From The Well"
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Coyote & Crow Games
4 months ago

Project Update: February Update

Osiyo folks!
I hope your new year and January were peaceful and rewarding. Things have been a little chaotic in the TTRPG world lately (*cough OGL cough*) but hopefully that's peaked and the tabletop hobby crowd can get back to a new normal.

Let's talk about Stories of the Free Lands!

First off, I want to say that I've really struggled with the entire process for this project. When I first envisioned it, it was going to be a fast and dirty crowdfunding campaign that landed us a set of PDF stories that could launch at the same time you were all receiving your books in April. I really wanted folks to have options for Stories as they started their Coyote & Crow journeys. 

But that's not the way things worked out. And while we've taken a lot longer to get these stories to you than I originally planned, I'm also really proud of what we're putting together. We're still in the process of editing, development and layouts. With that said, we're making great progress. Of the ten stories:
  • All ten are written and illustrated
  • Four are completely edited and laid out
  • Two more are developed and edited and heading to layouts
  • The remaining four are in various stages of development and will head to layouts soon
I can't give you an exact date on when the Stories of the Free Lands will be delivered to via BackerKit, but we are making progress. 

As soon as we finish Stories of the Free Lands, we'll finish up Allen Turner's stretch goal Story and get that out to everyone. 

I also wanted to throw out a big thank you to everyone who filled out their surveys. Our completion rate on getting surveys back is fantastic and we currently have about 99% back and finished. 

Have a great weekend folks!
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Coyote & Crow Games
6 months ago

Project Update: December Update for Stories of the Free Lands

Osiyo, folks!

I hope you're all having a lovely holiday season if you celebrate and that you're staying safe during the seriously rough winter weather. 

Just wanted to pass a long a few brief updates before I hibernate until January:
  • Our team is continuing to work on Stories of the Free Lands - development is taking longer than we'd planned, but we don't want to rush them. But we're making good progress and I'm pleased with the results I'm seeing.
  • Allen Turner has finished writing his stretch goal Story and oh dang is it good! We've also brought on veteran C&C artist Tate Allen to do the art for the story and they've already gotten a start.
  • I just sent out the Chahi font to all qualified backers! You should receive an email about it but if you don't, it's on your BackerKit pledge page. I hope you enjoy it!
  • I'm going to be sending out a newsletter from our website later today. If you haven't signed up yet, you can at: - I only send out maybe one per month. I don't like to spam folks.
  • Thank you so much! Almost all of you have filled out your surveys and physical rewards have all gone out

I hope you all have a great rest of your year and I'll speak to you in 2023 with more news about Stories of the Free Lands!

Finally, I'll leave you with some art from Sadekaronhes Esquivel - the splash cover for Stories of the Free Lands Volume 1!
Stories of the Free Lands Volume 1 Cover
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Coyote & Crow Games
7 months ago

Project Update: Fulfillment!

Hello friends!

Physical Rewards Update

Today is a big one for Coyote & Crow. First though, I want to say thank you to so many of you who promptly filled out your surveys. Of 2400 backers, we have less than 200 who have not filled theirs out yet.

So, now onto the rest of the news. I sent the first wave of backer info to our shipping partner, PSI, on 11/2. I expected shipments of physical rewards to go out within the week. However, they were (for some reason I cannot fathom) holding onto those orders until they received "the rest of them". As of this morning, we've cleared up this misunderstanding and according to them, everyone who has filled out their surveys and had their shipping charged, should(I feel like I have to use that word)have their products out of our warehouse door by this Friday 11/18.

However, that also means that you'll all be getting your rewards after they've launched into retail, which is - today, 11/16. My hope had been that by getting that information to PSI by 11/2 some of you would already have your physical rewards by now but that is sadly not going to happen. You have my sincerest apologies on that front.

If you haven't filled out your survey yet, get on it! (<--thanks)

Stories of the Free Lands

We're still working on development and layouts for these. I was really hoping to have them to you before the end of the month, but it's looking increasingly like this will have to be pushed back to the end of December. Progress is being made but we want to ensure that these stories are not only good stories in the small "s" definition of the word, but also good Stories, in the game mechanic term.  So bear with us. We'll have them to you soon.

Other News

Hemlock And Sage
Hemlock And Sage, the first novel from Coyote & Crow is finally releasing as well! We've been working on this for more than a year now and author Tali Inlow (Cherokee Nation) has really crafted a fantastic first book set in the world of Coyote & Crow. You can get it throug our webstore, DriveThruFiction, and Amazon for digital formats currently. You'll also be able to get physical copies (print on demand) shortly through DTF and Amazon. 

PAX Unplugged
I'll be personally at PAX Unplugged next month. There will not be a Coyote & Crow booth this year (and we currently do not have plans for any booths at shows at the moment). But I will be there, playing games, doing some play testing, speaking on at least one panel and taking some meetings. If you see me, please do say hello!

If the name Creep doesn't sound familiar it's because we haven't announced it until now! Creep is the stretch goal story from author Allen Turner (Lakota). Allen has finished his rough draft of the story and we're bringing back Coyote & Crow alum Tate Allen (Choctaw/Pomo) to do the art! We'll be working on this story concurrently with the Stories of the Free Lands stories. It will be delivered through BackerKit to all backers who pledged at the $20 level or higher. Allen's really bringing his A game!

Discord & Twitter
While we're keeping our Twitter profile active (and it's growing daily!) it's quite possible that the platform could implode at any moment. If you're interested in keeping in touch with Coyote & Crow but Twitter isn't your jam or you are getting out, I highly recommend our newsletter and our Discord. Both are great ways to keep up to date.

That's all for now.*
  *We're going to have two more small surprises before the end of the month that we're going to announce through our newsletter and our Discord only.

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Coyote & Crow Games
8 months ago

Project Update: Surveys & More!

Siyo, Indigipunks!
I wanted to update you all on where we're at. Things are moving along at a good pace and I need your help and attention!

  • Naasii and the Story Guide Screens are at our warehouse along with all other physical products and are ready to go!
  • The Stories of the Free Lands are being edited and laid out and I've just gotten the last of our full color art pieces for our stretch goals!
  • "Smoke Test" surveys have just gone out. If you're not familiar, a smoke test is where BackerKit sends out a small batch of surveys (about 5% from each pledge level) so that we can test if everything is working correctly. So a few of you will have your surveys. Your responses to these surveys will help us make sure that everything is ready and formatted correctly. If you receive one and have a problem, please let me know by commenting here, asap.
  • As soon as we've given folks a few days to respond to the smoke tests, we'll make any adjustments and send out the surveys to everyone else.

Here's what to expect in the surveys!
  • If you signed up for pre-launch OR backed in the first 48 hours, you'll get the Chahi font once your survey is complete
  • The survey will ask you a few questions about C&C (you won't be graded)
  • You'll be able to tack on extra items from the campaign in addition to what you pledged
  • You'll be asked for your shipping information if you have physical rewards
  • You'll be charged for any items you added on and a complete shipping charge

  • Once we've collected our first chunk of surveys, we'll start processing and fulfillment for physical rewards
  • We expect this to happen pretty quickly and the first domestic shipments should happen pretty fast.
  • We'll continue to process batches of surveys weekly as they are completed.
  • Once the Stories of the Free Lands are finished, they'll be added to your pledges here on BackerKit and you'll be able to directly download them from your survey page (so keep that page bookmarked or saved)
  • The additional story from Allen Turner will be coming soon, but will NOT be fulfilled through BackerKit. We'll have details on that soon.

Finally, I'll leave you with a few snippets of art from the color pieces we've been working on. Just a few bits and slices. Some of these are finished, others are drafts. Can't wait to unveil them all to you!
A few art teases from the color cover art stretch goal!

That's all for now!
Take care,
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Coyote & Crow Games
8 months ago

Project Update: We've funded and the campaign has ended! What now?

This is important information for all backers. Please read this thoroughly. 

Hey folks, thank you all for supporting what we're doing here at Coyote & Crow. Stories of the Free Lands is the next stone in the path we're laying out and it's an important one. Your pledges and interest are just so incredible and appreciated.  But this update isn't just all warm fuzzies. We have a lot of information to unpack. So let's get into it! 

Next Steps:

  1. Since we did not reach our $175K stretch goal, everyone who has over pledged for this campaign will have their pledge amount adjusted to the original, base pledge level amount before being charged. This includes backers that may have over pledged for add-ons as well. (So if you pledged $40 for the PDFs and then added $40 for physical copies, you'll only be charged the base $40, for example)
  2. Your pledge will be charged around 12PM (PT) on Thursday (tomorrow)
  3. Our hope is to have the pledge manager open up to you on Monday, October 31st (oooh, spooky!) Once that happens, and we send out surveys, you'll be able to add on any individual items you would like to (or to donate money if that's your jam).

Here's how the pledge manager works (for those of you new to crowdfunding, BackerKit, or who just need a refresher):

  • When the pledge manager opens up, you'll get an email (sent to the one you used to pledge with). That email will send you to your pledge on BackerKit where:
  • We may have some general survey type questions for you
  • If you have physical rewards, we'll ask for your shipping address
  • You'll be able to add on items you didn't get with your pledge
  • You'll be charged a single total amount for shipping for all items (pledged and added on)
  • All digital rewards will be delivered through BackerKit and will be available on your pledge page when they are finished.

Physical Editions of the Stories of the Free Lands

I know lots of you over-pledged and were excited for physical copies of the Stories of the Free Lands. While we didn't hit our stretch goal for that, I wanted to address that situation. Our original goal was always about funding these PDFs and getting them out to players as fast as we can. Physical book production is a costly and time consuming process. With that said, one of the things we'll be asking about in our survey when the pledge manager goes live is actually how many of you would like physical copies. If we get enough interest, we'll run a follow up campaign here on BackerKit for just the physical books for Stories of the Free Lands. It will be a no frills, fast and furious campaign, and will be just about getting the funds together for a print run. Folks that backed this campaign will get a discount on their pledge for that campaign if it happens. 

And finally, here's some additional information:

  • Our inventory of Naasii and the Story Guide Screens have arrived at our Georgia warehouse, which is good news for the timing of fulfillment
  • We're continuing to work on editing and layouts for Stories of the Free Lands and will have date announcements for those materials as they become known to us
  • The story from Allen Turner will take a little longer since he just started writing it, but we should have it before the end of the year. That story will be free to all backers who pledged at the $20 level or higher and will be delivered through BackerKit
  • If you pledged at the $5 level and then over-pledged, you'll be charged the full amount of your pledge tomorrow as this pledge level never had access to the pledge manager.
  • A reminder that we are only shipping physical goods to the US and Canada
  • The scheduled release date for Naasii and the Story Guide Screen is November 16th. If everything goes according to plan and if you are prompt about filling out your survey and completing your pledge, you should receive your physical items shortly before that date.
  • A reminder that any surveys left unfilled or responded to after one year will be considered abandoned pledges.

Okay, that's it for news on this campaign, but here's a couple of other exciting tidbits for Coyote & Crow Games in general:
  • I'll (Connor Alexander) will be at PAX Unplugged this year. I may be on some panels, but I'll definitely be playing some games. Say hi!
  • Coyote & Crow launches on Roll20 on 10/20 - just 8 days out!
  • If all goes well, our first novel set in the Coyote & Crow universe, written by Tali Inlow, will release in November! More on that soon!
  • We have TWO stand alone tabletop games planned for 2023. More on that soon!

That's all I have for the moment. Feel free to hit me up with questions or concerns and I'll do my best to get back to you as quickly as I can. Before you drop me questions though, please read through this update again and check the FAQ and other discussions here. Thanks!

And again, thank you all for the kindness, love and support. We have an incredible team of creatives working hard to bring you great stuff and I'm super proud of them.

Thank you/Wado,
Connor Alexander
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Coyote & Crow Games
9 months ago

Project Update: Print Run News!

We're heading toward a print run of Stories of the Free Lands!
And now you can add them on in this campaign!

Okay, so after quite a few discussions with backers, my team, our printer and a lot of sleepless nights, I've decided to go ahead with creating an add-on option for physical copies if we hit our print run goal!

So, what does that mean for you and how can you ensure you get a physical copy through this campaign. Here's the deal:
  • We'll greenlight the print run if we hit $175K
  • If you've already backed, you can up your current pledge amount to help us get to this goal
  • Based on our current projections, we expect the books to be $40 in retail
  • If you've backed at least the $40 level (the Stories of the Free Lands Volumes 1&2 or higher), you'll get a $20 discount toward a book purchase (maximum 2, 1 of each volume)
  • If you haven't backed, you can pre-load your pledge with that extra money to help us get to the goal, if you'd like.
  • Other than upping your pledge, there's no other action needed for now. When the campaign wraps up and you are sent your surveys, you'll be able to choose your add-ons and finalize your pledge.
  • Please be aware that if you choose to purchase books through this campaign, you will have to pay for a second round of shipping if you back for other physical items as the new books will not be ready for quite some time and other physical rewards will likely be ready to roll out by early November.
  • Also, just a reminder, that we will not be shipping these out to backers outside of the US and Canada.

That's it! Hopefully we'll hit that $175K goal and we'll be able to produce some stellar books for you.

In Other News

  • We hit our $125K goal and we'll now be producing color covers for each volume of the Stories, we'll be creating a whole new Story from Allen Turner that will be free to all backers at $20 pledge levels and higher, and all of the creatives on SotFL are now getting a 20% pay bonus!

  • We announced our $225K goal - a podcast! This goal will allow us to create and sustain an ongoing podcast for Coyote & Crow. We'll have interviews with Indigenous creatives, talk about Indigenous futurisms, folks from across the TTRPG and gaming community, create audio dramas and actual plays, share exclusive content and more. As things stand, it's not likely we will hit this goal (let alone our $275K one) but I think it's important that you all see what we have in mind and where we're trying to head as a company.

  • We've got an official launch date for Coyote & Crow on Roll20 - the full version! The game will be available with full functionality on 10/20/22!

  • Community content tools are launching on DriveThruRPG! We don't have a hard date yet, but I can say that it will be before the end of this campaign. As soon as we have it locked in, I'll let you know. 

That's it for now folks!
Goal: $161,975 / $175,000
We need $13,025 more to reach this goal.
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Coyote & Crow Games
9 months ago

Project Update: $100,000 And Add-Ons!

We just hit six figures!
Thank  you all for showing the Coyote & Crow team so much support and love. We're really excited to get these stories out to you and to start shipping out all the good things heading into our warehouse.

And - we're only $25,000 away from two more pieces of amazing cover art and an additional story from Allen Turner!

We've had quite a few people ask about our pledge levels and adding on specific items. So I wanted to take a moment to clarify a few things and explain your options.

First, this campaign is about Stories of the Free Lands and it's what we're crowdfunding for. So there are no pledge levels that don't include it.

With that said, you can back at any level you like at $20 or higher and you'll gain access to our pledge manager after the campaign is over. What that allows you to do is to add on any number of specific physical items (2 copies of our core rulebook, an extra copy of Naasii, whatever you'd like really).

How does that work? Let's say you pledge at the "Story Bundle & Naasii" level ($60) but you also know you want an extra copy of Naasii as a gift. How would you do that?

Two ways: - First, you could pledge $80. Then when it comes time to do your pledge management after the campaign is over, you can assign that extra $20 to a copy of Naasii. Easy Peasy. This also has the added benefit of helping us reach our stretch goals. - Second, you could just pledge $60. And when the pledge management roles around after the campaign, you can tack on another copy of Naasii and you'll just be charged an extra $20.

"But, wait," you might say. "How do I know how much individual items cost?" Here you go!

  • Each copy of Naasii: $20

  • Each copy of the Story Guide Screen: $25

  • Each copy of QWorkshop custom dice: $30

  • Each copy of Coyote & Crow the Roleplaying Game: $70

I apologize if this caused any confusion for anyone. The goal here was to create fewer pledge levels and to base them around what we thought were going to be the "typical" needs and wants of folks. For our last campaign we added on a number of pledge levels during the campaign and it caused some confusion for folks who weren't sure what they were supposed to be getting. 

Connor and the team

Goal: $125,000 reached! — We did it! This project reached this goal!
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Coyote & Crow Games
9 months ago

Project Update: New Stretch Goals and Contests Announced!

Welcome to day 2 of the Stories of the Free Lands Campaign!

We've got great news:
  • Our first stretch goal is unlocked
  • Our next two have been announced
  • We've announced three contests

Our first stretch goal is unlocked and we've got ten new color pieces for our stories on the way! We'll post some sketches and works in progress soon.

Our next two stretch goals have been announced. The first is full color cover pieces for each volume of the Stories of the Free Lands. In addition, we're bringing on Allen Turner, the creator of Ehdrighor, to write an original Coyote & Crow story, which will be given to every backer who backs at $20 or higher. We'll announce the artist for that story soon.

The second stretch goal announced is our physical print run! We'll create two soft cover books, one for each volume of Stories of the Free Lands. These will eventually go into hobby distribution and will be sold through our webstore and Amazon. We don't have a timetable for the release of these physical books yet, or a cost. However we expect them to be roughly $35-40 and release sometime late next year.

Finally, we have three contests to announce!
For full details and rules, go HERE
In short:
  • Twitter - post an original post that includes a link to this campaign and the hashtag #SotFLContest. At the end of the month, the five tweets with the most retweets will receive a copy of our core rulebook and a set of dice!
  • Discord fan art - join our Discord and post a piece of Coyote & Crow fan art. The art with the most votes will win $500 and become an official piece of Coyote & Crow art
  • Discord art prints - join our Discord and once a week we'll drop a trivia question. The first person to answer correctly wins a set of limited edition art prints!

Let's see if we can get to our next stretch goal today!

Goal: $125,000 reached! — We did it! This project reached this goal!
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Coyote & Crow Games
9 months ago

Project Update: Funded! Stretch Goals & More!

We funded in 82 minutes!
Thank you all for the love and support. It means so much to me to see the Coyote & Crow community grow and know that we're going to be able to keep bringing you these stories.

So, just a quick update here.
First - stretch goals!

We've just added our first one, which is ten full cover covers from various artists, all of which will also be added as digital prints in the bundles. In addition, all the creatives on Stories of the Free Lands will get a 10% pay bonus!

Pledge Levels & Individual Items
We've had folks asking why pledge levels include certain items but exclude others and why we're not doing a print run of the Stories. We'll have a video out about the overall campaign soon. But the short answer is, publishing is risky lately and we're going to do a print run as a stretch goal. But we wanted to get these stories out to you as fast as possible. You'll be able to add on any physical items during the pledge management portion of the campaign. We didn't want to create too many pledge levels as during our last campaign that caused confusion for backers.

More news soon! Let's kill those stretch goals!
Goal: $75,000 reached! — We did it! This project reached this goal!