Joined: 18 Sep 2008
|Posted: Sat Dec 29, 2012 7:51 pm Post subject: This Year at ADB: 2012
|Steve Cole reports:
It was another good year, although it was strange not to go to Origins. Without that intense deadline to focus on, we had a far less stressful year, although that also meant we lost track of time and didn't get as many products out as we wanted to. (That was aggravated by the fact that seven of the 2012 products will actually appear in January 2013 due to production issues. Oh well, 2013 will set a record for new products.) We will be at Origins 2013.
Star Fleet Battles got some new products including Module E3 the Borak. Steven Petrick continued his project to update existing rules and SSDs, which then go into new hard copy and PDF products. This included the R3 and R2 SSD books, Advanced Missions rulebook, T2012, and other things. The original SFB Pocket Edition was added to e23, as was the original boxed game and the three original expansions.
Star Fleet Marines was launched as new product line in late April with the first module (Assault). During the production phase, Marines evolved from a one-time thing into an entire product line.
Captain's Log #45 was late due to a lack of fiction and a lack of Origins-inspired focus. This pushed Captain's Log #46 into January of 2013.
We continued to add new products to e23 for all of our product lines, including all of the out of print Star Fleet Times issues, all of the out of print Prime Directive First Edition products, and the first four issues of the ancient JagdPanther magazine (done by Steve Cole long before Task Force or ADB even existed). Some of the products sent to e23 included F&E ISC War, Captain's Logs #19 to #27, SFB Module E3 Borak and R107 Nicozians, and Jean Sexton's free Intro to SFU RPGs book (which was a smash hit with over 1000 downloads, even if it was free). We even uploaded the ancient Federation Space game and the three volumes of the SFB Commander's Edition.
Tribbles vs. Klingons was unveiled as a future product, but reaction was so strong that we decided to make this our first full production commercial product. That means overseas production, which proved far more complicated that it should have, and this won't see print until 2013.
Federation Commander saw a few more ePacks of ship cards uploaded to e23, but most of the work went into Reinforcements Attack which (unfortunately) got delayed into January by the die-cutting company.
Starmada saw the release of the first books for the new Nova Edition done by the able Daniel Kast.
Roleplaying games were not neglected as we released Romulans PD20M and Jean completed all of the work on Prime Directive Traveller (except for the deck plans which artists continue to struggle with).
Federation & Empire saw all of the Ship Information Tables updated. They are on the BBS for easy access.
The Joint Venture with Mongoose continued with the rest of the Starline 2500 ships appearing and much good work done to correct mistakes in the original rulebook. At least, the Gorns no longer lumber around space like wallowing bathtubs. The first Call to Arms Journal was well received as it seamlessly brought scouts into ACTASF under the firm guidance of ADB's rules team. Matthew Sprange continues to be fun to work with.
Our page on Facebook grew from under 1100 friends in January to over 1400 in December. Jean Sexton continues to manage the page, upload amusing photos and graphics, and deny Steve Cole access to his password.
Our second Platinum Hat SFB Tournament attracted more players than the first and proceeded very efficiently under the gaze of judge Peter Bakija.
Leanna continued her work, which is rarely seen by outsiders as she does the real business of the business. Jean managed the marketing campaign and proofread everything, some of it twice. Joel Shutts graduated from college, continued managing our website, doing our graphics, and sinking hundreds of pirate websites. Customer Service manager Mike Sparks kept orders going out, conventions fully supported, and everyone happy.
Our staff remained very busy. Ace playtesters Scott Moellmer, Tony L. Thomas, and Mike Curtis led their teams through many challenging products, and produced articles for Captain's Log as well. Our artists (Adam Turner, Dale McKee, Loren Knight, and Xander Fulton) continued to produce outstanding work. Paul Franz took SFBOL and FCOL to new heights, managed the continuing Warlord campaign, and conducted a Talkshoe conference every Thursday. Frank Brooks continued his expert management of our PBEM system. Chuck Strong led a very effective F&E staff.
Our new Kyocera 9540 printer Ziva replaced the worn out Samantha, which retired after printing three million pages. Our second automatic bookbinder arrived. We also bought two more rolling book carts, Steve Cole's first non-Mac computer, and an iPad.
On a personal note, Leanna and Stephen Cole celebrated their 35th anniversary this year, and even relived the four weeks of their whirlwind courtship. Stephen, who lost the hearing in his right ear in May 2010, finally got a hearing aid. Stephen took Leanna to see The Nutcracker for her birthday, and noted that "this is the one without the ducks".
Steven Petrick's beloved Honda died at the age of 25 and the replacement car was destroyed by someone who thought her car was a phone booth. He now has his third car this year.
The year ended the way it began, with Jean Sexton's annual pilgrimage to ADB, Inc., headquarters in Amarillo. This year was unique in that Jean was also able to visit during May (since we did not go to Origins), seeing Texas in the summer for the first time. We all look forward to May of 2013 when she moves here permanently. In fact, we look forward to 2013 for many reasons, which I'll tell you about in a few days.
Business Manager/RPG Line Editor
Amarillo Design Bureau, Inc.