Sinister Adventures – Looks Like It’s Finally Dead

Well. Many of us have been waiting, waiting, waiting for Nick Logue’s Sinister Adventures imprint to publish Razor Coast.  He took pre-orders and said it was “close” in 2008. It wasn’t. Then he took a new job and effectively disappeared.

But the early stuff on Razor Coast looked AWESOME. Finally Lou Agresta and some volunteers (including yours truly) pitched in to try to the the manuscript completed, proofread, etc.  Lou did a great job of taking something half finished and pulling it all together. A complete manuscript got handed over to Nick a couple months ago. You can see a bit of the three years of trauma on this Paizo.com thread. You could see it on Sinister Adventures’ site, but as of now the domain name expired and it’s down. Probably for good.

Which is probably for the best.  The forums were overtaken by spammers, which Nick didn’t bother to do anything about (heck, or give the forum mod password to any of the people that would have been happy to do it for him). He dropped in on his own forums once every three to six months to say something chirpy and then disappear again. No answers to most emails. No meaningful updates or responses to customer queries.

Will Razor Coast eventually emerge?  No. No, despite it being completed except for layout and printing, Logue has shown that he really doesn’t care enough to do anything to complete the work required to get it out. Even though e.g. Louis Porter has offered to pick it up, even though I’m sure a quick layout job and then PDFing it would at least get it out there.

Nick Logue really dropped the ball in a completely negligent manner on this whole thing. I don’t think anyone has any legitimate expectation that this product will see the light of day. At least I hear he’s still giving refunds to those who can somehow find him to do so.

Nick – there’s no excuse for how you handled this. If you’re not going to do it, send everyone’s money back and close up shop. If you’re going to do it, then how much work does it take to go make a forum post once every two fucking weeks? Britain may be a shithole but they do have the Internet there and you work at a university. I guarantee you can send emails and access the Internet.  But people who invested in you apparently weren’t worth 15 minutes of your time every couple weeks – or, indeed, every couple months.  With the way you’ve handled this, you’ve effectively been saying “Fuck you” to a bunch of people that liked your work and believed in you, to the point of pre-ordering, a somewhat psychotic thing to do in the incompetence-riddled RPG industry.

Your work for Paizo was great and bought you some apparently ill-deserved credibility, and it’s unfortunate that this reflects back on them as well. Next guy that tries to spin off their own side thing from Paizo, I won’t be able to trust them one single fucking second just because they got stuff out there while working there. You’ve reflected poorly on yourself and degraded confidence in other Paizoites and the industry in general. You’ve reaffirmed that any given RPG company is probably incompetent and you should never give them money in advance, and that the rare exceptions like Open Design are probably just a temporary aberration. You have squandered more good will than most people in the industry ever. Solid work.

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24 responses to “Sinister Adventures – Looks Like It’s Finally Dead

  1. I know a number of folks have offered to help Nick, and the Werecabbages did a great job, and the manuscript as far as I know just needs to be laid out, though I don’t know what its art requirements are.

    Steve Russell
    Rite Publishing

  2. This really hurts, because I do like the guy’s work, what he had on his page looked top-notch, and it promised to really add a whole new level of neat stuff to the industry. I do hope Nick can get his act together, but after this, he’s going to have an uphill climb to win back the goodwill he started with. >.<

  3. Everyone know how I feel about this whole situation, sad all the way around. While Nick is a great writer, this proves he isn’t a great business man. Let professionals do what they do best and you stick to what you do best.

  4. rorschachhamster

    This is so sad… I have to look at the preview again… I want that book, not my money!
    I’m not even angry at Nick. Though I probably should be…

    Ok, NOW I’m angry at Nick. I write like a whiney emo… ; P

  5. Unfortunately, I have to agree that I’d be surprised to see Razor Coast now, or a refund for Ebon Shroud. Given how close RC is to completion, I really can’t understand why he doesn’t just release it and be done with it, but there you go. As stated above, it’s a shame because it looks like an excellent adventure.

  6. Well that sucks. Oddly enough I wasn’t too interested in Razor Coast, what I wanted was the Anarchist GM’s Cookbook. Logues style of adventure writing made me think he was my type of DM and the stuff he mentioned would be in that book looks downright delightful. Things that could really help me give my game the kick in the pants it needed (Been gaming with the same guys since high school, it’s kind of fallen into a rut of routine and personal cliches that can be attributed to both parties not changing their styles much). Now I’m quite disappointed that it’s probably never going to come to pass.

    Razor Coast looked neat but to me it was second fiddle to what the cook book promised to be.

    Sigh.

  7. How are we suppose to even get a refund back? This has went from a joke, to criminal. If I am not going to receive a product I paid for then I want my money back.

  8. I just found out the website is dead! I hadn’t been paying attention for a while assuming that news would be coming soon. I sent an email off to the address mxyzplk listed but to be honest I’m less than hopeful. If he was being responsible about it he should have sent an email out to everyone that ordered as soon as the site went down. Not that I should have expected he would at this point. If it turns out that the book will never see the light of day I’m wondering about the chances of getting a copy of the proofing pdf. Several people did work on it and given the situation *shrugs* .

  9. I’ll try the email address.

  10. Don’t know if what you’re looking for is there, but the wayback machine shows a few archived versions of the site. If the material’s that good, it might be worth someone’s time to try to get it.

    http://waybackmachine.org/*/http://www.sinisteradventures.com/

  11. Pingback: LPJ Design Apologises for April Fool’s Joke | Purple Pawn

  12. An interesting read until you posted a frankly outrageous comment about the UK being a shithole.

    Well frankly that undermines your argument completely. Just because you dislike Logue doesn’t mean the UK is a shithole.

    Look up “class” in the dictionary. There’s a picture of you with a caption that says “Not this asshole.”

    • Outrageous? Little old me? I didn’t even mention all the curried ass y’all eat or the royal wedding pointlessness, the Nanny State or the, uh, what do you call hoodlums nowadays… Who won the bloody war anyway?

      • Ah, while I’m not sure which war you are referring to, let’s asume its WWII, in which case I think the Russians won.

        As for your other insults, I’m sure the USA doesn’t have bad food, an unhealthy obsession with celebrity culture, a federal government that “nannies” its grossly unproductive farmers, or, um, what do you call ganagsters now any way?

  13. Each is entitled to his own opinion but I think FLB has a point….it was unnecessary and ungentleman-like..

    (Off course he/she crossed the line with the cursing)

    I won’t even discuss the war mention as it seems like you are actually trolling your own article…

    For what its worth I agree with most of your arguments
    But lets keep this civil please

  14. A bit of defence here for Nick. He disappeared of the scene in 2008 to take a new job over here in Britain as head of a university department. Now I know people are upset about his leaving the project but you have to understand how hard running a whole uni department is, never mind one that is underfunded and understaffed. Nick threw everything he has into his teaching and has changed the lives of all the students here at E15. So all though you all hate him, he is the hardest working man and greatest friend I have ever know. Unfortunately the university pushed him out and now he’s off to Hawaii so maybe he’ll have time to write there.

    • I’m sure he did a great job there. But there is no excuse, there is no “too busy,” to send an email saying “I’m not going to do this any more” or for keeping peoples’ money for a product you’re not going to deliver. I hear the “too busy” lame refrain in all sorts of arenas, but no – you’re not too busy to spend 15 minutes communicating or to live up to responsibilities you took on.

  15. I’m vaguely familiar with how much work running an underfunded/understaffed theater department can be, mainly from being a student in one and and seeing what it did to the harried professors. It is truly a labor of love, devotion and sacrifice that really consumes peoples lives. As such I can’t blame the guy too much, especially if he chose to spend what little free time he had with his family, still, he had obligations and while I’ll not condemn him I can’t condone his lack of honoring those obligations or at least arranging for someone else to honor those obligations. It’s probably not as simple as ‘taking fifteen minutes out of ones day’ (these things rarely ever are) but something should have been done.

    I hope his move to Hawaii allows him to honor those obligations and finish his work. He may have lost a lot of support but he still has a few hold outs.

  16. As an update, apparently Nick’s time in Hawaii has gotten his act together somewhat and he’s having Lou process refunds and has issued an apology on the Paizo forums.

    So that’s good. I can forgive, but am not going to forget… I’m gunshy about kickstarting and preordering and stuff from RPG companies in general. I finally overcame my post-Razor Coast fear of it for Dark Deeds in Freeport from Open Design, and now that’s been dicked around for a year with declarations of progress and then changes of designer and then months of silence happening in succession… Sigh.

  17. All’s well that ends well I suppose. Frog Gog Games has successfully funded the Razor Coast kickstarter, we have our pdfs and it is going to print soon. I can understand people’s concerns about the early days of the project, but sometimes it doesn’t work out the first time.

  18. And I’m credited in two of the books. Woot!

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