This one is long, but I’m not doing a TLDR version cause it’s all super cool and important and exciting so I’m gonna ask that you read all of it at least once. :)
I know we’ve had a lot (and I mean a lot) of change in our Dystopia Rising sphere lately, but we’ve gotta discuss one more BIG (and I mean fucking huge) change that’s heading our way. So before you read any further do me a favor and take a deep breath, maybe snag some whiskey or wine or chocolate - cause change is hard but this one is probably one of the best changes we’ll see to Dystopia Rising this year.
You won’t ever need to talk to ‘National’ again. Now before you get in the ‘ding dong the witch is dead’ zone - remember that these people poured blood, sweat and tears into a system and network that you and your friends enjoy. Even if you didn’t agree with their decisions or mindsets, they work hard and deserve basic human respect at the least.
Okay, so now that I’ve got you in the right mindset - here the sitch.
Democracy in Action!:
This option was presented to all the branch owners and we voted on it, choosing this change unanimously (of those who voted, there were no dissenters - not everyone participated in the vote but it WAS enough to get a majority of the owners).
No More National Events:
National events worked when there weren’t that many branches and you could run one without competing with the locals - it was an amazing way to see friends from all over. Now that we’ve grown we’ve come to realize that the National Events are hurting the network more than helping it - so they gotta go.
Yes, this means Downfall 2019 (Deathcon) is cancelled.
NO PANIC! Take another sip of liquor or bite of chocolate. Okay ...now continue reading.
Imagine Nation Collective (INC) will put out updates regarding refunds and such. Their #1 concern here is to have everyone walk away going “wow, that was awesome customer service!” - so go in kind and excited for the base reason this change is happening and I have no doubt it’ll be a great experience for everyone involved.
One of the refund options is INC sending a credit to us (your local branch) which we can apply to a bunch of things just as if you had given us cold hard cash.
Shifting the Focus to Local:
Everyone has come to the realization that we have more fun and trust in our game-runners when we can see them in-person every month. The faceless ‘other’ is really hard to relate to - so in the name of changing the business to match the community...well the business end is shifting it’s focus to local too.
Locally-Run and Focused Events Instead:
In place of National events we’re going to have ‘Premier Events’ that are designed to focus on the start or mid-point of a local storyline (although we will be able to include national and regional plot elements to include other branches in our stories. Co-creation evolved! (I couldn’t help myself - not sorry!)
These can either be a standard 3-day event or a 4-day event with an additional $25 per ticket.
All Premier events offer 5 additional build for $50
Each branch gets 1 premier event a year (emphasis on not overlapping with regional neighbors) so long as they’re in good standing (which isn’t new requirements so much as a new benny for doing what we’re supposed to paperwork-wise).
It’s a little cramped, but EVERY branch has a 2019 premier event too! Ours is Nov 29-Dec 1 (big thanksgivemas ya’ll?)
Regions, wtf Krista?:
Okay okay, I used that term a few times, so here’s THOSE details - we split the US into 5 regions (map at bottom!) and that gives everyone a set of neighbors that they’re extra encouraged to work with.
No, it doesn’t prevent us from working with groups outside our region, they’re just kinda a secondary focus for partners instead of primary. So we’ll still torture Trey & Cara n’crew in New Mexico on occasion.
It does mean that we’re gonna work extra to do crossplot with Texas, Oklahoma, Georgia and Florida. We ...well we might already be well ahead on that power-curve just cause ya’ll are so friendly with one another.
IT ALSO MEANS REGIONAL STORYLINES, so yeah, fun story we share with nearby friends.
BUT THAT’S NOT ALL - Shifting how Sales work too!:
Part of ‘shifting the focus to local’ also means the marketing and sales focus.
Advanced memberships will still have the same benefits - but they’ll be sold by us, the branches, and we’ll get a cut. Starting mid-sept, cause it’s not fair to change the cost before it was supposed to change.
All Merch will be sold at branch-level and we’ll have more options for customization and we’ll get a larger cut.
Surely that’s it?
I mean, mostly - but I can see how someone is going to take all this and go “but all this means is ‘National’ is still trying to make a bunch of money off the branches and now they do less work!” SO - before you go too far down that train of thought, lemme give you some real talk.
LLC provides a ton of infrastructure for us that, frankly, I desperately don’t want to have to duplicate at a local level. I don’t -want- to go through database development, maintenance and payments. I don’t -want- to try to get wholesale deals cheap enough to benefit my community but still make my business a little money. I don’t -want- to develop new content or balance mechanics. I’d say I don’t want to organize that many documents but then we know I’d be lying… :-D
But seriously - there’s a ton of value in the money that I send to LLC, hell - I get more for my $ from LLC than I do from the taxes I pay...and I pay more in taxes!
So really the base here is that we, as a group, decided to empower the branches and re-focus on our local communities first - and we think this’ll make us a better group all around.
Not sure? Legit!
Let’s find out what it’ll be like - together. <3