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06 May 2015

Why I'm spoiling my ballot paper

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I've been torn about what to do tomorrow. My best bet seems to be to meekly vote Lib Dems (2nd in my constituency) to try and prevent the Tories getting one more seat and further dismantling the NHS (and whatever's left of public and social services).

But that cross doesn't say "Oh for fuck's sake, as long as the Tories don't get in again...", it says "Yes, please, give me the Liberal Democrats, sir!" - that's right, the same party that screwed the nation's students, cut welfare for the most vulnerable in society and supports trident... among many other crimes against compassion and common sense.

And that makes me sick. That's not democracy, that's not why I've been given a vote: so I can subvert my free democratic choice by shoring up some broken concept of democracy ... so it can go and undo itself even further. No, that sticks in my throat and I refuse to take part in that game.

We've been handed a pale version of democracy that's fundamentally broken and time and again we've been told we should be grateful for it So here's the thing: if you have genuine support for a party, vote for them. I don't care if it's UKIP or the Greens, vote for what you believe. As long as you're making an informed, honest choice, good on you.

But if you feel your vote is being thrown away due to the short-comings of a non-RP electoral process, or you feel you have to vote tactically OR you can't be bothered with it and you weren't going to vote at all... spoil your paper. If you're feeling let down, fed up, angry or just completely unconvinced... spoil your paper. If you want to protest the lack of representation... spoil your paper. Make those views shown in the only way you can: spoil your paper.

Unfortunately spoiled ballots aren't recorded separately at the moment, but they ARE COUNTED. If there are significant numbers, that would be unavoidable news; an unmistakable message. Just draw a line through all boxes on the ballot paper and write "NONE" across it or "NOTA" (None Of The Above). Vote None has more information on how and why to protest vote. It also gives this thought-provoking statistic:

In the 2010 General Election, the UK total of protest and 'spoilt' votes was around 295,000. That is a large number, but it represents only 1% of voters. So it was not news. Meanwhile, 34% of registered voters (16m) just didn't vote

If everyone who can vote actually votes, everything changes. Of course, we don't know why that 34% didn't vote, but if even a fraction of them aren't voting because they feel there's no point... if those people all spoil their paper, then they could form the majority voice in a number of constituencies.

We've been handed a pale version of democracy that's fundamentally broken and time and again we've been told we should be grateful for it by (mostly) rich, white men in extraordinary positions of power. No. I won't be grateful. I demand more from a supposedly developed democracy: more representation, more accountability, more of a voice.

I'm spoiling my paper.

Posted by TerrorBull Games on 6 May 2015 - 0 comments

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30 Apr 2015

Preorders for The Hen Commandments are now live

We have a delivery date for The Hen Commandments which means we can now safely announce that our new game will be released at the end of June

We have just a limited number of games that we're going to make available to preorder from .... well... right .... NOW. As an extra perk, if you preorder the game, you get free postage.

Unfortunately due to the limited nature of this print run, we're restricting sales to our website for now and you'll only be able to get the game if you're within the UK. We know that will be a disappointment for a number of people, but please bear with us - we're testing a new model of doing things and the simpler we can make it right now, the more likely that it'll work in the long run. We must also ask that you restrict your preorders to a maximum of 4 games per person to make it fair on everyone.

You should also know we have no immediate plans to get the game into general distribution - again, apologies to all those wonderful small shops that have supported us over the years; we haven't forgotten or forsaken you.

Sorry once again about all the rules and restrictions. The Holy Chicken moves in mysterious ways, what can we say? With any luck, we'll have the opportunity to do a larger run later in the year - if the Great Egg in the Sky wishes it, of course.

Preorder the game here

Read more about the game here

Try out the online Holy Chicken wisdom generator here

Posted by TerrorBull Games on 30 April 2015 - 0 comments

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04 Apr 2015

The Hen Commandments final checks

It's been a while - an update is definitely due. We've just been checking the proofs for The Hen Commandments and the point of no return is very close. It's always an anxious - but exciting - moment in the process.

We've had a lot of fun making this, our third major release and I have to say we're really happy with how it's turning out. Since we were deliberately making lower numbers than usual, we wanted The Hen Commandments to be a special object and I like to think we've achieved that; you certainly won't have seen a party game like it. Sadly it's not quite at the level we wanted as the egg timer is going to be plastic rather than wooden. But we're still on the search for a nice, wooden egg timer to complement the "old religious artifact" vibe we're after and if we're fortunate, we'll get a chance to do another run with a better timer later in the year.

Other significant changes include a move in manufacturer to Ludo Fact - which is partly why we've slipped 2 months behind schedule! For all our Kickstarter backers reading this, sorry! We do regret the delays - it was an important goal for us to bring our first Kickstarter in on schedule, but more important than that is getting the quality right and the choice of manufacturer is such a vital part of that equation. I've been very impressed with Ludo Fact so far but that's not really surprising -their reputation is excellent.

We've also managed to get a few extra games made so come June we'll have about 1,000 games to test the water with and see how it gets received. Since our stock is so limited I think we'll be restricting sales through the website - we'll make an announcement later this month when we're ready to open up preorders.

Until then, please enjoy this picture of artist, Tom Morgan-Jones in ceremonial Heninist headdress going over some of the proofs with an eagle eye (surely chicken eye - ed.)

Tom Morgan-Jones checks for irregularities

UPDATE: we are now completely sold out of War on Terror and Crunch. Unfortunately we don't have any current plans to reprint them, so that little (no, big!) part of TerrorBull history is now firmly closed.

Posted by TerrorBull Games on 4 April 2015 - 0 comments

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05 Dec 2014

We did it! The Holy Chicken has smiled upon us

In a thrilling photo-finish last week, we just managed to achieve our Kickstarter target - and then exceed it by a £1000! In a very exciting development we also discovered 'The Chosen One', bringing all manner of prophesies to pass (and significantly helping us achieve our goal to boot).

It's hard to appreciate just how nerve-wracking it is running one of these things (and how much work) from the outside. Not that I'm moaning - Kickstarter and its ilk is a really exciting, collaborative and interesting way for small companies to raise funds. It looks like a win-win on the surface, although I have my slight reservations. It's almost become a victim of its own success and standing out from the crowd is phenomenally difficult. Still, we've learned enough to know that we'd do it again; so far it's suiting us.

The really hard work begins now! We've got to finish off the artwork (and the last 10% is always the most agonising and takes almost as long as the first 90% in our experience). To top it all, we've decided to pitch in some of our own money so that we can enlarge the game's capacity to a maximum of 8 players instead of 6. It's supposed to be a party game, after all, right?

Looking at it now, our hopes that it might be ready for Christmas were a little crazy, but hopefully early in 2015 we'll have a new game!

Many, many, many thanks to everyone who backed our campaign or gave support in all the many and varied ways you gave support. We literally couldn't do it without you. Thanks for believing in us and Egg be upon ye all.

Posted by TerrorBull Games on 5 December 2014 - 0 comments

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27 Nov 2014

The Final Days Are Upon Us

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£12,294 pledged of £14,000 goal ... 27 hours to go

We're entering the 11th hour; judgement day; the end times; ... the next 24 hours will be crucial in deciding whether The Hen Commandments gets made or not.

Normally we'd say something philosophical about it being out of our hands; that the Great Egg knows best and whatever It wills, shall be, in-shell-ah. And the Holy Chicken will surely bless it. A-hen*.

BUT at the risk of being sacriligious, might we suggest that we can all give providence a helping hand by getting out there and spreading the Good Word. There are just 333 backers right now; obviously we can't save everyone, but I think we can attract a few more good eggs for the Holy Chicken.

Before we go, we'll leave you with this marvellous piece of hate-literature that landed on our doorstep just last week from a very enlightened individual who has been busy bravely forcing his anonymous opinion on the citizens of Cambridge:

If you can't see this image, count yourself lucky; it's nothing but hate and bullshit If you can't see this image, count yourself lucky; it's nothing but hate and bullshit

If we're looking to highlight anything with this game, it's shit like this: The author of the above piece is (we have to assume) well-intentioned. He's not doing it to horrify and offend people; he's doing it because a mixture of arrogance, power-lust and poor interpretation has lead him to believe this is not just the right course of action, but the only one, because he (and let's face it; it's going to be a he) is convinced he has God on his side.

We'd like to think that had the author of this pamphlet played The Hen Commandments and played with the fragility of the written word, laughing at how easy it was to tweak meaning, to bend anything to your own advantage... then maybe, just maybe he might have a little less God-given certainty backing him up next time he wanted to take his own frustrations out on the population at large.

Please help us get The Hen Commandments made: http://kck.st/1Gk3vGO

* Special thanks to Lauren for graciously and generously licencing use of "A-hen" to us.

Posted by TerrorBull Games on 27 November 2014 - 3 comments

Comments so far:

  1. Found out about kickstarter yesterday, browsing the games sections today. One game appealed to my love of humorous and socially risqué board games - The Hen Commandments. I knew I was into a winner when I realised Terrorbull were involved. By the time I found out about this you were fully funded and according to the proposal on kickstarter you may not be marketing the game widely! I want to throw my money at you (and hopefully receive this game in return) - please tell me there's a way that I can do that! Nicola Nicolabroon@googlemail.comNicola from UK - 30 November 2014
  2. We want your game. Thirty quid is a bit steep for people in PL but we're getting bored here in the mountains with the Hare and the Tortoise.Tricky Dickie from Poland - 4 April 2015
  3. Well Tricky Dickie, you're in luck because it's not £30, it's just £21.95 ... but then you're also out of luck because right now you can only get it in the UK. Sorry about that - we hope it'll be successful enough that we can spread the Good Word of Heninism far and wide, but right now we don't know when (or if) that might happen.TerrorBull Games - 30 April 2015

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