Founder's Forum: Bundle of Holding Statement

Good Morning ConTessans!

What do you do when a game company benefits from the work you do while simultaneously refusing to help fund that work? I’m still not sure, but being quiet about it is not my way, nor our way. Make your own decision about the below, I’m not telling you what to believe or what to do, but I think it’s important that people know.

In the spirit of transparency, I’m going to tell you all what I know.

We were told by Bundle of Holding that starting on November 5th a Fate Bundle of Holding would come out, and ConTessa would be the charity the bundle benefited from. This made us happy. There was celebration. We were all surprised it went through that fast. We wanted to get the ball rolling, but figured it’d be some time before something was put together.

I told people. Lots of people. I was excited. We planned social media campaigns, were excited to push the bundle through all our channels.

Then, November 5th came, and we found out the EFF was the charity for the bundle by waking up that morning and looking on the site. No email declaring the agreement had change. No discussion as to why that change came about. Nothing. We were just unceremoniously dumped. Ghosted.

We reached out, and BoH told us there was “bad blood” between ConTessa and Evil Hat, which he thought made it a bad fit. There was a half-hearted apology, and what felt like a bit of a threat… if nothing else came up, we’d be eligible for the next round.

This “bad blood” was news to us. Evil Hat games have been run at nearly every one of the ConTessa events. People who got their start at ConTessa have created for Evil Hat. Evil Hat has benefitted from our existence.

While I respect Bundle of Holding holding the line against their publishers, I don’t believe for a second the owners of Evil Hat weren’t the ones who pulled the plug. What I don’t respect, and what makes me furious, is the fact he didn’t bother to tell us… we had to find out by looking. Right when we were ready to kick off our campaign.

We said ‘thanks, but no thanks’ and walked away from BoH altogether. That sort of unprofessional behavior is, unfortunately, present in many parts of the tabletop gaming industry - a natural result of an industry built by hobbyists. It made me incredibly uncomfortable to work with a company that didn’t even bother to tell us what happened.

So that’s that. Evil Hat, apparently, has bad blood against ConTessa. ConTessa doesn’t feel the same way, but our input didn’t matter and wasn’t asked for.

And that’s that. I’m angry, but unsurprised.

Yours Truly,

Stacy Dellorfano
Founder & CEO, ConTessa
stacy@contessa.rocks

Stacy Dellorfano