Hero-U Update #23

Loyal Backers and Other Readers,

I am excerpting a second of my Quest Log article (“A World Full of Heroes – The Power of We“) because, first, I think it’s important. And second, it may help you understand why our games are more than just games.  After the excerpt, one of our top-level backers explains why she made the decision to commit a large amount to this campaign.

Why do Lori and I make games about Heroes? It’s because we think the world needs more Heroes, and that playing games the focus on heroism is a small start. The characters in our games start out pretty ordinary, but as they work and learn and grow, they become better. When they commit themselves to heroic goals, they slowly discover that they can achieve those goals.

We can be Heroes too.

Where do soldiers, firemen, policemen, philanthropists, charity volunteers, and other real-life heroes come from? They all start out as ordinary people – some rich, some poor, most middle-class – and they commit to higher goals. They set their sights on noble goals, join a team, and work their tails off to gain the skills they need to succeed.

You and I and each of us can do the same. It takes commitment, follow-through, and the “power of we”.

A World of Heroes

Imagine a world full of heroes. It starts out as one or two individuals saying, “Things aren’t right. Someone should do something about that. I guess it’s up to me.”

Then they get together and realize that two people working together can accomplish more than two individuals alone. So they talk to others and share what they’ve learned. Pretty soon, someone else stands up and say, “You know, if they could do it, maybe so can I.” And then there are three.

And four. And a dozen. Slowly the word spreads, and more people join the cause. They aren’t all Heroes at first, but when they commit to doing good, they’ve taken the first step to becoming Heroes themselves.

And maybe you and I read, and listen, and say, “These people need help. How can they take on all the world’s troubles themselves?” And each of us has a choice – We can sit back, and keep complaining, and do nothing. Or we can take those first small steps ourselves. We can commit to joining the movement, doing Good whenever we can, and working towards becoming Heroes ourselves.

Because there is no Superman, or Batman, in our world. And there’s only one Chuck Norris. But there are a lot of ordinary people working to do good deeds, one small task at a time. Every time someone does Good – even it’s not a big, scary, Heroic action – it makes our world a little better.

The Power of We

Every time *you* do good, you make the world *and yourself* a little better. You become part of the hidden team, the people who care, the people who would rather be Heroes than lie back and ignore the evil around them.

That’s what “the power of We” is all about. A whole lot of people who take a stand and strive to do things that matter… That can be the difference from a world that suffocates under its own pollution, starves to death because it has exhausted its natural resources, or lives in fear under the iron hand of despotic rulers. We won’t stand for that world; we can’t allow it.

And that means we all – each one of us as individuals and many of us working together – must become Heroes. The world needs more Heroes, and if you and I do not heed the call, who will answer for us? It’s up to us and the Power of We.

Katherine Owen On Backing at the Highest Tier

Dear Fellow Backers of Rogue to Redemption,

I am one of the proud Philanthropist level backers (the one who bumped up from High Roller yesterday). I haven’t written anything about my particular pledge level to date but as Hero-U hits the final push to reach its funding target, I thought I would just share a few reasons why I have chosen to back it in such a serious way.

Quest for Glory was an important part of my childhood. The game I played for so many hours, days, weeks, months…the one that kept me coming back through my teens, my twenties and, eventually, the first part of my thirties. I wasn’t crazy, nor was it the case to say I didn’t play other games or indeed have other hobbies besides the computer. I was a very serious musician who later chose to become a professional violinist. This series was special. The kind of game that can change your outlook, make you think…the game that literally changed my life. I’ve read so many other similar stories across forums, I know it had a positive and lasting effect on many people.

Something that also changed my life, though with much less of a positive effect, was a car accident back in 2003. It has left me struggling with chronic pain and increasing disability, infecting every single corner of my life.

Still… In 2004 I decided to play Quest for Glory again to lift my spirits. An internet search led me to the How to be a Hero website and I was finally able to meet Lori and Corey Cole. That was a singularly awesome experience for a long-time fan. Through a difficult part of my life, struggling to come to terms with pain and the need to find new directions, this reconnection with the game of my youth somehow directed my energies into teaching and helping others.

Fast-forward another eight years. I still have the same physical problems, but I have spent years in a profession that I love, helping young people to grow and develop, gain confidence and see opportunities each and every one of us can take to make the world a better place. In so many small ways, you can be a Hero: Lori and Corey taught me that.

So, I have used a portion of the money I received as compensation for my accident to help fund this and a couple of other Kickstarter projects, some charities and local opportunities for young musicians; although something horrible happened to me, I now have the ability to support the causes that are close to my heart. I am tremendously honoured to have pledged to this game; I believe it will live up to all of our expectations, and I look forward to the next three days as we hopefully push Hero-U over the line.

My backer level is something I could NEVER have afforded previously. Some might choose to invest that portion of money in something that will return dividends to provide some security later in life. I’m doing that to an extent, also. But by investing in opportunities and projects that matter, ones I feel will genuinely make the world a better place, I see that as an investment in the future of humanist and the dividends will be beyond worth. (By the way, I am not religious, just a humanist. One who likes beagles…not sure what you’d call that). All of us believe in this project and invest what we can reasonably afford.

People often reach old age and regret opportunities missed. I am determined not to miss out on the opportunity of helping this game become a reality. It might sound far-fetched to say that Hero-U will change the world. But it could, simply by virtue of changing the lives of individual people in any number of small ways.

Also…there are uber-cool rewards at each tier. Why not consider bumping up your pledge today?

– Katherine Owen

Thank you, Katherine! Stories like yours inspired us to create the How to Be a Hero and School for Heroes sites, and they are the reason we want to make Hero-U now. Our #1 rule is, “The player must have fun,” but close behind that is, “Our games must give players meaning and value.” As long as it’s fun. 🙂

 – Corey Cole