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[Comments] (5) The Pitch!: Hey, folks, Leonard here, telling you that if you haven't bought your copy of Constellation Games, still the greatest novel about video games from outer space, now is probably the single best time to buy.

Sure, you were skeptical at first. Ever since standing in line for that midnight showing of The Phantom Menace, you've been wary of things that seem awesome. You thought, "can this guy bring to comedic science fiction the same epic scope we saw in RESTful Web Services?" But now Part One of the novel has been sent to subscribers, and random commentary readers are calling it "STONE COLD BRILLIANT" and "some of the most fun I've had in years". Even normally reputable publications like Wired's GeekDad have called it a "wild ride" that's "so much fun to read".

Now here's where your late-adopterhood pays off: with the completion of Part One, all subscribers have been given access to a compiled PDF of the novel so far. That's about 50,000 words in a single unencumbered file you can drop onto your ebook reader or your fancy smartphone.

This means you can subscribe to CG for $5, read the first sixteen chapters in one huge gulp, and then start reading the rest of the story as the chapters come out every Tuesday. Or you can subscribe at the $20 level, read the PDF at a more leisurely pace, and finish the whole story when the paperback comes out next month. For $20 you'll also get three bonus stories that take place before/during/after the novel, and an irreverent guide to a pathologically strange alien language.

With all this stuff on the table, you silently think, why not keep waiting? Won't we just offer more in the future? THE ANSWER IS NO. Once the paperback comes out, the bonus stories and language guide stop being pack-ins and become "sold separately"s. The paperback on its own will cost $20. (I don't know exactly how this is going to happen, but that's the gist of it.) So the best deal is to shell out $20 now for early access to Part One and a lot of preorder bonuses. If you hate paper, you can pay $5, catch up on the novel the way you would a web comic, and buy the bonus material later.

Friend, don't let the fact that I seem to think it's a great idea to call you "friend" in a sales pitch, dissuade you from shelling out your hard-earned PayPal balance for this quality entertainment. Here's the subscription page, and here are the first two chapters so you can see what you're getting. The whole thing could be yours for the cost of a really, really enormous gumball, a gumball that won't fit in your mouth so why even bother? This is a much better deal.

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Posted by danima at Mon Mar 19 2012 13:32

Dear Friend,

I, hating paper as I do, subscribed only at the $7 level so as to avoid an awkward confrontation with the Pey Shkoy phrasebook. Now, however, I find myself in dire need of access to the other two ancillary short stories. Is there some easy way to accomplish a subscription upgrade, or will I be left muttering "k'chua"?

Posted by Leonard at Mon Mar 19 2012 14:02

I asked about this when we were deciding on pricing, and Kate said no one had ever asked to upgrade their subscription, so we don't have anything in place for it. But we'll figure something out, maybe deducting that $2 from the price of the story package for you.

Posted by Matthew at Mon Mar 19 2012 15:34

I've never really been clear on this, but is the phrasebook an actual book, or will it be like a PDF emailed at some point?

Posted by Leonard at Mon Mar 19 2012 16:05

The stories and phrasebook will all be in PDF format. I looked around a bit, trying to find a cheap way of having the stories printed (eg. like a zine), but it's not really cost-effective. It might be worth it if we could use the story book as a giveaway promo, but the stories don't make much sense unless you've read the novel.

Posted by danima at Tue Mar 20 2012 14:13

Thanks for looking into it! I've attempted to send you an email to follow up.

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