Heartbreak & Heroines kickstarter cancelled

So it turns out Caoimhe/Kynn cancelled her Kickstarter project today:

Dear backers,

Due to situations of which some of you may be aware, I believe it is unfair to continue asking you to fund Heartbreak & Heroines. Therefore, I am closing the kickstarter project to funding and you will not be charged for the amount you pledged.

I thank you for your interest and I hope you will continue to support women-inclusive gaming projects in the future. I especially want to thank Joanne Renaud for her support and great work as the artist for H&H.

Caoimhe Ora Snow

The “situation” she refers to is not something I’m comfortable about discussing here, but certain allegations have been made against her, which have nothing to do with Heartbreak & Heroines itself; for a rough idea of what they are, look here. I’m not sure whom to believe in this or what the facts in this case are, so I’ll refrain from further comment. It doesn’t help that most of this played out on Livejournal which is going through one of its periodical meltdowns at the moment…

Heartbreak & Heroines

Character from Heartbreak & Heroines. Art by Joanne Renaud

I should’ve done this before, as her project is more than fully founded, but Caoimhe Ora Snow/Kynn Bartlett has a Kickstarter proposal up to fund her new feminist role playing game, Heartbreak & Heroines:

Heartbreak & Heroines is a fantasy roleplaying game about adventurous women who go and have awesome adventures — saving the world, falling in love, building community, defeating evil. It’s a game about relationships and romance, about fairy tales and feminism.

You play a fantasy heroine (or hero, if you prefer) whose heart has been broken. She’s experienced some loss so great that she’s taken up her sword, her tome, her staff, or her wand and walked away from her place in society — by becoming one of its defenders, fighting back the darkness that endangers everyone.


My friend Dwayne McDuffie passed away earlier this year. He was a comic book and animation writer who loved comics — but also saw they didn’t reflect his life as an African American man. Instead of writing a lot of essays and making blog posts (although he did both at times), he and went founded Milestone Media to create the kind of comics he wanted to enjoy. By doing so, Dwayne changed the comics industry and left a legacy that won’t be forgotten by fans of Static, Icon, Justice League, Ben 10, and other comics and animation properties.

I’m no Dwayne McDuffie, but I do want to change gaming by making it more inclusive — of women, people of color, LGBT people, and basically everyone. Using Dwayne as my model, I don’t want to just talk about inclusive gaming, I want to make and play games that push the window on inclusion.

Caoimhe/Kynn is an old internet friend of mine, dating back to Usenet somewhere in the mid nineties, so I’m biased to want this project to succeed anyway, as seems to have done by having raised over $5,000 from a $3,000 target, but even on its own merits this looks worthwhile. As we’ve seen in the past few years, what with Racefail and the Russ Pledge and all that, fandom in general is in need of having our consciousness raised; what better way to do this than through projects like this, with inclusiveness awareness build in from the start, without being preachy? If you are an RPG player, why not check it out to see if you like it? Only fifteen bucks buys you a copy of the game once it’s done…