20 years of the Shining Series

March 28th, 2011

Well, it’s here – just :) March 29th, the anniversary of the Shining Series.

I’m just uploading the last couple of Campaign videos I received. Thanks so much to everyone who’s supported the Campaign over the past 6 months. It’s been a lot of work to organise but it’s all been worthwhile already, as I have had confirmation that the parcel has been delivered to Camelot. We know that our Bundle of Love has reached them intact and in time.  We can only hope that they enjoy reading the letters, like the gifts and perhaps even choose to respond.

We’ll see what today brings in terms of Shining news, as rumour has it that the Sega “Shining World” portal will be updated today with some news. I won’t hold my breath, but I’d be lying if I said my hopes aren’t already up for this!

Today is the day of our “big tweet” to Sega, to try to show them a bit of Shining love. If you have a twitter account, please tweet the following message today, which will go to Sega Japan, America and Europe!

@sega_feed @SEGA Happy 20th Anniversary to the Shining Series. Please Save our Series, make a Shining Force SRPG! #ShiningForceSOS Retweet!

Thanks to everyone, and happy Shining Day!

The Campaign has been sent!

March 22nd, 2011

Since last Thursday I’ve been preparing the Campaign package, and I can’t believe just how long it has taken to get it ready!

First of all, let me say a huge thank you and well done to everyone who has helped the campaign.

We gathered a grand total of 42 postal letters and 23 digital letters (remember, the digitals have all come within the last week) from at least 11 different countries (possibly more, some digital letters didn’t include their address), including lots of fan art, and a number of lovely gifts for Camelot.  The birthday card ended up with 51 names inside it, which fitted perfectly as you’ll see from the photos!

To date we have also gathered 49 YouTube videos and I know at least a few more are on the way.  Don’t forget you can keep sending in your Campaign videos right up until the 29th of March, when we hope Camelot will view them.

The parcel weighed in at a little under 4.5kg and cost a whopping UK£83.79 (approx. US$137) to post. Delivery time should be in the region of 4-5 business days, but of course with the recent tragedies in Japan it may be a little longer. There is tracking on the parcel so I should be able to check when it’s been received. Thanks to everyone who donated towards the postage cost, we just about got it covered!

So, what’s in the bundle?

  • The Shining Birthday Card
  • 2 folders containing the fan letters, fan art and more…
  • 4 magazines
  • 3 presents
  • A CD containing PDF versions of all the letters & art etc.

I scanned in each and every letter (along with any fanwork included) and converted them to PDF files, which have been included with the bundle in the form of a nicely labelled CD. This is just in case anything should happen to the bundle in transit, and also so that I can easily send copies of the letters to Sega without having to send a similarly large parcel.

Each letter is in its own page of the display folder, and includes the envelope (or relevant part thereof, if it was too big or too heavy) to help prove authenticity. Letters which had a gift with them include a sticky note marked “Present”  in Japanese and a number, with a corresponding sticky note on each present in the bundle.

The presents have all been wrapped up and labelled, after all – who doesn’t love opening presents?!

I didn’t include a fancy SF:SOS label on the box, instead I thought it would be a nice surprise for Camelot to have no idea what’s inside, and then have to open it to find out.

Today I’ll be preparing the letters for Sega, and posting them along with a copy of the Campaign CD.

Well, without further ado, here are the photos of everything.  Note that I’ve blurred some photos for privacy reasons, but at least you can get the general idea of everything!

Now accepting Digital Letters!

March 12th, 2011

Write a letter to help the campaign!We are now into the final week of the Shining Force: SOS Campaign and while the response has not been as great as I had originally hoped, things have certainly picked up in the last few weeks! We have done much better than any previous campaign, well done everyone.

It’s looking as if we should have around 40-50 letters to send to Camelot in the bundle, and around 50 videos on the YouTube Channel. Some of the letters include fanart, fan fiction and photos of Shining collections – thanks to everyone for what they’ve sent :) As you may know I’ve made a Yogurt plush toy to send to Camelot (as well as one for the prize draw) and have had RainyDaySunshine’s beautiful Shining artwork turned into a large birthday card, into which I shall be gluing everyone’s signatures/names/messages if included with their letters. In addition we have several magazines to include which feature the SF:SOS advertisement as well as unpaid mentions of the campaign and just this morning I have been told that another campaign letter is on its way including a beautiful piece of Shining cross-stitch art for Camelot. Brilliant!

Now, while there are still a few days for fans in Europe and the UK to post their campaign letters, fans in the USA and rest of the world are just about out of time if they want to be sure their letters arrive in time to be included with the campaign bundle. If you live in a big city or know your postal service is reliable, there’s a good chance that letters sent on Monday will also arrive in time.

Just to recap, these are the recommended last posting dates, in order for me to receive the letters by March 20th:

UK: Friday 18th March (First Class), Thursday 17th March (Second Class)
Europe: Tuesday 15th March (Airmail)
Rest of World: Saturday 12th March (Airmail)

Although I had only wanted to include postal letters, for maximum impact on Camelot, I am now accepting digital letters for the campaign in order to boost numbers. Please, if you still have time to post your campaign letter, do still post it – this will be more effective in terms of campaign impact! If you’re too late to post, then you can now email me your letters. Read below for requirements:


1. Please be sure to include your name and postal address.
This is not only to show Camelot that you are a real person (afterall, anyone could fake a load of printed letters!) but also in case you win the prize draw and I need to send you a prize :)

2. If possible, handwrite your letter and your signature/name for the birthday card.
You should scan these at a high resolution (minimum 150DPI, ideally 300DPI) suitable for printing. A typed letter is also acceptable but please try to include a signature/name by hand. We want to show Camelot these are real letters from real people!

3. Include fanwork if you’ve made some.
If you want your fanart, photos or fanfiction included with your letter, please include these in your email for me to print.

4. Make sure to send in time
I need your digital letters/fanart by March 19th (to give me time for printing).

5. Email it to me!
Send your digital letter, digital signature/name and any fanwork for inclusion to sos@shiningforcecentral.com
Please keep the attachment size below 5MB, or contact me to arrange for larger files to be transferred.

Prize Draw
Note that digital campaign letters will not gain you an entry into the prize draw, as I feel this would be unfair on those who have already made the effort to post letters. HOWEVER – if you send a digital letter with signature and also send a campaign video I will still allow you two entries to the prize draw as normal, for making the effort to send both a letter and a video.

The Situation in Japan
Some of you may be wondering how the terrible turn of events in Japan will affect the campaign. My heart goes out to everyone who has been affected by these dreadful natural disasters. While it is clear that there may be postal and transportation delays in Japan (probably the least of their worries) in the coming weeks and months, we will not be delaying the campaign. Even if it does not arrive on time, Camelot will see from the postal date that it was sent in time for the anniversary. I will also of course be including a message of condolence regarding the situation and will apologise for the timing of the campaign which was already near completion when disaster struck. I don’t want us to come across as insensitive.

Two more videos & birthday card printed!

March 9th, 2011

I’m so pleased that the campaign seems to be really going well in its last weeks! Today I’ve recieved two new campaign videos (and the first part of another amazing video! – hope to receive the rest of it soon) as well as more promises of letters for the campaign.

Check out the videos here

Keep track of the letters received here

I’ve also received the professionally printed Shining 20th Anniversary card, ready to start sticking in your signatures :D Pictures of the card can be seen here.

Last Posting Dates

Below is a rough guide to when you should have your letters sent, in order that they are with me in time (March 20th).  In some cases they may arrive more quickly, but it’s better early than too late!

UK: Friday 18th March (First Class), Thursday 17th March (Second Class)
Europe: Tuesday 15th March (Airmail)
Rest of World: Saturday 12th March (Airmail)

 Thanks for your continued support. We’re doing great guys’n'gals!

New video, Birthday card & other news

March 7th, 2011

SF:SOS Birthday Card

First up, we have an excellent new video from a pair of Shining fans in the USA:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j3_XzsbY7-Y

Big thanks to Johnny and his nephew Alex, it’s great to see the younger generations enjoying the classic Shining games. Good luck in Scenario 2, Alex! :D

Next, we have the final version of the SF:SOS Birthday Card, designed by SFCer RainyDaySunshine. I think it looks amazing and I can’t wait to get it printed onto a proper card. Don’t forget to include a copy of your name for the card with your letter, so I can glue them all in!

http://rainydaysunshine.deviantart.com/art/Shining-force-birthday-card-199962693

I’ll be ordering the card in A4 size in the next couple of days, will post a photo when I receive it!

Finally, in news which has already been posted at the SFC forums, but I don’t think I posted it here yet…

The Smithsonian Art Museum in the USA is having a vote on which video games we think are most artistic, and Shining Force II is among the contenders. The games are organised into different groups and Shining Force II is up against Phantasy Star IV and Flashback. Tough competition, but I know which game I voted for!

Wouldn’t it be wonderfully satisfying for Camelot to have one of their Shining games in the Smithsonian? :) Even if Shining Force II isn’t your favourite of the series, a vote for it is a vote for the Shining series as a whole as far as the campaign is concerned, and this extra accolade for Camelot can only be a good thing. So please, get yourself over to:

http://www.artofvideogames.org/

and put in a vote for Shining Force II!

Nintendo Life supports the campaign!

March 4th, 2011

SFCer Kaihaku (whose campaign letter I received today, coincidentally!) pointed me to the following article at Nintendo Life today:

http://www.nintendolife.com/news/2011/02/features_10_sega_games_we_want_on_3ds

in which they talk about the top 10 Sega games they’d like to see on the 3DS. In at number 2 was Shining Force, and with that & their obviously similar point of view to ours, I wrote them an email wondering if they might cover the campaign in an article on their site.

Within minutes they were following us on twitter, had responded to offer some coverage for the campaign… and sure enough, the article is now up and it looks as though we may be gaining a few more supporters thanks to it.

http://retro.nintendolife.com/news/2011/03/lend_your_voice_to_the_save_our_shining_force_campaign

So, welcome all visitors from Nintendo Life, and thanks for coming along. I hope you’ll be able to write a letter and make a video in support of the campaign. I’m really starting to feel quite positive about it now, support seems to be piling in at last!

Time is running out, so get writing!

March 2nd, 2011

The end of the campaign is drawing near, and while videos can be accepted right up until March 29th (and beyond – but no longer eligible for the prize draw, as it is being held on the 29th) letters will need to be with me by March 20th at the very latest. Allowing a few days to a week for postage, this means you need to send your letters within the next 2 weeks if they are to be included with the campaign pack.

Remember, if you’re worried about your handwriting, type & print your letter – but sign it by hand for the personal touch.
You don’t have to include fanwork with the letter (but if you do, it’s appreciated!) and the letter doesn’t even have to be very long. Just a few lines to thank Camelot for the series and tell them that you love it will be enough.

Please, if you love the series – regardless of how you may feel about the campaign – just write a letter to thank Camelot. We may not achieve a new, true SF game – but at the very least we should all thank them for the Shining games they’ve given us.

More details on writing letters here

Don’t forget – there are some great prizes to win if you write a letter and/or send a video for the Campaign!

 

New Prize: Special Edition Yogurt Plushie!

February 13th, 2011

Pair of Yog plushies - one could be yours!

All new paw-pads for added cuteness!

Shining Force: SOS Special Edition Yogurt Plushie

Some of you may remember the Yogurt plushies I made about 8 years ago, only 30 in total. Everyone seemed to want them but I just couldn’t make enough!

Well this week I’ve been hard at work at my sewing machine and have produced two more Yogurt plushies – a bit different than the original ones, Shining Force: SOS Special Editions if you will! They feature all new style helmets and extra cute paw-pads.

One of these Yogurts will be sent to Camelot as part of the Bundle of Love :) The other will be added to the prizes for those who support the campaign with a video and/or letter. 

I didn’t even make one for myself (which I now regret, I think they’re even cuter than the last lot!)

So, what are you waiting for? Write a letter, make a video and you could win a Yog!

Even more prizes for supporters!

February 5th, 2011
Prizes donated by SFCer T300

Prizes donated by SFCer T300

First up, I owe an apology for taking so long to post this news. Life’s been pretty busy for me lately.

As a sign of his support for the Campaign and the strength of his desire for a new game, longtime SFCer T300 has very generously donated his Shining collection to be prizes for the Prize Draw! That means that we now have 4 prizes – that’s right, 4 chances to win when you support the campaign with a letter and/or video. T300 said that he wants a new Camelot Shining Force game so badly that he was prepared to give up his existing Shining games for it. I shall certainly be mentioning his sacrifice in the covering letter to Camelot, his actions may speak louder than words.

But what exactly are these prizes? Well we’ve some real gems here – not only his original UK Mega Drive copies of Shining Force and Shining Force II but also his copy of Resurrection of the Dark Dragon for GBA.

T300, I salute you.  Good luck to everyone in the prize draw!

Our first Swedish video – and more prizes!

January 31st, 2011

John’s video is the first we’ve had from Sweden – how great to be able to show Camelot just how many countries around the world their amazing series has reached!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8BfhUIJfBK8

Also, watch this space for news on some great new prizes which have been added to the prize draw for supporters of the campaign. There will now be even more chance to win!