The adverts have been tweaked slightly following the numerous excellent suggestions I received (thanks!) and sent off. I'm going to run the 'Pre-order before 15th August' It's Alive! one for a week, I'm not sure what to do about the Carpe Astra one yet, it might be a bit too early as there's not much info available yet.
In addition to the adverts I've also been playtesting a lot. Tuesday I played four 2-player games of Carpe Astra solo, trying out Michael's idea. I'm liking it more and more. Then yesterday evening I held the inaugural Reiver Games playtest night. I'm going to try to do them every Wednesday night to try to get through the massive stack of games I've received. Last night only Lisa and Chris could make it, but we played Sumeria and tried out a new one: Codename: Pharaoh (guess what that's about). Pharaoh took a while to get going as I think I misunderstood the rules a few times - they could do with being clearer. Writing a good set of rules is one of the hardest things to do, so I don't knock the designer for the problems I had. I had several questions, the answers for which may well be in the rulebook, but I couldn't find them.
Today my mate Dunk came round, and we played: Carpe Astra, Sumeria Codename: Match (x3) and Codename: Backyard. I really like Backyard, but I think the scoring needs work and the card balance could do with some tweaking too. I'll knock something together.
Dunk also asked me how Jorvik & Artist were going. Despite having given up my job I still struggle to find the time to work on my own designs! Jorvik & Artist are on the back-burner for now while I concentrate on getting It's Alive! and Carpe Astra out.
In other news, I got an email from the manufacturer to let me know that I'll receive some finished bits for It's Alive! tomorrow. These are printed and constructed for me to proof - not finished games. The finished games are due to arrive next week (according to the schedule of a few weeks ago), don't know whether that's still on course - I'll ask the manufacturer tomorrow.