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July Kickstarter Round-Up: LARP, Pugs and Brain Injuries

Once a month we'll be bringing you a look at some of the best local Kickstarter campaigns in order to let you know what's getting ready to be unleashed through the help of small investors.

Larpe Diem: Have you ever seen Darkon, the documentary someone made about foam sword fighting, live action RPGs? It's awesome. If they had that every Monday like football I would crash my car in order to get home on time to watch it.

Coming to us from the Fat Kids on the Block film crew, this is a similar film, except this time it's fictional. An average man named James is dragged by a friend to an underground LARP event where it turns out he is a naturally gifted foam weapons expert. Soon, he is an sensation in the LARP underworld, but success always makes you enemies.

Seriously, this is Kickboxer for the nerd crowd and I want it made yesterday. The only downside is that it's $75 to get a copy of the film (And a digital at that). Seems like a bit of a rip-off, but if they're angling for a theatrical release I can understand.

Goal: $7,500 by August 6

Puggernauts Pooch Paraphernalia Blastoff: This one goes out to my Aunt Kathy and all the pugs she's kept fat and happy over the years. Amberly Preston is dedicating herself to making the kind of items an elderly pug needs in their twilight years. These include diapers for incontinent dogs, and orthopedic, easily washable beds for their old bones. If dogs have saints, I can totally see Preston being one of them.

It's $75 to get a bed, but all the prizes below that come with stickers, dog clothes, autograph pictures, and other neat dog things. $500 gets you a big giant dog party, and that is the most adorable sounding thing ever!

Goal: $2,000 by August 7

This story continues on the next page.

Blitzshield: Our final entry this month is a subject that is near and dear to my heart.

Concussions are a worsening problem in modern sports. Too many men and women in boxing, football, and pro wrestling are suffering serious brain damage without even really knowing that it's happening. The result can lead to early dementia in athletes in their physical prime, which has been traced to several murders and suicides.

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Jim Hines is claiming his Blitzshields (Patent pending) use carbon fiber and Kevlar bonded with epoxy resin to create a football helmet that is more efficient and better protects the head in a collision. Currently he is working on the capital to build prototypes to test on actual NFL players, who Hines says have expressed interest.

$20 gets you an autographed picture of the player who receives the helmet, which is pretty good autograph rates. It'll be $1,000 for your own custom helmet, though.

Goal: $30,000 by August 11.

Jef has a new story, a tale of headless strippers and The Rolling Stones, available now in Broken Mirrors, Fractured Minds. You can also connect with him on Facebook.

Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.

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