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Showing posts from August, 2017

RPG Lexicon #2 - Exploding Dice

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Core Mechanics #7 - Fate

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RPG Lexicon #1 - Critical

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Core Mechanics #6 - GURPS

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Gen Con 2017: Day 4 and Recap

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Sunday is always a day of last chances and regrets. It's a day of packing up all your newly acquired treasures and checking out of the hotel. It's a day of tracking down that person you didn't manage to see all show, and then realizing as your heading out the door that there was someone else you didn't even know was in town.

The one thing of note I did on Sunday this year was visit the 50th Anniversary retrospective at the Lucas Oil Stadium. This was an excellent collection of gaming artifacts from the history of Gen Con and beyond. I was particularly interested in the early prototypes and playtest manuscripts of various games. Thanks to everyone who lent pieces of their collections.



Unfortunately, the time came to say goodbye to another year at Gen Con. And then travel back across the scorching plains of Ohio without air conditioning. And then get stuck in a completely pointless traffic jam at the Pennsylvania state line. But eventually, we made it home to our cat and…

Gen Con 2017: Day 3

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Saturday definitely felt more crowded than any Gen Con before. As much as I was impressed by how the organizers and convention center staff had seemed to keep people moving, there's only so much they can do when the crowds grew to record levels. I'm very curious to see what the final numbers are.

As for my day, it was close to excellent. It began with an excellent breakfast with +Jamie Stefko and +Tracy Barnett. We chatted about our goals and expectations as creatives and shared ideas for projects we want to work on. Tracy and I are on similar pages about working to our strengths and getting help from others with complementary skillsets rather than taking on everything ourselves.

Back to the exhibit hall, and I finally made it to Pelgrane Press's booth and partook of their amazing 4 for 3 deal to finally pick up 13th Age and Cthulhu Confidential, plus a couple supplements. I won't bore you with the details of international banking and credit card fraud protection that …

Gen Con 2017: Day 2

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Wednesday and Sunday at Gen Con don't entirely count for various reasons, so Friday is really the juicy center of the convention. This year, it was my big day for industry related activities, so let's see how that went.

The day began with a stroll to Au Bon Pain for breakfast, where I managed to burn the tip of my middle finger with scalding oatmeal. So that was a good start. It was pretty good oatmeal, though.

Then it was off to the exhibit hall to wind our way through the second half of the aisles. (My roommate had finished his circuit of the first set on day one.) Remember how I said Thursday felt like Saturday? Well, Friday felt even busier. By the time we hit the 3000s, I was seriously itching to get away from the crowds. Hunger was certainly a factor, but I swear those rows get narrower the farther you get from Paizo and Fantasy Flight.

To escape, I headed to the Crown Plaza for Ken and Robin Talk About Stuff Live. I won't spoil Ken's Nerd-Trope for future listen…

Gen Con 2017: Day 1

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I'll start by saying it: Thursday felt like Saturday. The crowds are certainly higher, and I can only imagine they'll continue to grow. That said, let's talk about how the day went.

I began by walking +Jamie Stefko to her first game, which was located on the field at Lucas Oil Stadium. I've never been out to the stadium before, as the convention had only expanded into it in the last couple years. I believe this was the first year they held events on the field.

The big feature there, however, was the pop-up museum of gaming history behind the facade of the Horticultural Hall, Gen Con's original home in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. I stayed here only briefly, but it looks like a well curated, if small, glimpse into the hobby's past.


But I had other places to be. As an Industry Insider, I had a ticket for early access to the exhibit hall, and I certainly wasn't going to waste it. Of course, like everything else at Gen Con, a couple hundred people had the same idea …

Gen Con 2017: Day 0

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It has begun again: Gen Con, the best four days in gaming (tee em). This year, of course, is the 50th instantiation of that hallowed gathering, and no one really knows just what kind of madness to expect. It seems to be off to a smashing start, but the crowds have yet to truly roll in.

My Gen Con experience began as all do with travel. Indianapolis is just close enough to Pittsburgh to think that driving to the show is a good idea. Unfortunately, when your air conditioning dies halfway across Ohio, and the temperature outside reaches the lofty heights of the mid-90s, you start to regret not taking to the air when you had the chance.

Thankfully, we reached Indy without losing too much of our body weight through our pores. And of course, along the way we indulged in that holiest of all roadside attractions: the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store.


Once in Indy, we checked into the Westin and then made our way to the convention center. Signs proudly announced that all badges were sold out, …

Core Mechanics #5 - Blades in the Dark

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My Big Fat Gen Con 50 Schedule

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This is going to be a huge Gen Con for everyone. The event has sold out completely for the first time in its history, and tens of thousands of gamers will fill the Indiana Convention Center, Lucas Oil Stadium, and surrounding hotels for the best four days in gaming (tee em).

Where will I be, you ask? (I'm imagining that you asked, since you're reading this. You can't stop me.) All over, as I am an Industry Insider Featured Presenter, and therefor contractually obligated to do stuff that might benefit you, the con-going public. Plus all the other stuff I'd normally be doing at Gen Con. Minus the playing games part. I couldn't actually fit time into my schedule to sit down and play.

Anyway, here's where I'll be and when throughout the convention.
Wednesday My wife and I plan to leave bright and early Wednesday morning. It's about a 6-8 hour drive from Pittsburgh, depending on traffic, construction, and how many times we stop to pee. If we leave by 9:00 AM…

Castle Whiterock — Chapter 0: Filth Beneath Cillamar, Part 1

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CharactersEmmeline Forthwrought, self-taught apprentice mageFrevia Arden, nature adept, herbalist, and healer.Imra Shadomantle, elven expert and troubleshooter for the less legitimate business of House ShadowmantleMelanie Shadowmantle, adopted aristocrat daugther of house Shadowmantle
These four women were brought together at the house of Thomas Kerrwin, a merchant familiar to them all. Kerrwin was pleased to see they all knew each other, as he was hoping they could help him with a problem. Thomas' son, Joran, had been missing for two weeks after accruing a heavy gambling debt. Joran owed a bookmaker named Evrik the Braid to princely sum of 3,000 gp, and Thomas wanted the group to pay the dwarf off and return Joran to his home. The party agreed and set off for Myna's Bones, a tavern in the Warrens of Cillamar which Evrik was known to frequent.

So early in the day, Myna's Bones was nearly empty, save for a few sour-faced regulars and a table of rowdy thugs and a bald dwarf…

Core Mechanics #4 — Feng Shui 2

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My Sales Numbers for July

For July 2017, I again offered PDFs, POD books, and POD cards for sale through OneBookShelf: DriveThruRPG, RPGNow, DriveThruCards, etc. July was the second strongest month of the year so far. In total, I sold 27 units last month, including a few card decks. My total earnings came to $29.48.

Arthuria: 1 PDF
Fragments, Volume 1, #2: 2 PDF
Full Moon: 1 PDF
Interstellar Patrol: 3 PDF
Interstellar Patrol Adventure Cards: 1 Card deck, 3 PDF
Rituals and Convergences: 4 PDF
Situation Aspect Cards: 1 Card deck, 7 Print-and-Play PDF
Super Power Cards: 1 Card/PDF combo, 2 Print-and-Play PDF
The Model: 1 PDF