Wednesday, August 31, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 31: When did you first take part in #RPGaDay?


Quite an easy question for me today, as I first took part in #RPGaDay when it started nine years ago.

However, I'd like to take this opportunity in this final day's post in #RPGaDay2022 to thank everyone for getting involved this year, and in previous years. It's great to see so many people share cool stories and positivity about tabletop gaming. Thank you for your support.

Big thanks to those who translate the posts into other languages for me, it is greatly appreciated.

And especially big thanks to Anthony Boyd who created most of the questions this year.

Thank you all. 

Until next year!

Stay multi-classy!!

Tuesday, August 30, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 30: What should #RPGaDay do for its 10th Anniversary next year?


This is quite a big question really, and one that could have quite an impact on next year. As you know, this is the 9th #RPGaDay, so for its 10th Anniversary next year I felt we should do something cool. But what?

Different format? Charity fundraiser? An award a day? 

Suggestions will be logged, and we'll see what we can do to make next year's celebration of positivity even better.

Monday, August 29, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 29: WHO would you like to see take part in #RPGaDay?


We're down to the last few days of #RPGaDay2022, and we're asking a few questions about #RPGaDay itself. First up, who would you like to see take part in #RPGaDay?

Well, I'm really just happy that anyone takes part, but I'd love to see some of the bigger names in the industry join in to spread the word a bit further. Maybe next year we could convince Eric Campbell or Matt Mercer to get involved. That would be amazing.

Sunday, August 28, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 28: Style Sunday


Day 28 of #RPGaDay2022 and it's Style Sunday, and it's all about your favourite cover art. That's tricky, because there's a lot of really cool cover art to choose from. One that really stood out for me when I was a kid and just discovering RPGs was the awesome cover for Star Frontiers

Really sold the game to me, and I couldn't wait to play it. 

The other game that I bought purely because of the cover was CJ Carella's WitchCraft.

That cover, along with the way that the book is smaller, digest sized, really sold it to me, and started me down a slippery slope buying all of Eden's games, and eventually writing some of them!

West End Games' Star Wars RPG was just perfect as well. Okay, so it wasn't original artwork, but it was everything I could have hoped for in an RPG, and that cover was wonderful. 

Saturday, August 27, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 27: How has your character changed?


Day 27 of #RPGaDay2022 and it's the final part of the 'look at your character' posts, asking how has your character changed? I must admit, I have very little attention span at the moment, far too much going on in my head, so I'm just happy to be playing with friends, rather than thinking about something like narrative progression for my character. I'd be happy if they got better at doing what they do - I feel like Edrahil stumbles from being on the verge of death to the next encounter where they end up in a similar state.

He is, however, becoming more attuned to the world, rather than being an elitist and isolated Rivendell elf, and sees the denizens of Middle Earth as being a mixed bunch who are in serious danger of the rising shadow.

Friday, August 26, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 26: Why does your character do what they do?


Day 26 of #RPGaDay2022 continues looking at your current character and asks WHY does your character do what they do? 

Edrahil is an elf from Rivendell, and is aware of a rising darkness in Middle Earth. It is his duty to find the influence of the Shadow and put a stop to its spread.

Thursday, August 25, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 25: Where has that character been?


Day 25 of #RPGaDay2022 continues looking at your current character, asking where has that character been?

Typically for The One Ring, he's been everywhere. He's been from Rivendell to Bree, south to barrows, further south to the forests, then across to the city divided by the river, upstream to Rivendell again, over the Misty Mountains, into Mirkwood, back to the inn, south to the forests teeming with bandits, and back to Rivendell, and now back to Bree and north to his impending doom.

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 24: When did you start playing this character?

Day 24 of #RPGaDay2022 continues asking questions about your current character, asking when you started playing them? 

Not sure. Must be about four months ago. We'd finished our bizarre and weird game of Heart, and I know our GM was particularly excited by the Rings of Power trailers, so suggested we play The One Ring. We did a few sessions as an intro, playing different characters who all ended up supposedly killed by the 'big bad' of our campaign, then started with our proper characters. 

Tuesday, August 23, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 23: What situation is your character currently in?


Day 23 of #RPGaDay2022 continues the theme of your current character, asking WHAT situation are they currently in? Well, Edrahil is constantly battling between being at full endurance, or completely unconscious and on the verge of death. Last week we were fighting orcs, so many orcs, that threatened to eat his rather luxurious white horse, and nobody messes with my horse. However, unlike John Wick, Edrahil and his companions were cut down, though the hobbit managed to do the most damage to the dozens of orcs. We were saved by some rangers, healed up, rested, and we're heading to the downs north of Bree to the place where all of our previous characters met their untimely end. So it's not looking good...

Monday, August 22, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 22: Who is your current character?


Day 22 of #RPGaDay2022 starts a week looking at your characters. Today's question asks WHO is your current character? 

I'm currently playing The One Ring, and my character is a High Elf of Rivendell called Edrahil - he's a bit of a snob, has a lovely white horse called Percival, and spends all of his time fighting, getting lost, and getting almost killed repeatedly. He's not great at things, but that may just be my dice rolling...

Sunday, August 21, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 21: Setting Sunday!!


Day 21 of #RPGaDay2022 is another one of those odd Sundays, and this time it's SETTING SUNDAY! Share an intriguing detail from a game setting you enjoy. Here's an intriguing detail that only some people know - the Conspiracy X Kickstarter from ages ago that had some signed editions (I think that was the Extraterrestrials Sourcebook) I was sent a load of bookplates to sign that I posted to the publishers to add to those who'd backed a signed version.

What I didn't tell anyone was that 50% of those signed ones also have messages and clues about the conspiracy that can only be seen under UV light. Some of them listed members of the MJ-12 conspiracy, some other clues were in there as well... 

Did you get one of those? 

Saturday, August 20, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 20: How long do your games last?


That's a weird one - How long do your games last? Session-wise, I'm getting old and tired. Gone are the eight hour sessions of my youth, not to mention that 90-hour marathon we tried to raise money for the local church roof. Though my current D&D sessions seem to be about 5-6 hours, we're happier with nice 2 1/2 hour sessions every week. 

If it's campaigns you're talking about, well most of those last about a year before we switch to a different game/setting. 

So that's my answer to Day Twenty of #RPGaDay2022!!!

Friday, August 19, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 19: Why has your favourite game stayed with you?


Day Nineteen of #RPGaDay2022 asks a slightly more complicated question - why has your favourite game stayed with you? As I mentioned a couple of days ago, my favourite game rotates between three, with some close runners knocking on the top 3 (yes, I'm looking at you Mage and Buffy).

WEG Star Wars as stayed with me because I've been a hardcore Star Wars nerd since I first saw the first movie in 1978 (yeah, I couldn't get to see it until 78). I started gaming and wanted that Star Wars feel, and while my first game (Traveller) was close, and Star Frontiers was closer, when WEG Star Wars came out it was the ultimate thing as far as I was concerned.

Ghostbusters was a similar case. Massive fan of the movie, bought the RPG and loved it - it inspired me to write RPGs, and is the reason I am where I am today. Still love it, and would love to do a new version with the same level of humour and excitement. 

Finally, Tales from the Loop was a revelation - minimal rules, set in the 80s, masses of atmosphere, what's not to love. It's the sort of game I aspire to.

Thursday, August 18, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 18: Where is your favourite place to play?


Day Eighteen of #RPGaDay2022 asks where is your favourite place to play? I'm really weird but I like playing at home, on the sofa, connected by Skype or Roll20 to players anywhere in the world. No need to lug books about... I guess I'm just naturally lazy!!

Wednesday, August 17, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 17: Past, Present, or Future - WHEN is your favourite game set?


Day Seventeen of #RPGaDay2022 asks when your favourite game is set? Oh, if only I had a favourite game! It changes depending upon the mood, from the 1980's (Tales from the Loop or Ghostbusters) to a galaxy far, far away (WEG Star Wars). I'm not much of a fantasy gamer, so that's probably the furthest in the past I'd prefer (though I did have a great game of Victorian era Changeling recently). 

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 16: What would be your perfect game?


Day Sixteen of #RPGaDay2022 and we're nearly halfway through the month! Hurrah!! Today's question asks "What would be your perfect game?" 

Tricky? Short of saying I'd love a game of something like The X-Files or Twin Peaks, or some other supernatural investigation game, or Stranger Things to capture that vibe of Tales from the Loop meets Stephen King, I don't know...

I'd like something that's relatively light, like Scott Pilgrim - a surreal but fun experience, where there's a little fighting but it's not the focus, and lots of cool and wacky happenings - maybe in a Ghostbusters style.

Other than that, you know my weird tastes!

Monday, August 15, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 15: Who would you like to Gamemaster for you?


And we're on to the next week of #RPGaDay2022, and the question is once again WHO? Who would you like to Gamemaster for you?

I honestly don't know! I'm not a great GM, so I certainly appreciate other people GMing for me. Stoo is doing a grand job with our games to date, having GM'd Tales from the Loop, Star Wars, Alien, Scum & Villainy, and currently - The One Ring

If I could get anyone to GM, it'd probably be someone cool like Eric Campbell, running something like Star Trek Adventures or Doctor Who. That'd be great.

Sunday, August 14, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 14: Suggestion Sunday

Day Fourteen of #RPGaDay2022 is one of those Suggestion Sunday things where you're supposed to tag some friends and suggest an RPG to try. Well, I'm not really a big fan of tagging people in things, and I already know some friends I'd like to see get involved, but the game I'm going to suggest is Broken Compass

A cool game that came out a year or more ago by Two Little Mice publishing, that immediately caught everyone's eye by its great corebook design. The game is little bit Tomb Raider, a little Uncharted, and a whole lot of Indiana Jones, with a corebook designed to look like a leatherbound travel journal, complete with an elasticated loop to hold a pen or pencil (logo emblazoned pencil is included). 

The system may take a little getting used to, as the dice rolling is very 'one roll for a whole encounter' and I would have thought a more segmented roll for each part of a trap or fight would be more in keeping with the tension-raising stakes of a high-adventure game. But I'd really like to see it in action and find out how it plays. 

Saturday, August 13, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 13: How would you change the way you started RPGing?

 Day Thirteen of #RPGaDay2022 asks HOW would you change the way you started RPGing? 

I don't think I would. Great games, even better friends, the only way it could be improved would be to have started playing earlier. The groups in my little town had been playing for a while by the time I got involved, so I missed out on a year or two of gaming! I didn't even know these things existed before then!! 

Friday, August 12, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 12: Why did you start RPGing?


Day Twelve of #RPGaDay2022 asks an odd question - Why did you start RPGing? 

I guess the answer to that one is fairly simple. I was obsessed with Star Wars and science fiction in general. My first RPG was Traveller, and while it wasn't the Star Wars that I loved, it was as close as I could get for a while. I enjoyed D&D and Runequest, I loved the company - having a growing group of friends that I'm still in contact with (and still gaming with) today. And then along came Star Frontiers, which was even more Star Wars-y than Traveller, and I was hooked. 

Thursday, August 11, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 11: If you could live in a game setting, where would it be?


Oh boy, today's question is a tricky one. Day Eleven of #RPGaDay2022 asks 'If you could live in a game setting, where would it be?'

I guess my problem is that I LOVE licensed games, so a lot of the RPG settings I'd pick are licensed settings. I mean, who wouldn't want to live in the idillic future of Star Trek, or run around with a lightsaber in Star Wars

Sadly, I'd have to say that my ideal choice would be Tales from the Loop. I know it's licensed, but who wouldn't want to return to your childhood in the 80s, surrounded by that cool music, iconic imagery, and add some (usually) helpful robots into the mix? Count me in!!

Wednesday, August 10, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 10: When Did you Start Gamemastering?


Day Ten of #RPGaDay2022 is 'When did you start Gamemastering?' and that was kinda answered in yesterday's question. My first GMing was the awesomeness that was original Star Frontiers. So the "When" answer is probably around 1983. I wasn't a great Gamemaster - I don't think I am now either. I think I peaked in the mid 90's with Kult. But I had a blast GMing Star Frontiers, and then I went on to things like TSR's Indiana Jones, WEG's Ghostbusters, WEG's Star Wars, Victory Games' James Bond (you can tell a trend there).

Tuesday, August 9, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 9: What is the Second RPG you bought?


Day Nine of #RPGaDay2022 asks the question, what is the second RPG you bought? That's a tricky one, because I bought two fairly close to each other, and I can't remember which came first!! I think it was this way around...

After my first couple of games, I was introduced to Traveller, Runequest, and AD&D, and it was clear to me that I really needed my own copy of the AD&D Player's Handbook. So, after a trip to the aforementioned secret shop hidden above a picture framers in the city 13 miles away, I purchased my own AD&D Player's Handbook. Not the one everyone started with, I had the blue one with the wizard. not the group stealing the stuff from the big demon statue. 

After that, I wanted to run my own game, and when I was buying the Player's Handbook the cover of Star Frontiers caught my eye and kinda stuck in my head, so it must have been shortly after that I purchased the original Star Frontiers Alpha Dawn boxed set. 

I loved Star Frontiers, we played the heck out of it, and Knight Hawks, and Zebulon's Guide. Loved it, and would have loved to have seen it make a comeback... but not like it is... dear god, no... You've ruined my youth... 

Monday, August 8, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 8: Who introduced you to RPGs?


Wow, week 2 of #RPGaDAY already, and the question for Day Eight is 'Who Introduced you to RPGs?'.

This kinda flashes back to the answer on day 3, of when were you introduced to RPGs... It was that moment when Crud (sorry, I know you never liked being called Crud, but I don't want to use real names here) decided that we weren't going to spend that afternoon creating lightcycles programs for the ZX Spectrum, and he was going to drag me along to JR's house to partake in my first game of Traveller

So, technically, the answer to 'Who' was Crud, along with JR and Pete. It was only a matter of time before that lead to me gaming with two different groups, which eventually merged into one.

Sunday, August 7, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 7: A Cool Part of a System

Day Seven of #RPGaDay2022 is one of the weird Sunday questions - this one is "Describe a cool part of a system that you love". Oh, man. So many to choose from. There have been many times over the last few years when I've read or played a relatively new game and thought "Wow, I wish I'd come up with that". 

Some cool elements that I particularly admire include the whole "Blades in the Dark" thing of rolling against a difficulty and the result determines if you succeed, succeed but with a consequence, or fail. That's bloomin' brilliant, and I think it's something that's been adapted from Powered by the Apocalypse - however, it was my first game of Scum and Villainy that I first encountered it. 

The other "wow" moment was experiencing Tales from the Loop for the first time. Just the simplicity of the game system, how the rules were a fraction of the size of most of the games I'd been playing, allowing the players to build their 'character' rather than a bunch of numbers. Flippin amazing. I guess that's my only frustration at the moment, is that there are no more official in-house Tales from the Loop books. I'd snap them up in an instant. 

Saturday, August 6, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 6: How would you get more people playing RPGs?

Day Six of #RPGaDay2022 asks 'How would you get more people playing RPGs?'. At a time when more people seem to be not only aware of what tabletop roleplaying games are, but also playing and streaming games, it's almost like TTRPGs are in a second renaissance! A new golden age, so to speak.

I remember having this discussion about 2006 when we were trying to work out how to get more people involved in RPGs, and we were talking about how licensed properties were the way to go. Get more kids introduced, a new generation of gamers, by bringing out games of properties they'd be interested in. We talked about James Bond, and (of course) Doctor Who - which eventually led to the game! 

Now, everyone's aware of tabletop roleplaying games thanks to streaming, Stranger Things, and more. You can find Dungeons & Dragons everywhere - no longer do you have to find out about secret, unmarked game stores hidden above picture framers.

That said, the best way to get more people playing RPGs is to NOT put them off. Put an end to the gatekeeping, and let everyone have a go! 

And that really is the great thing about the hobby at the moment - you really can have a go pretty easily. Or, at least, see what it's all about by watching streams. There are so many games out there if you fancy something different from Dungeons & Dragons, and so many indie games that are simply brilliant. And it's easier to get into making games now as well. We really are in a new golden age.

Friday, August 5, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 5: Why will they like this game?


I've kinda painted myself into a corner. After establishing the people I'd like to have introduced to RPGs being my dearly departed parents, and establishing some games I'd have used to introduce them to games, the question on Day Five is 'Why will they like this game?'

Answer should be because they enjoyed Ghostbusters, and would find it funny, but I have to say, in truth, they probably wouldn't have liked it. They'd have probably enjoyed West End Games' Star Wars more - they both loved Star Wars. Dad dressed up as Darth Vader one year for the town carnival, and when my mother was in care, the only DVD she wanted with her was the original Star Wars trilogy. Strange, but I wasn't going to question it. 

The West End Game Star Wars RPG was quick, pretty easy, and very accessible. Really lovely production on them as well. Love those first hardcovers. 

Right, tomorrow's question is a tricky one, so I'm going to go and think about that. 

Until then, stay multiclassy!!

Thursday, August 4, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 4: Where would you host a First Game?


Day Four of #RPGaDay2022 and the big question kinda follows on from the previous ones. We've asked who you'd like to introduce to RPGs, and what game would be a great choice. So now the question is 'Where would you host a first game?'

So you're all set, wanting to host this new game to show off to make a good impression for a first game. Where do you host it? 

Easy answer for that is wherever you're all comfortable and at ease. You could set the scene in a grand hall or a castle, with an epic table of minis, with candles and cool music, but it's not really necessary. The best thing I'd suggest is somewhere comfy, with few distractions, plenty of snacks. Heck, these days it doesn't even have to be in the same room as the other players!

My first game was at a friend's house on their dining room table. Most of our games were like that, at our houses around respective dining room tables. Some of the best times ever. But some of the coolest and most epic games I've had haven't even had that. One of the scariest Kult games was just in a little bedsit without even a single chair, while some of the most epic Star Wars games I've had have been mostly online with players in their own respective houses.

Just play wherever you like, and have fun. The more at ease and involved your prospective new players are, the more they'll enjoy it. 

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 3: When were you first introduced to RPGs?

 Day Three of #RPGaDay2022 and the question is 'When were you first introduced to RPGs'

Hopefully this prompt will inspire everyone to share how they got into tabletop gaming. For me, it was early 1980s. Must have been about 1983, because I remember I was going over to a friend's house on a Saturday afternoon where we'd work on the ZX Spectrum, trying to program a lightcycles game based on Tron. I say we, but in actual fact, I wasn't great at programming. I used Sinclair BASIC okay, but 'Crud' as he was known (though he didn't like being called Crud, sorry) was a far better programmer than me, and could use all that machine code stuff that just baffled me. So Saturday afternoons were him tapping away on the squishy Spectrum keyboard, and I sat there reading old issues of Computer and Video Games magazine. 

Anyway, one Saturday I went over, expecting an afternoon of lightcycles - instead, Crud took me off to another house - JR's - where I'd never been before, to be introduced to the wonders of Traveller.

I had no idea what was really going on, but JR and Crud (and I think Pete was there, maybe) guided me through the wonders of character creation (and hoping I didn't get my character killed in the process) and we started playing. 

I was hooked, and they foolishly mentioned off-hand that there was an AD&D or Runequest game the following day... and that was that. Four or five games a week for the next three or four years at least...

And that was that!

How about you? How did you start?

Tuesday, August 2, 2022

#RPGaDay2022 - Day 2: What is a great introductory RPG?


Day Two of #RPGaDay2022 and the big question is - 'What is a great introductory RPG?'

Ah, this is more like it. But where to start? 

I know a lot of people would say 'Start with D&D' - very valid. Especially with some great starter sets out there to get to playing fairly quickly. But if D&D isn't your thing, or if it's a bit too complicated to ease the new players in gently, what could you go for?

I'd go with something extremely fun and simple - first suggestion would be Ghostbusters. I mean, who doesn't like Ghostbusters?

The West End Games Ghostbusters RPG is incredibly quick and simple. Really fast to play, hilarious to read, and just really cool. It's the game that made me want to write tabletop RPGs.

Of course, if you don't have access to a game that came out in the late 1980s, you could go for the next best thing - EN Publishing's 'Awfully Cheerful Engine' or ACE for short. The game system is basically a retroclone of Ghostbusters, so it keeps the character stats quick and easy and can be recorded on a character sheet the size of an index card. 

It has a host of great adventures that new players will recognise, not just ones that I've contributed to - Spirits of Manhattan is a Ghostbusters-like parody which was an absolute blast to write, and Strange Science will appeal to fans of Stranger Things, Weird Science, and Back to the Future

I'm all about the retro.

On the subject of Stranger Things, the other game I'd use for an introduction would be Tales from the Loop. I love that game - it's so simple and easy, but oozing in setting and feel. (I've used the image of a French supplement I'm still pondering getting, just for completists sake). 

Monday, August 1, 2022

#RPGaDAY2022 - Day 1: Who would you like to introduce to RPGs?


Oh good lord, the graphics are horrible this year. I'm sorry. I just didn't really have the time for it...

Anyway, it's August again, so it's time for the NINTH #RPGaDAY!! Thank you for joining us on this journey through tabletop gaming and spreading a little positivity out in the world, showing off just how cool tabletop roleplaying games can be.

Thanks again this year to Anthony Boyd who came up with most of the questions, and I have to say, this is a first - the first day and I'm almost stumped.

DAY ONE: Who would you like to introduce to RPGs?

That one is really tricky, as most of the people I know are aware of RPGs, even if they don't play them. They know what I do, and get the basics of it, and a lot of that is thanks to tabletop gaming appearing more and more in general media (thank you again Stranger Things, for presenting gaming as something that isn't negative - and correctly depicting the hate and panic that it got all those years ago).

Back in the 80s, we desperately tried to introduce RPGs to new people at school, but I don't think it went down very well with most of them - probably due to the way it was introduced. Now it's a whole different matter. You can get people inspired by suggesting cool streams like Critical Role or Titansgrave, that way they can see what a game is like, even if it's done by professional gamers and actors.

Does make me wonder - did the cast of the new Dungeons & Dragons movie actually play D&D as research? 

This isn't answering the question. Who would I like to introduce to RPGs? I guess, if I could go back in time, I'd introduce my parents to it. They were supportive of me playing, and were happy I was hanging around with friends and rolling dice in a game rather than lurking on streets or getting drunk. But I don't think they really 'got' what we were doing. My dad was super-proud when the first RPG book arrived with my name in the front, and when I told my mum I was writing Doctor Who she kept watching the episodes expecting my name to come up on screen.

Of course, that's impossible now, they're both long gone and I miss them still. But it would have been cool if they knew what we were doing, and how those games formed friendships that would last 40+ years. 


If you want to take part in #RPGaDAY, all you have to do is download the infographic (as hideous as it is) from here or the Facebook page, look at the questions, and get involved. Blog, vlog, podcast, tweet, or anything you like. Just tag it #RPGaDAY2022 or #RPGaDay2022

If you want the questions as text, or in a different language, check out the original post here: