Ever since the iPad was first announced in the distant mists of time (2010), I’ve wanted an iPad with a screen large enough to easy read and annotate PDFs. In the intervening years the need has only grown, as I’ve shifted the majority of my RPG purchases from print to PDF. So when the 12.9″ iPad Pro was announced, I was eager to get one. It took a few months, but eventually I was able to make the purchase.
I’ve tried to keep this free of spoilers, but if you want to see Rogue One without any foreknowledge you may want to save this for later reading.
I put up the first version of Learn Tabletop RPGs on January 18, 2013. I kept adding more content, making adjustments to the site layout, and generally improving it where possible. The evening of August 31st this year, I flipped the switch on a new incarnation of the site.
Wreck Age is a post-apocalypse roleplaying game built around a miniatures skirmish combat system. The rules focus on the group rather than the individual, and resource management drives campaign play. The result is a refreshingly different post-apocalypse game.
Clayton Christensen, the celebrated author of The Innovator’s Dilemma, talks often about how marketers long ago became convinced that we make decisions about which products and services to buy on the basis of who we are and how we self-identify. He posits that much of this line of thinking is inaccurate, and that what we’re really doing when we make purchasing decisions (which can be extended to choosing political leaders, for example) is hiring. We are selecting something (a product, a service, a candidate, a way to spend our time) to do a job for us.
Tabletop roleplaying is almost always fun. Looking back on the years I’ve spent at the table, I can only think of a few instances when I would have rather been doing something else. And most of those incidents were in my teens, when I didn’t realize that the rules and the whim of the gamemaster are less important than everyone enjoying themselves.
What is the best tabletop RPG? What is the best fantasy roleplaying game? Or sci-fi roleplaying game? Horror? Superhero Historical?
Late one November night in 2007, a tall man in his early 40s hunched over his laptop, hesitantly tapping at the keyboard. He filled in a profile that described himself and his interests. Twice he grabbed the screen as if to close the laptop. He typed several sentences, then erased them, then started anew. Finally he sat back, sighed, and hit the enter button.
As I devoured Fantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks last weekend, I wondered what had kept me from reading the book much earlier. It had been well reviewed by geeks and non-geeks of all stripes. The author, Ethan Gilsdorf, was born a year before me. Like me, he had spent the bulk of his teenage years playing Dungeons & Dragons. The stars, as they say, were aligned. So why had I waited so long to read the book?
At the end of each year, I run a fairly comprehensive set of analytics to see how people get to Learn Tabletop RPGs, what they do when they’re visiting, and what they are purchasing via affiliate links to DriveThru RPG and Amazon. The 2015 analytics reveal some interesting information that is helping me plan for 2016 updates.