Capturing Lighting in a Bottle

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.

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One Last Shot

Reaching Out

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.

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Review – Fantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks

Unanswered Questions

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?

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2015 Report

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.

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Yes, People Start with Games Other Than Dungeons & Dragons

A while ago I asked people on Google +, Reddit, and Tumblr when they were introduced to tabletop roleplaying, who introduced them, and which game they first played. The results of my thoroughly unscientific poll showed that while D&D is the single biggest onramp to tabletop RPGs, its dominance in that regard has declined over time. Now let’s take a look at some of those other games, and the people who bring newcomers into our hobby.

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Roleplaying in Glorantha

Discover Glorantha

Glorantha first sprang from the fertile mind of Greg Stafford in 1966. As he discovered the details of this imaginary world, he kept adjusting its cosmology, magic, history, politics, and cultures. Other contributors got involved, and Glorantha became arguably the most thoroughly developed of all fantasy roleplaying settings.

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Star Wars: Age of Rebellion – The Actual Play Review


Like its predecessor Edge of the Empire, the Age of Rebellion Core Rulebook is a tremendously fun game. It is built for creating campaigns in which the players characters are heroes of the Rebellion. Because this isn’t a traditional murder-hobos-in-search-of-power-and-treasure affair, this sort of campaign may require more than the usual up-front discussion between GM and players to be sure expectations are aligned.

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