Too Much Good Stuff   21 comments

Fantasy role-playing game production has exploded in a most amazing way over the last few years, and the explosion continuess.  Because I have written a few reviews of products on http://drivethrurpg.com which is really the same company as http://RPGNow.com, I get the opportunity to review every new product that comes along.  Well, I can’t do that.  There is only so much time in a day, and I need most of it simply to handle my own needs and write/promote my own gaming projects, but for some time now I have been thinking of chronicling the terrific production of rpg modules being offered on the web.  What follows is just the offerings for one day, today, Feb. 9, 2012, and i’ll go through them in the order in which I learned about them.

Eastern Raider Games offers Image

which is a collection of 14 royalty free images of this young lady that anyone can use as art for anything they like.  Rendering for fun and profit.  I’m no render artist, but I imagine the images could be further transformed by the skilled.

Fat Goblin Games is offeringImage

which looks like a Pathfinder scenario for a certain type of Assassin character type, but it may just be a description of that D & D subclass.

NUELOW Games usually has one or more products every day.  Todays product is Image

a superhero scenario from the ROLF superhero rpg, which I had never heard of before. Looks like a story game–players go through a certain romantic triangle story game.

Rite Publishing brings us Image

1001 Spells gives you – yes, you guessed it – 1001 spells, that will help you realize the vision you’ve had for your spellcaster.   Another Pathfinder product–I imagine Game Masters could quickly adapt this to the game system of their choice.

Raging Swan Press has had 4 releases today.  I’m only going to show the latest one:

Image

This is royalty free art for GMs or Scenario Designers to use to add some black and white color to their products.  Not all of us have a stable of talented artists to turn to when we want a piece of art to enliven our new scenario.  This seems like an awkward pose for a warrior, but I haven’t looked inside to see whether our protagonist gets more dynamic or not.  Raging Swan also offered stock art for a Harp Sorcerer and a Bugbear Warrior today.  Yesterday they offered a scenario builder for Marsh Encounters.  These guys are working all the time.

For today’s would-be authors E=zines are what the pulps were for people like Robert E. Howard and H.P. Lovecraft back in the 20s, 30s, and 40s of the early 20th century.  They’re great.  I love e-zines, and have appeared in a few of them like Elder Tunnels and Fight On.  This Stories in the Ether from Nevermet Press looks like a very good one.  I might download this, just to see if it could be a possible future market for some of my own tales.  Writers, this is a very good thing to do.  Study the publishers–see what they want, and how your tales are likely to be presented.  You might not get paid for contributing to an e-zine.  Pulp authors didn’t make much either, and they had a much bigger real as opposed to potential audience.  The internet gives us a potential audience of billions although the real audience is more likely to be dozens.  Dozens is better than none, my friends.  Find the publishers and send them your best work!

Attention Span Games adds to the fun with

A sequel to the Carmine rpg.

Okay, I’ve never heard of the Carmne rpg, but it’s plain that author Ron F. Leota has his own dark fantasy universe going, and is having good fun with it.

We’re not done yet.  Cubicles 7 releases 

This is a roleplaying scenario set in Middle Earth during the War of the Ring.

Hey, I haven’t finished mentioning all the things that could have come to me today.  Ten more have arrived while I was putting this blog together, and who knows how many might come before midnight?  I haven’t downloaded any of them, but I saved the emails just in case I’m persuaded somehow to change my mind.  If I download, I will write a short review, probably not here, but right at the download site.  The prices on all of these games and entertainment objects are extremely reasonable.  Support your hard-working game designers, writers, and artists.  Buy the one you like the best, or go hunting at Drivethrurpg.com.  If you’re not familiar with the place, you will be amazed at the superabundance of gaming, art, and other forms or entertainment goodness.  Search for your favorite system or style or creator.  Better yet, search for me, Ken St. Andre  (grin–shameless plug) or my friend John Wick.  I had a new product just last week, and so did he.  I might have another next week if current efforts go well–a fantasy art calendar for Tunnels and Trolls.  I’m starting it in March so you won’t feel cheated by having days that have already gone by.

If you buy or download games online, please leave a comment.  Tell us what you think of the selection or the service.

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21 responses to “Too Much Good Stuff

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  1. They are some great products, Trollgod. I will hav eto check them out.

  2. I couldn’t agree with your title more. We suffer from an embarrassment of riches in the hobby today; I am inclined to refer to it as a white noise problem. I think back on the days when it was possible to own EVERY RPG product in print fondly. Which is not to say I don’t appreciate the abundance that we currently enjoy. I just wish I had the time to actually figure out what was worth buying, and what wasn’t.

    G’Noll

  3. Wow! I will have to look into this this week-end. I will send you comments through Trollhalla Mail. Trrrommm. I could see that some of this would be quite useful 1001 spells! yea.

    Douglas Trrrommm Mitten
  4. Yeah, there’s no shortage of good stuff. The business of rpgs may be dying, but the hobby sure isn’t.

    My biggest problem with drivethru/rpgnow, though, is that since I prefer hard copy, this solutions forks off the printing costs to me…

    I love the potential of POD via those producers…

    /korrraq

    • You get stuck paying for the printing either way, really. Either you pay up front when you buy a hard copy, or later on when you take your file to Kinkos to have it spiral bound.

      The one downside of PDF publishing for me is that I keep forgetting what I’ve got! I almost always buy the disaster aid bundles & end up with two dozen or thirty new PDFs, most of which I never get around to reading because I save them off to a thumb drive & then never think to read them.

      Ivarrr

  5. I would echo the thoughts of G’Noll and Korrraq. So much material to consider buying; hence stick to just a few games you know and love perhaps. Plus, I’m a hard copy boy, so I either want to buy a book or print one off.

    Darrgh Tarrrho

  6. The Dragon Girl and b/w warrior look great. I love the idea of good quality, reasonably priced, art. Or even free art. Someone should compile a list of the best sources of public domain, otherwise free, and good value art to help those of us whose gaming and game creation is financially challenged!

  7. a swag of products…

  8. Oh Mighty Khenn –
    The runt troll cannot keep up with the herd anymore! I have pretty much decided to devote my time to helping Jeff with Bean World. I think I might be able to make some decent contributions there. Beans In Space is proceeding apace, and I hope to contribute to the Bean World project Jeff is currently working on.
    I am not computer challenged- i am computer stupid, and this handicaps me in this exploding market. But, I do what I can, and Jeff is great fun to work with and so far seems to appreciate my efforts. I see possible applications of Bean to home schooling.
    I love the Walla. Always fun to drop in there and mark my territory! (-:
    the runt troll’
    Yorrdamma Vrash

    Yorrdamma Vrash (Roy Cram)
  9. I must agree with G’Noll. There’s just so much stuff coming out that you could drown in it. I mostly keep up with the T & T and BEAN! products, but I don’t have the time to keep track of everything that I might be interested in.

    Better than having nothing coming out, though!

    Mahrundl

  10. It’s a strange and wonderful problem to have. Don’t they call it “the long tail”? A world where the many many many small things which each matter to a small number of people are in aggregate a more important thing than the few big things that mean something big to just about everybody?

    It’s a good world. It’s a step backward in some ways, a positive step backward:

    BEFORE MASS COMMUNICATION — if you want original art/music/whatever you have to go to someone local, and there are many many people with small local fame

    MASS COMMUNICATION AVAILABLE TO A FEW — everybody gets to admire the few who made it big, and all the other artists get to dream and hope that someday they might be one of the few who made it big. The vast majority don’t ever get there.

    MASS COMMUNICATION AVAILABLE TO EVERYONE — explosion of wonderful things from all the people who couldn’t make it into the system before! Nobody can possibly appreciate it all, there’s too much! So people break into tiny chunks of interest and fandom and many artists are appreciated by small numbers of people, just like “before mass communication” — except bound by interest and social links, not geography. There are still a few big artists but people care less about them than they used to.

  11. Yes, there is a plethora of games and products out there now days. I tend to stick with my childhood favorites and ignore the rest except for reference material for plots and character inspiration.

  12. I haven’t heard of ‘Stories in the Ether’, it looks like something I’d grab. Thanks for the heads up!

    Xukk!

  13. The bokk of 1001 Spells sounds like it may have some good ideas in it.

  14. I agree, Naharaht, I am always a sucker for more spells – and if they are in a book they are more likely to be accepted by a GM than ones that I just made up myself.

  15. I’ve been a great fan of RPGNow for years now. I started buying pdf products back when Wizards was actually selling their back titles for 1st edition and Basic/Expert, but quickly fell in love with all the independent publishers.

  16. Royalty-free art is always welcome!

  17. Does “UGH” count as a valid comment? 😛

  18. Your predicament of having too many products w/o enough time to review them all is enviable! (but understandable…)

    I think with the constant advances in desktop publishing, print on demand, crowd sourcing, etc we’ll see more and more products for our hobby done by so called “hobby publishers”. And I can’t wait to see what the next few years will bring.

    /ackfoo

  19. I wish there were more reviews or more pages to review before deciding to purchase games on drivethru. Perhaps you blog will help. When I’m at the hobby store, I buy mostly on impulse. I come in to look for something in mind, but there’s always something that catches my eye and I end up purchasing.

  20. Thanks for the mention of NUELOW Games and ROLF!. (By way of clarification, ROLF! is more a game of universal silliness… the core game has a fantasy vibe to it, but the “battle scenarios” have covered just about every genre at this point.)

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