NEVER BEGIN WITH AN APOLOGY
I don’t do this as often as I ought to, but I’d like to point out some favorite RPG Blogs. I read these and almost always come away with new ideas and insights. I offer just selected few. Otherwise this would go on and on, so I’ve left off many other excellent ones. I offer a few examples from each of these "top of my mind" blogs.
Well-written examination of diverse topics. The author covers WoD, Pathfinder, and other systems. The blog has an amazing variety of approaches- suggestions for campaigns, ideas for gamemastering, actual play, and mechanical approaches. There’s a good deal of discussion of Vampire and Horror in recent months, but not the usual stuff. In fact I’m always struck by her unique voice and take on the ideas she presents.
- Changeling Autumn Court Festivals: I’d written up a post with a couple of goofy ideas on Midwestern holidays and how Changelings might integrate those. She took that core idea and ran with it- making it much more useful and applicable to many campaigns. I’ll be stealing these for my games.
- Solo Investigations with NPCs: A topic I hadn’t really considered and an excellent guide.
- Game Translation: Cold Fear: Reading this, I had one of those moments where I both admired the brilliance of the concept and hated myself for not thinking of it. The author takes a video game and examines it from both a game analysis approach and also how those elements would translate to the tabletop. Brilliant.
- Extra Credits Advice Useful For Games Mastering, Part 1: I had never watched the video series Extra Credits. Then I read this which sent me scurry off to YouTube. She’s absolutely right in her reading- and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed watching the episodes. I’m always glad to be pointed to something great I might otherwise have missed.
One of my co-hosts from the Play on Target podcast, Andrew Goenner, has a blog which brings together several of his projects- including preparation for his upcoming Kickstarter game, Time Heroes, and various video reviews.
- The Eternal GM - Player Buy-In: Touches on a crucial topic- and one that’s getting more attention in recent game designs.
- His Review of Fate Core: He does a nice job of going through the elements of the game here.
A relatively new blogger who has consistently produced excellent material. He’s be posting for almost exactly a year; he’s also really good (much better than I) about commenting on other people’s posts. Covers a wide-range of gaming topics.
- Failing at bluff checks – as a GM: When you’re always having to bluff, it can get wearing. Offers some interesting insights.
- Role Playing a Child: A smart look at one genre approach. He helped point out to me the “kids in peril” horror sub-genre.
The author covers a wide range of games. His reviews are clear and well written. He almost always offers a new spin on ideas. I enjoy reading his posts here and his comments/feed on G+. His suggestions and ideas are sharp, punchy, and clear.
- Mining Firebirds: the Church, State, and Citizenry: I like Fading Suns, and the author writes quite a bit on this under-served game. This post is especially excellent- adding insight to a key element in the setting.
- Secret Societies: lateral growth for character classes? A brief cool concept that has stuck in my head.
Interesting perspectives and reviews. He offers insightful analysis of many different games. Beyond that he assembles interesting campaign ideas and thoughts on gamemastering. Includes interviews and examinations of many different rpgs.
- Safely Introducing Your Villain’s Backstory: A good piece offering ideas on how to bring the rich tales of your villains to the table without annoying them.
- Let's Study Wu Xing: The Ninja Crusade] Part 1 – The History and Ninja of the Izou Empire: The first of a six part look at this rpg. He goes through the book with a fine-tooth comb, describing how it works and what’s cool in it.
I don’t always agree with this author. In fact I disagree with him often. However he always gets me to consider my position carefully and think about things I take for granted. A couple of times he’s gotten me shift my position.
- Too Mechanical? Whose Fault? I like this post for the way it considers the idea of player trust- and how some games try to enforce that. (a related post and one I agree and disagree with would be this one-Why I Don’t Play Certain Games)
- A Working Definition for Romantic Fantasy: An interesting piece and characterictic to his smart analysis. My wife and I have been talking about how Romantic fantasy could be presented at the table- especially drawing more from the classic female approach to these tropes.
A new, new blog by a friend and fellow player. She relatively new to the hobby and arrived at it late, so I think she’ll have a unique perspective on things we often take for granted.