Last weekend was GaryCon, in beautiful Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, where it all began. If you’ve never been to this con, I cannot recommend it highly enough. There are thousands of gamers, artists, and vendors, all there to pay homage to Gary Gygax, the co-inventor of Dungeons & Dragons. Also in attendance are dozens of luminaries from the early days of the hobby and TSR, most of whom are happy to chat, sign autographs, and receive free drinks at the bar in the evening.
I arrived Wednesday evening after a 13 hour drive from New Jersey, all done in a single shot. Since I brought both the regular batch of BRW Games books and a large selection of non-BRW products, including wargame titles from Decision Games and board games from Steve Jackson Games, I opted for a different setup for the booth:
The wargames turned out to be a huge success. By 11:00 on Thursday, they were almost all gone, and by 2:00 the last two were sold. Bringing them was an experiment; I wasn’t sure if they would sell at all. Experiment successful! I’ll be bringing a lot more of them next year, and to other cons as well. Overall, things went exceedingly well. A lot of people heard the Good Word of Adventures Dark and Deep, and I actually ran out of Castle of the Mad Archmage, and had to take orders (all of which have been submitted, by the way). The emails with the links for PDF versions of the books that people bought went out this morning.
There are actually four dealers’ rooms; the main one (where I was), an annex (which was under-advertised at first, but more signage was added and things apparently turned up), a room exclusively for Hackmaster, and an artists’ alley. Whew!
On the whole, this was a spectacular con, and I’m happy to be coming back next year. And now, more photos of the dealers and a few bits of gaming:
The new Kickstarter for Adventures Great and Glorious in now live!
The book will contain old-school RPG rules for high-level play, including domain management, courtly intrigue, mass combat, and much more.
You can reach the Kickstarter here:
BRW Games had a booth at this past weekend’s Totalcon convention for the first time. We came prepared with the old standards – Adventures Dark and Deep and Castle of the Mad Archmage – and plenty of the latest books, but also had a large supply of old-school Steve Jackson Games board game titles like Ogre, Ogre Miniatures, and Car Wars.
I’m happy to report that the con was a success on all fronts. The convention itself is an amazing experience, with tons of board and RPG games happening, a vibrant dealer’s room and exhibitors hall, and a terrific staff that were more than happy and able to smooth over any rough patches and answer any questions. It’s billed as New England’s largest gaming convention, and I certainly believe it, with more than a thousand passes sold. Our own offerings were very well-received, and I’m pleased to say that many friends were made both in and out of the vendor room.
It was also good to see old friends like the Frog Gods, Jeffrey Talanian, Erik Tenkar, and many, many others. Although I need to rethink my “close the bar the first night you get there” strategy. Ahem. Although I did find a new brand of mead (Groennfell Meadery) that produces several flavors of excellent mead in cans!
I cannot recommend this convention highly enough. If you’re anywhere in range of Massachusetts, do yourself the favor and try to make it.
After many months of work, the print edition of the Random Terrain and Encounter Generator is now available. We were holding off doing the print version of the book because a major portion was still under construction. It is with great pleasure that we can now announce that the book now contains a complete system for generating urban environments and encounters, as well as wilderness and dungeons.
There are 24 different city district types (each with their own mix of buildings), special features, and random encounters designed for districts in both day and night.
If you have previously ordered the pdf version that did not contain the urban section, you will be getting a notification that your file has been updated. If you didn’t get the notification, then just go to DriveThruRPG and click on “My Library” in the upper-right. You’ll find the link to download the new version there.
In addition, if you ordered the previous version of the pdf, you will also be getting an email containing a discount on the printed book, so you don’t have to pay anything extra. If you don’t get it in a day or so, be sure to check your spam folder. You can email firstname.lastname@example.org if you don’t see it at all, just make sure you include the original order number so we can confirm.
A bit of news on the creative front!
The reason we didn’t publish a print edition of the Random Terrain and Encounter Generator was that we wanted to wait until the urban section was complete. That way, readers will have complete systems for random terrain and encounters for wilderness, dungeon, and cities.
Well, I’m pleased to say that the urban section is almost complete! Just a few final touches left to go. So if you’ve already purchased the pdf, expect to see a big fat update coming soon, as well as a print edition as soon as possible.
The question is, can I get it into print in time for Gary Con Gaming Convention? It’ll be close, but I’m going to try!
One thing that people have been asking for over the years is an errata, so they can have all the various minor tweaks that have been made to the rules over the years. It’s especially helpful for people with hard copies of the books. Well, we’ve taken a first, tiny step in that direction and released version 0.1 of the Adventures Dark and Deep Errata, which right now consists of a single table (the updated Multi-Class Options by Race table, for those who are curious). This is just a start, of course, and over the coming months the plan is to get all of the errata compiled into this single document, and keep it updated going forward. This is not an inconsequential project, and it’s happening on top of everything else that’s going on, but it’s definitely something that you all will find useful.
For now, you can download the pdf here. Once it gets a little more robust, it will go up on DriveThruRPG as a free download.
From OneBookShelf (the owners of both RPGNow and DriveThruRPG):
Starting in February 2019, all elements of the RPGNow tool pages and storefront will redirect to similar pages on DriveThruRPG.
You most likely know this, but since RPGNow and DriveThruRPG first merged as businesses back in 2006, they have shared all the same tools and digital inventory. On the front end, they looked and behaved like two separate sites, but essentially they have just been two faces of the same site for many years. The only real differences were the color schemes and logos.
You might have some questions about the coming change, so we’ve done our best to anticipate and answer them below.
How will this affect me?
In most ways, you’ll be unaffected. Your entire catalog of titles from RPGNow is already listed on DriveThruRPG (as it always has been), and you can log in to DriveThruRPG using the same account(s) you’ve always used on RPGNow, just as you could before.
Even your old bookmarks to pages on RPGNow.com will still work: They’ll automatically be redirected to the same page on DriveThruRPG.
What about sales reporting? Will my past sales be combined?
Yes, as far as sales records and your titles’ metal rankings, we will be merging those together.
Starting in February, your sales records will show combined sales of each title across both the deprecated RPGNow site and DriveThruRPG, together. The number of unit sales will also be combined, so if you had metal rankings for titles on one or both sites, there’s a good chance you’ll find that your rankings on some titles will have increased on DriveThruRPG.
What about my Publisher Promotion Points and marketing impressions?
No worries. Your Publisher Promotion Points (PPP) are already shared across sister sites. They are compiled by publisher, not by site.
If you have used your PPP to purchase site impressions for banners or featured product messages on RPGNow, you will also be reimbursed, commensurately, for those expenditures on DriveThruRPG.
Why is this happening?
Here’s the big picture: In the 12 years since RPGNow and DriveThruRPG merged, the growth of RPGNow has tapered off constantly, while DriveThruRPG has continued to grow strongly, year over year, since it launched in 2004. We’ve reached the point where RPGNow rarely draws new customers or publishers and sells less than one-tenth the volume of titles purchased on DriveThruRPG.
To be honest, we have known this moment would come for years now. We’ve just finally decided it’s time to put the RPGNow brand out to pasture.
Although BRW Games has routinely done most of its work through the RPGNow branded site, our operations will be uninterrupted by this change. You might see complimentary PDF and our very rare marketing and sales emails coming from the other domain now, but that’s about it.
See you all at Mepacon this weekend! We might be a bit late setting up our booth on Friday because of the weather, but we’ll be there!
Given the political hysteria that has gripped the country lately, I felt it necessary to make an official statement regarding BRW Games’ stance when it comes to politics. So here it is:
We don’t care.
We create games for everyone, regardless of ideology, religion, race, gender, or anything else. We don’t create games to promote any political or religious or any other kind of agenda. We create games we think are fun.
If you like tabletop games, you’re more than welcome here, whoever you are. We’re creating games for you.
President, BRW Games