Tuesday, March 24, 2009

rpg companinies are stupid

Animal Crackers in my soup!

Gaming. Writting about gaming is neat because only one person has really done it before and he's gone now so I can take over. YAY.

Where to start. Actually I don't think I'll do theory at the moment I want to take a moment to diverge.

See there is something that mystifies me about roleplaying, minature wargaming and all the other stuff. It is the fact that companies are so fucking bad at excisting.. Seriously, I don't understand how these people manage to stay in buisness with the sort of slipshod terrble buissness practices that I've seen. Okay the embazzlement thing that happened to Pallidum sucks but these things do indeed happen. I am reffering more to Games Workshop not allowing online purchases of any of their products through any store other than thier own, or how TSR used to relentlessly hunt down fan made webpages and threaten them with leagal action, or just releasing products that are just poorly edited.

Even most professionally produced games still feel and look like most grass roots produced games and there is no real break between the two. Notatble exceptions being Games Workshop for minatures and Wizards of the Coast for roleplaying. Even still between these two companies nothing massive oppertunities are being missed and that just fucking confuses me.

Right now we live in a world that has never been more receptive to table top roleplaying ever.

The Harry Potter series, the lord of the rings movies, Twilight, Buffy, oh and the multi million wow players. At the moment fantasy and vampire novels are mainstream. The world is primed and ready, roleplaying topics are ever present in the media, and best of all the middleschool demographic is right in the middle of it all, which when most roleplayers really get thier start.

So what are the roleplaying companies doing? Nothing out of the ordinary. Seriously though, you take a rules light game system that doesn't scare everyone off, pack the book with source material, background, maps where applicable, and two custom made adventures, and we are off to the races! Buy some ad space in the twilight magazine and pull a gun on Barns and Nobles so that your books are on the shelf and you just fucking printed money. Not only that but you can continue to print money in the form of premade game sessions for people who are to busy to properly prepare (just about everyone). The boat has been missed on most of these properties but still the mainstream is primed and ready this could be so easy and yet...yet no one has taken advantage of it.

It may see wierd that I am calling out for the corporate bastardization of my own hobby but this is definatly one of those ends justifies the means moments. Roleplaying doesn't have to be the crazy geek hobby played only by the wierd kids who don't shower. Now is the time where that steriotype can be really broken. I'm not saying that by listening to me rpgs will be catapulted into the main stream don't be stupid. But, as of current, most people are brought into the hobby though word of mouth. One person will get a book because they were interested, they will teach other people and that's h0ow it goes. By having a massive player influx brought on my easy to read/understand rules as part of a swank starter kit we could really drive up the number of roleplayers.

Hell just WOW alone should be utilized into bringing people in. WOW is perfect because most wow players have a basic sense of party dynamics along with squad based tactics. They make excelent roleplayers once they learn the rules. Garrrrgh.

I don't understand. There is a WOW rpg, a Buffy Rpg, a LoTR rpg & minature wargame and yet literally NO effort on the patrt of any of the companies has been made to bring in more casual fans of the seires. In addition there is no Harry Potter or Twilight rpgs when there bloody well should be.

Harry Potter especially, holy fuck that is the most perfect rpg setting fucking ever! And it targeted the perfect age group. I don't get how these companies can fail so mightly at this.

Oh well. People are dumb and I got to go to the bathroom so I might as well wrap it up here. Peace.


Upon further reflection I think part of the fear when acting on pop culture explosions is the idea that the product will fail. A good solid rpg product will last a developer forever. Shadowrun is coming up on 25 years, AD&D is coming up on oh god I don't even know how old it is, and warhammer has also been around forever. Games Workshop was honestly mistified when the buzz around the LOTR game died along with the buzz around the movies. The point I was trying to make, and may of failed is that they can use these products to reel them into the main rpg staple lines. The buzz won't last forever, but really? What is the diffrence between Twilight and Vampire the Masqurade? Fan people don't answer that.

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