Monday, 31 August 2015

RPGaDay2015: Big Set Piece Finale With Lots of Explosions and Special Effects

29. Favourite RPG website / blog?

Once upon a time, I was a big reader of forums like, but over time there's been less and less there for me. I still drop by once in a while to dip my toes in the pool, but it's been a while since I've actively participated. To be honest, although I often enjoyed the discussions there, despite the occasional tendency toward absurd flamewars (now I have Twitter for that!), I often found that it was hard to actually participate in any discussions. The real chatter was among the guys who seemed to be there 24/7, and if you only dropped by once a day, you weren't worth their attention. No one would engage. Insider baseball.

No, the only gaming website that I make use of on a regular basis is the astounding Roll20. I post about running games there occasionally, but I rarely say how amazing a resource this site is for gaming with friends from far and wide. I've been using it for several years for free -- not because it isn't worth paying for (it is), but because my finances haven't allowed it. If I had the cash, I would gladly shell out for a paid account to support these guys, who are constantly improving, and also to get access to premium content and experimental features. If I had the time, I could learn to make my own in-game character sheets customized for the game at hand - pretty sweet.

In short, if you don't do so already, you really should be playing games on Roll20.

30. Favourite RPG playing celebrity?

I can't say that I give this a lot of thought, but I'm certainly happy to hear that the likes of Stephen Colbert and Robin Williams played RPGs at some point in their lives. Really, you'd have to go a long way to beat Wil Wheaton, though, because he has actually done more than anyone else I can think of to promote the hobby and get more people playing the games we love.

31. Favourite non-RPG thing to come out of RPGing?

I feel like a bit of a cheat, because I saw S. John Ross's answer on this early this morning (Ken Hite used it as his answer too), and I absolutely can't think of a better one myself.

Relationships, of course.

From the days I was a grubby Grade 4 kid playing games with the older kids in various and sundry basements and rumpus rooms, the hobby has been all about the friends I get to spend time making stories with. That was true in high school, playing in the Sydenham High School English room, and it was true in university, playing in a series of small apartments, and true when I graduated and began gaming as an adult. Some of my closest friendships came out of gaming. I have been privileged to see players in my games grow into excellent adults with children of their own, watched romances blossom and grow into marriages, and listened to stories of the hobby being taught to the next generation of players.

When we moved to our new home in London, Ontario eight years ago, we were happy enough, and had a nice new house that had a lot more space for us and our many books. But it wasn't a home until we found a new gaming family and invited them to our table, week after week, to break bread and tell stories and laugh and sometimes cry together. The hobby is our crackling fire, the place we gather and share a drink and catch up and escape from the world for a while. For my old friends, now scattered by the winds that blow down the years, it is the fire we return to sometimes to renew important bonds and remember.

For myself and my wife, roleplaying has been a thing we have shared and enjoyed together through most of our relationship. We play together, pushing each other to go further, try new things, break down barriers. Gaming is an expression of our friendship, our trust, the art we make together.

Gaming celebrates all the best that social gatherings can offer. It is democratic, intimate, liberating, joyful, cathartic, generous. And it comes with awesome dice.

Be proud of your hobby. Share it with others.

Share it with people you love.

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