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is a fantasy of world-shaping intrigue and exploration πŸ’ŽπŸ¦ŽπŸ‘‘

It's inspired by other conspiratorial games such as , and πŸ‘

Click here to learn more: πŸ‘ˆ

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is a one-page, one-move with no MC! In it, you and your traveling companions sail in the Little Tail boat down a very dangerous river, hoping to reach the great Unconquered City by the seashore. As you overcome each stretch of wild rapids, you discover why you're traveling, what's your cargo or why do you really care for your companions.

What assumptions have you taken for granted and then discovered them implicitely put into question?

One that leaves me wondering about a silent majority of our hobby is the assumption that people can take a book, read it, play it and therefore learn that game.

One challenge in design that deliberately acknowledges how we're playing around with some narrative is a shared sense of time. Often it's easier to explore a shared sense of place from which time is derived.

"Fun" is almost like a pre-condition of play, it doesn't say anything about what you're playing. But was the game satisfying? Did you invest in it and were surprised by how it payed off? Can you lean into the game without having it crumble unexpectedly?

"My players were about to make a mistake..."


"We had this situation with our protagonists..."

As the host of this which one puts you in a better position to help with any issue?

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"My players..."

Are you not a player too? Or don't you want to be?

Is that possessive case and separation between you and them something you want to cultivate?

Wouldn't your sentence be more accurate if it was clearly about a group of people collaborating?

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There's hidden treasure in using words like "we" instead of "my players" when talking about our

Come delve with me into how we talk about role-playing:

Words are like eggs or stones or balls of wool?

We can accept how "campaign" has become the default term for a series of sessions. It's our nod to wargames. We can even accept how every has "adventures" as an attempt to appeal to the dragon game people. But does every "adventure" need to imply combat?

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One provocative question I like to put towards an I'm designing or reading is "what's a combat?"

I often don't understand why an RPG assumes combat being so relevant when it doesn't particularly match up with its premise.

I don’t always design but when I do it's to satisfy the voices that crowd my sleep.

"It'd be cool if..."

"What this game actually wants to be is..."

"There has to be a better way..."

"I don't see anybody else talking about..."

You've heard of small press games. But what about no press games?

I'm more and more tempted to just go digital for anything that's not the playable artifacts you want to present at the table.

Which can simply be your printable sheets or maps. Or special cards/dice.

Still, as far as corporate dreams go, this one has a leverage point: never in the history of the dragon game has it ever been so mimetic and self-referential. People play recreating how they see other people perform the dragon game on live streams. Everyone knows the same jokes.

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There has never been only one dragon game. And with the explosion of the OSR movement, there has never been so many dragon games. Much like the Zuck's metaverse, one dragon game is only a corporate dream.

Here's an question for people like me that have no current characters: what are the reasons you usually stop reading an RPG and probably never pick it up again?

I like to imagine that some recent meeting between WotC and Hasbro came to this moment:

"Didn't we use to have a great game for rich tactical combat inside a VTT?"

"You mean the edition we pretend never existed?"

Congratulations to everyone who overcame this year's challenge! Be sure to check out their submissions, right here: πŸ‘ˆ

dreamup boosted

The most fun quote I've read in an RPG this whole year is in a game in this bundle:

"I thought about my favorite game designer and suddenly I was able to tackle decisions that seemed impossible!"

I've seen this latest piece of corporate advertising where they assume that the person who hosts their game doesn't get to play and also call everyone who does that lazy. And if you enjoy working for free, you can also help playtest their game. Thank you, late stage capitalism.

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I hear that the next label your needs to not die of starvation is 1D

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