Monday, 18 June 2012

Thoughts and Reflections on Free RPG Day

So, as you know, I offered to run the two mini-adventures in this year’s Goodman Games Free RPG Day giveaway at Dueling Grounds in Toronto.  I ran The Jeweller Who Dealt in Stardust (by Harley Stroh) at noon, and was prepared to run The Undulating Corruption (by Michael Curtis) thereafter.  I had also printed out several reference sheet booklets, to give away to anyone who showed even the slightest interest!

Turnout was rather poor at Dueling Grounds; so much so that the Pathfinder crowd were also unable to stage their second event.  Nonetheless, I had a blast with Jeweller, met some nice people, and got to talk up Dungeon Crawl Classics to those in the store.  I think that, next year, I’ll have some form of advanced registration so that you know you’ll get to play if you make the drive.

There were some nice giveaways for Free RPG Day this year.  I tend to think that the DCC module was the cream of the crop, but the beautiful colour map of Hârn is a close second, and will certainly be the big prize in some folk’s eyes.  The Paizo module and Cosmic Patrol quickstarter from Catalyst Game Labs also looked interesting.  I am sure that everything else was pretty cool, too, even if it didn’t particularly catch my eye.

I received a pair of Forest percentile dice and a d12 for running the game (Thanks!) manufactured by Q-Workshop.  I find they are somewhat hard to read, but cool looking nonetheless.  There was a fellow there who had intended on running the 4th Edition D&D module from Wizards of the Coast, but chose not to because there were no maps, and he could discover no information as to what map set he should purchase to get the maps.  I was somewhat disappointed that the WotC module wasn’t a 5e playtest/quickstarter….especially as events left me with the potential time to have played in it.

Overall, it was a good day on a great weekend.  Not running Corruption was a disappointment, but I feel certain I’ll have a chance to run it in my home game.  It was great being able to talk with the Pathfinder aficionados who had shown up, and it was great running Jeweller.  Admittedly, all the characters in my DCC adventure died….the gentleman from Dueling Grounds said he knew I was going to kill all the PCs because I was wearing my Gary Gygax memorial cover T-Shirt from Dragon Roots Magazine

But I rolled the dice in the open, and the PCs fell in the very last encounter, one die roll away from ultimate success.  And there is no doubt that my dice were rolling hot, while theirs were not to be trusted….although they did have some very timely rolls along the way!

I am going to count Free RPG Day 2012 as a provisional success, and a learning experience.  And I am going to plan on a better turn-out for 2013.

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