Tag Archives: Opinion

Weekend Update: 9/18/2021

Welcome to the Cannibal Halfling Weekend Update! Start your weekend with a chunk of RPG news from the past week. We have the week’s top sellers, industry news stories, and discussions from elsewhere online. This week: chaos gods, Critical credit snafus, hurricane relief, dirty laundry, and dad discussions!

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Weekend Update: 9/11/2021

Welcome to the Cannibal Halfling Weekend Update! Start your weekend with a chunk of RPG news from the past week. We have the week’s top sellers, industry news stories, and discussions from elsewhere online.

DriveThruRPG Top Sellers for 9/11/2021

  1. Deviant: the Renegades
  2. Cepheus Deluxe
  3. Fallout: the Roleplaying Game Core Rules
  4. Alien RPG Colonial Marines Operations Manual
  5. 2300AD

Top News Stories

SideQuest, a creator-led funding drive, launches November 2021!

From SideQuest’s own press release, helpfully dropped in our Discord: “On the 8th of September 2021, the Zine Creators Workshop announced SideQuest 2021. This event is modelled after the popular ZineQuest promotion on Kickstarter. Designers will crowdfund games over the course of November. By pooling resources, they will shine a light on all their projects.

The thinking behind SideQuest is simple. ZineQuest is so successful that many designers wait all year to launch projects. Kickstarter becomes flooded with indie games campaigns. The rest of the year, it becomes hard for new designers to promote zine-sized offerings. SideQuest will address this, providing a second focal point. The event is not limited to a single crowdfunding platform. Participating campaigns will include the SideQuest logo and appear on the SideQuest website.

Marc Strocks (he/they) founded SideQuest. “I was excited for ZineQuest but didn’t see any community form between participants. I created a Discord server to help people network and lift each other up. We don’t need corporations. We work together to show what indie resources can do.”

Laurie O’Connel (he/him) had breakaway success with Lichcraft. “For me, the exciting thing is the opportunity to do projects that come from your heart, but aren’t as ‘mainstream’. When I put Lichcraft together, I thought that it would get very little attention. It turns out, if you love a game, there’s a solid chance other people will love it too. My SideQuest project, Stolen Crown, has also been in the back of my mind for far too long. This is a chance to finally make it happen.”

Tanya Floaker (they/them) is publishing their first game. “I’ll be helping other designers. In turn, they will be helping me. Being part of a collective endeavour is why I’m involved.”

Spencer Campbell (he/him) of Slayers and LUMEN has to say about the event: “SideQuest represents everything I love about the indie RPG scene: an opportunity for a wide variety of designers to show off their amazing work, and the community lifting one another up together.”

SideQuest is an initiative of the Zine Creators Workshop. ZCW formed on the 8th of January 2021, before ZineQuest3. It is an incubator for game development, a knowledge base, and pushes to get new designers in to print.

Go to SideQuest.info to see all participating projects. Follow the conversation on Twitter and Instagram with #SideQuest2021. Sign up at tinyurl.com/JoinSideQuest or itch.io/jam/sidequest-2021

Discussion of the Week

Magpie Games provides answers, more questions, in Dicebreaker Article: Dicebreaker contributor Chase Carter spoke with Magpie Games CEO Mark Diaz Truman regarding their record-breaking Kickstarter campaign for Avatar Legends. Secondary discussions on Twitter were mixed, finding that Diaz Truman’s answers often asked more questions than they, well, answered. While the Avatar Legends Kickstarter is inarguably a massive success and also inarguably funding a corporate licensed game, the fairly small RPG industry provides many distortions. I mean, Wizards of the Coast makes over $100 million *a month*, but who’s counting, right?

Have any RPG news leads or scoops? Get in touch! You can reach us at cannibalhalflinggaming@gmail.com, or through Twitter via @HungryHalfling.

Solitaire Storytelling: Bucket of Bolts

Busted, rusted, set adrift, cloaked in cloth and grime.

This old ship lies still—a relic
from a different time.

Lift the dust sheets, one by one, pry the broken latch.

Up the ladder, flaking paint,
up towards the hatch.

Crank it open, hit the switch, dim lights flicker on.
Yellowed bulkheads, fraying wires—
captains, dead and gone.

In the cockpit, fire it up—engine’s thrumming roar.
Creaking, lurching up towards
shining stars once more.

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Solitaire Storytelling: A Visit to San Sibilia

My Visit to San Sibilia – A Cartographer’s Journal by Campbell McNevin – Day One

What surprisingly good fortune! The last thing I remember from last night, having had perhaps one libation too many, was staggering home in a foul mood after a series of less-than-civil conversations at the Cartographers Guild biennial convention in Paris. Yet here I stand in the light of day, only slightly under the weather, in the strange city of San Sibilia!

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Kickstarter Wonk: September, 2021

Welcome to Kickstarter Wonk for September! We’re nearly ¾ of the way through this weird-ass year, and the desire for more escapism hasn’t abated. While we might *still* be gaming on Zoom, designers from all over the world are ready to serve up new twists. Whether it’s magical realist convenience stores, fantasy adventure insects, or just a nice blimp, Kickstarter (and a new upstart) have what you need to keep your mind off (waving hands) all of this.

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Fallout: The Roleplaying Game Review

RPG licensing. RPG licensing never changes. In some ways it’s amazing that it took until 2021 to get an honest Fallout tabletop RPG, given the original game’s mechanical dalliance with GURPS and other design elements borrowed heavily from pen and paper games of the time. Nonetheless, it wasn’t until Fallout 4 that the series turned back to its roots and, with the help of Modiphius, got an official licensed port. Fallout the Role-Playing Game leans heavily on the most recent iteration of the video game series; both the mechanics and the setting borrow heavily and almost exclusively from Bethesda’s Fallout 4 for source material. Comparing this game to a Bethesda game ends up being quite apt, though; like most of the modern software titles released by this game’s licensor, Fallout the Role-Playing Game shows a lot of promise and appears at first glance to be ported well into its new mechanics…but in reality it’s hampered by a raft of grave unforced errors in editing and product management. So is it endearingly buggy, or is it hopeless? Let’s take a look.

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Building Characters From Archetypes

Everyone knows what a character class is. From D&D to Diablo and from Final Fantasy to Facebook personality tests, the notion of starting your RPG adventure with a Fighter, Thief, Mage, or Cleric has transcended D&D and TTRPGs in general to become a nerd pop culture staple. In the modern TTRPG hobby, though, classes are but one way to present a set of archetypes from which to build a character.

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Weekend Update: 8/7/2021

Welcome to the Cannibal Halfling Weekend Update! Start your weekend with a chunk of RPG news from the past week. We have the week’s top sellers, industry news stories, and discussions from elsewhere online.

DriveThruRPG Top Sellers for 8/7/2021

  1. Fallout: The Roleplaying Game Core Rules
  2. Battletech: ilClan
  3. BLASTER: Volume 3
  4. M20: Technocracy Reloaded
  5. Trails of Ash and Bone

Top News Stories

DM’s Guild Releases Print-On-Demand Guidelines: Announced in the DriveThruRPG Discord on Wednesday, the DM’s Guild has established guidelines for community content getting to Print-On-Demand. First, it has to be said that this does make PoD on the Guild more accessible than it was – we checked with DM’s Guild staff, and prior to this the only way to have a printed product on the Guild was on a very limited case-by-case basis – Exploring Eberron is the only one to have crossed our desk. That doesn’t mean it’s now actually easy

In addition to all of the usual guidelines familiar to DTRPG’s PoD market, all print files need to be completed by a Guild-approved layout designer, of which there are currently only four. Only products that are already Platinum Best Sellers or higher, or new products from a creator who has another product that is Platinum or higher, can be submitted. In terms of actual numbers that means more than a thousand copies sold – only 889 products (3.47% of everything on the guild) meet that specification as of this writing, and it’s likely that that does not translate to 889 individual creators. Finally, a product has to have 100 or more pages, meaning even many of those Platinum or higher products still don’t qualify – a quick count seems to show that only 20 of the 72 Adamantine products, the bestsellers, would make the cut.

Some of these restrictions make internal sense, particularly the layout requirement – you’re playing in the Guild’s sandbox, it tracks that you’d be held to a certain standard of quality. Still, while undeniably more attainable than it was, actually calling the Guild’s Print-on-Demand program ‘accessible’ doesn’t quite fit either. It’s early days yet, though; hopefully this is the first step towards a greater number of creators getting to see their work on the printed page.

Discussion of the Week

The Avatar Kickstarter and TTRPG Cross-Pollination: The Kickstarter for Avatar Legends from Magpie Games has shattered records for TTRPG projects by raising $2,502,090 as this is written, a number that will be hilariously outdated by the time we add a period to the end of this sentence. It has also, predictably, kicked off discussions ranging from the right of licensed games to use kickstarter at all to how much, if at all, Magpie’s success will either help or harm everything from other individual projects to the entire TTRPG industry/crowdfunding mechanism. In all the fervor, though, we’ve found one thread by @JazzElves to be particularly worth a look, talking about entry points for the hobby and the best ways, Avatar or otherwise, to actually get people playing new games.

Have any RPG news leads or scoops? Get in touch! You can reach us at cannibalhalflinggaming@gmail.com, or through Twitter via @HungryHalfling.

Lands of Legends Review – A Thousand Options For Your Game

Adventuring through an old-school-style sandbox setting, or mapping your way through a sprawling hexcrawl? The biggest challenge of playing a game where the characters can go any direction they want is making sure there’s something worth finding in every direction they can possibly go – even more so if the world is functionally boundless. From vast ancient cities consumed by the forest to a monastery of living mummies, from a desert falling into a black hole serving as the hourglass for the world’s life to a barge-bound casino-temple to the god of luck and gambling, there are plenty of options to be found in the Lands of Legends from Axian Spice!

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Kickstarter Wonk: August, 2021

Welcome to Kickstarter Wonk for August! Now, you might be looking down the headings and notice we only have seven games and an honorable mention. Well, that’s because, whether you know it or not, you got way more Kickstarter content this month than usual! Check out my preview of Dreampunk, which is still live for another ten days…really neat game using imagery cards to drive play through a dream world. Then you can read Seamus’s quickstart review of Avatar Legends, the new game from Magpie Games! That brings us up to nine, but you can count Avatar Legends twice if you also read the Meet the Party Seamus put together. Beyond those, though, all eight below are all worth checking out, and should help you ease the pain of missing this year’s superspreader event GenCon. 

Continue reading Kickstarter Wonk: August, 2021