Getting Ready for FREE RPG DAY!

All topics including role playing games, board games, etc., etc.
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moriarty777
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Post by moriarty777 »

Well, another year... though it was technically the first year that Free RPG Day was happening up here in Canada.

All the C&C Quickstarts were grabbed up and the people who sat down for my session seemed to all have some fun. I was thanked and one person who played is one of the organizers for the Draconis which happens in Montreal at the start of October (formally known as Royalcon). At any rate, he seemed eager to try and solicit my assistance to perhaps run a game or two of C&C at the convention.

There were a couple of things that irked me a bit though. Lack of advertising the event in question meant a weird turnout in terms of numbers. The game I had done all the prep also started almost two hours later than I originally expected (and I had already been there two hours prior to that). At least it gave me the time to do up a handful of pre-gens.

Lastly, I didn't get all the freebies I wanted since some weren't put out. At least nothing nefarious is happening here. Some of the items weren't put out simply because nothing was being run in relation to those products. The Goodman Games gazetteer and Paizo's adventure module were a couple of things I hoped to get but didn't. However, they plan on doing another RPG event like this later this year and distribute the things that didn't make it out today.

I have to say that I was most amused that the 4th Edition game that was planned didn't happen since the freebie was just too long to run within a reasonable time frame.

I already had the both the TLG freebies since I was running and doing Q&A for them but I also managed to nab:

- WOTC's adventure, mini, and free tile

- Traveller Book 0

- The two different Cthulhu related ones (one of which was a LARP)

- Another StarSiege which was left at the end of the day (which a friend of mine had expressed interest in but couldn't make it)

However, the one thing I didn't appreciate was not actually being able to PLAY anything. I had hoped that I would get a bit of time in to try something out but sadly the opportunity just didn't come up. With all the work I put into this to 'go the extra mile', at the end of my day I was wondering if it was really worth all the effort. Sure, I had fun... but this served as a reminder how under appreciated a GM/DM/CK can be with these kind of events.

Let's just say that, although I'm certainly curious about the new Draconis gaming convention, I'm going to have to really think hard about participating in that capacity. What ended up being an eight hour day was quite exhausting for what ended up being little reward.

Well, that was my Free RPG day...

I'm glad some of you had a chance to make it out to your respective FLGS.

M
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Post by Treebore »

It sounds like your LGS didn't distribute the items like they were supposed to be. As I understood the rules EVERYTHING was to be distributed today. Plus the items are to never be for sale.
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Post by Harry Joy »

Good lord.

I really, really hate you people.

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Post by moriarty777 »

Treebore wrote:
It sounds like your LGS didn't distribute the items like they were supposed to be. As I understood the rules EVERYTHING was to be distributed today. Plus the items are to never be for sale.

At least on that count (in terms of selling), I know that this won't come to pass. The store is a good store. I've begun hearing some real horror stories in comparison on some of the other forums. I read about one store requiring a $10 purchase to get a freebie for instance.

The stuff at my LGS that they still have to give will be given with no restrictions or reservations. They just want to have another event/day for it. That way, not only are they giving out more stuff (possibly drawing more people to the store) but they are also have people running these games or providing some Q&A as well. It's good for the store and good for the publishers who take part. To be honest, I'd rather see that than see the stacks of free product sitting in a pile unattended.

Of course, I still wish I could get a couple of the freebies sooner rather than later but I know I should be able to get them if I go to the next planned even which will probably be in July sometime.

However, my other bone of contention... the getting little to no return for running a game instead of just showing up to play... is one that I'm still dwelling on.

M
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Post by tylermo »

Our newest game store opened only a couple of weeks ago, and was unable to participate this year. However, I went to another store in a nearby state. They allowed one freebie per patron. And, if you purchased any books(in stock items, not the freebies) of 5.00 or higher value, you received another freebie for each purchase. I'm not sure if that's how it's supposed to be done, but it worked for me. I bought another 10.00 Savage Worlds rpg book(the best deal on a corebook ever in rpg history), and C&C's Engineering Dungeons. So, I was able to get a freebie Starsiege for just walking in, another two copies of SS for my friends who also recently playtest Josh's game. A buddy of mine also bought an item, and didn't want his freebies, so I picked up the C&C quickstart(mainly for the adventure-is that one already a pdf?), and the Mongoose Traveller introductory booklet(which was very well done). I'll have to decide if this game warrants a purchase. Between things like Star Wars, the upcoming Doctor WHo, Starsiege, Sav WOrlds' upcoming pulp sci-fi setting Slipstream, the Savage Worlds sci-fi toolkits, etc. I'm not sure if I can justify buying Traveller, but it's damned tempting.

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Post by moriarty777 »

Harry Joy wrote:
Good lord.

I really, really hate you people.

I am sorry to hear that you couldn't take part and this thread is certainly not meant to rub your nose in it. I was in the same boat last year if only because the first Free RPG day was restricted within the borders of the United States.

One of the things I wish is that the publishers directly give out (for a very limited time and quantities) copies of the freebies. That way, if you order something direct from the publisher, you could get a freebie. The person who receives their package could then either give it to a friend or keep it themselves. Just for a limited time so to speak... like orders taken in a week after Free RPG Day or something.

I know the intention was largely to get people into the traditional stores asking about other product but the FLGS seems to be a dying breed. I'm very fortunate having moved here to Montreal were I have more than one. I didn't like the one where I lived in Ottawa but at least they had one and it was large enough to offer choice.

However, if I take a look at my spending over the past few years, I primarily order my gaming stuff online (until recently). This is largely from Amazon or other online retailers such as Noble Knight Games, direct from the publisher (like TLG), and ebay.

Harry -- do you have a sizable gaming community close by even if you don't have a LGS, assuming that is the case, or where you just not able to make it out?

M
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Post by moriarty777 »

tylermo wrote:
Our newest game store opened only a couple of weeks ago, and was unable to participate this year. However, I went to another store in a nearby state. They allowed one freebie per patron. And, if you purchased any books(in stock items, not the freebies) of 5.00 or higher value, you received another freebie for each purchase. I'm not sure if that's how it's supposed to be done, but it worked for me. I bought another 10.00 Savage Worlds rpg book(the best deal on a corebook ever in rpg history), and C&C's Engineering Dungeons. So, I was able to get a freebie Starsiege for just walking in, another two copies of SS for my friends who also recently playtest Josh's game. A buddy of mine also bought an item, and didn't want his freebies, so I picked up the C&C quickstart(mainly for the adventure-is that one already a pdf?), and the Mongoose Traveller introductory booklet(which was very well done). I'll have to decide if this game warrants a purchase. Between things like Star Wars, the upcoming Doctor WHo, Starsiege, Sav WOrlds' upcoming pulp sci-fi setting Slipstream, the Savage Worlds sci-fi toolkits, etc. I'm not sure if I can justify buying Traveller, but it's damned tempting.

That's not so bad then. In relation to your question about the C&C freebie, it is a new adventure. This is TLG's second quickstart and the rules portion for this seems unchanged but the 'adventure' portion is. To be fair, the adventure material from the first one is not so much an adventure but rather a resource for one. This adventure is a great adventure suited for the newcomers to the game and explain the checks that need to be made as they occur in the text of the adventure. However, if you are referring to the title, there is a PDF called Dwarven Glory: Looking Stones which is a different one but would be part of the same series.

The new C&C Quickstart should be available as a PDF soon enough along with the Starsiege one.

M
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Post by Harry Joy »

moriarty777 wrote:
Harry -- do you have a sizable gaming community close by even if you don't have a LGS, assuming that is the case, or where you just not able to make it out?

I've mentioned it here more than a few times, but we have a good sized gaming community here, and two FLGSs close by. One is a rather good FLGS. But they don't seem to be in on the loop for Free RPG Day. [There are other game stores within a fairly long drive - say 45 minutes to an hour and a half. Dunno if they participated.]

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Post by Omote »

I had gone up to one of the local gaming stores to just chat up some C&C, and it turned into a pretty good meet and greet. Talked a good amount of C&C and actually sold some C&C because of it. A couple of new Crusaders in the fold for sure. Free RPG Day actually turned out pretty damn cool this year for my area (westside, Cleveland Ohio).

Man, I wish I could have snagged a copy of that HARN module. Damn that thing looked impressive!

STARSEIGE Looks juicey awesome. And the C&C Quickstart rules (12 copies) were gone in the first 3 hours.

Good times, good times.

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Post by Taranthyll »

Interestingly enough the C&C quickstart rules got snapped up pretty quickly at my favourite store. I was pleasantly surprised given the recent 4E excitement. I am starting a C&C campaign at the store tonight so that might have generated some interest in checking the game out.

The Goodman Games Gazetteer was really cool and was my favourite freebie of the lot. You can never have enough wicked cities

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Post by Treebore »

OK, I'll be trying to get my freebies on line via Noble Knight. Going by the rules he sent me I'll only be able to get 2, maybe 3 of them. So which 3 should I get?

It sounds like the Harn and Goodman modules will be good ones. What should I consider if I qualify for the third?
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Post by moriarty777 »

Harry Joy wrote:
I've mentioned it here more than a few times, but we have a good sized gaming community here, and two FLGSs close by. One is a rather good FLGS. But they don't seem to be in on the loop for Free RPG Day. [There are other game stores within a fairly long drive - say 45 minutes to an hour and a half. Dunno if they participated.]

I seem to recall that now that you mention it. The one thing I liked from last years is that many of them ended up as free PDFs (though not all of them). Hopefully it will largely be the same this year.

M
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Post by Rigon »

Well, I drove the 40 miles one way to get to my LGS for Free RPG Day and got my copy of the StarSEIGE quickstart. I also picked up a Kingdoms of Kalamar boxed set from 1995 or so and a Dark Sun Campaign Setting box (but didn't realize that the Wanderer's Journal was missing until this morning).

Haven't read much of the quickstart yet, I've been getting back into The Legend of Zelda Wind Waker after a 2 month break. I'll try to get to it sometime soon.

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Post by moriarty777 »

Treebore wrote:
OK, I'll be trying to get my freebies on line via Noble Knight. Going by the rules he sent me I'll only be able to get 2, maybe 3 of them. So which 3 should I get?

It sounds like the Harn and Goodman modules will be good ones. What should I consider if I qualify for the third?

I think I may try and do the same in order to get some of the ones I wanted to get but didn't ... there were a few that made it out that day that I only had a chance to glance at a distance before various gamers descended down upon them.
From what I've seen (and take it for what it's worth) there are more than a few with high production values this year. Aside from the 4E offering (useless if you don't have the core rules to go with it), the Traveller quickstart is very nice and gives you the basics you need to create and equip your characters and the basic how you play approach (32 pages).

The Paizo module looks to be very nice and seems to be regular d20 (and under the Pathfinder label I believe). You might be interested in the C&C quickstart but the mini adventure in it is only a 3 pages and there is nothing out of the ordinary about it. I only saw the Tunnels & Trolls one which looked nicer than last years but I don't know if the content is any different.

In terms of a couple of the other new ones... there is the Song of Ice and Fire which is a new RPG by Green Ronin based on the George RR Martin series as well as Heirs to Olympia by Countess Games which caught my eye.

I'd probably go for the Paizo one which is called Revenge of the Kobold King I believe or the Traveller quickstart if your interested in that.

M
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Post by dachda »

The Free RPG day at my flgs in Portland, went okay. The place was packed, with a lot of gamemasters running various games. The 4e demo games had the most people. The guy I mentioned before, who moved up from San Francisco ran the C&C adventure in the quickstart, with me and four others as players. Two were total 4e fanboys, who only played cause the 4e games they hoped to be in started early. They completely rejected C&C, totally closed minded about how slick the seige engine works, but talked my ear off about all these cools combat moves in 4e, which sounded just like computer games stuff to me, thus having the effect of making me even less interested in 4e. One of the other players had played several RPGs before but never D&D or C&C, she enjoyed the game and may join our new Wednesday night game. the other player was already convinced and a player in the wednesday game. I was feeling a bit low about the reaction of the two 4e fanboys, until I saw all the C&C quickstart freebies were gone. It turned out to be a popular item.

I grabbed a copy of Star Siege, but the store only gave folks one choice of item so couldn't get anything else. Though I did buy a copy of Savage Worlds explorer's Edition, to see why Danger Dwarf likes it so much.

All in all, C&C did okay. We may have gained one convert, the two who rejected C&C were so gung-ho for 4e, they couldn't ever be converted, and the store gave away all the C&C quickstarts they had. Once we get our Wednesday night game at the store established I'm sure we'll convert a few more.
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Post by Rhuvein »

I met and briefly chatted with Joe Goodman at the LGGC and he was nice enough to bring his free RPG product ~ a DCC module by Harley Stroh called Punjar: The Tarnished Jewel.

[Actually, I see they've called it a gazetteer rather than a module - heh, I probably should actually read it before posting! Soon.]
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Post by Matthew »

Rhuvein wrote:
I met and briefly chatted with Joe Goodman at the LGGC and he was nice enough to bring his free RPG product ~ a DCC module by Harley Stroh called Junjar: The Tarnished Jewel.

[Actually, I see they've called it a gazetteer rather than a module - heh, I probably should actually read it before posting! Soon.]

I read that last night. There were a few editing errors, but it was otherwise an excellent (and relatively system neutral) read. I just wish it was going to be produced for Castles & Crusades.
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Post by tylermo »

I think I saw that item at free rpg day. I hope that's not the new look for their covers. I liked the look of the old 3.5 mods they were doing. Definately captured the 1st edition feel. Besides, I'm not sure how much D&D 4th I'll be running, let alone playing.

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Post by Matthew »

tylermo wrote:
I think I saw that item at free rpg day. I hope that's not the new look for their covers. I liked the look of the old 3.5 mods they were doing. Definately captured the 1st edition feel. Besides, I'm not sure how much D&D 4th I'll be running, let alone playing.

That is the new look for Dungeon Crawl Classics. The tag line is 'always two edition behind', implying that they are going for an AD&D 2e look. I think that's not a bad business move for a number of reasons, but I am no business man!
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Post by Deogolf »

Missed out on the C&C/Star Siege stuff due to being at the LGGC IV con - how's that for irony!
Anyone get a chance to pick them up? How were they?
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Post by serleran »

I grabbed the TLG stuff. The C&C QS looks good. The SS looks more involved than I had thought - not a bad thing, per se, but not what I was expecting.

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Post by cuchulainkevin »

Deogolf wrote:
Missed out on the C&C/Star Siege stuff due to being at the LGGC IV con - how's that for irony!
Anyone get a chance to pick them up? How were they?

I feel your pain John.

Maybe the Trolls can make the QS rules that were comming to LGGC available to attendees somehow (IDK, maybe through their next purchase- just a thought).

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Post by Taranthyll »

Treebore wrote:
It sounds like the Harn and Goodman modules will be good ones. What should I consider if I qualify for the third?

Paizo's Revenge of the Kobold King is pretty decent.

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Post by Harry Joy »

Have I mentioned that I hate you people? Total, and consuming hatred?

I finally got a chance to talk to the owners of each of my local FLGSs today, The Comic Cellar and the excellent Comics & Collectibles. Turns out that neither Comics & Collectibles or The Comic Cellar were offered anything by anyone, distributor or otherwise. Neither owner, Ron or Jason, even knew who was organising it this year. Jason said he didn't think Diamond was involved this time, that it was the pet project of someone at Mongoose. That was the most anyone knew, prior to Saturday. And both also mentioned that no one came looking for any free swag either.

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Post by Treebore »

Harry Joy wrote:
Have I mentioned that I hate you people? Total, and consuming hatred?

I finally got a chance to talk to the owners of each of my local FLGSs today, The Comic Cellar and the excellent Comics & Collectibles. Turns out that neither Comics & Collectibles or The Comic Cellar were offered anything by anyone, distributor or otherwise. Neither owner, Ron or Jason, even knew who was organising it this year. Jason said he didn't think Diamond was involved this time, that it was the pet project of someone at Mongoose. That was the most anyone knew, prior to Saturday. And both also mentioned that no one came looking for any free swag either.

Doesn't anyone around you use the internet?

Goodman Games is the one who got this thing going, not Mongoose. If they want to sign up up for next year tell them to go to Goodman Games site and look for the link. Plus it isn't free for the LGS, but its darn cheap and good advertising.
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Post by Harry Joy »

Treebore wrote:
Doesn't anyone around you use the internet?

Apparently not.

Folks don't seem to want to admit it, but folks who populate the message boards are NOT the typical gamer. Or most any subset of the internet. I also like doing airplane modeling and fantasy figures. There are excellent sites out there devoted to such topics. Do most people read them? No.

Even among the hardcore gamers I know, besides myself only one spends an appreciable amount of time online, and his is in fits and spurts. Most people go online to check email, pay bills, read a few headlines, and catch the occasional virus. Little else.

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Post by Harry Joy »

LINK

My opinion of Free RPG Day is now officially deep, deep in a hole. Thanks, guys. The whole "I hate" thing started as a joke. Now I'm not so sure.

Last year the only "retailer" in Tennessee who took part was some gamer in Chattanooga who apparently operated a half dozen shops with no fronts and no employees. And that left me with a fairly negative attitude about FRPG Day. Figured they'd get those little issues ironed out. Guess they didn't. And now people here are gaming their booty for cash. Real class there, folks.

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Post by Matthew »

Harry Joy wrote:
And now people here are gaming their booty for cash. Real class there, folks.

I have to admit, it's pretty tempting to sell The Treasure of Tardos Pass at $30.00, and spend the money on Castles & Crusades stuff, but I don't expect I will. It is a lot more likely that I will play it, and then give it away.
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Post by moriarty777 »

Harry Joy wrote:
LINK

My opinion of Free RPG Day is now officially deep, deep in a hole. Thanks, guys. The whole "I hate" thing started as a joke. Now I'm not so sure.

Last year the only "retailer" in Tennessee who took part was some gamer in Chattanooga who apparently operated a half dozen shops with no fronts and no employees. And that left me with a fairly negative attitude about FRPG Day. Figured they'd get those little issues ironed out. Guess they didn't. And now people here are gaming their booty for cash. Real class there, folks.

That's the sort of that also really got me peeved last year. At one point, shortly after the event, I noticed the DCC freebie being sold on NKG (of all places) for just over $10. Now, they didn't hold on to their freebies last year, but someone a couple months after the fact get rid of their stuff via NKG and the store went with 'current market value' which I guess meant comparing ebay prices. At the time I ranted about this... I think I might have ranted it about it here too. Of course nothing came of it.

Free RPG Day is a good idea in theory but I really think that dispensation to sell the product after the fact would help curb this whole ebay thing... Or, as I posted in another thread (I'm too lazy to link it), the publisher continue giving these things when people order direct from them for a time period after the event in question (a week to a month).

I know I've kidded around a bit about selling that 4e module but I'm not and won't be. Trading it would be different if only because there are things I didn't have a chance to get that I would rather have from Free RPG Day (if that wasn't clear).

In the spirit of Free RPG Day, I grabbed only the things that I wanted (had I seen the contents of the 4e module, I would have probably left it there)... I could have easily grabbed extra copies of the C&C ones but I didn't since I was trying to 'spread the word' so-to-speak. The only reason I got an extra Star Siege was because it was the end of the day, the store was closing up, and I *knew* a friend of mine wanted it but couldn't make it.

At any rate, all kidding aside, I hope some of that resentment about the event wasn't targeted at me. If some of it was, well, at the very least let me apologize if I came across badly or negatively.

M
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Harry Joy
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Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2007 7:00 am

Post by Harry Joy »

moriarty777 wrote:
...I hope some of that resentment about the event wasn't targeted at me.

It wasn't. Thanks though.

Last year, I got all excited about FRPGD, and even tried to get off work for it, before I started noticing that no one seemed to know or care about it. This year, I was kind of "meh" and took a wait & see attitude. Next year, I imagine it will be total antipathy, maybe even actual dissent, regarding the event.

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