Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Over 450 Dungeons and Counting

I spent a good part of my limited free time this month working through different open source image galleries. Galleria and Flexslider were the two main ones I tinkered with. I have always been the type of programmer who would rather write my own software than to have to hack on something and try to get it to do something it doesn't do out of the box. From reading about programmers over the years, this is a common trait. It, possibly, stems from the anecdote that it is much easier to write code then to read code. And there is a corollary that the act of writing code gives you a much greater insight into the problems that creep up with any project.

So, as humble and uncomplicated as it is, I wrote my own little image gallery. It is not complete. In fact, the domain I am using is named
When I get it a little more polished and I get the rest of the site converted over to a new system, the beta3 site will disappear and then all of the content there will reappear under the main domain

Currently, the website is being hosted through Google Sites, but I would like to get it onto its own place. And, philosophically, I am having more and more issues with the decisions and directions that Google is taking, so after moving the contest, I would also like to move the Random Wizard blog to its own place. But time, time... where does it go?

As I get older, I find I have less and less time to work on the complicated projects I have always wanted to get into. More time is devoted to work, family, loved ones and exploring the world. So, instead of leaving the beta version wrapped up in a domain, I figured why not let the fans of the contest see the image gallery. It really lets people "see" what the contest is all about.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

RPG Ranking By Year

Scroll bar below allows scrolling image to the right.

The Green Ronin reference would seem to indicate the Mutants & Masterminds that precedes and succeeds it.
Warhammer 40k, Dark Hersey, Rogue Trader have all been given a dashed line to show they are related.
Shadowrun appears, disappears, reappears, disappears, reappears.
Mutans & Masterminds has several appearances long after its debut.

Data collected from
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/14725/top-winter--08--09-rpgs    April 10, 2009 @ 2:37 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/9157/game-retailers-reveal-secrets    August 16, 2006 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/11168/game-market-has-solid-summer    August 23, 2007 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/15715/top-q2-2009-rpgs    August 27, 2009 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/13174/d-d-board-games-keep-game-category-solid    August 28, 2008 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/7439/game-market-decline-levels-off    August 30, 2005 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/20743/top-5-rpgs-q2-2011    August 4, 2011 @ 3:51 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/29329/top-5-rpgs-spring-2014    August 6, 2014 @ 4:36 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/13825/top-fall-2008-rpgs    December 2, 2008 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/22214/top-5-rpgs-q4-2011    February 21, 2012 @ 4:39 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/26215/top-5-rpgs-spring-2013    July 15, 2013 @ 5:52 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/23500/top-5-rpgs-spring-2012    July 25, 2012 @ 5:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/18045/top-5-rpgs-q2-2010    July 30, 2010 @ 2:02 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/7439/game-market-decline-levels-off   June 14, 2006 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/10758/strong-spring-strengthens-game-retailers    June 15, 2007 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/7057/05-game-sales-starting-weak    June 17, 2005 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/12766/games-forge-solid-spring    June 19, 2008 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/28124/top-5-rpgs-fall-2013    March 13, 2014 @ 3:53 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/8407    March 23, 2006 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/17087/top-q4-2009-roleplaying-games    March 23, 2010 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/12294/ccgs-miniature-games-up-07    March 27, 2008 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/10315/game-sales-revive-2006    March 28, 2007 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/19721/top-5-roleplaying-games-q4-2010    March 28, 2011 @ 3:02 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/25377/top-5-rpgs-fall-2012    March 29, 2013 @ 3:43 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/6654/game-market-soft-04    March 31, 2005 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/17571/top-five-rpgs-q1-2010    May 27, 2010 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/20178/top-5-rpgs-q1-2011    May 27, 2011 @ 5:01 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/5943/game-market-picks-up    November 2, 2004 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/21403/top-5-rpgs-summer-2011    November 2, 2011 @ 4:38 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/9667/tabletop-electronics    November 22, 2006 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/comics/view/11681/game-market-has-solid-base-holidays    November 27, 2007 @ 12:00 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/16202/top-q3-2009-rpgs    November 5, 2009 @ 4:56 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/29999/top-5-rpgs-summer-2014    October 22, 2014 @ 4:03 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/24224/top-5-rpgs-summer-2012    October 23, 2012 @ 4:47 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/27068/top-5-rpgs-summer-2013    October 29, 2013 @ 3:47 am EST
http://icv2.com/articles/games/view/18504/top-5-rpgs-q3-2010    October 7, 2010 @ 12:00 am EST

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Schrodingers Cauldron

Most game master's that I know of, will write up a little bit of notes to act as a guide for the adventure they want to run. A typical description may appear as follows.

Room Key 56: This area contains a black cauldron. During the evening there is a 30% chance of encountering the 3 witches from Room Key 62.

Published adventures may have more detail (some with a metric ton of detail). Older adventures tended to be similar to the above with a sparse description.

Continuing on with the thought experiment; pretend that a player has navigated their character to the room during the day, and he asks, "What is in the cauldron? And, if anything, what happens if I taste what is inside?"

Some game master's might take this opportunity to put something in the cauldron.

They might draw upon their previous knowledge of witches from movies or cartoons and decide that a love potion is being made, or a concoction that turns the imbiber into a toad. Some might decide it is a deadly poison.

Some might decide that whatever is inside is similar to a magic potion and make the connection that there is a table in the rules for the game they are playing in having magical treasure generated. So they flip through a rule book and find the potion table and make a roll to see what it is.

And some might decide to connect up the cauldron with a previous encounter where a group of leprechauns have lost their pot of gold and decide this is the pot with a leprechaun that the witches have tied up and kept in the cauldron to use in their next experiment.

In some, relatively, newer games, some of the narrative control of what is in the cauldron might be passed off to the player. He may have some points he can spend to try and bend reality to his idea and say, "I think the cauldron contains a soup with healing qualities" and then, there maybe a duel between the game master and the player about how that will play out.

But even in older games, there may be more traditional methods for the player to manipulate what is in the cauldron. There may be a spell that the player could have learned that would allow the character to summon something into the cauldron. Perhaps, even a wish spell.

More often then not, I find the question of what is inside the cauldron (metaphorically) is a large part of any role playing game. And (paradoxically) the answer is nothing and, at the same time, the potential for anything.