The GROGNARD Files

Table-top RPGs from back in the day and today.

For the past 4 years I’ve had a crack at the RPGGaDay challenge and by the 10th day I’ve usually burned out. In previous versions there has been a series of very specific questions that invariably got to to a question that I had no opinion about.

This year there has been a more ‘word association’ approach that I’ve indicated in caps. Although some of them lent themselves to a potential portentous statement, I’ve tried to avoid it by being as personal as I can. For example, the word “VAST” lends itself to platitudes like “the human imagination is vast and I intend to explore it through RPGs”.

I’ve done it every day in August on twitter, and for those of you who don’t use it, here are my entries:

1. Four years ago, the FIRST podcast was published featuring the first RPG we’d played: RuneQuest #rpgaday2019#RPGfirsthttps://thegrognardfiles.com/2015/08/07/the-grognard-files-rpg-episode-1-runequest/…

2.The greatest thrill of playing one-off convention RPG games is that every experience for every player around the table is completely UNIQUE. Never to be repeated. #rpgaday

3. It’s been great to ENGAGE with the GROGSQUAD for White Dwarf Book Club – sharing memories and our attitudes to it now #RPGaDay2019#rpgaday

4. I really love seeing other people’s gaming stuff. It’s one of my favourite aspects of social media: Gamers get to SHARE their stuff. #RPGaDay2019

5. The last, regular SPACE adventure I participated in was The Traveller Adventure 4 years ago. I’ve enjoyed our occasional Star Trek Adventures with @Asako_Soh but I need more SPACE in my life. #RPGaDay19#RPGaDay#RPGaDay2019

6. ANCIENT settings are my personal favourites. I’ve always wanted to be Jason thanks to @Ray_Harryhausen RPGs such as RUNEQUEST have let me realise the dream (albeit with no left leg) #RPGaDay19#rpgaday

7. One of my all-time favourite characters was Azir Voon who had an homunculus FAMILIAR (I *did* say that RPGs are just a means of putting me in Ray Harryhausen films) #rpgaday #RPGaDay2019

Avir Voon and friend

8. I have a load of GM Screens to OBSCURE my secrets from the players, but I’ve never found the perfect one … perhaps I should treat myself to one made by @cognitivemerch (here’s @OrlanthR with his at GROGMEET18) #RPGaDay2019#rpgaday

9. We’ve had a CRITICAL comment about the GROGZINE content “it’s just not nostalgic enough”. Excellent. It’s finally a *real* 80s ‘zine with a readers’ letters page pointing out how things have gone downhill. #RPGaDay2019 #rpgaday

10. Big run of convention games coming up. Going to FOCUS on creating some characters while on holiday. #RPGaDay2019#rpgaday#OBaWS@24hr_rpg

11. I still get twitchy at the point when players need to EXAMINE the clues. I dropped the handout bomb for Two-Headed Serpent. I need to learn GM patience. #RPGaDay2019#rpgaday

12. FRIENDSHIP – a small ad in White Dwarf in 1983 brought the 3 of us together and we’re still playing and creating great new friendships along the way! @sjamb7@Edinthesand#RPGaDay2019#RPGaDay

13. I’m on holiday. New places are filled with MYSTERY, waiting to be unlocked; what’s the story behind this Deep One carnival masque? What’s lurking in the murky green Venetian lagoon? #RPGaDay2019 #RPGaDay

14. There’s YouTube, Game Store Demos and clubs to GUIDE you into RPGs now. Back in the day it was articles in @STARBURST_MAG that showed us the light! #RPGaDay2019#RPGaDay#rpgaday

15. The DOOR is the GMs’ best pacing friend. Stick a door in it and it’s either an encounter, a brake or an accelerator (see also, a box) #RPGaDay2019#RPGaDay (here’s a Roman Door – what would you do with it? A Magic Mouth for riddles? An impenetrable seal? A teleport?

16. My DREAM? One day, I’ll all have all the time in the world to retire to a house of gaming. A place lined with shelfies, with many comfortable rooms filled with friends, drink, music and games. Welcome to DunGroggin’ #RPGaDay2019#rpgaday

17. ONE on one play happened all the time when we couldn’t get a group together. Recently @sjamb7 played in a ‘link up’ adventure for the Two Headed Serpent it seemed both awkward & dangerous! @PelgranePress are supporting Solo Ops with Gumshoe; what about you? #RPGaDay2019#rpgaday

18. I once thought a gaming session once a month was PLENTY, now I get withdrawal if there isn’t a game once a week. How much is too much? #RPGaDay2019 #rpgaday

19. When I want to make things SCARY for players, I think of the things that made me scared as a kid. They’re all wrapped up in one book: A Pictorial History of Horror by Denis Gifford (Conrad Veidt in THE MAN WHO LAUGHS … shudder…) #RPGaDay2019 #rpgaday

20. One of my favourite and most enduring characters from bitd was Marcus Mendusor, a NOBLE Gladiator. You can read about him in the first GROGZINE. Submissions needed for GROGZINE20 too. #RPGaDay2019 #rpgaday

21. On the site of The Boar’s Head in Bolton, there was a pub for students known as Varsity, but @sjamb7 named it The VAST Empty Space-we were often the only people in it-at the top of the stairs in Nipper’s Corner, making plans “let’s write a RPG memoir” #RPGaDay2019

22. LOST at conventions over the past 3 years: D8 purple translucent D4 lime green D4 solid black D20 Red Notebook dry wipe pen Return in exchange for 10,000 xp #RPGaDay2019 #rpgaday

23. I suppose, with all this ‘health and safety gone mad’ and the woke ‘player agency’, it’s frowned upon to SURPRISE your players by killing them all. #RPGaDay2019 #rpgaday From Grimtooth’s traps:

24. Battlecars was fuel for my imagination in the eighties. @Edinthesand and I added RPG elements, with scenarios and reoccurring characters, such as, The Bean and his opponent, Rooster Rotten and his souped up TRIUMPH T-100. #RPGaDay2019#rpgaday

25. A RPG session can survive any CALAMITY apart from one: A forgotten character sheet I made me and @sjamb7 two hours late for an all day D&D session because I had to go home for my character. Anything else can be improvised, but you need your character, right?#RPGaDay2019#rpgaday

26. I never thought that I’d abandon my notebook of scrawl that I take everywhere, so that when an IDEA strikes, I can catch it. I’ve gone digital by using EverNote, where I can keep clippings and scrawl in one place. #RPGaDay2019 #rpgaday

27. I’m really enjoying running the Pulp Cthulhu campaign and emulating a pulp serial to create SUSPENSE with a cliff-hanger at the end of every session. #RPGaDay2019 #rpgaday

28. I LOVE creating my characters for RPGs, so why do I find creating pre-gens for convention games such a chore? #RPGaDay2019#RPGaDay

29. When it comes to Gygaxian naturalism I’m on the fence. Should Monsters EVOLVE with a ‘realistic’ logic, or be completely fantastical? #RPGaDay2019 #RPGaDay

30. “Crew Members Required” It’s 4 years since we made CONNECTION with the online, Wednesday, fortnightly group. @oilpainting71@rumleech@BenBgalvin@Edinthesand@sjamb7@DailyDwarf and Hal #RPGaDay2019#rpgaday

31. This is the first time that I’ve completed the RPGaDay Challenge – I hope it isn’t the last!

2 thoughts on “RPGaDay 2019

  1. Thanks for putting these all in one spot! Great to read.

  2. engleback says:

    #23 – good choice, well, good/evil choice, but as you may not know we recently lost Rick Loomis of Flying Buffalo who published Grimtooths Traps (as well as T&T), during his illness he accumulated sizeable medical bills, there is a Bundle of Holding supporting him which includes all the Grimtooths books, as well as a Fundraiser, so if anyone is interested.
    https://bundleofholding.com/presents/Catalyst2019
    https://www.gofundme.com/f/help-gaming-legend-rick-loomis

    Can you post stuff on you MeWe page once in a while, there’s a burgeoning OSR community out there?

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