Monday, November 16, 2009

Using Google Wave for Gaming

I found this article published on the RetroRolePlayingBlog. Thought it was interesting.

Using Google Wave for Gaming: "Google Wave seems to be the new 'must have' thing on the Internet judging by the buzz on sites like Lifehacker. Gamers are already thinking about how to use it in online games. So far, most people I've seen using it for RPGs are using it like a chat room and not taking much planned advantage of its special features.

Will Hindmarch had a interesting article on using Google Wave for gaming on his gameplaywright blog. Although his blog is aimed more at Story Games than pure RPGs, his ideas for using Google Wave in gaming are quite adaptable and very much worth a look: Playing On A Wave.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Dungeons and Dragons: Who will inherit the legacy?

I got an Email from Amazon asking if I wanted to sell any Dungeons and Dragons 3.5 material. I think it highlights the popularity of the d20 system and the failure of the fourth edition. Usually, about now, everyone is dumping their previous version to purchase the new one. The market for 3.5 materials should be flooded with players wanting to upgrade and prices should be depressed. Instead, now that the previous version is out of print, demand is higher than ever. A player’s handbook fetches about $90 new and $60 used. This while the free and remarketed Dungeons and Dragons Online is becoming wildly popular (to the point of server overload) and the entire online system is built on the 3.5 rule set.

Meanwhile, Green Ronin Publishing is pushing hard to replace the D20 system with their True20 system that is built on the 3.5 System Reference Documents that were released by Wizards and published under the Open Gaming License. I have seen their true20 on the shelves of two game stores I have visited in the last month. Clearly they are poised to strike at Wizards weakness and are looking to push True20 in as the real heir to the Dungeons and Dragons gaming legacy. They like to say, “True20 is the latest in generations of adventure roleplaying games that have been around since the 1970s.”

I have two 3.5 player handbooks at my disposal that are shared between two campaign groups. I want players to consider purchasing the books themselves. Should I place a $60-$90 burden on them? I think I could ask them to purchase the True20 players handbook at $30, or at least the PDF version for $9.99.

Hasbro’s downsizing last year saw Wizards of the Coast dump Jonathan Tweet (the main author of the 3.5 handbook). With this behavior you have to wonder what of interest will be coming out of Wizards in the future. Meanwhile a small upstart is attempting to co-opt a legacy.