Most of these creative businesses people daydream about are vanishing small, but none is so tiny as #TTRPGs. There are perhaps a hundred or so real, workaday-world jobs in the whole “industry”. And once you get past WotC, Paizo and Chaosium, that ground grows very sparse indeed.
People like to imagine some complex creative ecosystem of pros and non-pros, but in #TTRPGs, that line is blurred so much as to not exist. A nobody with no backing can win game of the year, and sell more than enough to make it all worthwhile all on their own.
I have worked professionally in #comics, #books, #videogames, and #cardgames and none of them approach the level of freedom and ease-of-liftoff of #TTRPGs. It is quite literally something you can just choose to try without a huge wind-up or buy-in from some tastemaker.
So, if you want to make #TTRPGs, go make them. My only advice is keep your team as small as is possible (this means wearing a lot of hats) and getting stuff out in the hopes of spinning it up over time; don’t expect something to hit right out of the gate.
And, if you need any advice and you think I can help, drop me a DM — that is if you don’t mind hearing the truth — and I’ll do what I can to assist you. Cheers.
(Oh, and if this message somehow rubs you the wrong way like it did the person that just sent me a frantic and completely insane-pants DM…)

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More from @drgonzo123

7 Aug
Reading comments on #DeltaGreen today really cemented a thought that’s been floating around in my head: people don’t buy #TTRPGs for rules, they buy them for rules AND a compelling world. And it’s ok if the rules are merely sufficient, but the world? Not so much.
The job of a #TTRPG book is to HAND OFF the world to the GM. To christen them God and tell them “do what thou will with this,” but to jump that hurdle you must ENTERTAIN AND HOOK THE GM.

This sounds obvious, but apparently (based on some comments) a lot of people don’t get it.
“Why do you have a giant timeline in the Handler’s guide?” A GM coming in blank to a game is a God-in-training. They need to get the flavour (to change the flavour but they have to know what it IS first). The background. The characters. The factions. The history it is not fluff.
Read 6 tweets
23 Mar
If you #freelance, in general, they can do what they want with your work. They own it. They can edit as they like. If there is no “no edit” or “pre-approval” clause, forget it.

This is the price you pay to play with properties like #SpiderMan, #StarWars, or #DungeonsandDragons.
Freelance #writers and #artists expecting to have input and editorial clout—to really shape an entire product from soup to nuts, to have final say over nearly anything: don’t bother freelancing.

It’s not for you.
Next up, if you’re out to create something amazing, I can almost guarantee that it only comes along in vast, company driven group project once in a blue moon, and only then randomly, because stars align or something and the people click.
Read 9 tweets
22 Mar
When we emigrated to Canada, my wife had American medical “system” PTSD. We had just paid $18,000 for a bog-standard broken leg my son suffered while fully insured. Most of that was from an unnecessary ambulance we were forced to take from the receiving hospital to another ER.
Turns out this whole “ferry them onward” scam is quite common, of course we didn’t know that. The broken leg? Oh yeah, that was fine FAST. Our bills, not so much. When we finally moved to Canada, my wife was so nervous she called up the BC ambulance service.
“Yeah, how much is an ambulance?” “$50” “Per mile?” “Ha. No. Just $50.” My wife was stymied by this, but then continued, “What about an air ambulance?” “Oh, that’s more expensive.” *My wife looks triumphant* “It’s more expensive for sure. $80.”

We’ve finally fully acclimatized.
Read 6 tweets
22 Mar
“Any game book that changes the setting constitutes metaplot!”

Uh. That’s almost every game book…ever.

People in TTRPGs hang on to utterly bizarre, easily falsifiable beliefs like security blankets, when the TRUE core of their complaint is: “I don’t want the game to do that.”
And “I don’t like this!” Is a FINE point of view. It’s your opinion! However saying “A game book that changes this established world is METAPLOT AND RUINS A GAME!” is not. How? “Oh, er. Uh. It makes it harder to set up a game!”

Don’t buy it.

(But I’ll let you in on a secret, it never could make your game harder to set up. *YOU* are the one making your game harder to set up by believing there is some baseline “DO NOT GO PAST THIS LINE” in *ANY* TTRPG game. Here’s a hint: THERE ISN’T).
Read 4 tweets
25 Oct 19
Here's the deal #America; whatever you had before, forget it. That is all gone. The moment Trump violated the law and nothing was done (day 1), rule of law in the States was over. The Presidential lawyer claims the President is above the law. It's been 1,000 days since then.
In those 1000 days, the President has whittled the 3 branches of government down to 1.5. There is the Executive (which OWNS the Judicial, for the most part, and the Senate), vs. the House. Without major legislation or changes, the President has crippled checks and balances.
The President owns the Justice Department. He owns the Supreme Court and Senate. The Reps continue to pack all courts with Trumpers (44 in a single day!). This is like John Gotti being in complete charge of the Justice Dept. while they investigated him. What does this mean?
Read 12 tweets
18 Jan 19
99.9% of my interactions with fans are delightful. #DeltaGreen fans, in particular, are a great bunch. They want to talk, they want to explore ideas within the paradigm, and most of all, they want to be frightened. So, new publisher, how to deal with the OTHER .1%?
Clear lines of communication make some people feel that they can say ANYTHING to you. I've had more than a few "WELL ASSHOLE!" emails and DMs. Usually, this is for something exceedingly stupid — like shipping a book to Australia with real, live, postal rates.
Other times, it's some political tangle and the language and insults are invariably worse. My policy is the same for both. 1) Did you order something <nameless numberhead guy>? 2) Here's your money back. 3) You're fired, don't come back.
Read 8 tweets

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