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James Raggi
Master of Metal, Master of Space, Master of Time
Master of Metal, Master of Space, Master of Time

James Raggi's posts

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Last day to vote. Get Patrick and Scrap some well-deserved accolades, make it known to the rest of the world the quality of releases we're doing over here, and let the industry know just what people actually want from their gaming books.

And I really want that opportunity at a live mic.

Seen on Twitter:

"Dear Creative people, it is worth putting women and LGBTQI+ characters in your works just to see the man babies cry. Please make it so!"

I can verify from publishing LotFP material that this is indeed works, but perhaps not in quite the same way this tweeter was hoping.

Whenever I read about people talking about Death Frost Doom, I wonder what adventure they actually are reading.

"There's no treasure in there." There's a fuckton of treasure in there! It's just lying there, unguarded, requiring just a little patience to collect. Technically, by the book, with enough patience (ok, a lot of patience), you can amass enough treasure to buy the entire world, and just walk out with it, unimpeded. Seriously, no threat. Yes, that's boring, but that's the sensible accumulation of wealth for you.

"It's a TPK and the end of the campaign." Well, in the real world, Death Frost Doom has been the start of campaigns. Yes, it's over 10,000 undead creatures, but it's functionally just an army. You've never had an army on the march in one of your campaigns? Ever? What the hell are you even doing? And even if characters get stuck in the middle of that, there are multiple ways out of the place, and options for them to have more time to find those ways out.

Seriously, when I first playtested the adventure, before I'd published anything so it's not like people were looking for the ol' LotFP screwjob, the deaths all happened at the organ. Never after everything blows up.

So what is up with the reputation this adventure has?

Is this like that one "playtest review" of The God that Crawls where the entire party was TPKed because they just fought the God straight off? And then complained there was "no warning" about how powerful it was, in a standup fight where every player thought it was a magnificent idea to just stand there and keep swinging as their comrades died one by one before their eyes?

Is the problem that it is assumed that the average player is a drooling moron whose thoughts will oscillate between "I attack!" and "derp derp derp derp" ?

bloody hell.

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New person wanting to get into LotFP, wanting recommendations about what to get first.

I remember when Capaldi was announced as the next Doctor. "Oh, he's so great," I thought, "the show will finally get good again!"

And hopeful as I was, I suffered through two mostly-dismal seasons, trying to give it every chance and liking things on first viewing that really weren't that good. I gave up on something that had become something of an obsession for me since discovering it in 2012, because it was just so depressingly garbage.

I didn't watch the latest season, didn't keep up on what was going on in it or anything. I was just done, because frankly in hindsight the entire show had gone to shit since Davies left as showrunner.

Conclusion: Anyone offering an opinion on the new Doctor is a blithering idiot spreading digital pollution at this point, because an actor's publicity photo and CV says fuck all about how good or bad the show is going to be with them in the lead. There's literally nothing to cheer or boo at this point.

The fucking mindless lazy reflex of people.

No, I don't want George Romero to Rest in Peace.

I want that fucker to RISE AND EAT SOMEBODY'S FACE OFF.

Jesus, doesn't anyone remember why they care about him in the first place?

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'allo all!

The ENNIES voting is live! The ENNIES are tabletop RPG awards presented every year at Gen Con in a big ceremony, so in many ways these are the highest profile and most important awards in tabletop role-playing. The LotFP crew will be at Gen Con, so if you want to help out our merry band of creators and give us a live mic in front of an industry audience, here's how to vote... and please do vote. In many categories we're up against a game that did a $1.3 million Kickstarter. We beat the D&D Players Handbook a couple years ago, so we can do it... but only if we all actually do it!

For the Judges... last year 4 of the 5 judges were the same as this year and no LotFP releases got no ENNIE nominations last year. The difference this year where four different LotFP books got nods? Reece Carter. Vote Reece Carter.

Best Adventure: Blood in the Chocolate.

Best Cartography: The Cursed Chateau

Best Electronic Book: Hubris: A World of Visceral Adventure (not an LotFP release, but Mike is a friend of LotFP)
Best Free Product: I'd say fuck this category since Slügs! was robbed, but Evey is cool so vote Santa is Dead.

Best Monster/Adversary: Veins of the Earth

Best Rules: Veins of the Earth

Best Writing: Veins of the Earth

Fan's Favorite Publisher: Lamentations of the Flame Princess!

Product of the Year: Veins of the Earth

I've probably forgotten to mention some other Friend of LotFP, I always catch hell for it after sending out these emails every year we've got stuff nominated... so if you feel you should have been recommended here but weren't, please accept my most insincere apologies... :D

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Tiny detail preview of LotFP's 2017 Gen Con catalog cover!

"Who cares about the ENNIES?"

There are a bunch of reasons why I care about them, and reasons why the common criticism against them (and to a certain extent, all awards) really don't amount to much.

First of all, direct experience, when RPL won several ENNIES, I saw an immediate sales spike across most of my sales channels, very distinct from what the book had been doing the previous months. This year, if Veins can place in all of the categories it's nominated, with LotFP being right there at Gen Con with a booth selling the damn book... that's a few months' rent paid for me, Patrick, and Scrap just from that one weekend's sales at that one location, nevermind any other sales channel into the future.

If you win big industry awards and can't convert that into more units sold, you suck as a publisher. Sell your fucking shit if you're going to sell your shit, you know?

"The greater gaming world doesn't care about Enworld, so their awards are unimportant."

The real association people make for the ENNIES isn't with the Enworld website.

No, people think of the ENNIES as The Gen Con Awards. You know, the biggest games convention in the English speaking world. They really should rename the damn thing the GENNIES.

"The fact that publishers have to submit their releases to the judges undermines the legitimacy of the awards.

If there's a more fair way to have a wider cross-section of releases represented for possible nomination, I'd really like to know.

Seriously, what are the alternatives? Do you expect anybody, anybody at all, to find out about, let alone buy, EVERYTHING that comes out in RPGs in a given year in order to evaluate them all? How else would you do it to give the widest possible selection of releases the fairest shake in what is supposed to be an industry-wide award?

Remember that last year Maze of the Blue Medusa got multiple nominations just from submitting the PDF, so you don't even have to worry about putting any books in the mail.

"Gamers don't pay attention to awards when deciding what to buy."

One, horseshit. Enough do to spike sales. Maybe the effect is vanishingly small if you're already a market leader, but LotFP is still tiny compared to the top sellers in this industry. Any additional scrap of attention does make a very real difference.

Two, even if no actual gamer gave the first shit about any awards, there are a whole lot of layers in this industry with their movers and shakers and gatekeepers, and being able to say "MAJOR AWARD WINNER" certainly helps a smaller publisher get their attention, especially when we can say "Yeah, we got out the fan vote and beat Wizards of the Coast's new D&D Players Handbook" like we did in 2015. You really don't think people pay attention when something like that happens? And this year we've got the $1,300,000 Kickstarter game to overcome in fan voting.

And in something really concerning more LotFP than anyone else that might be vying for an ENNIE, having major awards in the back pocket does give a good reminder when someone sees Vaginas are Magic or Towers Two or Fuck For Satan and wonders what kind of operation I run, that yes, we do that sort of thing and still hang with the elite in this industry in any damn way you want to measure.

Because fuck you, that's why.

Anonymous comment over at Tenkar's concerning the ENNIES: "The only reason LotFP gets so many nominations is the publisher has the money to nominate all of his stuff."

... unless somehow this person means "can pay for the postage to send in the required copies," I'm clueless as to how this is supposed to work or even what it might mean.

Any Infowars fans out there that can explain this conspiracy logic?
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