No Time To Play
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Weekly Links #238


I'm still not back into the groove when it comes to making games, but my latest mini-project is turning in that direction again, so that might just give me some ideas. More importantly, I've recently read not one but two free tabletop RPGs, which rekindled my interest in the genre. One even gave me the key to finishing the one I started in spring only to set it aside after 5000 words. Came up with a new idea, too. And then there's the gamedev zine I was writing before catching the web development bug again. Perhaps mixing games and writing is the key to doing fiction again after all.

Otherwise, not much to say these days. The gaming press appears to be 40% Fortnite, 30% the Telltale debacle, and the rest indies advising each other to act like triple-A studios, because who cares what "indie" even means, we want to get rich quick just like everyone else! Never mind that you're far more likely to crash and burn instead, as we've all just witnessed.

Anyway, going back to Telltale for a moment: I see people trying to take advantage of it and advertise the nascent movement for unionizing the industry. Which isn't a bad thing. But duuude. What you need is decent labor laws that apply whether or not workers are unionized. Like, firing 250 people with 30 minutes notice? In Romania, the minimum period is 15 days. No exceptions. And while that can be as annoying to the employee as it is to the employer, it also means neither party can screw the other out of spite.

But then, the delusion of exceptionalism is what the gaming industry and the USA have in common. So let's leave it at that and see the news.

Having returned to web development for a while, there wasn't much of my attention span left for games. Turns out however that my work in progress fits No Time To Play pretty well. You see, I have a huge pile of old links to gaming material on the web, that was bit-rotting away in my browser bookmarks. Stuff that either predates the Weekly Links newsletter or never made it in. And my latest creation just so happens to be designed for link blogs.

Now, to sort and curate all those links is going to take a while. I'm not going to just dump them on you! And some of them already went on the wiki, where they fit better. But one has to start somewhere. So take a look, and hopefully you'll find something of use while the next batch is on the way.

Thanks to the indefatigable Konstantinos Dimopoulos we learn that Failbetter Games, makers of Fallen London and its spin-offs, have just released a free, rules-light RPG to go with their upcoming game. It caught my eye not just because of that, but also due to how it has a premise very similar to my own Tales of Space and Magic, allowing of course for the different setting. Except the Skyfarers RPG, being made by experienced designers, identifies an obvious problem with it and offers a fix in the same breath. Live and learn!

And that’s about it again. I’ll turn this newsletter around yet, no worries.