Sunday, August 26, 2012

The Google Nexus Tablet Meets My RPG PDF Collection

I've had the Google Nexus 7 Tablet for about 5 weeks now. I can tell from an earlier post today (talking  about the Blood & Treasure RPG) that folks are interested in knowing how the Nexus 7 holds up when reading RPG PDFs.

It holds up very well.

The last two PDFs I've looked at on the Nexus 7 (using the EZ PDF Reader App) have been Blood & Treasure and Swords & Wizardry Complete. Why? Because I just bought the first one, and the second one is on my mind with the Reaper Kickstarter and the Swords & Wizardry Complete Kickstarter.

Both are readable with the tablet held in the vertical position, like a book. The print is small, but readable. I've mostly been using it to read for a few minutes in bed before sleep. If I were going to read for a longer period of time, I'd probably hold it in the horizontal position and move the page up and down for the two column format most games seem to favor.

Actually, I've got bunch of stuff on it in PDF format, so I'll rate them from zero to 2 thumbs up for vertical (V) and horizontal (H) reading. In no particular order:

RuneQuest 6 - 1V, 2H
S&W Complete - 1V, 2H
Blood & Treasure - 1V, 2H
Death Love Doom - 1+V, 2H (just a tad better to read than the others so far in vertical position)
ACKS - 1-V, 2H (its readable in vertical, but the walls of text don't make it easy)
Advanced Dungeons & Savages - 2V, 2H
Attack of the Frawgs! - 1V, 2H
The Ooze Pits of Jonas Gralk - 1V, 2H
Stars W/O Number - Core Edition - 1V-, 2H (readable but not easy on the eyes in vertical)
Other Dust -1V-, 2H (readable but not easy on the eyes in vertical)
DCC RPG - 1V+, 2H (maybe it's the font, but it's a bit easier on the eyes than most of the others when held in the vertical position)

So, most is readable in the vertical (book held) position, but for extended reading, you'll probably want to hold it vertically. I couldn't even really try to read most of my PDFs in the vertical postion with my Kindle Fire. I'm going to chalk that up to the quality of the screen.


  1. And that is exactly what I wanted to know. Thanks!

  2. I have been really pleased with Orion Viewer:

    It has a setting for paging down columns and then you will find once you zoom in to 250, it is quite readable in the upright position.

  3. You should try my Blackmarsh PDF, I formatted it Digest size so it should work well. Note it is free to download from RPGNow.

  4. What is the rendering speed like on really heavy PDFs? I'm considering a nexus 7 primarily for rulebook pdfs, but my experience rendering huge pdfs on mobile devices hasn't been great.


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