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Tenkar's Tavern Community Updates

Saturday, December 12, 2020

Gamers, Avoid Being Fleeced for Your Health

As many of you know, Rach and I do installments of Gamer's Health on the Tavern Chat Podcast on Friday Nights. It's an honest view of the health challenges Rach and I face and how we are attempting to change our habits to improve our health - physical, mental, and emotional.

We make no bones about the fact that our experiences may not reflect yours, and hope to be as much an inspiration for positive change as we are examples of such change. Everyone's path to improved health is individual to that person,

You also probably know I'm fairly well known for exposing "Wayward Kickstarters" and fraudsters within our corner of the hobby.

I'm suspecting we are seeing an intersection of these two aspects of my passions.

How much is your health worth? When someone offers to help you with a program to a healthier life that's geared around your hobby, it probably seems too good to be true. Of course, it really isn't geared towards the RPG hobby, but the video gaming hobby, and there is much overlap between the two hobbies, and the health challenges experienced by a large segment of these communities are well known.

Remember when Kickstarters promised the world and often had nothing to show? Well, I've found that to be true in the gamers' health niche.

A program that promised amazing results (and I was likely targeted due to the weekly Gamer's Health Podcast episodes) was introduced to me by someone that friended me on Facebook. I have a fairly high profile in our corner of the hobby and accept most friend requests that aren't obviously porn spam. 

The sales pitch started as a soft pitch, and initially, I thought I was going to be given some generic advice. But once the "marketer" thought I was hooked, the presentation began and the script was obvious, and the "you can't put a price on improved health" told me that the price was likely high.

$3,200 bucks high. For a program that had very little to show for itself upfront, and was reluctant to actually link their website.

Key take away? You can use the Nintendo Switch to turn exercise into a game. So, for 300 bucks and the cost of a game or two, I can replicate much of the program for 10% of the cost.

Sure, you need to motivate yourself. My motivation would be saving 90% and improving my health. I don't need to pay others to motivate me.

As gamers, there is a segment of society at large that thinks we are easy marks with disposable income waiting to be fleeced. I prefer to save that money for gaming ;)



Friday, December 11, 2020

OSR Christmas is Right Around the Corner

'Tis the season for OSR Christmas. Seriously, it has been a shitty year, what with Covid shutting down the world and my own unrelated health issues. What better way to end such a year than with some OSR Christmas.

I'm still locking down some publishers/gifters (with some solid regulars already signed up), but I can tell you what I'm putting into the gift pool this year - at least $500 in DTRPG Gift Certificates, ranging from $25 to $100 each.

Now, not every day will be hosted here at TenkarsTavern.com. Some will be hosted on the podcast side of things, on the Tavern Chat Podcast. At least one will be hosted on the Talking Crit Livestream next Wednesday at 8 PM Eastern. That will kick things off, and yes, OSR Christmas will run from December 15th, 2020 thru Three Kings Day, January 6th, 2021. There will be 12 days of gift-giving in that time frame.

If you are a publisher or potential gift giver and you wish to participate in the good cheer of giveaways, email me at tenkarsDOTtavernAT that gmail thing with OSR Christmas in the subject.

The Tavern is supported by readers like you. The easiest way to support The Tavern is to shop via our affiliate links. DTRPGAmazon, and Humble Bundle are the affiliate programs that support The Tavern.  

You can catch the daily Tavern Chat podcast on AnchorYouTube
or wherever you listen to your podcast collection.

Don't forget to subscribe to The Tavern's weekly Newsletter! We currently have 160 subscribers. When we hit 200 subscribers, I'll award 2 random subscribers a $10 DTRPG Gift Certificate.  



Thursday, December 10, 2020

A WTF Kickstarter - More Gaming! The 2020 Upside Sticker for Roleplaying Gamers (Yay COVID-19!)

I kid you the fuck not. The More Gaming! The 2020 Upside Sticker for Roleplaying Gamers Kickstarter is subtitled: A souvenir sticker to celebrate all the virtual RPG gaming that happened in 2020.

Tone deaf?

Clueless? 

A slimy attempt to cash in on the pandemic?

Simply pretty shit perhaps...

The fact that the sticker is ugly as sin doesn't earn it any points either.

94 bucks raised of a $500 goal with a week left. (only $50 is currently reflected in the pledges placed.)

Three 3"x3" stickers for 5 bucks. Wait, 7 bucks if you include shipping.

This won't fund, as well it shouldn't.

The Tavern is supported by readers like you. The easiest way to support The Tavern is to shop via our affiliate links. DTRPGAmazon, and Humble Bundle are the affiliate programs that support The Tavern.  

You can catch the daily Tavern Chat podcast on AnchorYouTube
or wherever you listen to your podcast collection.

Don't forget to subscribe to The Tavern's weekly Newsletter! We currently have 160 subscribers. When we hit 200 subscribers, I'll award 2 random subscribers a $10 DTRPG Gift Certificate.  


Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Humble RPG Book Bundle - Pathfinder Monster Lore by Paizo

Now I'm sure some of The Tavern's readers are going "why the F should I care about Pathfinder monster books?" Truth is, you shouldn't, except as a resource to tweak out your monster library for your OSR games. Converting from Pathfinder to the OSR is as simple as removing 90% of the crunch but keeping the flavor, and these books will ooze with flavor. 

They are a bargain for ANY DM of any OSR game. Less so for 5e DMs, but I'm sure there is inspiration to be found for all. Oh, ad if you DO play Pathfinder 1e, the Humble RPG Book Bundle - Pathfinder Monster Lore is a goldmine :)

29 books for 18 bucks - that a lot of inspiration!


The Tavern is supported by readers like you. The easiest way to support The Tavern is to shop via our affiliate links. DTRPGAmazon, and Humble Bundle are the affiliate programs that support The Tavern.  

You can catch the daily Tavern Chat podcast on AnchorYouTube
or wherever you listen to your podcast collection.

Don't forget to subscribe to The Tavern's weekly Newsletter! We currently have 160 subscribers. When we hit 200 subscribers, I'll award 2 random subscribers a $10 DTRPG Gift Certificate.  

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Help Save Some Cats and Get Entered Into a DCC Raffle for Fat Lot! The Tavern Will Match Donations up to the First $500 Raised

Ashley
Every year David Baity runs a raffle to raise money for feral cats. Our current cat, Sadie, is a stray that literally walked in our back door the night after we lost our feline daughter Ashley to cancer. Ashley herself was a rescue.

Cats are a big part of my life and have been for as long as I can remember. The cause is a good one and David is awesome for doing this every year.

Without further distraction, here's David:

Hey Everyone! Long post! But please take a second to read this and share if you think you can boost the signal! 

Every year around this time I put on a charity raffle geared towards those who like to play games. 100% of all proceeds go to help a couple of local no-kill feline rescues (Feline Lifeline & Paved Paws Animal League of Greenville SC). If you know me, you know I love cats, so several years ago I decided to try and help some amazing people who work tirelessly feeding, trapping, and fixing feral cats. They also foster and adopt those that can be tamed, or that may have been abandoned. This is just the tip of the iceberg of what they do, so I figure it is only fair that I do this, in hopes of raising money to help provide donations to help them out. 

Throughout the year, I collect items to offer as prize support for the raffle, but I am also lucky to have amazing friends who care enough to donate prizes to help add considerable weight to what I am offering. This year has been no exception and I am so touched/grateful to those of you that have reached out with prizes!

The raffle works like this, one ticket is $1.00, and each ticket counts for 1 entry into the raffle. Throw in $5 and you have 5 chances to win. All winners will be announced on 12/24 at 11pm EST, with a celebrity author pulling several random winners to match the number of available prize packages (see below). Winners will be given a choice of prize packages in the order they are drawn.

So, if you have a spare dollar or two, please consider helping me provide for some of my local rescues! Even if you are not a gamer there might be someone you know who is! Hell, you could even throw them up on E-bay if you win, so please consider donating. 

The link to donate can be found here

https://paypal.me/mysticmousers?locale.x=en_US

(Add a note that The Tavern Sent You to your donation and The Tavern will match dollar for dollar all donations made by members of this community up to a total of $500. The match WILL NOT be entered into the raffle, just the original donations will be)

Edit: please also add a comment on this post so David and I can track :)

Prize packages with names of donors:

(Note, unless stated in the description all books are printed hardcover or softcover) 

Dungeon Crawl Classics Mega Bundle: DCC rulebook (San Julian cover), DCC Funny dice set (hellcat), DCC Adventure modules 70, 72, 73, 74, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 87, 89, 90, 91, 91.1, 91.2, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99. DCC horror adventures 2, 5, 6

DCC Prize pack A- DCC Rulebook (gold foil KS edition) signed by Michael Curtis and a set of DCC funny dice set (Ming’s Infernal Bones style) also donated by MC! 

DCC Prize pack B- DCC Rulebook (silver foil Seven-Pointed Star of Sezrekan) signed by Michael Curtis along with a set of DCC funny dice ( The Dice of Lost Lemuria style) also donated by MC! 

DCC Lankhmar Prize pack- DCC Lankhmar Boxed set, DCC Lankhmar adventures, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 donated by Michael Curtis

MCC Prize pack- MCC core rulebook, MCC GM screen, MCC #1, MCC Mutant Mayhem (Glow-Dan, Harold, Mistur Tode) donated by Goodman games, MCC adventures 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 donated by the Skach family, The Scientific Barbarian #1 donated by Aaron Talley, 10 MCC/ RAD Chips donated by Hector Cruz

D&D 5th edition Prize pack- Original Adventures Reincarnated-X2 Castle Amber, Fifth Edition Fantasy 4, 16 donated and signed by Michael Curtis

Umerica Prize package -The Umerican Survival Guide (choice of either cover), Twisted Menagerie Manual, The Umerican Road Atlas, Umerica Unnatural- all donated by Shield of Faith Studios

Psychoda Press Prize package-The Lesser key to the Celestial Legion, The Forgotten Rites of the Moldering Dead- all donated by Donn Stroud

Dark Trails RPG Standard edition hardback and PDF (Delivered upon release). One online gaming session run by author David Baity on Roll20 or Zoom and up to 6 friends (I will work with you to schedule the game after the raffle). 

The Cthulhu Alphabet Prize pack #1- Cerulean foil version- signed and donated by Michael Curtis

Bronx Beasts: Mutant Animal Roleplaying Vol 1- Several copies donated by Dan Steeby and Anna Horvath

Gong farmers Almanac 2015 and 2016 edition donated by Michael Curtis.

Monday, December 7, 2020

Bundle of Holding - Savage Rifts

I backed the Savage Rifts Kickstarter a few years back and was very happy with the result. Great setting with a usable system. Go figure ;)

Well, Savage Rifts is currently available on Bundle of Holding. It's 13 bucks for the Starter Collection and a hair over 20 bucks for the Bonus Collection.

This is updated to the latest Savage Worlds edition (the prior edition is also available currently on Bundle of Holding)

The Tavern is supported by readers like you. The easiest way to support The Tavern is to shop via our affiliate links. DTRPGAmazon, and Humble Bundle are the affiliate programs that support The Tavern.  

You can catch the daily Tavern Chat podcast on AnchorYouTube
or wherever you listen to your podcast collection.

Don't forget to subscribe to The Tavern's weekly Newsletter! We currently have 160 subscribers. When we hit 200 subscribers, I'll award 2 random subscribers a $10 DTRPG Gift Certificate.  

Sunday, December 6, 2020

One Not-So-Quick Thought on Increasing the Value for a Convention-Working GM

 

One Not-So-Quick Thought on Increasing the Value for a Convention-Working GM
I'm only a couple thousand miles away from home right now, pretty much stuck in my hotel room due to quarantine restrictions, but I did have a chance to get out and enjoy some outside time yesterday.....which I did a hard pass on. Some of that was because the high temperature was a negative something Fahrenheit, but also because if I wasn't careful I might miss out on my bi-weekly online OSR game.

Missing out on a chance to freeze my balls off to make sure I don't miss a game.....pretty much a no-brainer....but don't worry as I'll be venturing out into the cold today because I can.

I'm certain I've posted, either directly or indirectly, about how important a regular game is for me....and I bet for a lot of you too. My coworker/associate/brothers don't get the importance of the "gaming thing" initially, but when matched against hanging out drinking & playing cards on a TDY, or watching a football game together instead of by oneself.....I think they understand a bit more.

Having to explain things to my coworkers, some of whom probably think I'm just goofing off on the Xbox I definitely didn't bring with me, made me think about this whole fun vs. work dichotomy.....maybe not initially, but like everyone else my mind wanders in weird ways. I was thinking of my GM being stuck in his own version of quarantine and how his involvement in this social activity that is a Role Playing Game is by essentially having to work as the GM.

Now don't get me wrong.....being a GM is, or can be, a fun job, but in many ways it is a job....it is work. There is usually a decent amount of prep work outside of the group gaming table before/after/during gaming sessions. Trying to make the game interesting and an appropriate challenge can be taxing......and that's something a GM is probably doing for/with friends.

The hapless GM working at a Game Convention? That can really crank up the "work" factor and has the potential to exponentially increase the "suck" factor. Now odds are, any given game session will go well and everybody will have fun, but there is still the wild card factor....and I've been to a LOT of game conventions and have had more than my fair share of wild cards.....but those are a story for another day and not something on my current train of thought.

No, what I'm thinking about, and hoping to plant the seed for, is an idea to make make the "work" for a convention GM a little more worthwhile, but let me bury the lead a bit further. Right now I'd say the average GM pays to attend a gaming convention and runs a session or three because they want to. Some conventions, especially the larger ones like Origins or GenCon, have the resources to "pay" GMs to run games, usually through a free badge or maybe part of a hotel room. As the organized play manager for a game company I've seen these "benefit packages" and while not insignificant, a GM usually has to run at least a game session (four hours) a day to get part of a room. Part of a room and a free badge, you're probably the con's bitch. If you don't have players show up to one of your games you could be screwed. Some GMs might be sponsored by a game company. For a few years I got a free badge from Kenzer & Company. At least once I was listed as one of the D-Team's kids, but whatever. At the end of the day, pretty much no matter how you figure it out, it ends up the GM is working/paying to attend the game convention and getting to play is difficult.

The idea I have here is far from an original one.....thanks to Kenzer & Company for the exposure: game companies, in conjunction with the game convention should organize a GM only game at the convention. I'll go so far as to filter the original idea a bit more and say that the GM has to be running at least a game session (maybe more) at the convention to qualify. Give a bit of fun reward to the GMs for paying to go work for part of a convention. Now I'd suggest that the game companies provide material support and maybe even the GMs, but also go ahead and let some of these gaming guys sit in and play as well. I will say that as a GM getting to run for, play under, or sit beside some of these game designers.....really just names on gaming products before, quickly became a highlight of the convention for me. 

My experience doing this with KenzerCo at Origins was a bit broader in that you pretty much just had to have GM credentials to qualify and it was just for the HackMaster GMs, but it got big enough I think we had six or seven tables easy at the one GM Game I wrote for. Yep, that was another year of writing, running at a con that cost me a couple grand....literally paying to work at a convention FT, but even then....that GM game was a ton of fun for me and made that con a much more positive experience, probably more so than any other thing. I didn't realize I had written in a joking insult to the all the assembled GMs that got huge laughs.......the on-going theme of this annual GM game was that it had to be a joke/parody/non-serious session....my game had a Saturday Morning Cartoon theme.

Anyway.....that was fun and I think all the GMs enjoyed it, but that is more an aside and just anecdotal to what I think could be a good addition to any gaming convention. There....I consider the bug in our collective ear planted. If you happen to be connected to a game convention (Bad Mike.....) or know of anyone who is (Erik.....) please mention this. Anything we do to make it a better value proposition for the average convention GM should, theoretically, "raise the tide" for all boats (players).  

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