It was amazing to see so many designers of various games up at the con. I just wanted to share this message that Jim Sandoval, the guy who runs the RPG area in Strategicon, sent out a while back. Perhaps it is of interest to some of you:
Just thought I'd throw that out there. If you ever want to get in touch with him, he can be reached at plustentoawesome at gmail dot com.This is an open letter to Southern California players who attend or may wish to attend any Strategicon RPG events.
My name is Jim Sandoval and I am the new RPG coordinator at the Strategicon series of events in Los Angeles. I would like to take a moment of your time to reach out to those of you in this community that attend our conventions.
I have some new initiatives in mind to help this department grow and to offer new and exciting opportunities. I am not willing to rest on my laurels and simply continue with the status quo. You, as part of our great SoCal RPG community can be of great help to me in assuring the realization of these goals.
My current mission as RPG Supervisor is to create as broad an experience as possible for our attendees. In reality, I am an administrator. I have no control over the games that are offered here at Strategicon. I simply organize space and facilitate scheduling. I rely on peoples’ individual passions to govern what is played and I would not have that any other way. I feel that the best role I can take in pursuit of my mission is to become an educator.
At this point my goals are twofold.
1) Educate myself on indie publishers and work on building a relationship with the communities that support these games.
2) Create a resource at Strategicon that can be easily shared with attendees to give them an opportunity to discover new things.
As to my first goal, I am reaching out to you as a resource. I would love to hear from you about games that have interesting things to offer, but may not be generally available at your local FLGS (Friendly Local Game Store) or Barnes & Noble. Games that offer new and interesting mechanics, unique setting or any other elements you consider engaging. If you know of any resources, forums, Facebook, Google+ or web sites that indie developers or designers frequent, please forward me that information. Simply stated, please share with me any resources you think might help with getting to know about as many RPGs as possible. I will add these resources to the many others I already have to further educate myself and in turn pass along that information.
Once I have a reasonably large list of these kinds of games and have made myself known to the communities surrounding them I will move on to the second part of my plan. I want to build an RPG library. As many of you may already know, we have a large board games library where attendees can borrow games to play. This is a great resource at Strategicon that offers our attendees a great opportunity to either break into board gaming or increase their knowledge of games before they decide on how to spend their hard earned money.
Of course this template won’t exactly work for RPGs since they require a far greater level of preparation to play, but picking up a game to play in open gaming really isn’t my intent. My intent is to have a large block of game books that players can borrow to browse and assess. Each book will have an insert glued to the back side of the front cover that will give interested players all the information they need on where to purchase the game if they are interested. I will also open up an online forum for those who are interested in writing a review of the game that can easily be shared with our community; links to these resources will also be available on this insert. In this way I can encourage people who find something new and wonderful to perhaps offer up game play as a volunteer in one of our upcoming conventions.
The borrowing of these books will work similarly to our board games counterpart. Simply leave your ID and recover it when the book is returned.
Please contact me with any questions or comments on these ideas. I look forward to hearing from you.