The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread
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Post Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 4:06 am 
 

Maybe because the Wild West has never attracted any quality writers.
It appears as though its a lack of imagination in that space, over a lack of possibilities.
Of course if only 1 in 100 players ever venture into Wild West RPGs, then only 1 in 100 writers are likely ever to think of writing in that space, and the return on investment of your time as a writer is only 1% of what you could earn putting in the same effort with a Fantasy of Scifi RPG. So that kills it for writers, and artists have the same problem. Have you ever seen a Wild West RPG with anything close to professional level artwork?
So you're left with trusting fans to produce and distribute their own work, and they are few and far between when compared to Fantasy or Scifi fans, and they are fans and not writers for a reason, and that is reflected in the quality of their work.

As collectables this makes for a good niche corner to collect in, but one with little value or appreciation. You still get the enjoyment of discovery and accomplishment, researching, hunting and completing a collection.


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Post Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 4:20 am 
 

I see your point but we wouldn't have played that. I'm not meaning to unload on anyone (pun intended), I have significant Indian heritage and that would have been more of, at least, my game. The person that taught me to play D&D had similar (conquistador) family background. We would have made a game very different from its sources just like we did with D&D.
The old west has everything D&D has if you use everything including Chinese and many other culture's mythologies that flocked to this country during that time period. It would have been bad guy of the week for a little while, but it wouldn't have been long.

  

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Post Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 4:34 am 
 

mbassoc2003 wrote in The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread:Maybe because the Wild West has never attracted any quality writers.


I think you make a great point there.

Think you can insert that too into why whole industries don't cater to fan interest when fans will surely cough up their money as fast as anyone else.
It's been thrown around a lot on here about a "great" D&D movie being made. I don't think it would happen ever, not the way some on here might want it. No one with the talent to make a great movie is going to put up with a fan base potentially requiring them to "tell the story the way fans want it to be told." I say great in that it could potentially win an Academy Award or the like. Because the most qualified people making a movie would be more likely to bring the Gygax version of "The Social Network" than what most on here would want to see.
Maybe I'm just spitballin' here a little. It is a truly great story that could be twisted around into something almost unrecognizable to those that know it best. Unfortunately, that what gets sold to millions of consumers. That's what makes a great movie also.

  

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Post Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 6:44 am 
 

Mister Yuk wrote in The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread:Think you can insert that too into why whole industries don't cater to fan interest when fans will surely cough up their money as fast as anyone else.

I think if there was sufficient money in the hands of 'fans' and they would give it up readily for a product, and that product would then return a profit that justified the investment of time and effort and resources, then those products would exist. It is not the case that there is a lack of imagination in the industry, nor that there is a lack of desire by people to make money serving the industry.

What there is is a lack of fans willing to pay for quality writing.

Taking the D&D Movie analogy as an example... The movies that are produced are not produced by people who are invested in portraying any specific 'image' of the D&D genre or fans perceptions of the game (all of which are individual and particular to that individual's own experiences of the game.) They are produced by people who are invested in return on capital and maximising bums on seats in cinemas. Making a niche film to pander to RPG gamers cannot possible succeed over making a generic action movie with a splattering of the fantastical. The new Dune move may well be a great success (I hope it is), but if it is, it is because the money was invested and the decisions were made, not based upon the strength of the fantasy genre, but based upon the strength of a single individual author and his vision and portrayal of a single world. The same goes for JRR Tolkien or George RR Martin. There does not exist a single image of the D&D world created by anyone of talent that can be called upon to epitomise Dungeons & Dragons. We all live in our own fantasy bubbles and then complain because someone we've never met cannot portray that with any accuracy or success, or because we cannot accept that someone else's portrayal of their generic D&D world is so dissimilar and inferior to the ones we have adventured in our heads.

I can guarantee that my perception of what makes for a good expedition, what makes a good plot, and what exploring a dungeon should feel like for the adventurers, is dramatically different to everyone else's. My perception of D&D is no more or less valid than anyone else's. That means I am less likely to agree on what makes a good D&D movie with any random other D&D player, than I am to agree on what makes a good Dune or Middle Earth movie.

Back to the Wild West genre... no one will write for it because no one is willing to buy it. If there were a million copies to be sold of a successful scenario, it would be worked upon and written. When there are likely less than maybe 100 games being played in the US, and probably less than 10% of those are ongoing campaigns, then for a writer who wants to make a living and has the talent to do so, they are wasting their time trying to pander to maybe 10 buyers and possibly 100 over the lifetime of the product. And if fans really cared about the quality of the Wild West genre, let's face it, they would put the time and effort into building it themselves, the same way the OSR was built. The fact that they didn't and won't tells you all you need to know about the genre and the fanbase.

Again, that makes for good collectables. But not for valuable collectables.


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Post Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 9:02 am 
 

Mister Yuk wrote in The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread:I see your point but we wouldn't have played that. I'm not meaning to unload on anyone (pun intended), I have significant Indian heritage and that would have been more of, at least, my game. The person that taught me to play D&D had similar (conquistador) family background. We would have made a game very different from its sources just like we did with D&D.
The old west has everything D&D has if you use everything including Chinese and many other culture's mythologies that flocked to this country during that time period. It would have been bad guy of the week for a little while, but it wouldn't have been long.


I wasn't trying to offend, just pointing out the most common tropes.  Obviously other races and cultures played a role in the Wild West, and they would contribute to such a game, but still the game would boil down to shoot-outs,  middle of the street duels, racial clashes over territory/treasure, good guys with guns vs bad guys with guns.

  

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Post Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 9:26 am 
 

ZardokhasSpoken wrote in The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread:I wasn't trying to offend, just pointing out the most common tropes.  Obviously other races and cultures played a role in the Wild West, and they would contribute to such a game, but still the game would boil down to shoot-outs,  middle of the street duels, racial clashes over territory/treasure, good guys with guns vs bad guys with guns.

Yep. Non-US citizens have different views on the wild west from that portrayed in the US. We have fewer references to the cultural tropes portrayed by US society. We have no historical links to that culture, and no reference to it in our education system. Likewise, I find many in the US have a somewhat detached and romantic notion of historic Europe, and I suspect fewer references to it in their education system. Wild West is inevitably a US centric RPG genre, and one in which many would tend towards playing the tropes they had been raised to believe were relevant. The idea of exploring political power, economic struggle, murder mystery, or gothic horror for example is not something the majority are willing to consider Wild West roleplaying. Of course if those are explored they expand the game, but also pull it into the orbit of other games like Cthulhu, and whilst you may be able to sell Wild West Cthulhu to the Cthulhu crowd, they aren't buying it because it is Wild West, but because it is horror, the same way a D&D player will buy an expedition into an Egyptian tomb, not because it is Egyptian, but because it is D&D.

What the Wild West genre needs is fans who care, and are willing to work at improving the game. Without those, they do not deserve, nor will ever get, investment from the talents in the RPG space, and the publishers who influence them.


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Post Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 10:48 am 
 

ZardokhasSpoken wrote in The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread:I wasn't trying to offend, just pointing out the most common tropes.  Obviously other races and cultures played a role in the Wild West, and they would contribute to such a game, but still the game would boil down to shoot-outs,  middle of the street duels, racial clashes over territory/treasure, good guys with guns vs bad guys with guns.


One trope that is often over-looked, and surprised me the first time I heard it, is that about one-fourth of all cowboys were black/African American.   You certainly don't get that impression from most wild west movies. 8)


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Post Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 12:10 pm 
 

benjoshua wrote in The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread:
One trope that is often over-looked, and surprised me the first time I heard it, is that about one-fourth of all cowboys were black/African American.   You certainly don't get that impression from most wild west movies. 8)

Yep, and who'd have though so many Caucasians were hanging around the Middle East in biblical times. So many in fact you couldn't see the locals if 2K years of recorded history is to be believed.


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Post Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 2:59 pm 
 

benjoshua wrote in The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread:
One trope that is often over-looked, and surprised me the first time I heard it, is that about one-fourth of all cowboys were black/African American.   You certainly don't get that impression from most wild west movies. 8)


I was watching a comedian the other day and he said at one point that he was from Wyoming. Then "bet you all didn't expect a brother to say that". Seemed completely plausible to me because those tropes were identified and corrected pretty much every time I watched TV until I got to a certain age. Didn't get me on my Johnny Socko & Ultraman, it was on too early in the morning lol. I watched an Ultraman the other day, wow that was violent even for the time.
I was writing this mbassoc2003 when you posted - you're spot on too.

Getting back to it though. I don't think some of my friends and I were so different from anyone else but we were made aware of our Heritage very early on. Also knew that most other people didn't know anything except the garbage that they've been spoon fed all their lives just so they could feel entertained. Several times a year I went to a place to know how my indigenous ancestors lived. You think your game collection is out of control. That dude had 1600 years of history piled up everywhere in that place. This wasn't some old man collector, my Uncle was fluent in three indigenous languages, over thirty dialects and spent his entire life educating the ignorant. When he passed, the important things he had went back to the Tribes, the rest went to Museums.
To quickly finish because most of this probably didn't need to be disclosed about me to make a point. I don't remember if he cared if I knew any Chief's name ever, but he wanted me to know absolutely how we lived and what we cared about.
That mentality was prevalent in my group of friends, that's why I don't think we were different than most anyone else. But the D&D Group we eventually would become a part of, I've never heard of anyone's experience playing at that time being anything like our Group. I've not talked about it much here because I don't want to end up upsetting anyone on something so unimportant.
This shouldn't bother anyone though to give you an idea. We infrequently had big tourney style games at our school and a few adults took off work or college, got permission to attend and played with us. Never as a DM though, strictly as PCs only. I only received an invite once and during that game was allowed to do only one action with my PC. Sounds pretty confusing doesn't it and not much fun (at least for me), might also sound like we had a pretty good game going at times.
I didn't expect to get such great replies to my comment but I'm glad I did. With the D&D Movie, I was referring to a TSR or Gygax/Arneson Movie that had been discussed a while back. I'm to blame for that confusion.
I think a lot of great points were made about the other. I keep thinking though. Isn't everything we have now - youtube, celebs, kids playing d&d in a TV show, in a couple of shows. There's stuff we aren't even aware of that going on the the 5th ed players. Isn't that enough?
We expect others to do something for us, but constantly I see kids and young adults get their voices out there about things they care about using technology. If we aren't going to do the same for ourselves, why should anyone else do it?

  

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Post Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 3:14 pm 
 

Two examples to go the movie route.

Want an action movie? This guy made one for $7K.

El Mariachi (1993) - Rotten Tomatoes

Want a funny, action-y romp. This was made for $40K

Coyote (2007) - Rotten Tomatoes

It's not that hard anymore.

  

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Post Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 3:29 pm 
 

mbassoc2003 wrote in The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread: The idea of exploring political power, economic struggle, murder mystery, or gothic horror for example is not something the majority are willing to consider Wild West roleplaying. Of course if those are explored they expand the game, but also pull it into the orbit of other games like Cthulhu, and whilst you may be able to sell Wild West Cthulhu to the Cthulhu crowd, they aren't buying it because it is Wild West, but because it is horror, the same way a D&D player will buy an expedition into an Egyptian tomb, not because it is Egyptian, but because it is D&D.

What the Wild West genre needs is fans who care, and are willing to work at improving the game. Without those, they do not deserve, nor will ever get, investment from the talents in the RPG space, and the publishers who influence them.


I skimmed over this part earlier and didn't make a remark. I do want to say that you've stated this very well imo

  


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Post Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2020 11:01 pm 
 

Mister Yuk wrote in The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread: during that game was allowed to do only one action with my PC.


Of all the things that turn people away from D&D, that happens far too often.


Mister Yuk wrote in The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread:Want an action movie? This guy made one for $7K.

El Mariachi (1993) - Rotten Tomatoes


More-or-less true, but after it was picked up by the film industry it was given at least $100K of technical makeovers (sound & editing), plus all the money spent on promotion & distribution.

  

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Post Posted: Sun Dec 20, 2020 3:17 pm 
 

sauromatian wrote in The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread:
Of all the things that turn people away from D&D, that happens far too often.


I brought that up because that's just one thing that was different (or maybe I'm different). It was an honor for me to just sit at the top table in the group and be in the adventure as it unfolded. It was summarized and told of the next day at morning meetup, but I got to personally witness it instead of being at the least tables those few days. Playing D&D was a very small part of why it was important for more than a few of us to be together a lot.
But my local experience doesn't seem to match up with you all either.
No satanic panic - biggest area church, lead Elder was an owner of the local Wargamer's Supply (Epic Gallery). It was just a game for smart kids. At the time it was all defense industry and engineers around me. Wargaming was huge here, I think bigger than D&D, at least more people played it than D&D. Any adult p'd/u a problem w/ D&D off tv or a chick tract, they got straightened out quick.
The Group itself was created by a 16 year old girl and a young female teacher, that supposedly was a OD&D-playing force at her college. The Group's real purpose was to combat all of the school-sanctioned bullying of us.  I added a lot more to this but it's probably better that I deleted it.
We played as an organization. A lot of problems the group had stemmed from the game itself or the attitudes of people playing it at the time. It was almost impossible to keep group members playing D&D depending on what was said in Dragon Magazine that month. I know people here have a different experience with that. You didn't try to play Basic or 1E always trying to be fair to the 30 or so girls playing with you. Most of which played a lot more and a lot longer than the boys in the group. I've been trying to track down photos of stuff. Keep thinking it would be a good idea that new gamers heard about us, I don't know. It lasted two years if I remember correctly, then the teacher was threatened with firing and we had to disband.

Mister Yuk wrote in The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread:Want an action movie? This guy made one for $7K.


sauromatian wrote in The Non-TSR Recent Fun Finds thread: More-or-less true, but after it was picked up by the film industry it was given at least $100K of technical makeovers (sound & editing), plus all the money spent on promotion & distribution.


Excellent point, and I have been tricked by that evil industry once again, curses to them!

Rodriguez's commentary is still a must listen How-To on cheapo film making. The other movie had similar commentary. It's better than it reviews. The subject matter picks up a lot of downvotes.

I keep thinking, if someone tries something. Even if it's low budget or not typical. Do a good job, and money can get interested. I live in a state with 10,000 caves and old abandoned stone structures here and there. Some interesting stuff gets dumped when you go out to rural areas. Stuff made for people that had disabilities and such. A lot of weird stuff around here that's super old, just have to know where it is.
Skill, creativity, willingness to see something though.

  
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