BookMachine | Ahead of the Curve: What RPG publishers have to teach the mainstream

BookMachine_logoIn light of the fantastic time I had at the UK Games Expo this weekend, I thought I’d give a shout out to all those gorgeous RPG publishers out there in this fortnight’s BookMachine article. It’s a pit-stop tour of a diverse and lovely niche in our industry, so please forgive any generalisations: I did my best with a little word count! Read the whole thing over on the BookMachine blog, or get started right here:

This weekend saw one of Britain’s largest annual meetings of leisure games enthusiasts at the 2015 UK Games Expo in Birmingham. Amongst the 14,000 attendees (up 20% from last year) were some were some of the most successful Roleplaying Game (RPG) publishers in the industry, showing that this niche, with its many curious quirks, has a lot to teach the mainstream about publishing in the digital age.

What are RPGs?

There are many different kinds of RPG, but the ones which concern us here are tabletop and live action RPGs. In these games, players get together and take on characters, acting them out within a narrative lead by the Game Master (GM), who guides the party on adventures through their chosen setting. Games take place in sessions and can be one-offs or ongoing sagas.

These games can be acted out more or less elaborately, but each one operates under its own set of rules, dictated by the game’s rulebook. These systems of rules help decide what actions the characters can and cannot take, how they progress and develop over time, and how the setting responds to them. RPG rulebooks also usually describe the universe of the game, providing a sandbox for the players to create their own stories in.

Though market for RPGs is growing, it at least for now it remains niche. That, combined with some of the unique characteristics of the gaming community, has kept RPG publishers ahead of curve in several ways. [READ MORE]