To date my involvement with Patreon has remained as a patron. It’s not only a wonderful means of receiving useful game content directly from creators I admire but a way for me to directly support their efforts with my admittedly small donations. As a creator myself, I like the format far better than the often frantic hype of Kickstarter campaigns. During the past year I’ve considered releasing one of my own gaming projects not as a massive game-setting sourcebook but as a series of small supplements on Patreon. While that project remains in development, I find inspiration in various Patreon creators who cater to my need for short yet satisfying resources for my OSR and B/X D&D gaming interests.
I’ve discussed my growing preference for concise game material before. My Patreon pledges support designers creating exactly the kind of useful game material I consider “short and sweet.” Most of these deliver complete little packages of encounters, locations, or scenarios perfect for dropping into existing fantasy roleplaying game campaigns or providing inspiration for creating one’s own resources. I’ve listed them below with their Patreon titles, which follow a sometimes awkward and not always entirely accurate formula.
|Cartography by Dyson Logos|
Simon Forster Is Creating Maps: While Simon makes many maps, his latest endeavors at his Patreon page focus on “A to Z” lairs. He’s already completed 26 in his wilderness lairs series (compiled in The Book of Lairs available through his RPGNow e-storefront or on Lulu); now he’s recently embarked on a similar exploration of lairs in urban settings. Like his wilderness lairs, he includes a digest-sized, full-color map with one page of keyed locations, rumors, background, and stats (for the Adventurer Conqueror King system [ACK], but easily ported to other OSR games). Each lair forms a location-based encounter, enough for a mini-scenario or a brief “save the town from monsters” scenario easily dropped into existing campaigns or settings. Some lairs contain well-known creatures, but others focus on oddities from the ACK game or Simon’s original monstrous creations. Most of his entries are “For Patrons Only,” but each one is a satisfying dose of new material to slip somewhere into one’s game.
Michael Prescott Is Creating Adventures: The title of Michael Prescott’s Patreon page doesn’t do his work justice. He isn’t simply creating adventures; he’s rendering amazing cutaway environments and populating them with intriguing scenario material...all in concise one- or two-page format. These are exotic locales filled with strange, original creatures and compelling backgrounds. The concise format doesn’t limit the content, but provides unusual encounter locations to easily fill a night’s adventuring. Even the titles evoke a sense of fantastic mystery: “In the Care of Bones,” “The Unmended Way,” “A Litany in Scratches,” and “The Full-Dark Stone” are just a few enticing examples. His amazing maps combine cartographic skill with artistic talent to create illustrations that truly give readers a visual sense of the setting. He manages to fit an astounding amount of material onto one or two pages. Although his offerings aren’t as frequent as others, they’re definitely worth the wait for their amazing visual game content. Whether or not you’re a Patreon supporter, you can get his fantastic map-scenarios for free from his Patreon site or his blog I'll See It When I Believe It.
If these resources in any way satisfy your need for original gaming material, sign up at Patreon and give these designers your financial support, however small. And if their material isn’t your cup of tea, wander through Patreon’s list of creators; the platform has nurtured a growing community of roleplaying game designers and artists producing fresh inspiration. I’m grateful to not only have a source of regular, concise, and useful game resources but to have the opportunity to directly support creators whose work I admire.
Have a favorite Patreon designer who creates short-and-sweet game material? Want to share your opinion? Start a civilized discussion? Share a link to this blog entry on Google+ and tag me (+Peter Schweighofer) to comment.