A new rpg blog

23 August, 2015 at 2:59 pm (meta)


This one is old and feels cluttered. Rather than try resurrecting this I decided to start a new rpg blog. Some content is in Finnish. There’s not much yet.

There is a hidden sidebar with RSS feeds and a blogroll.

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18 May, 2009 at 4:54 pm (meta) ()

I’m on Facebook. The user interface is very, very bad. Few questions:

Can I add my shared Google reader entries to my profile? What about my blog posts, their titles or something similar? Stumbled things?

Also, if I happen to know you, feel free to add me as a friend. If we have had a discussions via blogs or other means it is quite sufficient for me adding you as a friend.


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Why WordPress?

17 May, 2009 at 2:15 pm (meta) (, , , , , , , , , )

Before starting this blog I investigated the different options there are. Particularly the big three: Blogspot, Livejournal and WordPress. Which one I came to prefer should be obvious. Here’s some reasons, as I know that a few rpg bloggers read my site every now and then. Actually, here are the reasons why I do not use LJ or blogger/blogspot, and consequently the option I ended with was WordPress.


Livejournal is a huge mess. It  lacks an RSS feed for comments. Hence, it is very difficult to follow discussions. Further, the comment threads tend to collapse due to nested comments and hence become difficult to read; always necessary to expand that or this comment and hope you expanded the right one.

I would not want any readers I might get to experience that nightmare. Hence, no LJ.

Blogspot and blogger

Google does offer comment feeds (though they tend to be well hidden), which is good. On some themes the comments are separated to a separate comment page, which is frankly idiotic as it separates the discussion. Likewise the necessity of opening a new page to write a comment; not smart. There is also the annoyance of not being able to use blockquotes when commenting, but I don’t think I was aware of that when starting blogging.

In addition there’s the CAPTCHA, which means the distorted texts that one is supposed to understand when posting. They have the problem of being terribly annoying. The problem is further aggravated by the fact that when using OpenID I must suffer through the trouble twice, as the first time I enter the CAPTCHA it is not accepted. Very annoying. This, again, was not a problem when I first started blogging.

Why not simply use Google account when commenting? The primarily problem is that those comments are difficult to trace back to my blog. I’d have to write some signature, which looks and feels spammy, or hope people check out my Google profile and deduce my blog from it. More importantly, I want to know the blogs or website of any who comment on my website.

In summary: Commenting on Blogspot/Blogger is very inconvenient and finding out where the comments come from is also slow, as opposed to automatic on WordPress blogs, where you just click the link that is the commenter’s handle. It can be to a blog or static website or whatever else.

Truncated feeds

Now that I’m ranting…

I’m not certain of the correct term here, but I mean those feeds that don’t show entire posts, only the first sentence or two or a hand-crafted summary. They are a pain. They force me to open a new tab and read that. Further, I must either wait for the page to load or read other stuff while waiting (which I prefer). Problem: I must keep the article unread in the case of it being of good quality so that I would want to share or star it (in Google reader). Or sometimes I won’t bother, but will rather just read on and forget sharing the truncated stuff. So: Truncated feed is not user-friendly and further might cost you a reader or two. When it is time to prune feeds, those that truncate their content are high on the list of candidates.

By the way: If my blog has truncated feeds, now is exactly the right moment to share the information. I’ll fix it. The feed is supposed to contain entire posts.

I am not exactly sure why people do use truncated feeds. A perversive desire to annoy people? Not likely. Maybe they want people to enter their website? That seems more likely. Maybe there are ads there? Personally, Adblock takes care of those. If I like you and your site, I might turn Adblock off there, but there’s little hope of that as long as I must open pointless tabs to read the posts of yours. Sorry. Want me to read more posts of yours? You might sometimes succeed, but links to former posts are at least as effective a tool and they don’t cause frustration.

If you want me to read your website and whatever goodies are there, here’s an excellent way of accomplishing it: Write a post that I will want to respond to. Also write a post that I will want to link to; that way, the three readers I have are likely to check out what you have there. More importantly, I or my readers will arrive to your website with curiosity or interest, not annoyance.

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Personal blog

31 March, 2009 at 9:06 pm (meta)

I started a new blog for more personal and political material. Most of the entries will be in Finnish, but there is a specific category for English posts. I might summarise the Finnish ones every now and then. Or maybe not. Time will tell. It can be found here: http://tommibrander.wordpress.com/. (I am oh so very imaginative with blog urls.)

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Blogroll cleaned

1 March, 2009 at 6:06 pm (meta)

I finally got around to cleaning my blogroll. Now there are less dead links, less dead blogs (though I purposefully left some there, if they have good content) and more currently active and interesting blogs. There’ll probably be minor additions in the near future.

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13 February, 2009 at 11:12 pm (meta) (, )

I’m on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/tommibrander .

It is not very interesting place for an undergraduate student with barely any relevant work experience. Oh well.

If some reader happens to be using the service and we have had a discussion longer than few comments sometimes, I’d be glad to have that reader as a connection. (Chat discussions count.) There is also an rpg bloggers group and a couple of other groups for roleplayers.

Should some inquisitive reader be unfamiliar with LinkedIn, the main point of the site is to act as a networking tool. People can search for people with desired profession, experience or training, and possibly get introduced by a connection, which adds credibility to the introduction. And wasting one’s time is harder there than it is on Facebook and the like.

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6 November, 2008 at 5:59 pm (meta) (, , , , , )

I’ve been somewhat busy due to university and visiting my parents for (now third) consecutive weekend. I make no promises, but more posts are possible in the near future.

1. Reynard’s blog on Enworld has material on sandbox play and random encounters. Of especial notice is this post. Unfortunately the RSS feed does not seem to be working.

2. Jonathan‘s rpg blog anthology project. If the project works, more people will be able to read the ramblings of random rpg bloggers. If it does not, J will hopefully still list the nominated blog posts or some best-of summary, so it will still be a way to find good posts. Contributing takes little time and gives you an excuse to re-read a few good posts, if you are so inclined.

The following are links to my own projects. So, not much to see, unless you are especially interested in my projects. Both the wikis have an RSS feed available. There is a page about wikis, including a link to Abulafia, which you should use.

3. Wiki of persistent fantasy rpg / In a Wicked Age clone / my default no-prep game.

4. Wiki of the dungeoncrawling rpg I have GM’d a few session of, and have been developing during my free time. Rules update is the most relevant page there. In the unlikely case of some reader wanting to contribute, ask via email, blog or the option in the wiki.

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A campaign wiki

4 September, 2008 at 8:49 pm (meta, persistent fantasy) (, )

Worlds generated in play have a particular feature; they tend to be chaotic and beautifully interlinked at the same time. A page on this blog is hardly sufficient to host such a creation. Hence, I want to use a wiki.

Some options:

  • Obsidian portal is basically a wiki, or something close to it. It has some unnecessary focus on players and the control of characters, which might prove annoying, and further all sorts of unnecessary rating systems. I could write the setting there, but there are extra features and actively bad aspects. (My game has been played by a total of thirteen people thus far; no way I could track all of them, and getting more than four or so to register would be likewise difficult.)
  • GMspaces as hosted by the stumbler Streetline, who was gracious enough to give me a link. Gmspaces sporadically works for me (might be better if you live on the other side of the big oceans) and has unnecessary emphasis on GM keeping stuff hidden from players and planning adventures and that sort of stuff that is not of interest to me right now, if ever.
  • Campaignwiki is the most attractive option right now, though I need to investigate it a bit more before making anything resembling a decision.
  • Campaign builders’ guide also has a wiki. It would work as well as any other wiki anywhere, basically.
  • Or, I could find some site that hosts a free wiki and use it. There are sites that host free forums, so I doubt a free wiki is hard to find.

So, any suggestions?

I should have a reader or two. Does anyone know any good sites for hosting a campaign wiki or have actual experience with the aforementioned sites? It would contain characters, setting info, a few instances of maps and other scanned stuff, and links to AP reports on this blog. It would be preferable if people could edit it without registering and if there was little spam there. (Combining these two is not trivial, but is possible.)

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Political leanings

29 August, 2008 at 9:17 am (meta) (, , )

I doubt there will be many political posts in this blog. This has nothing to do with presidental election in a country far, far away, for the record.

I will, in the next election where it is possible, vote for the Pirate party. I am also a member, as of today. This is not because I practice a lot of file sharing or such. I do not. I probably would if it were legal.

I vote for the pirate party because they are likely understand internet. Others try to control it.

I vote for the piraty party because I want there to be more free stuff available by legal means. (Honesty is a good thing.)

I vote for the pirate party because I am disillusioned with the other parties; consensus-based politics and them not helping the poor are big factors in this.

I vote for the pirate party because I am scared; there is internet censorship in Finland, supposedly of child pornography, but in reality of diverse subjects. Surveillance is becoming more and more widespread and accepted (by the law). These are not good developments.

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Help me buy something

21 June, 2008 at 9:48 pm (meta)

Phil held a contest. I won. Now I have 15 dollars to kill in DriveThruRPG. Current wishlist: http://rpg.drivethrustuff.com/wishlist_public.php?public_id=169703, which is a list of things I might spend this virtual money on.

I’m taking further recommendations. Also, if something there sucks, tell it. For something to be interesting it needs to cost at most 15$, in addition to being interesting. New game systems are interesting if they are

  1. Fantasy games that do something in different and interesting ways.
  2. Generic games that are very clever.
  3. Other games that are extremely clever, to the point of being famous for it, which means that I have heard of them (and decided to not use any virtual money on them, as likely as not).

Other stuff should be as system-neutral as possible. The following are interesting:

  • Theory, game mastering and so on.
  • Worldbuilding that is about building a world to be good for gaming, not only realistic/genre-appropriate.
  • Interesting in some other way I can’t name right now. Good luck finding one of these.

In other news

I have two AP reports to write, which will not happen because I am lazy and have other things to do (like playing some Warlords Battlecry 3 for a change and travelling around and occasionally work).

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