Community Focus: 2015 Review – 2016 Preview

It is important for me and for Opie Games to be a supporter of the table top gaming community and I am always looking for opportunities. In January 2015 I created a short list of goals for the year.

One day in late March 2015 after being away for weeks, we arrived at our Wyoming home to find water flowing out from under the front door. Our furnace had died, pipes froze and then thawed, and a portion of our house and entire heating system flooded. Thus my weekends for the next 6 months were consumed commuting 200+ miles to renovate the damaged part of the house. Once started, I felt the need to carry the changes through the rest of the house and am only completing the work a year later.

So my progress certainly was not what I had hoped, but let’s see how I did. My goals and some comments follow:

  • I will participate more with the gaming community face-to-face.
    • Result: Negative
    • I had signed on with Double Exposure’s Envoy program to demo and teach games at conventions, stores and game groups and hoped that the program would provide the framework and incentive to get out more and to connect with other avid gamers. There have been a few structured opportunities in 2015, but mostly it was left to me to create opportunities. Given my other obligations, this just hasn’t happened and I am not sure that it will in 2016 either. With no complaints about Envoy, this just may not be the right thing for me.
    • 2016: Continue toward the goal, but maybe not with the same approach.
  • I will provide more content and more interesting information to the community through the Opie Games website.
    • Result: Strong Negative
    • I was able to research a few articles that hopefully were interesting to the community, but my production was far from regular. The year started off strong, but as soon as we hit the house troubles, everything dropped off drastically. There were 5 months that I did not publish any articles, which is a disappointment.
    • I started several articles that were not completed. In several cases the topic was timely and others reported on it, so my contribution would have seemed hacked.
    • 2016: Publish articles more quickly. Focus will be on quality instead of quantity.
  • I will continue to offer my assistance in playtesting and rules editing when possible.
    • Result: Slight Negative
    • I was able to provide editing/proofreading for a few games, which was very satisfying.
    • I was only able to playtest for one game (Seafall) and, at that, only two times. The timeline for testing ended up being right in the heart of the immediate house renovation.
    • 2016: Continue toward the goal, but also be selective with opportunities.
  • I will continue to support podcasters and other contributors to the community financially and with attention through the Opie Games website and social media.
    • Result: Positive
    • I continued supporting On Board Games and Ludology through Patreon throughout 2015.
    • I have discontinued those to allocate that support to 2 others (of many) that I enjoy, but haven’t decided yet which.
    • 2016: Continue supporting podcasters in the industry.
  • I will continue to participate in social media related to table top gaming, but am not interested in expanding this involvement – it is consuming.
    • Result: Neutral
    • I “attended” Board Game Hour several Mondays, but not as many as I had planned. The time interferes with my work responsibilities often and sometimes the topic is not compelling enough to get me to commit. When I have participated, I have tried to be a productive contributor to the conversation. Sometimes I link to articles that I have written on the current topic. This may annoy some people – I don’t know – but if I have invested in an article on a topic, I figure it is better than anything I can say in 124 characters.
    • 2016: Continue at current level of participation.

On the whole it was not a great year for my contribution to the board game community. Let’s hope 2016 is more productive.