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Highlights

News and other things from around the gaming world


GAMA Raze

The annual GAMA Trade Show was held in Las Vegas this March. Sandy Atunes provided a wrap up of the entire event on RPGNet, so we'll limit ourselves to just mentioning the high notes.

Wizards of the Coast released the results of their Industry Survey, a massive analysis of the real market forces underlying the hobby that every gamer will find interesting. Wizards also released more info about d20, their new gaming system. This system will form the basis for both the upcoming third edition of Dungeons and Dragons and the subsequent Star Wars RPG. Moreover, they intend to introduce an "open source" strategy for this system, allowing players to produce and pass on their own products for the game. This controversial move immediately prompted analysis on Salon and Slashdot. All eyes will be watching this one on its release in August.

The Year That Was

As the above indicates, we are living in very interesting times for gaming. To get the lowdown on all the big events in the hobby that happened in 1999, don't miss The Year in Review by Spencer Lease and Bill Walton. A great read, as is The Escapist, in which the article appears.

The Ultimate SF-Fantasy Web Site?

Gary Thompson and his colleagues have undertaken a massive task: to turn their site, www.ficiton-fantasy.net into the ultimate net resource for absolutely everything to do with science fiction or fantasy - including RPGs. And with the support he's already attracted, he may just do it. Interested? Check out the site, or mail Gary to find out more.

Report: Roleplaying Still Not Dead

Las Vegas, Nevada: Independent researches speaking at the GAMA Trade Fair last month shocked the gaming world with their announcement that the RPG hobby is still not dead.

"Despite over ten years of forecasts, predictions and outright threats of its certain demise, we can find no evidence of this death at this time" said head researcher Dr. John Fergurson to the stunned crowd. "What's more, we cannot find anything to make us think it will die any time soon. It's not even sick!"

Dr. Fergurson's team were hired two months ago by the GAMA staff to investigate the mysterious lack of death plaguing the hobby. Since 1992, predictions of the death of the industry have doubled each year, reaching crisis points in mid-1999, with the release of AEG's 7th Sea. Most industry observers had thus concluded that the end was not far away. But, says Fergurson, the facts just don't back this up.

"We double checked everything, but the hobby just is not dying like we thought. In fact, player numbers are going up and up. It doesn't make any sense. The best theory we have is that the death is just around the corner. If things continue to improve as they are, then the only logical conclusion is that very soon, it's all going to go down in flames"

News of the unprecedented continuing health of the hobby has caused shock waves throughout the hobby. Jason Briggs, who was attending the convention remarked: "I don't believe it. After all the horrible things that White Wolf have done to destroy this hobby, it just won't die. That's just adding insult to injury".

Fellow convention attendee Crystal Arroyho disagreed. "The blame for this can only rest on John Wick and the way his screwed-up ideas on game design have infected the industry. Somehow, he's perverted and twisted this hobby so much that the more he destroys it, the healthier it looks"

Industry observer Sandy Atunes commented on the long-term effects of the announcement: "This can only be bad news for the hobby. People will see this good bill of health as a sign that they can continue and increase their heartless, destructive marketing processes, and thus only speed up gaming's inevitable demise."

"Make no mistake", he concluded, "this clean bill of health will very likely spell the death of the entire RPG industry."

PTGPTB Around the World

PTGPTB has gone truly international with the launch of our French edition! This site is the official PTGPTB mirror site in France, and features full French translations of our articles. So far, only a small handful of translations have gone up, but more are constantly being added.

The work is being translated and produced by a very dedicated team of Parisian roleplayers, known as Regis, Antoine Dinimant and Saladdin. They've demonstrated a great understanding of PTGPTB's design principles, and we couldn't want for a better team to produce the site. Watch this space for more updates on the French version.

Meanwhile, The History of Gaming is now also marked to be translated into Dutch by the gaming society Ducosim. This will be the fourth language into which PTGPTB has been translated, so we really are developing an international presence. What's more, last issue, we were being accessed by readers in thirty seven countries world-wide. Hello to all our readers in Ecuador!

PTGPTB Featured on Gaming Outpost

For cross-promotional purposes, major gaming website The Gaming Outpost played host last month to Mark J. Young's article, The Source of Law. This article originally appeared in Issue Nine. Naturally, we're very pleased with this move, and welcome any new readers who may have discovered us through this promotion. We also encourage all our readers to check out Gaming Outpost if they haven't already - truly one of the premiere gaming sites on the web.


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