Indie RPG Awards

Indie RPG Awards

Marshall Miller shared this privately but this is the Indie Game Reading Club so let’s talk about it!

Two PbtA games tied for first place: Night Witches and World Wide Wrestling. Have we hit peak PbtA yet? Should we talk about the “indie” in “Indie RPGs”? They’re both just terrific, can’t fault the judges.


Fall of Magic, legit. Great form factor and kind of … un-copy-able without everyone calling it a “Fall of Magic ripoff.” Betting we’ll see more “move a token and talk about this place” games from Ross, though.

The Warren: more PbtA. I haven’t played it yet! But it reads great and it’s just sitting there waiting. Maybe…hm, maybe I should add The Warren to my BigBadCon list.

Urban Shadows: ditto re PbtA, although it’s an awfully good iteration. I think lots of people have picked up on its long-play issues but that’s a good thing, yeah? Nothing wrong with the rooolz, and the big critical mass of players are going to uncover terrific Best Practices. Kind of wish this awards program gave out bonus points for community.

The last few are not known to me:

Downfall by Caroline Hobbs. I’ve seen it talked up! It’s sitting in my drivethrurpg wish list in fact.

Capes, Cowls and Villains Foul by Barak Blackburn. Dunno anything about it.

Sign by Hakan Seyalioglu, Kathryn Hymes. I think I saw a thing about this zing by. Dunno.

The Necklace by clash bowley. I got nuttin.

FAITH: the Sci-Fi RPG by Carlos Gomez, Mauricio Gomez, Helio de Grado. Now I have seen this. Amazing production values. Can’t really tell how the game plays at all but the vibe I got off it is that the production is the star of the show, not the design. Maybe I’m wrong!

0 thoughts on “Indie RPG Awards”

  1. Side note: Click through to check out the other categories: Fall of Magic gets best production, World Wide Wrestling gets best support, Sign gets best free game, and Fiasco Playset Anthology gets best supplement.

  2. I have Faith, and kinda-sorta ran it on Free RPG day, but that was also the first day I had possession of the game, so many rules were unread. It’s on my to do list to give it a real try this fall.

  3. I voted for Sign for first place both as game of the year and for innovation, despite how much I love NW, US, WWW, and Warren.

    My reasons were like:

    1) It’s a LARPy game, which is awesome.
    2) It’s an awesome LARPy game, which is more awesome.
    3) It’s innovative, about communications and influence and society in a way that few games ever approach.
    4) It is just absolutely fucking phenomenal as a work of design.

    I also really liked Downfall — it’s in the tradition of Kingdom, Microscope, and Questlandia. It’s a really good area of design, but, I think maybe not traddy enough for many people? Doesn’t promise long form?

    Anyway, there seems to me to be a magic formula in PtbA games in that they work pretty okay as one shots, but also promise (and mostly deliver) medium length games too, such that a lot of people see the potential magic combination of trad+storygame and love them to death.

  4. Night Witches is one of my favorite games. WWW is also really, really good – I kept having to stop reading to watch wrestling marches on YouTube… I’m going to try to get Fall of Magic going with my family and I’ve got Downfall next to my bed in my reading pile.

  5. Paul, I backed Downfall and love the game, but from what I know about your leanings is that it might not be your style? It’s closer to Microscope or Fiasco in feel.

  6. I very much enjoyed Downfall when my group played it. In fact that quote on the site is from my vote. The way you answer questions (“we deal with our dead by…”) and then make a symbol for each answer is a surprisingly fast and deep way of creating culture.

  7. I loved the world creation of Downfall, but it’s not the sort of theme I would go back to a lot. I do want to play a session that’s purely created; we used one of the pregen settings in the interest of time.

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