Monday, February 11, 2019

Another Anniversary: 8 Years of Blogging

Another year has rolled around, and today marks my 8th year of blogging here at Daddy Rolled a 1. The short version, as always, is that I didn't blog as much as I set out to, but for the first year in the past five years, I posted more times than I did the previous year. That alone is a small accomplishment for me, although the downside is that I haven't posted since August 2018. The same old reasons apply: work, childcare, and general fatigue. I don't see those things changing any time until my daughter grows up and moves out of the house (or at least gets her driver's license and can drive herself to her own activities and also cook her own meals and buy her own clothes and school supplies; on the plus side, she was home from school today for Lincoln's Birthday and decided to make chocolate cupcakes with peppermint frosting from scratch, which I did not realize until I came out of my office to ask he what all of the banging around was in the kitchen).

Over the past year, I did blog a few new things, including my first ever character class for the B/X System (and its associated Retro-Clones), and a discussion about my failed 1st Edition game (after I posted my last post, we never played that particular game again). I created a fun infographic about my hardback game book collection, that a few people commented on, whether here on the blog, on the soon-to-be-dead Google Plus, or on Twitter, and a few reviews (one for an obscure late 1970's post-apocalyptic movie, one for a fantasy-Africa gaming supplement, and one on a few new comics I'm reading). I also posted some more of my old campaign notes and maps, which is something I've done from time to time here on my blog over the years as a way to document the changes in my campaign from "theory" to actual application as a backdrop for an actual game.

Outside of blogging, my geek activities have continued along. I attended my first non-U.S. convention this year by meeting my friends Cal and Terry in Vancouver for "Shut Up and Sit Down," which I will say is my favorite game convention I've attended so far (although my experience is rather small, being limited to several different Strategicon Conventions here in the Los Angeles area, and one in Seattle, until I went to Vancouver). We only played board games at this past convention, but I do enjoy those as well as role-playing.

In other gaming news, while running my World of Samoth game has slowed down more than I would like, I continue to play in a monthly Cthulhu role-playing game, which has been running on and off since 2007 using the same characters but different systems (we're currently using the Realms of Cthulhu supplement for Savage Worlds). Someone recently commented to me that he had never heard of a Chutlhu RPG lasting longer than a few sessions because the players get depressed about the ultimate hopelessness of the game. I mentioned that, for me, playing a Cthulhu RPG is more about exploring the milieu than it is about focusing on your character advancing and getting better over time, and we both then agreed that the main emphasis for a Cthulhu RPG is on the skill of the games master (as well as the time commitment to make the setting as detailed and engaging as possible, which is something I've blogged about before). I'm curious to hear other peoples' thoughts, as this particular game is my only exposure to a Cthulhu RPG.

I also was honored once again with being selected as a judge for the One Page Dungeon Contest in 2018, which is something I really enjoy, and which I'm always excited to be asked to participate. It's so difficult to articulate how much I always appreciate being asked to be a judge for this contest, how it inspires me, and validates my love of the hobby.

My daughter and I also continue to make weekly trips to our local comic book store, and I am still writing reviews for There are a lot of great fantasy comics out there right now for those who are interested in something outside of the superhero genre. In particular, I can whole-heartedly recommend Coda and Isola (the art alone in Isola is enough to get a recommendation, but the story is also fantastic).

On the TV and movie front, I'm sadly really behind, although my wife and I do try to see the big "tentpole" movies every year, especially if isn't something we can take our nine year-old daughter to (she goes to all the Marvel and Star Wars movies with us). I have a bunch of "Star Wars: Resistance" recorded to watch later, and I am completely caught up on "Game of Thrones" and the third season of "Young Justice," but I haven't watched any of the second season of "Star Trek: Discovery" (although I did enjoy the first season quite a bit). I have really been liking "Black Lightning" on CW, but my wife and I are 6-7 episodes behind on all of the other CW DC shows ("Supergirl," "Flash," "Green Arrow," and "Legends of Tomorrow").

In the coming year, my goal is to try to blog at least once a month. That pales in comparison to most of the blogs I follow that are updated usually daily, or at least a few times a week, but it's what I currently have time for given my work and family commitments. I still continue to work on a big RPG supplement project that I've been working on for a few years, and for which I need to figure out a way to get some illustrations and maps and get it illustrated.

Thanks for reading. And, with that, here are the stats for this past year, with a comparison to the previous year. Cheers!

  • Page Views: 5,853 versus 5,445, up +7.5%
    • I think this might be due to my concentration of more blog posts in the first eight months of the year versus the year prior
  • Unique Page Views: 5,198 versus 4,856, up +7.0%
  • Average Pages Per Session: 1.48 versus 1.54, down -3.6%
  • Average Time on Page: 02:13 versus 2:21, down -5.3%
  • Bounce Rate: 80.16% versus 81.78%, down -2.0%
  • New Users Percent: 92.5%, the same percentage as the previous year
  • New Users Total: 3,338 versus 2,758 up +21.0%
  • Location: 56% of my readers are from the U.S., 8% from France, 6% from Canada, 5% from the U.K., 2% each from Australia and Brazil, and 1% each from German, Japan, Iraq, and Italy. It never occurred to me before, but now I wonder if at least some of those numbers are from the military service? 
  • Device: 66% Desktop (up, percentage-wise, from last year), 28% mobile (down percentage-wise), and 6% Tablet (down, percentage-wise). 

The most popular posts from all time are a mixed-bag, including one of my comic posts from this past year:

Hanging: Congregation Ale House, Pasadena Chapter (while my daughter is at ballet lessons down the street)
Listening: A live version of "Gimme Shelter" by the Rolling Stones was playing on the loudspeakers as I finished typing this
Drinking: Epic Brewing Company "Hopulent" Double IPA, on Nitro


  1. Tell Joy I would LOVE one of her cupcakes. Enjoyed reading this boog. Well done.

    1. Thanks! I was actually wondering who commented. Her cupcakes look pretty good, but she ran out of frosting so only 9 out of 12 are frosted, and there is also red coloring all over the kitchen counter, island, two rubber scrapers, the sink, several bowls, and her shirt.

  2. Happy blog-birthday!

    For me, Cthulhu games feel more heroic than high fantasy rpgs, or even superhero games, because the characters are so unprepared for what they face. In most of these games they are librarians and doctors; you may get a police officer or a WWI veteran now and then, but for the most part they are normal people facing the most abnormal horrors and still attempting to defeat them, or at least survive.

    I can see how that would come across as depressing and nihilistic, but I don't feel that. Even when things go wrong and a character goes mad, or gets knifed by cultists, or eaten by an alien god, there's an element of black humour to it.

    I find that a lot of people have an impression of Call of Cthulhu -- and related games -- without having played it; there's a general idea that it doesn't suit campaign play, and that everyone dies all the time, and I think that gets accepted without question.

    CoC works well for one-shots, but I've also run successful campaigns, so I think like most games, it's what you make of it.

    Anyway, congratulations on eight years!

    1. Thank you! I've quite enjoyed our long-running game (although to be fair, we have taken quite a few hiatus periods, some lasting as long as a few years, while we're run something else, because the Cthulhu GM was too busy at work to prep for the game), and I have never found it depressing at all.

      I do like the idea of us all being "regular" people instead of trained adventurers, and getting into the role-playing aspect of trying to think how you would really react to be exposed to the things that our team sees (crazed cultists, zombies, dark magic, etc.). That part is a lot of fun, although I do feel that our particular group sometimes resorts too quickly to a typical D&D mentality of "shoot first, ask questions later." We've had long talks about how our actions, in the "real world," would have run us afoul of the local constabulary way more often than we do.

    2. Yes, "normal person" becomes "desperate criminal" quite quickly in Cthulhu gaming!

  3. Congrats! Woohoo! February Anniversary Buddies!

    1. I discovered your blog right after I found Grognardia and went down this rabbit-hole of OSR type gaming blogs! I had no idea that your blog anniversary is the same as mine! You were more subtle with your post, though. :)


  4. Happy (belated) anniversary, Martin! Glad to see you're keeping the blog alive. :)

    To be honest, I've never played an extended CoC campaign. Lots of one-shots, yes, and one mini-campaign (around six or seven game sessions), but I agree w/ Kelvin Green - the game is what you make it. It doesn't have to be completely nihilistic. The mini-campaign games we've played have all been about historical immersion, personal horror, and dark humor more than world-ending doom. Our approach has led to some amazing play sessions (and players getting so involved that they - not their characters - needed to make SAN checks). I've also heard of some groups turning it into a game of monster hunting adventure. ("Shooting deep ones in the face," I've heard one person call it.) I think the key is to discuss the game with the group beforehand and determine the approach that best fits. That way everybody knows what to expect and no one's disappointed when they don't end up shooting deep ones in the face. (Which is what happened w/ the player I heard that from, his disappointment shared by another player and leading ultimately to the demise of that campaign.)

    Keep on bloggin'!

    1. Thanks, Christopher!

      Our group had a little trouble transitioning from the "shoot the monsters in the face" mentality, as we had come right out of a 3.5 Edition D&D game, and the only person in the group who had played Cthulhu before was the GM, and on top of all of that, we were using the D20 Cthulhu rules (which the GM picked because he knew the group was familiar with the rules). So, there was a lot of "min-maxing" with characters going on, etc. That faded quickly, and then we shortly transitioned to Savage Worlds, which, despite its claim of being all about action, has been better suited to the campaign. We tend to run a lot more, now. :)



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