Robert Lundgren

IMG-3199

Online Nicknames
Griss-The-Gnome

Introduction and Platform

Hello there my name is Robert Lundgren, and I am submitting my nomination for Ennie judge. I run a small podcast called Forgot My Dice, which is supposed to be about talking about games, but usually is about my co-host and myself picking on each other. Currently I am a stay at home Dad to twins, and believe I have a lot to offer.

Why do you play/run RPGs?
I play and run RPGs for the social experience, the routing of getting friends together and do something. I recently moved across several states, so keeping in touch with friends in my old town is very nice. I enjoy reading RPGs for fun, from the latest D&D release, to weird indie games like Microscop and Pasión de las Pasiones. It’s interesting keeping up with all ends of the RPG spectrum.

 

The ENnies requires a major commitment of time and energy. What resources do you have that will help you discharge these responsibilities? Will your gaming group or other individuals be assisting you? Does your family support you?
My twins are almost 3, and most of the time I act as a supervisor more than an active parent. They play with each other, but I need to be on call to handle the odd dispute, take stubborn duplos apart, etc. In short right now, I have a ton of time on my hands. But going back to work isn’t in the cards yet.

 

Judging requires a great deal of critical thinking skills, communication with other judges, deadline management, organization, and storage space for the product received. What interests, experience, and skills do you bring that will make you a more effective judge?

My co-host on my podcast is a professional project manager, he actually attempted to hire me to his company about a year ago. I asked why, and he said everything I do for the podcast,making outlines for the show, keeping our reviews in order, making sure everything gets edited, is basically what he does save on a smaller scale.

Additionally I used to run a game store which I closed just before my boys were born. Tenth Planet Games & Comics in Cedar Park Texas. Which gives me a unique perspective on some categories, such as Organized play and best accessories. Being a judge sounds like a fun challenge, and I’m more than up for it!

 

What styles and genres of RPGs do you enjoy most? Are there any styles or genres that you do not enjoy? Which games best exemplify what you like? Do you consider yourself a particular system’s, publisher’s, or genre’s “fanboy/fangirl/fanperson”?
The style of RPG I enjoy the most is conspiracy horror, I’m a fanboy of GUMSHOE especially Night’s Black Agents. However, that has a lot more to do with the Dracula Dossier campaign I ran. I’m looking forward to Delta Green Impossible Landscapes as well. I’m also looking forward to the Alien RPG, as I have a weird idea for a cold war inspired game, with the occasional side of Xenomorph. I’d also have to say D&D, I own a lot of books for every edition since 2nd edition.

It’s hard to think of an RPG I didn’t like, a lot of them have good ideas you can borrow for the future. For example I don’t think I will ever run Pasión de las Pasiones, although I’d play it if a friend was running it, but I can borrow it’s rules to run a reality show game if I ever get around to it.

Regardless, personal preferences aside, every game can have something to teach you. Which is what I would try and base my nomination decisions on.

 

What games have you played in the past year? List up to 10 RPGs you have played the most. Which ones, if any, have you loved or hated?
D&D 5th Eberron – I didn’t like this game. But it was my bad, I was trying to play a noir detective and that doesn’t work well in an adventuring party.

D&D 5th Ravnica – I’m running this game, it’s on hiatus for the summer. The game is inspired by Cyberpunk tropes, it’s fun.

Tales From the Loop – this game unfortunately fizzled out due to personal reasons after a few sessions. I liked the setting quite a bit, the rules didn’t quite match up with what they were going after in my opinion.

Microscope – I’m playing this with my wife, which we do over a week once a month or so. It’s very fun, Creating random history for the sake of creating random history is oddly fulfilling.

 

Briefly summarize the criteria you will use for judging products in the different categories.

I’m going with the categories from last year.

Best Art Cover & Interior. Best Production Values. Best Cartography – this one is just a value judgement. Art, what you get in the box, what a map looks like. Everybody has preferences on what they like.

Best Podcast & Blog – these two are similar. Personally I like both where the people involved talk about games in a critical manor. It’s possible to like something and still give it notes. Just like it’s possible to not like a game and still figure out good ideas within it.

Best Organized Play – As a former game store owner, I ran Pathfinder, Free RPG Day, D&D Adventurers League, Pathfinder Society, Warmachine Leagues, and Extra Life. I’m very interested in this category.

Best Website – I like company pages that do more for you than just give you previews, product listings, and character sheets.

Best Adventure – I like adventures that experiment and attempt to push the genre forward. Personal favorites of mine are the Dracula Dossier, as it taught me how to run a sandbox. The original Delta Green was my first brush with conspiracy horror and I loved it. I loved the generational aspect to the Darkening of Mirkwood. But that is what I look for, trying new things, trying old things and getting it right.

Best Aid/Accessory – I’ve gotten a lot of things like this over the years. I’d vote for things I consider helpful to play. The Ravnica Map Pack has been oddly helpful, as the D&D spell cards. It’s more of a personal judgment call.

Best Setting – I’m a big fan of settings, I love stealing bits of everything for my home brew. I’m a big believer in there is something worth borrowing in a lot of settings. My choice would be how much is worth borrowing.

Best Miniature Product – When I owned the game shop I painted a lot of miniatures. How easy the mini is to assemble. It’s level of detail, to little and it’s bland, to much and it’s hard to paint. Personally, I’m really tired of sexist mini’s, it bugs me how many kickstarters I see that seem to do well because of the half naked women in them. Safe to say I will be avoiding those as well.

Best Family Product – I’ve run a few games with my eldest who is 7. D&D, No Thank You Evil, and Dread. This is a another product I’m very interested in judging, I got some skin in this game.

Best Writing – For me, this is always do I read the story at the front. Or do I read the first page of it and skip to the rules. Or, do they explain the rules in a way I get on the first read.

Best Electronic Book – I do a lot of my reading while I’m working out, and I like reading on my tablet. So if it reads good while I’m working out, it’s got my vote.

All the other categories are very inter connected. Basically does the product in question exemplify the category, does it have ideas worth stealing for home brew, and does it push things forward. Frankly I think there are a few to many categories remaining, they seem like having separate skills for hiding and moving silently. But it would be my job, so I would do my best.

 

How will you judge supplements or adventures for game systems whose core rules you are unfamiliar with or you believe are badly designed?
I would use my old friends Wikipedia, RPGGeek, RPGNet, and Google in that order to get a sense of the systems. If I couldn’t figure it out via the context of what I was reading. I’ve never read GURPS, but I use the supplements from time to time, and I’ve haven’t read Shadowrun since 2nd Edition was new, but I’m using the adventures and converting them to D&D. You can figure it out, it’s not so hard.

 

How would you like to see the ENnies change? What should remain inviolate?

I think a few categories could be condensed, I think honestly the biggest problem of the awards isn’t allowed to attend the con this year.

BONUS: (optional) If you were an RPG, what would it be and would you play it?

Id be a weird Powered by the Apocalypse game, about pushing through your existential dread and imposter syndrome, and I’m about to play when I hit submit.

Comments are closed.