How I plan to keep up with the OSR post G+

23245f5a35bdc2ed34d977cfa0404e27I’m unlikely to be using MeWe much. It’s not terrible, but it’s basically G+ without that platform’s best features. Also, I’m very much enjoying the shift to the blogs.

I’ve started using Inoreader to keep up with the OSR blogosphere. I plugged Ram’s OSR OPML into it and was set to go. I sorted the blogs into best and the rest, check in on the best every day, and skim the rest when I feel like it. It’s been incredibly freeing. The stuff I’m reading is as good as it ever was, it’s longer, more thoughtful, and by commenting on the post itself rather than on a separate platform the conversation stays focused and gets archived more permanently. It’s also motivated me to start writing posts in response to stuff I like, which is something I’ve never done before. To be honest, I’m enjoying this mode of discussion more than G+ in some ways. Also, the regular “OSR News” posts on Dreams of Mythic Fantasy keep you updated on everything you need to know.

If I want to just chat casually about the OSR I use Discord, usually either the OSR server or the DIYRPG one (which features an incredible 24/7 Gygaxian Democracy mill). That one is still semi-private, so I won’t be posting a link. I enjoy having long-form discussion and informal chat on two separate platforms.

The /r/rpg subreddit is good for getting the word out about new products but not so great for discussions. The range of assumptions and play-styles is vast, so you inevitably have to restart from ground zero explaining your approach every time you get into a discussion. The OSR subreddit is more focused but it’s never really felt like home. The brand new artpunk subreddit (not sure if it’s open to the public yet) looks to be the place to talk to the NeOSR/Adventure Game/Hipster DnD crowd, so I check in there periodically, but at the moment it looks like its biggest use will be to post the best new blog posts.

I’ve been posting more on Twitter recently, but that’s mostly to keep my Questing Beast followers updated on what’s going on with me and to reshare other OSR posts. There isn’t a lot of OSR conversion on Twitter and overall I think that’s fine. It’s a really anxious, high-strung platform.

Conclusion: BACK TO THE BLOGS! Get Inoreader or Feedly up and running, find a post you enjoy, write a response, and tell the original poster about it. 

If you want to contact me directly, my email is questingmaps at gmail.

10 Comments

  • Frank "Mottokrosh" Reding

    February 6, 2019 at 12:28 PM Reply

    I’m also trying to find my footing in the shifting RPG social landscape. I’ve been with it since the early days of monolithic forums, through the move to Google+, and now to… something else. I’ve been testing MeWe for some time now, and it’s been a struggle. Not that anything is particularly wrong with the platform, but the sheer number of fragmented groups have made keeping up with it all—and the pronounced duplication of posts it has brought along—tiresome. I did the same with Discord that I did with MeWe and that was jumping on every single channel that emerged. Recently I had a good cull. It’s likely I’ll drop MeWe completely. I like blogs for the same reason you mention above: long-form, thought-out articles, which keep their value for a long time. For throw-away casual chat I still have plenty of Discord servers.

  • Marshall Brengle

    February 6, 2019 at 2:52 PM Reply

    But the burning question is, what went in “Best” ??

  • Kevin

    February 6, 2019 at 6:13 PM Reply

    Do you think the OSR subreddit is appropriate for games that are less retro-clones and more adventure games? is there a better subreddit for those? I took a look at the artpunk sub, but I haven’t quite reconciled its “commandments” with your description of adventure games (which I generally like). Artpunk feels much more narrow, but I’d like to reserve the right to change my mind after thinking about it more :).

    On a related note, how much work has it been moderating the comments on your blog? I’m planning on starting a blog, but kind of dread having to manage comments. I was thinking of maybe referring all comments to reddit or something.

    • Ben

      February 6, 2019 at 6:48 PM Reply

      You see a lot of OSR-adjacent stuff in the OSR subreddit, so most things that fall in the old-school playstyle seem to be fine. I suppose the Artpunk commandments are narrower that Adventure games, but those do match the kinds of games I like to play very closely. Moderating on here has been really easy. I don’t get many comments to begin with, and almost never have to delete anything. The spam filter catches most of the crap. I think having the comments on the post is a MUCH better solution than having them elsewhere, since they’re often enlightening for people reading in the future. Lots of the high-quality discussions about the best blog posts are now lost the depths of G+, never to return.

  • Joshua Burnett

    February 6, 2019 at 6:17 PM Reply

    With the spasming death of G+, i’ve been motivated to post more on my blog than I have in the past couple of years. So far, so good. I’m also trying to comment more on people’s blogs than I did before (Hi!), to help build that discussion.
    I don’t quite hate Mewe yet, but it just feels a bit “off” somehow. I can’t quite place it. I might get used to it, I might not.
    I want to start using Discord more, but I can’t quite grok using it as a discussion/social-media platform, rather than just something for game sessions.
    This post-G+ period is confusing, but kind of exciting. I’m curious to see where everything shakes out in the wend.

  • Jonathan Davis

    February 6, 2019 at 9:08 PM Reply

    I just stumbled onto instructions on how to do the same thing just recently. I’m going to give it a whirl, too.
    http://save.vs.totalpartykill.ca/blog/osr-opml/

  • Mark McGann

    February 12, 2019 at 1:41 PM Reply

    Chris McDowall, writer of Into the Odd, has a very good and nice community set up over on Discord. Feels like some nice, friendly discussion of OSR junk that I feel, in addition to the return to blogging, fills the void somewhat.

  • Erik Johnson

    February 16, 2019 at 10:41 PM Reply

    Thank you for this! Definitely going to try your blog reader idea. That to me is the perfect response to the uncertainty of the G+ exodus. Along with the reasons you’ve stated, I also really don’t want to be beholden to yet another social media site. Especially since it’s come to light that the crowd favorite–MeWe–had been found to be pulling some sneaky monetization moves.

  • Michael S - Chgowiz

    February 17, 2019 at 5:26 PM Reply

    You’ve been added to my Feedly! :)

  • Greyhawk Grognard

    October 11, 2019 at 7:32 PM Reply

    Back to the blogs? I never stopped posting on Greyhawk Grognard. :-)

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