Money Matters

The makers of the new Marvel Heroic Roleplaying Game want me to review their game. I want to review their game. It means more press for them, which means more sales, which means a stronger industry, which means more work for me, potentially, plus I get a copy of the game which I might also use to promote it further. But I gave up doing that because I can’t afford it any more. No game company can afford to pay reviewers. Few, if any, gaming sites or magazines can either. Whereas the thing I’m writing this week is for a Real Magazine (TM) and so will pay for my rent this month, and food, and boy, do I like being able to afford food.

Now, if, say, forty people put ten dollars each into a Paypal account linked to my old email at, then I’d have rent for this month and could totally review the game and support the industry. But that’s unlikely and I’m not going to set up a kickstarter for every review. So what’s the point of this post? I guess just another reminder that every time somebody says RPGs are too expensive, another writer dies of scurvy and malnutrition. And that a lot of the time, creative types in this industry actually have to choose between putting food on the table, or content on the web. That’s the reality.

One thought on “Money Matters

  1. Good point, Steve. You don’t have to feel guilty if you don’t review MH, however; your review wouldn’t have provoked a wave of purchases of this game, and even if, a good sale of one RPG wouldn’t have upturned the industry, and have millions of people abandon MMORPGs for tabletop. You posted an article called “the future doesn’t look bright” about that; IIRC.
    RPGs are expensive, because it’s a niche market, the games are NOT mass-produced and there are no economy of scale. Your Real Magazine has more audience, and therefore is probably also financed by advertisement, which in turn allows it to pay you.

    There is no way out, at least for you. đŸ˜¦ The secret of the regulars in the RPG industry is they have a job outside the industry that pays enough to finance their passion during their free time.

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