The #RPGaDAY topic for day seventeen is about a game that’s been sitting on the shelf. Specifically, a game that I own but haven’t played. For this, I’m only going to count physical game books. Let me nip down to the basement where it probably is living and I’ll let you know after the break.

Before I head down, I’m going to guess it’s Blue Planet, first edition. I never played that game, but I loved it so. The second edition, I’ve ran and I so do love the setting. But that first version — which I know is downstairs — I have never played.


Holy crap, I’ve got a copy of Everway.

I’m not really counting that because technically, the question is “which RPG have you owned the longest…” not “which RPG is the oldest…” and I got that back when Uncle Bear moved from Tucson to Albuquerque. I’ve owned the first edition of Blue Planet — which was upstairs, by the way — about the time it came out in ’98.

But the year after it came out, I purchased the limited hardcover of Shadowrun’s third edition and I may have picked that up before I picked up a slightly older copy of Blue Planet, most likely from the Compleat Strategist in midtown Manhattan, so let’s talk about how I scored the Shadowrun 3 Big Black Book.

See, they had taken this limited edition of Shadowrun to Gen Con where they sold through 800 copies of the 1000 copy print run at the show. FASA held back two hundred copies so people who couldn’t make it to the show might get a chance at a copy. Their plan was this: at about 11:00 Eastern on a work day, they’d open up a web form for people to place an order and once all 200 were gone, they were gone.

Their website was hammered by a spike of fans submitting the form over and over. The form kept timing out — it waited a certain amount of time to get a response from the server and when nothing game back, you got dumped to an error page.

I looked at the source code on the form and saw that it was a simple form submitted to the server, but that timeout was set to sixty seconds. So I copied the form, put it on my own website, and changed that timeout to something more reasonable like two hours.

Fill out the form.


Wait six minutes and there’s the confirmation that I just purchased a copy of the limited edition.

It felt great — I used some light hacking to get a game book that is partially about hacking.

Anyway, it’s downstairs, unplayed, #880 of 1000.

Previously on RPGaDAY…

Last year, we looked at the preferred method of character advancement. These days, I’m still thinking of games that improve your character by adding in story elements rather than stat and skill bonuses, but I have a fondness for Marvel Heroic Roleplaying’s milestone system. You tell a story about how you want your character to do a thing, gaining XP along the way, then use those XP to buy unlockables in the story: Gain 3XP when you choose to listen to your armored suit’s AI persona instead of your teammates. Spend 10XP and Spider-Man swings by to help out against the Hulk. That was cool stuff.

In 2015, the topic was “Favorite Fantasy RPG”. I’m still thinking it’s D&D 5th Edition, but I’m eyeing the Dragon Age RPG.

In 2014, the topic was “Funniest Game Played”. Folks, don’t force humor into your games. It’ll come organically.

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