Another very different bundle from Bundle of Holding, this time. Whereas previous bundles have consisted of various different roleplaying games, this bundle is a bit of a history lesson, looking at roleplaying games and companies through the decades, along with guide books to finding great family and hobby games.
The first tier of this bundle costs $7.95 and includes the first of Shannon Applecline’s Designers & Dragons series, which chronicles the history of the tabletop RPG. The book gives an insight into some of the earliest RPGs and Applecline’s account of TSR should make for interesting reading. The full contents of this tier include:
- Designers & Dragons: The ’70s (retail value $10): The first volume in Shannon Appelcline’s four-book history of RPG publishers, covering Dungeons & Dragons, the turbulent history of TSR, and the first generation of RPGs. Foreword by Greg Stafford.
- Family Games: The 100 Best (retail $10): A hundred famed designers review and discuss their favorite games: Blokus, Can’t Stop, Gloom, Kill Dr. Lucky, Prince Valiant, and dozens more.
- 40 Years of Gen Con (retail $15): Robin D. Laws presents a photo-filled anecdotal reminiscence of the hobby’s leading US convention.
The second tier is priced at a threshold which is, at the time of writing, sitting at $18.50. This tier includes the remaining three volumes of the Designers & Dragons series, which include a number of my favourites. I’m particularly interested to read their sections on World of Darkness, Pathfinder and Evil Hat. This tier consists of:
- Hobby Games: The 100 Best (retail $10): From Amber Diceless Roleplaying to Wiz-War, a hundred leading designers praise their favorites.
- Designers & Dragons: The ’80s (retail $10): GURPS, West End, Palladium, Champions, and much more. Foreword by Cyberpunk designer Mike Pondsmith.
- Designers & Dragons: The ’90s (retail $10): World of Darkness, Wizards of the Coast, Warhammer 40K, Atlas Games, and more. Foreword by Peter Adkison, founder of Wizards and owner of Gen Con.
- Designers & Dragons: The ’00s (retail $10): D20, Pathfinder, the indies, and (yes) Evil Hat. Foreword by Paizo Publishing founder Lisa Stevens.
This bundle does not include any games, and so is the least practical of any recent bundle. It is quite unique, with a lot of interesting reading for people already embedded and invested in the RPG community or with an interest in niche subscultures. I am really interested in this, so I’m looking forward to reading the Designers & Dragons series in particular.