I have amassed a fair number of RPG PDFs. Some are free previews and quickstarts. Some are games I have purchased for themselves, some are Kickstarters, some are parts of bundles, and some are from Bundles of Holding. Most of these have been acquired for their mechanics. I have never been big on settings or genres because that’s kind of what I love doing. That hasn’t always been the case, but right now I would much rather research and design a game about . . . I don’t know, let’s say special operations forces or Roman legionaries, than buy what someone else has done.
So my interest is almost exclusively in mechanics.
I have been going through these PDFs and looking at the mechanics. I’m saving those that have something really interesting. For others, I’m saving those pages that have the basic mechanical information. For most, though, I’m deleting them.
I’m not deleting them because they are bad games. I’m not deleting them because I don’t like them. I’m not deleting them because I believe I made a mistake when I acquired them.
I’m deleting them because I’m not using them right now and I can always recover them.
See, that’s one of the nice aspects about PDFs. In general, these come from sources to which I can return if I want them. And if they aren’t, there are lots of places I can store them out of the way where I can get them if I want them, like cloud storage or a USB.
And while ripping pages out of my print copy of Night Witches should lead to some kind of traumatic punishment, copying and saving some pages from my PDF to use as reference isn’t a problem – as long as I’m not sharing them or something.
As much as I love books on a shelf, I’ve become very fond of PDFs for RPGs. They are generally more useful to me.
You can find print and PDFs of my games here.
You can find PDFs here.
You can find Night Witches here.