A New Year Begins! – Adventure Rules Update 2.0

Happy New Year, adventurers!

It’s 2016 now (at least it is in the eastern time zone) and with a new year comes a whole new Adventure Rules. Some of those changes should already be evident. Like, for example, the cool new logo you’ll see at the top of the page. Or the fact that I called you “adventurers” rather than “readers.”

You’ll also notice a new tagline. “Gaming’s Solution to Real-Life Problems” has been thrown aside in favor of “The Essential Companion of Heroic Adventurers.” Why this change? To put it simply, the new tagline better reflects the sort of blog that Adventure Rules has become. When I first started out, I wasn’t one hundred percent sure where I was going with this. Now I’ve come into my own a little, developed my style, seen what kind of posts work for me and which ones don’t. The new tagline better reflects that. If you check out the About This Blog page, you’ll see an updated description of what the site is all about. I’ve also made some mild updates to the About Me page, if you’re interested in that sort of thing.

Now if you’re seeing this – and by this I mean the blog – for the first time, you may be curious as to what Adventure Rules is all about. What kind of stuff can you expect to see?

First off, there’s Tabletop Tuesday, the site’s oldest segment. On this day, I totally ignore video games and instead take some time to talk about tabletop games such as card games, board games, or RPGs. If you’re into tabletops or want to be, this is a great segment to check out.

Then there’s Fanfic Friday, a day dedicated to fictional stories about iconic characters from Nintendo. This segment is a long-form fanfic that will be updated weekly over many months. Each month is one chapter of the story. So for the rest of the Fridays in January, you’ll get one part of Chapter One, adding up to a completed chapter by the end of the month. In February, each week I’ll post one part of chapter two. And so on, and so on.

So what’s this story about? To avoid spoilers, I’ll explain it like this. The story deals with a universe where every Nintendo world is connected. Normally, these worlds are separate – however, a phenomenon called Outrealm Gates allow things to cross from one world to the next. The shenanigans that ensue will take place all over the Nintendo universe and result in meetings and confrontations between many characters who would otherwise never speak to one another. This story will be called The Outrealms, and I hope you’re excited for the first chapter one week from today.

The next two segments are not weekly, but will be quite common on the site. One is the Casual Stroll, my own interpretation of a walkthrough. Rather than tell you exactly what to do to solve every puzzle and beat every mission of a particular game, I’ll offer advice to help you on your journey. It’s no replacement for a full walkthrough when you’re stuck at a particular spot, but these strolls will often answer more general-purpose questions that you can’t find in a step-by-step guide. Casual Strolls are designed to push you in the right direction rather than holding your hand the whole way.

The other non-weekly segment is called Totally Subjective Reviews, and this is my way of telling you what I think of the latest games I have played. Why totally subjective? Because in reality, every review is subjective. Most reviews assign numbers to different categories in order to try to create some sort of objective rating system everyone can share, but when it comes down to it, you never really know what someone thinks of a game until you hear what they have to say about it. So when I review a game, I attach totally arbitrary scores to every category and instead focus my real attention on what I have to say. If you want to know my opinion of a game, you’ll have to do the unthinkable – read the review.

Now in addition to these four segments, there’s a special week long segment that pops up every now and again called Multiplayer Week. This is when all the adventurers ban together to help the blog reach as many people as possible. For one week, I promise to bring my A-game in exchange for your promise to share the posts you like on social media or with your real-life friends. Now these promises aren’t binding – I’m not gonna hate you forever if you don’t share any posts. But if you genuinely enjoy the content of Adventure Rules, I’d love it if you’d spend Multiplayer Week helping other people to enjoy it as well.

Now in order to facilitate sharing during Multiplayer Week and to make it easier to be a follower of Adventure Rules, I’ve added what is probably the BIGGEST reveal of Adventure Rules II. The thing that is more significant and more of a change than any of the other things I have talked about. This goes beyond mere aesthetics, or branding. This thing is what will really make Adventure Rules more accessible to other people.

Because right now, I am announcing that Adventure Rules is officially on social media.

Up til now, Adventure Rules has been accessible mainly by following the blog on WordPress or by being my personal acquaintance in real life. A few folks are loyal followers through the power of search engines. But that’s no way to follow a blog, so now Adventure Rules will be accessible through not only its own Facebook page, but also through Twitter and Tumblr! Every time I post to the WordPress blog, you’ll see it on all three social media sites, enabling you to follow the blog without a WordPress account and without having to constantly search for the blog on the web.

Of course, these pages aren’t just designed to mindlessly share my blog posts and nothing else. Each social media site will feature exclusive content, stuff that only posts to that site and none of the others.
Facebook followers will get to enjoy family-oriented content. Suggestions for family game nights, tongue-in-cheek posts about parenting and video games, and anecdotes from my own journey as a father and husband. If you’re a spouse or parent and a gamer as well, Facebook will have content right up your alley.
Twitter followers will get access to exclusive tabletop content. This is where I’ll post things like quick monster or item concepts for Dungeon World, character ideas for M&M, quotes or anecdotes from tabletop nights with my friends, etc. If you love tabletop games and want to see more tabletop content, you’ll want to follow Adventure Rules on Twitter.
Tumblr followers will enjoy exclusive fiction content. Stuff like behind-the-scenes for the Outrealms fanfiction, flash-fiction stories, and even outtakes or bloopers for Outrealms. If you’re a fanfiction fan, Tumblr is the place to see everything fanfiction on Adventure Rules.
If you’re the kind of person who wants to see every tiny bit of content that Adventure Rules has to offer, then fear not! There’s no rule limiting what sites you follow on. You can check out all three to guarantee that you don’t miss any of the fun.

The links to these sites will now be on the About This Blog and About Me pages, as well as my WordPress Gravatar profile.

So as we enter the first week of 2016, there are a lot of new communities for Adventure Rules to explore. We’re going to have a Multiplayer Week this week to encourage folks across these social media sites to get connected and to enjoy the content that the blog has to offer. If you want to start by sharing this post to whet your friends’ appetites, great!

So what can adventurers old and new expect from the blog this week? Well, I’ll be posting a review about a tabletop RPG I’ve frequently discussed on the site – Dungeon World! I’ll also be talking about some common video game features that would be useful to have in real life. I’ll reveal a few details about the Myers-Briggs based tabletop game I’m developing in my spare time, and we’ll take a casual stroll through one of my favorite games: Paper Mario! And one week from today, the first part of the first chapter of The Outrealms will debut right here on the site. There’s a lot to look forward to, so be sure to follow on your preferred social media site so you don’t miss a minute!

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