Five Hundred

Five hundred blog posts. Wow. Time flies.

It’s been almost a year and a half since I wrote my Four Hundred blog post. Obviously, my output has slipped. I’m going to have to think about that, and see if there’s something I want to be writing about but am not. I know that this summer, I was really slacking on the posting, and then there was some downtime as I reworked the site. Since then, I’ve been posting a little more regularly, and I want that to continue.


Over the past hundred posts, by far the majority of what I’ve been posting has been play reports from my campaigns. Maybe not the most interesting stuff in the world, but I try to spice them up with thoughts about what’s working and what’s not. They get some solid traffic, so I’m assuming that someone out there ((Beyond my players.)) is enjoying them.

Of my new posts, the biggest draws seem to be reviews – this makes sense to me, as word of the review usually gets broadcast further than my normal reach allows, thanks to the publishers, authors, fans, etc. People are obviously interested in my reviews of games and books ((So much so that I’ve posted my review policy here.)), so I’m going to try and do more of those, I think.

The biggest draws on the site are still – and I think this is a testament to how good the game is – my articles about The Dresden Files RPG. It’s gotten so that I can tell when a new group is starting a game, because of the spike in page views on campaign creation and character creation posts. I’m pretty pleased that the game is going strong, and glad that I’m able to contribute to people’s enjoyment of it in my own way ((If you were around when this all started, or if you look back into the misty past as represented by the blog’s archives, you will recall (or discover) that without DFRPG and the cool folks at Evil Hat, this blog would not exist, so the game will always have a special place in my heart. Thanks again, Fred, for your brilliant Disclosure Policy during the playtest!)).

So. Five hundred posts in five and a half years ((Five years, ten months to be a little more precise.)). Daily traffic that averages around 300 page views per day. Nine different campaigns I’ve wonked on at length about, four of which are recorded from start to finish in the play reports on this site. And a number of good friends made through the blog.

Thanks to everyone who reads the blog. Extra special thanks to everyone who comments, or who comes up in person to talk to me because of the blog – it’s nice to know I’m not shouting into a void.

Thanks to the publishers who have said nice things about the blog, and who always treat me so well whenever we interact. Special mention goes to Evil Hat Productions, Margaret Weis Productions, Atlas Games, and Pelgrane Press. These folks all treat their fans with great respect, care, and friendliness. And the make great games ((I don’t have sponsors or advertisers on this blog, and I never plan to. When I recommend something, it’s because I think it’s good, and no other reason. So, take me seriously when I say these folks deserve your dollars.)).

Most of all, though, thanks to my friends – my fellow gamers – who let me use their game sessions as blogfodder. They are good people ((Except for Erik, who is a great big freak. And Chris, who is my nemesis.)), and I appreciate their tolerance and indulgence, especially when I go into one of my weird, experimental phases.

Now. Something I don’t normally do. I’m going to open the floor to suggestions. Is there anything that you folks out there would like to see a blog post on? Can’t guarantee I’ll do it, but I am curious to see what people are interested in. Toss your suggestion up in the comments.

And I hope you’ll stick around for another hundred posts, at least.

Four Hundred

Welcome to my 400th blog post.

It took me almost exactly 15 months to do the last hundred posts, so we’re looking at about a post every five days. Obviously, the schedule hasn’t been as regular as that; indeed, there have been a couple of floods and a couple of droughts, but still. I’m averaging slightly better than a post a week ((That’s not counting my Ireland trip posts over on my other blog, of course.)), which I consider not too bad.

I’ve been looking over the kinds of things that I’ve been writing about these last hundred posts. I’ve done a lot of play reports, a lot of articles on DFRPG ((And there’s some crossover there, obviously.)), a few on gaming in general, and a couple on general nerdy stuff. Obviously, it’s been a moderately successful mix – daily hits have almost doubled over the last hundred posts.

The big attractions here still seem to be my articles on how to play DFRPG; even the very earliest ones are consistently in my top-visited page stats. It’s nice to see that they’re a useful resource to so many folks, and nice to see so many people playing the game! There probably aren’t going to be any new articles in this category, because I’ve said pretty much all I can think of to say on the subject, but you never know.

One of the other big hits on the site is the series I’m working on finishing on emergent campaign storylines. They seem to have a wider initial appeal, but don’t become such return destinations. I’ve got one more article in the series ((Well, maybe two. I’m trying to think if the other one is actually worth writing, or if it’s just rephrasing too much of what the other articles say.)), and then it’s done. I’ll probably come up with a new series of articles after that, but I don’t know what they’ll be.


This is the point where I say thank you to everyone who comes by to read something I’ve written here. It’s always nice to see that people are reading the blog. And an extra special thank you to those of you who care enough to leave a comment. Sometimes, writing a blog feels like shouting into the wilderness. It’s especially gratifying to hear that there are real people out there.

The most profound, humble thanks I reserve for two different groups of people. First, my friends, who let me talk about them ((And their characters.)) online. They are a great group of people to game with, and I’m immensely glad to know them all.

Second, to those of you who I’ve met personally. You’ve all had very nice things to say about my little narcissistic ramblings here, and it’s wonderful to meet so many different people who like games as much as I do ((Weird little aside, here. Many years ago, I wrote a bunch of RPG stuff in the industry, mainly for D&D 3E and Unknown Armies. At the height of my… well, I can’t honestly call it “fame,” but at the height of my presence in the gaming world, very few people recognized my name or my work. This past year, I have had more people ask me if I’m THE Rick Neal because of this blog than ever approached me because of my actual payed writing. It’s gratifying, and humbling, and a little puzzling all at the same time.)). It’s allowed me to meet some people in the industry that I’ve long admired, and to chat with them semi-regularly. It’s also allowed me to meet some fascinating people who AREN’T in the industry, and chat with them.

So, thanks to everyone for feeding my ego, whether it’s as an anonymous reader, a friendly commenter, or a brave in-person approacher. Thanks for indulging me.

The next hundred posts should start tomorrow or the next day, with a report about this past weekend’s Marvel Heroic Roleplaying Launch Party down in Minneapolis ((Teaser review: The game is awesome.)).

Stick around.

Three Hundred

Wow. We’re at 300 posts. Wow.

In a lot of ways, I’m surprised that the blog has lasted this long. I’m surprised at how much I still enjoy writing for it, and I’m gratified how many people come to take a look every day.

I’ve been looking over the stuff I’ve been writing the past 100 posts, and – unsurprisingly, really – much of it revolves around The Dresden Files RPG, which, if you folks recall, is the reason I started writing this blog in the first place. I had also intended to talk more about other things on my mind – books, movies, TV, etc. – but this has turned into a gaming blog first and foremost. Which makes sense; gaming is my primary hobby, after all. But it’s nice that I’m hitting post 300 at the same time I’m starting a new DFRPG campaign with a lot of the players from my original playtest. Feels like coming full circle.

But It’s nice to see that there are a number of you out there who have become regulars, here. And it’s nice to see that references to this blog are showing up in other forums. Hell, who am I kidding? It’s better than nice; it’s a huge stroking for my already-inflated ego!

Really, though, it’s just very gratifying to me that there are a growing number of readers out there who seem to be interested in what I’m posting here. Thank you all for coming by and leaving the occasional comment.

It took me about a year to get the first hundred posts up, and then about another year for the second hundred posts. It’s only been nine months for this third hundred – I’m obviously blogging more frequently and regularly, and that’s a good thing ((Mostly, anyway. I’ve been kind of neglecting some of my other writing in favour of keeping the blog up to date with my games. Gonna have to think about how to handle that.)).

As is usual, I’m going to show a few stats from the past 100 posts.

  • 300 posts (obviously)
  • 24 pages (no change)
  • 10 categories (up 4 from post 200, and heavily reorganized)
  • 336 tags (up 28 from post 200 – I created roughly 67% fewer these past hundred posts)
  • 1,013 comments (up 533 from post 200) ((And the winner for getting comment #100 is Karla! Congratulations! You win… nothing, I’m afraid. But thanks for the comment! EDIT: This should read comment #1000. Sorry about that, folks!))
  • Average of 267 hits a day, including RSS subscribers ((The big bump, of course, was when I did the DFRPG Q&A series last February. But still, that’s some significant growth over the last 100 posts.))
  • The U.S. accounts for roughly 62% of my hits, with Canada in second place at 18%, and the U.K. in third with 8%. Australia, and Germany each have about 2% each.
  • Winnipeg, my home town, is the city giving me the most hits, at 5,795.
  • Total number of hits since April 2009: 60,664

Yes, that’s right. Total number of hits has quintupled over the past 100 posts. That’s absolutely amazing to me. And, while the boom has ended, there are still a fair number of folks who keep stopping by.

Thank you all for that. Thanks for reading, thanks for commenting. Thanks for coming back.

Tomorrow should see the start of the next hundred posts.

Hope you like them.

Two Hundred

This is a bit of a filler post, something I’ve decided to do every hundredth post. It’s just an overview of what I’ve been doing, and what the readership on the blog is like. It’s mainly for my own interest, but some others may be curious.

Keep your eyes peeled, though, because I should have the first set of DFRPG questions and answers up sometime this evening.

It’s now exactly two years since I started this blog, and this is my two-hundredth post. It’s fitting, in a lot of ways, that the Dresden Files RPG, which I started this blog to talk about, is once more featuring in my posts as it begins its headlong dash to the June release date.

I was going to do a comparison of stats over the past year with the previous year, but at the beginning of April, 2009, the stat package I was previously using stopped working, and hadn’t been supported by its creator for a while. So, I got a new (and significantly better) stats package from the same creator. But this meant that I’m missing about a month and a half of data, and the new package tracks some things very differently from the previous one.

Still, here’s a look at how things stand, from April of 2009 to present:

  • 200 posts (obviously)
  • 24 pages (no change)
  • 10 categories (up 3 from post 100)
  • 308 tags (up 97 from post 100 – I created roughly 50% fewer these past hundred posts)
  • 480 comments (up 161 from post 100)
  • Average of 108 hits a day, including RSS subscribers
  • The U.S. accounts for roughly 48% of my hits, with Canada in second place at 34%, and the U.K. in third with 8%. Australia, Poland, and France each have about 1% each.
  • Winnipeg, my home town, is the city giving me the most hits, at 2,824.
  • Total number of hits since April 2009: 11,622

All, in all, it’s been very gratifying. I even had one of my posts nominated for the Open Game Table, which I found rather flattering, because it wasn’t me or any of my friends that did it.

So, thanks for coming by. Thanks for reading. And thanks for coming back.

One Hundred

So, a bit of a departure. This is the one hundredth post I’ve done for this blog, which I started on February 7, 2008. I thought I’d take advantage of the centenary post to look back on what I’ve done.

Here are a few statistics:

  • 100 posts (duh!)
  • 24 pages
  • 7 categories
  • 211 tags (Man, I was overusing tags at first.)
  • An average of 530 hits a day
  • An average of 106 unique visitors each day
  • 4,996 spam comments filtered out by Akismet

When I started the blog, I figured that I’d get a few people checking it out for the Dresden Files RPG playtest stuff, which would trickle off as the playtest ended, and then I’d probably abandon the blog.

That didn’t happen.

I’ve got into the habit of writing for the blog. It lets me talk about things that I find interesting, to rant about my opinions, and to sort out my thinking on a variety of topics. After the initial rush of the DFRPG playtest, I was a little burnt out, but then I got back into the groove, with an almost-regular posting frequency.

And you people keep coming to read it.

The big rush of reading was, unsurprisingly, during the playtest period, but I’m still getting around a hundred unique visitors each day. Even on days when I don’t post.

So, thanks. I’m glad to know that I’m doing something that people find interesting.

I think I’ll keep going. Here’s to the next hundred posts.