Online Nickname: Shiny
Introduction and Platform
I am a long time fan of the ENNIES, with a lot of experience with various RPGs. I enjoy all kinds of different games, and learning about new tools and systems to make gaming more fun!
Why do you play/run RPGs?
I enjoy RPGs, usually over other types of games, because of how they allow you to explore different ideas and have completely new and exciting experiences! Playing RPGs with friends is what I want to be doing all day!
The ENNIES requires a major commitment of time and energy. What resources do you have that will help you discharge these responsibilities? Will your gaming group or other individuals be assisting you? Does your family support you?
I have many different people who can help, including a few gaming groups with different interests, many internet friends who are also tuned into the RPG industry, and my boyfriend who is as passionate about gaming as I am! We LOVE just sitting around and reading about and playing new games!
Judging requires a great deal of critical thinking skills, communication with other judges, deadline management, organization, and storage space for the product received. What interests, experience, and skills do you bring that will make you a more effective judge?
In my professional life I am an IT Program Manager/Compliance Specialist, so my day job also requires time management, communication and organization skills, just to keep up with the things I manage. I am also a BIG spreadsheet nerd and really enjoy organizing things, just in general.
What styles and genres of RPGs do you enjoy most? Are there any styles or genres that you do not enjoy? Which games best exemplify what you like? Do you consider yourself a particular system’s, publisher’s, or genre’s “fanboy/fangirl/fanperson”?
I play RPGs of all kinds! I play a lot of D&D, incorporating aspects from all kinds of other games I play along the way. I don’t really dislike any particular system or style, I can find things to appreciate in practically any product! I do tend to gravitate towards games that focus more on roleplay and group storytelling, but I enjoy RPGs of all kinds!
What games have you played in the past year? List up to 10 RPGs you have played the most. Which ones, if any, have you loved or hated?
Oh goodness, so many! I play a couple different D&D games, on my Twitch channel we’ve tried a bunch of different “one pager” RPGs- like the kinds Grant Howitt designs (Sexy Battle Wizards was one of the funniest games ever). I was also an ENNIES judge last year, which exposed me to SO MANY new games that I got to try, and plan on trying in the near future like Wickedness, Troubleshooters, Colostle, Delta Green, and so many others!
Briefly summarize the criteria you will use for judging products in the different categories.
Overall production quality, if the rules make sense and are accessible, if the game includes cultural aspects-if there were sensitivity readers or consultants, if the game provides safety tools or recommendations for supporting safe gameplay, what the art is like, how creative and effective the layout is, quality of the writing/research that went into the product, etc.
How will you judge supplements or adventures for game systems whose core rules you are unfamiliar with or you believe are badly designed?
I do my best to learn enough about the system to see if the supplement makes sense, and makes the original game more fun or expands on it in a good way. I try to ignore what my preference for the style/presentation of the rules, and focus on whether or not the rules are well documented, they make sense, and if someone who understood the original game, would be able to incorporate the supplement with minimal effort.
How would you like to see the ENNIEs change? What should remain inviolate?
I love the ENNIES, and I think the process makes a lot of sense. It’s hard, because of some of the controversy in our community, but where possible I think it would be helpful if we could publicly say: the judges have decided not to accept products from ** production company, because of abuse allegations. That may be really hard, but it *could* help bring down some of the instances of abuse in our community, and force companies to get rid of the abusers in our community.
On a far less controversial note, it would be nice if the ENNIES added some categories for smaller games like a Zine/One-pager category, a category for musical/audio enhancements for games, and maybe something for best representation (for example, cultural representation, queer representation, representation for disabled people, etc.) There were several games I saw last year that deserved awards for just that!
BONUS: (optional) If you were an RPG, what would it be and would you play it?
Hmmm, something dumb, fun, and not too complicated, like Goblin Punks or The Halloween Babysitter!