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Tools of the YouTube RPG Gamer

What's Needed To Participate In The Tabletop RPG One Shot Group?

This question has come up a few times. I have answered it countless times. That is ok though I understand there is a lot of information out there to sift through so this is going to be my guide to what is necessary, recommended, and preferred.

Most people run games over Google + Hangouts. So you will need a G+ account. A YouTube, Roll20, and many others are recommended though. If you have a YouTube account you can broadcast your games. If you have Roll20 you can use grids and many other tools. There are many other resources out there but those are the most common.

Now it is mandatory you have some sort of microphone so the other players can hear you. I personally use a cheap Logitech Stereo Headset H110 (microphone headphones combo) that sells for about $10. Many people use Blue Snowball (do not get the ICE CONDENSOR SNOWBALL), and Blue Yeti (most recommended) because the sound quality is a lot better than built in microphones on laptops and the cheaper microphones out there. Headphones are important because without them you will pick up sound from your speakers and make the experience tough on the other people in the game. This is one of the more annoying things when playing a game. I have used my iPhone ear buds before and it does the trick just fine.

Next up is a camera and there are people out there who won't allow a player in their game without one. I am not one of them but I know of a few who require it. A built in laptop camera should be sufficient enough but if you really want to there are some quality webcams you can pick up. I recommend the Logitech HD Pro C920 because it offers up to 1080p but works just fine at 720. Anything above this I feel is certainly overkill for live plays.

So if I was just getting into everything I would focus on the microphone above all else. When playing in an online game that is the most important aspect. The Blue Yeti is going to give you the best sound quality but may not be necessary if you are just playing in a couple games a month though.

2014 Wraps Up and 2015 Begins!

2014 has been an amazing year. When this year began I never would have thought it would end the way it has. When the year started my family was in a transition phase. We had moved to the other side of the state and were staying in my wifes parents basement until we found our house. It took a little longer than expected but in the end we found a home and are very happy here.

When it comes to gaming much like the year before I made a game transition. At the start of 2014 I was getting into Pathfinder pretty heavily. Struggled for a long time to find a group to play Pathfinder but when I did the new D&D5e had come out. So I switched over to Fifth Edition and it was awesome! I couldn't be happier with where I stand on the games I enjoy. Don't think I will ever run Pathfinder again but may someday play it again. Fifth Edition Dungeons and Dragons is my favorite game right now and for the foreseeable future.

Currently I run two campaigns of D&D5e. I also run D&D Encounters at a local gaming store. This has given me a lot of experience in a very short time. One thing I have learned is the importance of campaign notes because trying to keep track of things happening across multiple games at the very same time is difficult. I had to drop out of a Savage Worlds Campaign due to how busy I am with work and not being able to plan far enough in advance for gaming sessions. It was unfortunate because they were awesome people. Maybe down the line I will get back to being able to play with them.

The YouTube channel had a little over 130 subscribers and I set the bar high I felt at 500 subscribers by the end of 2014. Little did I know that I would hit that goal in November and I'd hit about 750 subscribers. It is funny because it reminds me of a class I took this year where they ask you what your goals are but then make you cross it out and double it. So I would probably say my goal is 2,000 for 2015 but if I cross it out and double it you know what that makes it. No matter how many subscribers I get over there though I will always try to reply to as many comments as possible.

Content is still key with YouTube and there is a lot I want to do in 2015. Crafting is something I want to get back to. Haven't done any crafting in a few months now. It is something I enjoy doing and I think people like to watch it. I would say Flip Through Fridays but I don't buy enough books to keep up with that every week. My D&D Basics Series has been on hold for a few weeks but I plan on bringing that back until I finish it and move on to a more advanced D&D series. One of the things I enjoyed doing early on with my channel is discussing ideas for campaigns and stuff so I want to do that again. Also World Building and fleshing out my current world is on my list. The video ideas I have are many and looking forward to doing them.

When it comes to this website, blog, and podcast it is still new to me. The positive reaction it has received has been great. We have had some guest blog posts that people liked too. I want to bring you new posts at least every other day on average. I'd also like to get more downloads up on the website with monsters, characters to use, tables, and more. The podcast is going to be bi-weekly but every now and then it may be once a month. We don't have an actual release schedule for it. We are always interested in your questions, or show requests though.

The Tabletop RPG One Shot group on Facebook began around August and already has hit 750 members. That is amazing! Right now there are 17 games scheduled in the next two weeks to be played because of the group. Again that is fantastic! When we started the group I never expected this type of success with it. I still plan on running games for mainly new members when milestones are hit. For instance when we hit 1,000 members I will run another D&D5e game.

Some things I would really like to do in 2015 is get more people making videos, playing games, and interacting with others. The Live Chats I have hosted on G+ Hangouts have led to some great friendships and helped me learn a lot as well. If I make half as many friends as I did in 2014 it will be a good year. The friends I made this year are people that I think will be life long friends. There are so many awesome people out there and I want to say thank you to all of them for their support this whole time.

As you can see there is a lot of great things going on heading into 2015 and we here are  planning for a huge year. Growing the hobby is something I have always been passionate about and I feel like I made some progress towards that in 2014.