Welcome to the first annual HoBby Awards! For the last twelve months, I have been reading every blog article placed on the website here. Once a month with the Heroes of Blogging series, I try to get more traffic to those articles worth reading. It’s hard to believe an entire year has passed, but I thought it would be appropriate to honor some of the bloggers who have contributed most to the online community.
Originally I was going to write this article as if it were an actual award show, with nominees and winners. But I decided that was a bit too elitist. I really only want to honor and highlight the unsung heroes of blogging. Accordingly, I will simply list two or three notable bloggers and articles from the past year in various categories.
Best Game Design Bloggers
With a passion for terrain and props, Geneome contributes unique talents to the community. A frequent contributor, his advice on spicing up your campaign with props and visual aids is unparalleled. Although he has not contributed an article since April, I do hope he returns soon with more wonderful pictures and props.
Master of the house rule, Qube has blessed these blogs with variant rules on feats, minions, weapons, mass combat, and classless D&D, not to mention introducing several articles on his idea of “knacks”. These are all interesting reading that cannot help but inspire DMs to create their own mini-games in their campaign.
Best DM Advocates
If there were a Heroes of Blogging for Magic, I suspect LordArchaon would be on that list as well as this one because of his contributions in redesigning Magic’s world of Zendikar into a 4e D&D campaign setting. In addition to his work on Zendikar, he is a veteran creature designer, having presented us with unique and challenging dragons, demon princes, and goblins.
It is always worth a trip to Foggy Bottom Manor to read an article with its founder and master, quid.tu.facis. Whether he is presenting advice on designing campaigns and adventures, presenting his own adventures for DMs to use, or analyzing the digital tools, quid.tu.facis’ advice is always well-presented, civil, thorough, and very, very astute. He is also prolific with multiple articles featured in seven months. He disappeared for a while in the winter, but I’m glad he returned last month, and hope he continues blogging.
Prolific and prosaic, zephsright offers advice to DMs on solo creatures, maps and the virtual tabletop. And although it wasn’t featured in Heroes of Blogging, I do recommend reading through his Journal of an Elf Invoker, which is an entertaining piece of fantasy writing.
Best Player Advocates
A passionate advocate for all things martial, Garthanos is the master of reflavoring. He is the inventor of the “princess build” or the “LazyLord”. In the past years, he has added his unique touch to warlords, rangers, swordmages, fighters, and knights. His ideas on design and character building are always worth reading.
TelinArtho is more than a prolific blogger, with a featured article every other month, on average. He is a valuable member of the D&D community. Laboring tirelessly for the Core Coliseum, and endlessly promoting play-by-post games, Telin_Artho is not just a hero of blogging. He is a hero of D&D.
We all know that Khilkhameth likes dragonborn, but that’s not what gets him on this list today. Khilkameth should be a featured blogger for his constant reviews of D&D related materials, from the comic books to Dark Sun materials. A wealth of information and an entertaining reviewer, Khilkhameth’s contributions are as valuable as his name is difficult to spell.
With heroic articles in ten of the last twelve months, and multiple featured articles in half of those months, xa05 is easily the most prolific of the Heroes of Blogging. But quality, more than quantity is what earns xa05 a spot in the HoBbies. His analysis of AD&D mechanics, particularly his analysis of psionics, was astute and entertaining. His variant rules on skill challenges, politics, and other aspects of the game are good advice for any edition.
Best Individual Articles
Incenjucar’s "Elemental Power Source" series was brilliant, and I can only hope the developers saw it before the future book on elemental heroes went to print.
Paladin-s Pride’s "Trap Sense" series was outstanding advice on the use of traps and well worth reading.
Pluisjen’s “Your Kingdom Awaits” system for managing estates is genius, in my opnion, and would be a great foundation for a Birthright-style campaign in 4e. Jharii’s related "Kingdoms as Characters" series is also worth reading.
And an honorable mention to davidgiven, Darth_Jerrod, I_smile_alot, kilpatds, MajesticMoose, and Timmeh, all of whom are gifted bloggers whom I highly recommend reading. I also encourage everybody to keep contributing and blogging to the site. I really enjoy reading what everyone has to say and I encourage people to keep saying it!