Thursday, July 19, 2012

Obligatory Post About the ENnie Awards' "Best Free Product" Category

In case you are living under a rock, there is a lot of controversy about this year's "Best Free Product" nominees for this year's ENnie Awards.

As Justin Halliday explains quite well, this award category is a farce—all but ONE of the free products are either quick-start rules for a for-pay product, promos for paid products, one-day free downloads, or, of all things, a conversion guide between campaign settings. And all of the nominees except for that conversion guide are from established, commercial publishers.

Seriously—and especially in regards to that conversion guide—WTF?!?

I have lots of free PDFs from RPG/OSR blogs and small-press or indie publishers and yet NONE of them were nominated. Why wasn't Secret Santicore nominated? Why not Heroes Against Darkness? Or the Hills Canton Compendium? Or the Lands of Ara Compendium. Or Blackmarsh for God's sake?

I think it's time to start a fan based award system modeled on the The People's Choice Award, where the fans and players vote for fan-produced products. Sure, it's a circle-jerk, but it would be our circle-jerk. I don't know if there should be prizes involved--hell, I don't have any cash to put up prizes. Maybe those guys over at the One Page Dungeon Contest can arrange something or run this whole thing. They might be better at this than me.

After coming up with the categories below, I'm tempted to call these the FANnies. All we need is a Hot Elf Chick in our logo and we would be good to go. Maybe this one:

Art by Khairul Hisham, copyright ©2010.
Totally used without permission. Here's a link to the post where I found it:

At any rate, here are my suggested categories:

Best For-Pay Fanzine

Best Free Fanzine

Best For-Pay Fan Adventure/Encounter/Module thingie

Best Free Fan Adventure/Encounter/Module thingie

Best Fan-created For-Pay Supplement

Best Fan-created Free Supplement

Best Free Fan-Created Community Project

Best Free Fan-created Original Monster
(not included in any other category--like posted to a blog or something)

Best Fan Podcast

Best Fan Vidcast

Best Fan Blog

Best Fan Forum

Best Overall Fan-Created Free Product

Any other categories you can think of? Who would you nominate for these categories (feel free to nominate yourself). Since I'm dreaming here, can I also have a pony?