|Logo of Joc Internacional,
originally designed by Arnal Ballester
Last May 3rd the Spanish newspaper El Mundo published in its online edition the article titled Decadencia y caída del imperio de los juegos de rol (Decline and fall of the empire of role-playing games, here with a link to the Google machine-translation, just in case the article disappears or is deleted you can find a copy of it in Google's search cache and Archive.org) which proposes that role-playing games in Spain have been a fad that had its peak in the decades of the 80s and 90s of last century and coinciding with the sale of the game Oráculo by the now dissapeared publisher Joc Internacional (Wikipedia | Roleropedia) this playful period was extinguished leaving only a few players (“románticos trasnochados” ie "outmoded romantics" literally citing the article) who insist on going ahead with hobbies that, quoting the article again “se reducen a curiosidades casi arqueológicas” (ie "are reduced to almost archaeological curiosities") and one might think they are like Asterix, Obelix and the Gauls of the village which obstinately resists again and again to the Roman invader, The Last of the Mohicans by James Fenimore Cooper or the 300 Spartans of king Leonidas in the Battle of Thermopylae...
Well, what can I tell you?, as one of these outmoded romantics I can tell you that the view presented in the article does not correspond much less to the world in which I move and is full of a large number of errors and fallacies (to see a thorough breakdown and critique of the article you may read this post of the blog Play it again, Sam or see this video of the Youtube channel of El Poderoso Crom).
In fact we are living through a really fabulous creative bloom in which contact between veteran players and newbies recently discovering this marvelous hobby does not stop growing, in which ideas and publications of fans and publishers bloom and are spread thanks to Internet and the new technologies using websites, blogs and social networks, as you can see in the feeds appearing at the right side of my blog, in Red de Rol or the community El Rol de Siempre Online to put just a few examples (and yes, those are the technologies which apparently had to definitively bury our “analogical” hobby but are helping to mantain it and grow it).
And if that was not enough some of the role-playing games created in Spain wil have an English language edition as can be read in this post of the blog of Nocturnal Media, so the future is very interesting and does not seem to fall into decline more or less immediately.
Perhaps you, dear reader, have reached my blog being a role-playing games connoisseur and already know all of this, but there's also the chance of you being a person who have heared about our hobby and want to know more about it, if so, I recommend you take a look to the corresponding Wikipedia entry and the excellent blogs Rol de los 90 and La Frikoteca to knwo more about it, also you may want to test some games, so you may visit the websites offering freely downloadable games and aventures in Spanish and Catalan like RolGratis.com, Sinergia del juego de rol or Codice Grupo Creativo (Facebook | Google+ | Wix), the digital shelf of Maqui Edicions at Lektu and the blog Fanzine Rolero, so if you want it you will not need to spend any euro (or dollar, or whatever), you also may know of players willing to invite you to a demonstration session and who knows, perhaps you like it, but if not dont worry, not all people likes the same things and there is nothing wrong with it.
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