Wow. What a week! In a typical year, this week would’ve been a trip to Reno for GAMA trade show. My days at GAMA mean lots of meetings with industry folk, talking to retailers, and generally spreading the word about Paizo’s organized play programs. But this year is anything but typical. I’m not one to get flustered about epidemics – lived in England during Mad Cow and in South Korea during the last SARS outbreak – but even I’m finding the information overload surrounding Covid-19 overwhelming. This morning, half my emails were from companies talking about the steps they are taking to contain and protect from the virus. I’m glad everyone’s taking steps to minimize the footprint and restrain the outbreak.
Which brings me to what organized play is doing. Staff are practicing hygiene and social distancing techniques. We suspended travel to events through the end of May, which caused us to withdraw from a number of conventions. Paizo leadership is looking at PaizoCon and evaluating options. Many of the conventions we withdrew from have now cancelled or postponed their events and others are following suite. The Washington state government banned gatherings over 250 people. This is the first governmental restriction in the US, but I don’t expect it to be the last. Europeans in many countries have limited travel and some are in lockdown status. I expect directives from other nations as well as we all step in to combat the spread of the virus.
What does this mean for our players and the communities that support the events? Fortunately for us, several years ago we established an online region under the direction of regional venture-coordinator Jesse Davis. We are working closely with Jesse and the online team to look at moving physical games to online space. We ask that any GM willing to run online games let their local coordinators know. We are still processing event support for those events that have not cancelled. We ask organizers to drop us a line to update their event status at email@example.com.
These are trying times and we appreciate our communities stepping up and doing their part to limit the spread of the virus. We thank you for your assistance and will let you know more when we have the information.
Until next time—Explore, Report, Cooperate!
Organized Play Manager
Musings from the Organized Play Manager
Thursday, March 12, 2020