The CRPG Book - Initial Thoughts Sunday 4th of August 2019

I first heard of The CRPG Book back in 2017 with preview 5. I remember downloading the PDF and thinking this was an awesome project, but... I don't do PDF's. While most of the books I read these days are eBook’s rather than paper, none of my handheld devices are particular good at handling PDF's and I'm not going to read books on a blazing computer screen. So even after grabbing the initial release in 2018, it remained on the to-do list.

I later found that it had been printed as hardback by Bitmap Books, although by the time I heard about it it was already out of stock. So I signed up to their newsletter for when it would next be available. As soon as I got the notification, I pre-ordered my copy.

(Incidentally, the rotter’s at Bitmap Books notified me that the book was available, I purchased it, received it a few weeks later and it's been left in its protective cocoons for a couple of weeks while I try to find space on a book shelf for it. In the interim, they sent another email saying they had some copies left of the collector’s edition. GAH! I'd likely have bought that instead if they told me that first.)

Another extremely well packaged book!
Another extremely well packaged book!

When the book arrived, it was very well packaged - seems to be a theme for me recently getting books that have actually had some care taken with. My first surprise was how heavy the book is. It is a substantially meaty hardback. In fact, it's so substantial I think I'd have to read it by having it flat on a desk.

The cover of this expansive (and heavy) tome
The cover of this expansive (and heavy) tome

On unwrapping the book I was quite taken with the cover. The original PDF I'd downloaded had a kind of montage of game boxes which was neat in its own right, but this new art was pretty cool also.

Seeing is believing. Each page is glossy, full colour with crisp text.
Seeing is believing. Each page is glossy, full colour with crisp text.

The photo's I've taken of the book can't really do it justice. Each page is a high gloss extravaganza of text and full colour screenshots. It looks really good.

There are over 500 pages, the vast bulk describing a plethora of RPG's from 1975 to 2014.

As well as the high quality glossy pages, it has a built in bookmark
As well as the high quality glossy pages, it has a built in bookmark

Each described game has either one or two full pages devoted to it along with plenty of screenshots. The photo above is from one of the two page spreads, and also features the ribbon bookmark that is attached to the book.

I haven't read very much of this book yet but I am impressed with the quality of the content by the various contributors to the book, and to the actual physical package provided by Bitmap Books.

Once I've read the book I'll post a proper review, but for now, I'm impressed. It'll be interesting to see just how many of these games I've played (not many!), and how my experiences of them compare with the authors.

This post was first published Sunday 4th of August 2019 and was last modified Sunday 4th of August 2019 at 08:28:20.

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