State of the Order

By October 11, 2013EOG Lore
State of the Order

Looking back at the EOG’s First Months

Four days without a new article? It’s unacceptable!

It’s a very busy week here as I search for new chambers, so I must apologise for the lack of articles. By way of compensation, this seems to be the perfect opportunity for a look back at the first five months of the Esoteric Order of Gamers online. There have been 78 articles in those months—an average of about one ever other day—and 6 new games have been added to the library—over one a month. I’m pleased with that rate—and hope to continue it—because one of our most important goals is to ensure the site is always fresh and interesting and regularly updated with new content.

So the biggest reason why I wanted to have this look back at the site so far was to ask you, the reader, what you’re enjoying about the EOG so far, and what you’d like to see in the future. If you have a moment, peruse this list of questions and let me know your thoughts in the comments below:

– what’s your favourite category of post?
– what would you like to see more of?
– what would you like to see less of?
– what is the most useful thing to you on the site?
– any suggestions for improving your experience of the site?
– any suggestions for things you’d like to see (subjects and/or functionality)?
– any comments on how we’re using social media?
– would you lke to read more about the Esoteric Order’s history (ie, stories, history etc)?
– why do you visit the EOG?
– what keeps you coming back?
– how can we increase our readership?

The history and motivations of EOG as an organisation can be mysterious, but the website exists to improve the gaming of like-minded people all over the world. So let’s hear from you! Now’s your chance to take a hand in how this site develops over the years to come. And don’t spare the criticism—as long as it’s constructive we can take it!


  • Corey says:

    UH. Saw your post. So you know, I come to your site every few days to see if there are updates to the game sheets. I also have really enjoyed your painting videos, foamcore plans, etc. Your passion for the hobby is infectious. I also enjoy your design in Tales of Arabian (family favorite). IMHO, you do an amazing job with the site, the presentation and the contributions you make with your game sheets. It is so much easier to teach the games to new people with your designs. Keep up the good work.

    • Universal Head says:

      Thankyou Corey, I really do appreciate the kind words. I love to hear that people appreciate the site, and I also appreciate you letting me know what could be done better – so if you think of anything, do let me know! Great to have you as a regular visitor.

  • Monsterman says:

    I also stop by every few days or so. The reference sheets had always been my primary focus, but since the advent of the new site I can say I’ve enjoyed every article in some way. Your love of the hobby almost matches mine 🙂 (you just seem to have a bit more drive than I do!!).. Thanks for all your work!

    • Universal Head says:

      It’s fantastic to be gethering some like minded people together here Monsterman. You’re always welcome at the Order!

  • Steve says:

    I’ve been visiting since the old site, and am always on the lookout for your rules summaries and reference sheets. I enjoy reading about the other elements, but don’t always have the time to follow your plans (though I lust after those well-packed boxes and custom details). I suppose that makes sense—I’m looking for summaries and I don’t have a lot of time. 😉

    Of course, my recommendation then would have to include more coverage. I own quite a few games and am always hoping you’ll present one of them as the next rules summary project. It all depends on which games you have access to, but it would be exciting to prepare a poll that allowed gamers to select your next endeavor from a list of options.

    Keep up the great work. As others mentioned, your enthusiasm and “I’m actually doing this, not just talking about it” approach are awesome.

    • Universal Head says:

      Since I own almost every game I’ve done a summary for, the choice (and in fact, everything here at the EOG) is quite influenced by my own personal taste in games. There are just so many games out there the best I can do (currently anyway) is to cover the games I like. Unfortunately this does mean that some will feel their favourites have fallen through the cracks. But the poll idea is a great one and next time there’s a choice between a bunch of games I’m thinking about covering, I’ll definitely set the question before the EOG readership. Thanks Steve!

      • Steve says:

        Aye, Universal Head! That was precisely what I had in mind. I had no intention of trying to convince you to pick up one of the games I owned (though I do think you should at least *try* Mage Wars at your neighbor’s home someday). Thank you for all of your contributions to the hobby!

  • David says:

    I check almost everyday, at least every other day to see if you have posted any updates. The two things I enjoy the most are articles on how you improve your board games (painting and foam core inserts) and the rule aids. I followed your plans for Merchants of Venus and it inspired me to do something for Myrmes. In both cases it is amazing how quick those games setup.

    I come from a miniature game background and enjoy seeing how to make board gaming a more visual experience. As an avid Dice Tower fan I get a lot of information on new games and things happening in the hobby, so what I am looking for on other sites is how to improve the gaming experience, either by improving the individual games or the gaming environment.

  • paul davies says:

    Hello Illustrious Leader – by your command……… whoop!

    So, here’s the thing. The site is brilliant. There’s rarely a day goes by when I don’t look at it with envy and think – “That’s what a proper gaming site should do and look like” so frankly asking me to critique it is like saying, “Well yes, the Saturn V rocket was indeed a marvel of unified multi-disciplinary engineering achievement, but if there was one thing I’d have changed…. it’s the colour, it always bugged me”

    That aside, you asked nicely so here goes.

    It’s brilliant. And frankly, there are times in our gaming lives in the past few months when our times with games would have been far more confusing, less enlightened, dogged by mistakes and certainly greyer and less painted.

    I’d never painted a single mini before watching and reading your painting guides and genuinely, your series on the Mansion of Madness figs gave me the final confidence to go ahead and actually try painting some figs, and do you know what? I love it, and even better… they don’t look bad (you’ve seen the results on Tweety) and I’m really pleased that every time I pick up my brushes, turn them the right way round, and apply some paint – i’m just that little bit better than i was the last time and my models look just a little sharper, more exciting and yes, ‘poppier’ than before. You’ve changed Descent forever for us. And we’re now about to start malifaux and even my partner slightly sheepishly asked if I could talk her thru starting to paint her crew.

    So, the painting guides are ok. (sorry, couldn’t resist)

    Also, I’d never picked up Foamcore before watching your guides. Alright…… I’d never actually HEARD of Foamcore before your guides, but now I even have a decent low cost bulk supplier and I use it for everything and occasionally games boxes.

    So, those are great.

    Your game guides and cheat sheets have saved us a lot of head scratching and confusion too, so please keep those coming. In fact, they are genuinely the first thing I print out when getting a new game and read through first before the main rules. When it comes to FFG games they are utterly indispensable as they actually make sense!

    I still use you guides for every Arkham Horror, Descent, & Ghost Stories evening we have and often find myself teaching off them and printing new ones out for guests. (One question – why is the Red November one so small? Is it due to the originally small box?)

    So the most useful aspect of the site is probably the game guides, but the most inspirational are the “make & do’s”

    Your social media presence is great, and you’ve kindly answered questions and given feedback on the Tweety regarding my painting efforts that have been really useful in real time. (Seriously man, one model was still drying when you came back with some tips!)

    I like your game descriptions, they aren’t reviews, they aren’t overly opinionated, but so much more than just a bland trotting out of the box/publisher blurb. The mechanics summaries are always spot-on and though your summaries have never made or broken a game buying decision (co hey, we’re all different right?), they have always made me look deeper at a game or weighed them up more carefully in our local game store.

    I also enjoy your playthru vids. They feel more like “seeing the site owner at play” kind of wildlife documentary (which I was interested to see from the War of the Ring vid is how your partner also views your gaming!) than actual useful vids, but the flavour and fun of a game always comes thru. I don’t play 40k, but found the battle rep really funny, interesting and engaging. But it still didn’t make me want to play, which is good, shows it’s the video I liked not the game – something other reviewers would do well to be mindful of when they do lazy ‘fish in a barrel’ reviews.

    So basically – you’re doing ok man. Where ‘ok’ is a bar that I can just about see with my naked eye if I’m stood on the Eiffel Tower which I’ve remembered to attach securely to the top of the Matterhorn first.

    Yours – a lowly amateur review site person

    Paul D
    card and pixel

    • Universal Head says:

      Wow. Wow. ‘Thanks for writing’ doesn’t cover it Paul. I’m not doing this for the praise (I sure ain’t doing it for the money!) but that almost brought a tear to my eye. I created this site to cover gaming things in my own slightly idiosyncratic, hopefully entertaining way, and it’s feedback like that that lets me know I’m definitely heading in the right direction with it.

      I’m absolutely chuffed and you just made my week. Cheers mate, I’ll try to keep it coming.

      (PS Yep, the Red November one was designed for the original small box.)

  • Holger says:

    Hello there, greetings from a kingdom far-far away (which in this case is germany),

    first I want to tell you how impressing your work is. The whole spirit that is embedd in each of your pages and every article is that of full commitment to the hobby and none is done half-hearted.

    This I like and share. Since I was a BIG gamer in battletech, WH40K and WH-Roleplay but also a lot of 80’s to 90’s games (like the awesome “Games Workshop Book Case Games”), a lot of nostalgia overcame me when I stumbeld over your order. Nowadays – married with children – there is only a little time left for boardgaming and none for roleplaying. But these few precious moments I want to savour as much as possible. And that is exactly what talks to me out of your website: Enjoying the gaming evening like a expensive bottle of wine (or maybe whisky) in the right setting.

    Apart from feeling familiar and comfortble when reading your articles i learned about this very useful and – at least to me – new material of foamboard (which is “kapa-platte” in german). Man, this stuff is awesome. If you have one of these games (like Battlestar Galactica with all expansions) that are really stuffed with – hmmm – stuff, these self-made trays and inlets safe your day. I definitely will do some for myself. But I fear, I won’t be able to contribute plans like you do because of the lack of CAD-programs.

    The rules-summaries are also awesome. Since i have done a lot of these for myself, i know what kind of fiddly work this is. But where i only wrote some Word-documents, your designs are looking far (in the dimensions of lightyears) better. This is the typical rousing EOG-attitude i mentioned earlier.

    Because of all of this, I’m visiting your site at least two times a week and keep my friends informed.

    PLEASE keep up the amazing work.


    • Universal Head says:

      ‘Kapa-platte’! Love it!

      It’s very exciting to hear that there is a ‘feel’ coming across in all the EOG materials—that’s exactly the kind of thing I was hoping for. I want this to be a place where you always get quality stuff to improve your gaming experiences, but I also want it to be entertaining, a bit special and different.

      Tausend dank Holger!

  • Thomas Covert says:

    I think your player aids are the best around, clear and concise. i also love the new foam core plans, keep them coming. I would really like to see some of the player aids updated now that expansions have been released (Ghost Stories, Conquest of Planet Earth, Elder Sign, etc)

    Thanks for your hard work and dedication to the gaming community.

What do you think?