Friday, July 8, 2011

Really? In my opinion, ennies = LAME

Okay, I know this opinion might upset some people, but I couldn't care less if your game or whatever won an award.  Especially something like an ennie.  What's an ennie anyway?  Does it have something to do with independent publishing?  If that's the case then aren't almost all the RPG/hobby games independent?  I noticed that a couple of D&D products were nominated.  Are they indie also?  I thought they were the "big boys" of RPG publishing?  Or is an ennie something else?

I also find the qualifications of the judges a bit dubious.  From what I understand, aren't they picked from applicants from a forum?  From what I've seen  posted by most forum contributors, WHY IN THE HELL would I want to trust their judgement about games or gaming accessories?

Or is it just an ego massage for the game makers/publishers? 

I know it's a sweet gig for the judges, because they get free games.  Hey, if you want an award send me a copy of your game, gaming accessory, or whatever, and I'll send you a nice certificate, and post it on my blog!  I'll even put a link on my sidebar.  Heh... yeah, like that's going to happen.

I'm sure some people go,  "Ooooooooooooo,,, it won an ennie..."  However, it's not going to influence my purchasing decision.  In fact it might push me in the 'don't bother buying or downloading' direction.

It's fine if you want to try and win an award for your efforts, but all in all, the ennies seem to be more of a popularity contest than anything else.

And just to be clear, I don't have any dogs in this show.  I've never submitted anything to an awards contest.  Nor have I applied to be a judge.  No sour grapes here; just my opinion about most awards in general.  Even if I were to start creating/publishing gaming material I would have no interest in submitting it to the ennies or any other awards contest.

Be proud of  what you create.  Do it becuase you love doing it.  If you make some money, and people like your work that's all the awards you should need.


  1. They are called Ennies because they are backed by ENworld, not because of a reference to "indie" or "independent"

  2. Oh yeah ENworld. Now they seem even less important to me, if that's even possible. I only visited the forum or site a few times, and had forgotten the connection between ENworld and the Ennies. Thanks for the info.

  3. I agree. Folk shouldn't need awards to recognize they did something awesome.

    I think the ENnies are just a fun, well meaning attempt to call attention to some nifty games. I don't see the harm in that, and I don't see folk taking them extremely seriously either. They're fun, they start conversations, they help folk find neat things they might enjoy, but they don't claim to be the be all end all of what constitutes a good game.

  4. CW Richeson, you make some good points, and looking at the ENnies from that perspective they don't seem that bad. However, some people do take them very seriously, and they shouldn't. The judges qualifications are dubious, and no one knows the amount of "work" they put into the judging. Someone could flip through a few pages and dismiss something without giving it much thought. Then it comes down to a popularity vote. Why not just go with a straight popularity vote in the first place? Give everyone an even chance?

  5. @CW Richeson, well after reading your comment on RPG Blog II it appears that you were an Ennie judge? Why not disclose that fact in your comment? You made some good points, but now I'm not so sure they were good points given the fact you were a judge. In fact it really makes me wonder about the honesty of Ennie judges. Full disclosure is important, honesty is important, anything else destroys the credibilty of what you say and the Ennies themselves.

  6. That's a great point about full disclosure, Zanazaz. You can find a complete list of the ENnies staff and judges at the official site. I'm not aware of anyone trying to hide a connection to the ENnies. I apologize if you find my statement that the ENnies are fun and we should all just have a good time to be some sort of malfeasance on my part.

  7. Perhaps it was an oversight on your part to mention you were an ENnie judge. However, I don't follow what goes on at ENWorld, so no, I don't know who is a judge and who isn't a judge. As far as fun goes, how can it be fun when there are allegations of past corruption? The awards no longer seem credible to me.

  8. I'm not much of a regular at ENWorld I'm afraid. As to corruption, there have been zero problems while I've been a judge for the past two years. The whole judging process is really just an email list where we talk about playing games and talk games up. It's about the most benign thing I've encountered while using the internet.

    You may also want to consider that there's really nothing to gain from "corruption." Most of us give away huge amounts of product because, frankly, we can't store it and don't really want it. I'm an attorney and take off work to judge, so it's actually a financial disadvantage to participate. This is a common situation for many judges.

    Nevertheless, if you really feel this strongly about it why not help a friend you know who loves the hobby get elected? Anyone can run, and now's the time for nominations. The judges from past years have been a big mix of people of all different sorts of backgrounds.

    In any event, thank you for the polite disagreement. Happy gaming!