Monday, March 30, 2009

Thinking About Game Carnival

The Idea

The concept of the blog carnival rather interests me. For those of you not familiar with this phenomenon, a carnival is an online magazine published at a regular interval that demands participation from a blog community in two ways: authors submit posts from their blog that become the articles in the magazine, and then those same authors take turns hosting the carnival every time it is published.

This format increases the visibility of the entire community since readers stumbling upon the publication will be presented with a variety of interesting articles on the subject at hand and thus be introduced to blogs they may never have read before. Also, when an author hosts a well supported blog carnival on their site, many additional guests will visit the site and perhaps be exposed to much more of what that author has to offer even beyond what they've submitted to the carnival.

Game Carnival

A year or two ago when I was initially active on my blog, I followed the Game Carnival maintained by Gameguy, submitting some articles to it as well. Unfortunately, during my downtime (we'll call it 'the dark years') Game Carnival gradually lost its board game content and its support in general and was ultimately abandoned. This strikes me as odd since it seems like there are lots of interesting board game blogs out there, and the carnival is such a good way to increase exposure in the community. Why did it fail? Is there enough interest in this for me to pick it up and run with it? Are board game bloggers really not that interested in keeping such a project up and running?

A Final Thought...

Game Carnival was a broad gaming publication, meaning articles could be submitted on board games, card games, video games, role playing games, and anything remotely related to the hobby. This seemed at the time to be a positive feature--in theory a broader topic would garner more support from different kinds of bloggers. However, could the lack of focus and sense of purpose be what did it in?

What would be the first steps to building support for a new carnival? Is there any way to start small, perhaps some sort of a trial run to test the market, if you will? The fact that there doesn't seem to be any viable publication on board games makes me think one may simply not work, but then again perhaps the idea simply needs some tinkering.



Yehuda said...

you can start small.

contact the owners of all the blogs and explain to them the concept and ask for submissions. Also post notes on BGG and in spielfrieks.

I would contribute and host.

Nathaniel Todd said...

Do you think it makes sense to stick to the basic BGG territory for the carnival, or should it encompass role playing and video gaming as well? My leaning is toward keeping it board & card games only, but I wonder if this would be too limiting. Would you think an official site like the one that hosted 'game carnival' is worth using, or would it be just as easy to have the whole deal be freeform?

Yehuda said...

There was once a very large electronic games carnival, but I don't know why it died out.

I would stick to tabletop games.

Definitely best to use