RPG Holidays Part Two – July to December

In this part, I’ll cover the holidays for the remainder of the calendar year.

There are a variety tabletop roleplaying game holidays each year. These are days and entire months dedicated to a specific RPG luminary, campaign, game, format, or position like that of the gamemaster. In the first part of this three-part series, I covered all of the widely recognized holidays that occur in the first half of the year. From New Gamemaster Month and RPG Zine Month to GM’s Day, Blackmoor Campaign Day, and Free RPG Day, there are a number of worthy holidays, each celebrating the hobby we love. In this part, I’ll cover the holidays for the remainder of the calendar year, talking about each event and why they’re important to the whole hobby.

DCC Day 2023 Logo.png

JULY TO DECEMBER

  • JULY. The closest event for fans and game stores to Free RPG Day is Goodman Games’ Dungeon Crawl Classics Day/DCC Day. In July of each year, the DCC Day event offers a free-to-fans adventure funnel and characters to pull gamers into the antics of the DCC/MCC game systems. On Saturday, July 22 of 2023, Goodman offered a chance to play a Mutant Crawl Classics (MCC) adventure titled Crash of the Titans. In addition to the funnel, the publisher offered stores a “new limited edition printing of the MCC Core Rulebook [with] a glow-in-the-dark cover from Stefan Poag!” The DCC Day 2023 Adventure Pack provided two other adventures. If you’re interested in what stores hosted and gave DCC/MCC some extra support in 2023, check out the list of participating friendly local game stores (FLGS) near you. Goodman Games promises another DCC Day in 2024. After Free RPG Day perhaps the most widely observed RPG-related holiday is Gary Gygax Day. Celebrated on July 27th each year to coincide with Gary’s birthday, this date has a lot of grassroots support among Dungeons & Dragons and OSR players, and RPGers in general. To get into the spirit of this event, grab some polyhedrals, gather with friends, and play a Gygax RPG like Dungeons & Dragons, Gary Gygax’s Dangerous Journeys, Gary Gygax’s Lejendary Adventure, or Castles & Crusades. For the 2023 celebration of Gary's day, a park bench was dedicated in his memory in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. Like the holidays related to Dave Arneson, this is a chance to recognize the contribution Gary made to your gaming table. Without these creators gaming together, we would not have any roleplaying games today.
  • AUGUST. For fans of the Great Old Ones and Cthulhu, there’s H. P. Lovecraft Day on August 20, the author’s birthday. This date is a celebration of the Mythos-related writings of Lovecraft. To coincide with the date, NecronomiCon Providence, a Lovecraftian convention, falls on or near this date each year on even numbered years. Like the holiday, the convention is dedicated to all things Lovecraft and Cthulhu including the many tabletop roleplaying games inspired by his works. If you’re not at the convention, August 20 is a great time for a session of Call of Cthulhu, Achtung! Cthulhu 2d20, Trail of Cthulhu, Eldritch Skies, or any of the other RPGs about the Mythos.
  • OCTOBER. Month of Darkness spins out of the World of Darkness (Vampire: The Masquerade, Werewolf: The Apocalypse, etc.) and runs for the full month of October. During the month, publishers offer deals and free content for World of Darkness RPGs. Tthe title and October running up to Halloween makes perfect sense for this promotion. That said, I am not sure if this is an ongoing event. It’ll be interesting to see if Paradox and Renegade Game Studios continue this in 2023 and what goodies they might offer. Dave Arneson Game Day occurs on October 1st, and is the same setup as Gary Gygax Day and Blackmoor Campaign Day. Based on Dave’s birthday, this is another great date to play a game of D&D set in Blackmoor. Like the other dates, it recognized Dave’s contribution to the wider hobby. Warhammer Day comes in October. While this holiday is a spotlight shined on the famous tabletop miniatures wargame, it is still a great date to bust out your favorite edition of the Warhammer RPG and sling some d6s.
  • NOVEMBER. Cyberpunk Day is about the entire cyberpunk genre. Cyberpunk RPGs speak to me enough to warrant a three-part retrospective about what they offered in 2022. On October 10 the international version of the holiday occurs, but there’s a separate option on November 12 that’s dedicated to writers, gamers, and more. Either date is a great reason to play Cyberpunk 2020, Cyberpunk RED, Shadowrun, Blade Runner: The Roleplaying Game, CY_BORG, TOKYO : OTHERSCAPE - A Mythic Cyberpunk RPG, GURPS CthulhuPunk (if you want to combine cyberpunk, Cthulhu, and crunch), or even my post-cyberpunk RPG, HUMAN… ALMOST. There is an opportunity here for cyberpunk RPG publishers and fans to push and promote the date to raise awareness of the many great cyberpunk RPGs already available.
  • DECEMBER. DriveThruRPG’s early to mid-December sale, just prior to Christmas, is the “Teach Your Kids Holiday Sale.” Featuring sales on a variety of child- and family-focused games, the event provides fun stocking stuffers for the holiday season. It’s also a smart tie-in to New Gamemaster Month in January. If you go back to the first article and look at the January offerings, you’ll find New GM Month kicks off the year. This creates a cycle where you buy the young person in your life a game in December so they can learn to run it in January. It’s a solid strategy to build a larger base of GMs, which is critical to the continued health of tabletop RPGs. National Dice Day happens on December 4th. This is a day about dice in general, but for RPGs they’re foundational so it’s worth noting this game-related holiday. If you’re a fan of dice – what RPGer isn’t? – this is a great day to give them a roll.
The Month of Darkness.png

SECOND HALF OF THE YEAR RECAP

If these dates aren’t already on your calendar, now’s the time to add the holidays that interest you and your gaming table. Each of these events is a great excuse to sling some dice with your friends while celebrating the artform we call roleplaying.

You’ve read the list of RPG holidays which begs the question: What do you think of the existing holidays? Beyond gaming conventions, which are a separate subject, did I miss any tabletop roleplaying game related dates that you celebrate? If so, let me know in the comments.

MORE RPG HOLIDAYS TO COME

In the next, and final, installment of this series, I talk about some of the one-off events that have happened over the years including several for Dungeons & Dragons. I’ll delve into unofficial holidays and TTRPG events that could be added to the calendar for 2024 and beyond. Check back to find out more about the RPG holidays yet to pass.

Here’s a recap of the TTRPG-related holidays including those from the first part of this series:
  • New Gamemaster Month – January (full month)
  • RPG Zine Month – February (full month)
  • GM’s Day – March 4
  • Blackmoor Campaign Day – April 17
  • Traveller RPG Day – May 1
  • International Tabletop Day – 1st Saturday of June
  • Free RPG Day – 2nd or 3rd Saturday in June
  • DCC Day – 2nd or 3rd Saturday in July
  • Gary Gygax Day – July 27
  • H. P. Lovecraft Day – August 20
  • Month of Darkness – October (full month)
  • Dave Arneson Game Day – October 1
  • Warhammer Day – 1st Saturday of October
  • Cyberpunk Day – November 12 (with another version on October 10)
  • National Dice Day – December 4
TTRPG holiday-related DriveThruRPG sales:
  • New Year, New Game (full month of January)
  • Teach Your Kids Holiday Sale (most of December)
Egg Embry participates in the OneBookShelf Affiliate Program, Noble Knight Games’ Affiliate Program, and is an Amazon Associate. These programs provide advertising fees by linking to DriveThruRPG, Noble Knight Games, and Amazon.
 

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Egg Embry

Egg Embry

darjr

I crit!
Limithron, the folks who make Pirate Borg have Talk like a Pirate day.

 

Limithron, the folks who make Pirate Borg have Talk like a Pirate day.

Very appropriate! Thanks for sharing! Let me get this into.the next part of this series.
 

KoolMoDaddy-O

Explorer
Just a head's up: NecronomiCon in Providence happens every other year, not annually. Before the pandemic it took place in odd-numbered years but now it occurs in even-numbered years, so the next one is in 2024. On the off-years, the group that runs it -- Lovecraft Arts & Sciences Council -- will usually do a few small local or virtual events.

It's a lot of fun with a crossover between gaming and author/writer events and appearances.
 

Just a head's up: NecronomiCon in Providence happens every other year, not annually. Before the pandemic it took place in odd-numbered years but now it occurs in even-numbered years, so the next one is in 2024. On the off-years, the group that runs it -- Lovecraft Arts & Sciences Council -- will usually do a few small local or virtual events.

It's a lot of fun with a crossover between gaming and author/writer events and appearances.
Good call out. I've updated the article. :)
 

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