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Guide to Data Entry

The Problem

The categorizing of Role-Playing Games into a database hierarchy is complicated. RPGs change publishers. Go out of print and come back. Get revised into new rulesets. You name the complication and the RPG world has an example to cover it. No structure we impose will be perfect - but we must have order. And so we have decided upon a fairly simple structure - with a few interesting ways to handle the corner cases.

Design Goals

To create a database hierarchy that is flexible enough to handle a wide variety of collector needs but refrain from being overly complex so that it is navigable to the average role-play gamer.The idea is to be able to track things down to the print edition (if desired) while still allowing for higher-level discussion and review of any game, core book, sourcebook, supplement or adventure. We welcome collectors, players and anyone interested in the hobby of Role-Playing for any reason!

The Great Analogy

Picture a box. Could be a small box. Might be a large box. This box is our basic container on RPGG. We call this box an [rpg] and on the outside we label the contents. Inside the box we place various things that belong together - rulebooks, supplements, maps, dice, etc. We call these tangible things [items].

A classic example of a box would be "Dungeons & Dragons (v3.5)". It's a large box as it contains the three core rulebooks along with hundreds of supplements and sourceboooks that came out during its lifetime. We have another box labeled "Dungeon & Dragons (4th Edition)" to store the latest edition books - they are separate because we don't want the older edition books feeling jealous of the new ones. But clearly these two boxes are related - they are both Dungeons and Dragons and so we will put them on the same closet shelf. This shelf is what we call a [family] and it keeps related boxes near each other.

Now within a box there may need to be some additional structure. Within the "Dungeons & Dragons (v3.5)" box we have books that are part of an ongoing series (such as "The Complete XXXXX" books) or are part of a campaign setting (Ravenloft, Forgotten Realms, Eberron, etc). We use [series] and [setting] to group these books within the box - think of [series] and [setting] as a rubber band that can be used to bind books loosely together within the box.

Now... onto more technical details.

The 98.3% Rule

Throughout this guide you will see references to a rather magical number: 98.3%. We use this as a totally arbitrary (yet ridiculously precise!) number to determine if things should be grouped in the same box. For example, the later editions of Call of Cthulhu are close enough compatibility-wise that you can take any sourcebook, supplement or character from one edition and use it any of the other editions of the rules - they are that close. For the purposes of discussion (forums, reviews, etc) we want these grouped in the same box. Whenever you see the 98.3% rule, don't get hung up over whether something is 1.5% different vs. 2.5% different - instead take it in the spirit it was intended: compatible enough that two RPGs or two Items can be considered the same for purposes of grouping together for discussion, tracking, reviewing, etc. When in doubt, ask for advice from the community!

An Example Entry

Here is an example of a well-formed item entered into the Geek. It demonstrates much of what you will read below:


The Basic Structure

If you only know one thing about all this, it's that we a general hierarchy of:



The [family] and [rpg] entries are not tangible items. An [item] is a tangible item. [item] entries are something you can buy, touch, smell, burn or sell. In terms of the popular Dungeons and Dragons 4th edition, an [item] might be the Player's Handbook or the Monster Manual or some adventure module or boxed set. The [rpg] is the basic way you group these items together as a single entity - these are products that are designed for use together. An [rpg] entry is not tangible, but it is crucial. So, the [rpg] that owns those aforementioned items might be "Dungeons and Dragons (4th Edition)". Nothing about an [rpg] entry implies a rulebook - a rulebook would be an [item]. We add the edition in (parens) so that you know what edition of the rpg you are playing as the Player's Handbooks and Monster Manuals have come out for numerous flavors of D&D. A [family] is an even higher level but looser grouping. It is optional but works well when you have a number of [rpg] entries that are related (such as the various editions of Dungeons and Dragons released over the years).

Because [items] such as books are released in hardcover, softcover, other languages, special bindings (leather, etc) we also have a concept of a [version]. Each [version] entry represents the same item - it might be a 2nd printing with errata included, a PDF version of the book or a foreign language edition of the book.

Below you will find a diagram that we've been using to showcase how it all fits together. You'll see in this diagram the [family] of "Dungeons and Dragons", two [rpg] entries to cover 2 (of the 10!) flavors of Dungeons and Dragons and a number of [item] entries under each. This is nowhere near exhaustive of the Dungeons and Dragons product line ;)

We REQUIRE an [rpg] entry for every [item] entered into the system. So, even if you had a single RPG core book product that had no other supplements, you would still have an [rpg] entry for that and a single [item] entry that represents the actual rulebook. We hate seeing orphaned [item] entries that have no [rpg] attached. I've heard it told that every time an [item] is submitted to the RPG-Geek database without an [rpg] attached a Woodland Gnome dies. Not sure if it's true, but let's not test it.

If you know all of the above, you'll be fine.

The Five Steps To Listing An Item

So you have one of those awesome RPG rule books in front of you... or maybe a nice meaty campaign book. Or some other RPG candy... Unless it is the issue of a magazine, if you’re holding it in your hands, then it’s an [item] in terms of our structure. Here is what you do to get it listed:

  • Adding Items
    1. Is it already listed in the database? Search for the RPG using the "All" search. This will bring up any [rpg] or [item] that have that search term (it unifies the RPG, Item, System and Setting level searches).
    2. If the Item is missing (and thus needs to be entered) you should ensure that the designers, artists, production staff and publisher are in the database. If not, you should add those first - you do not need to wait for their approval (the system allows you to link in pending people and companies to a new submission).
    3. If the Item is missing but the RPG is there, just Create RPG Item and link the parent RPG to this new item.
    4. If the Item is missing and there is no RPG, first add the the RPG entry, using Create RPG, and wait for the Submission Approved message. Then add the Item and link the parent RPG to this new item.
    5. If you have multiple editions of an RPG, it needs multiple [rpg] entries, one for each edition. In this way, we do not put the edition on the Items, only on the RPG. (Only create a new edition if it is significantly different from a previous edition. Otherwise, mark the RPG (1st, 2nd Edition) and so on. If you are adding the second edition of an RPG, you should also create a family to link them together (see [family] below).

Specific Field Rules


The family is an all-encompassing way of grouping rpg as well as series/settings together. This is most often used to group an RPG line that has seen many publications and many different editions over the years. You can imagine there would be a fairly big “Dungeons and Dragons” family (10 major editions over the years) as well as a “GURPS” family (4 major editions). If you are trying to use [family] to group together things thematically (in terms of the game world) or group things released in sets by the publisher, you probably want to use a [setting] or [series] grouping instead. If you are trying to use a [family] to group together rpgs that use the same core ruleset, you probably want to use a [system] entry instead (see below).


  • The [family] entry should not generally contain any edition information.
  • The [family] entry may included parenthetical information to help distinguish it from similar entries.

Here are examples of some of the more common families with proper naming conventions:

Ars Magica
BESM (Big Eyes, Small Mouth)
Call of Cthulhu
DC Heroes
Dungeons & Dragons
Mutants & Masterminds
Star Trek
Star Wars
Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay
World Of Darkness (nWoD)


If you have an RPG that has seen two or more editions, these should be different [rpg] entries (and, subsequently, the rpgs need to be linked together by a family). If two editions have rulesets that are nearly compatible (the threshold is set arbitrarily at 98.3% compatible) such that any sourcebook, supplement or character could be used nearly seamlessly amongst them, then it is acceptable to list a single [rpg] entry and keep all items under them. Think hard before you combine multiple editions into a single [rpg] and remember that even with editions split out, a single item can can be linked to as many [rpg] entries as it is compatible with. Before you combine into a single [rpg] really think out how close the editions are! When in doubt, ask.


  • Put edition information in (parens). That is, "GURPS (Fourth Edition)" not "GURPS Fourth Edition".
  • If the rpg is covering more than one edition (which are 98.3% compatible), the title should reflect that. e.g. "Chivalry & Sorcery (1st & 2nd Editions)"
  • If the book title page or cover clearly indicates a format for the edition, use it. For example "Dungeons & Dragons (v3.5)" and "Dungeons & Dragons (4th Edition)" are the correct way to list these rpgs.
  • If the book does not show an edition (such as the original AD&D or the original GURPS), list it with (1st Edition) in parens. That is: "Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (1st Edition)" or "GURPS (First Edition)". This makes things crystal clear.
  • The d20 System Open Game License can allow a publisher to create an entire game, with the exception of character creation, which must refer to the D&D Player's Handbook. If the item is basically a "game" it should get its own [rpg] entry (see Fading Suns: D20 or BESM d20 as examples). Other d20 System materials, which are intended as generic supplements for d20 games, should go under one of the "d20 XXXX" [rpg] entries. See the notes under the [item] description below for more details on this.
  • RPG Magazines are given their own [periodical] entry.

Here are examples of some of the more common rpgs with proper naming conventions:

Ars Magica (1st Edition)
Ars Magica (2nd Edition)
Ars Magica (3rd Edition)
Ars Magica (4th Edition)
Ars Magica (5th Edition)
Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (1st Edition)
Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (2nd Edition)
Dungeons & Dragons (3rd Edition)
Dungeons & Dragons (3.5 Edition)
Dungeons & Dragons (4th Edition)
Dungeon (Magazine)
BESM (Second Edition)
BESM (Third Edition)
BESM d20
GURPS (Third Edition)
GURPS (Fourth Edition)
Mutants & Masterminds (1st Edition)
Mutants & Masterminds (2nd Edition)
Dinky Dungeons

If you have an rpg listed without an edition in (parens) and a new edition comes out, not only do you add the new [rpg] for the new edition, but the title of the old game must change to reflect it as a (1st Edition). Any items from the first edition that can be used directly with the second edition should be linked to both rpgs.

Even though a book containing only setting information may be used for multiple editions of a role playing game, it should only be linked to the edition for which it was initially published.

    • creating a Family entry is a admin only function


Items are tangible things you can hold, buy or sell. It could be the core rulebook. A monster supplement. A sourcebook or a campaign book. Some cool dice designed only for that game. They are always attached to a [rpg] entry.


  • Use the actual names (titles) of the books and products. Technically the Title Page is the official title of a book but for RPG Geek we are allowing the cover title to take precedence as the primary title and add in the Title page title as an alternate name. Typos in the title stay (i.e. 1st Edition DM Guide was: "Dungeon Masters Guide"). Use an alternate name for the more grammatically correct version.
  • Articles such as "A" and "The" come naturally in the title - that is, "The Book of Undead" _not_ "Book of Undead, The". The sort position can also be specified so that “The Book of Undead” can be set to sort at position 5 (the ‘B’ in Book). It's helpful if you put a reminder in the admin note to set the sort position when approving the item.
  • Editions are not normally needed at the [item] level since those are captured at the [rpg] level except where the actual title (on the title page) uses them. For example, "BESM Third Edition" is the actual name of the book based on the title page.
  • The name of the game does not need to be repeated at the [item] level unless it's officially part of the title (on the title page). So, for example, use "Heroes of the Fallen Lands" - not "Dungeons & Dragons - Heroes of the Fallen Lands". Common book names (such as "Player's Handbook" and "Dungeon Master's Guide") can be suffixed with the abbreviated game name in parentheses to disambiguate. GURPS, however, seems to commonly use GURPS as part of the title so those are always "GURPS Powers", "GURPS Ice Age", "GURPS Atomic Horror", etc.
  • Subtitles on books are generally not included in the title unless it's commonly used or clarifies the listing.
  • If the front of the book makes it look like the game name is part of the title, it's okay to add that as an alternate name to aid searching. Al-Qadim is a good example of this. There's a big logo treatment that says "Al-Qadim" and under that a ribbon that says "Land of Fate". The latter is the title of the product. But a casual searcher might search for the whole thing, so it's okay to add this as an alternate name (via Submit Corrections) after the entry is approved.
  • Boxed sets are listed as a single [item] and will be tagged with a category of "Boxed Set". Include in the description field the contents of the box. The word "Box Set" should not be listed in the title. If any individual books in the box set are sold separately, they would also be listed as their own [item] entries.
  • d20 items (see [rpg] section above for details on whole games that use the d20 system) need some guidance. Just because a sourcebook "feels" like D&D does not mean it should go under D&D unless it actually bears the D&D logo. In most cases, if the product does not bear the D&D logo, it should be placed in one of the "d20 System / OGL Product" [rpg] boxes. There are third party products which did get the rights and logo from WotC - those are allowed to be items in one of the various D&D [rpg] boxes or their own [rpg] if they are clearly their own game (e.g. Ravenloft published by Swords & Sorceries Studios/White Wolf which bears the official logo but is really a stand-alone [rpg]). Please note that the 4th edition of D&D gets even more confusing - their third party licence logo actually has the D&D logo in it. In this case, look to see if it just has the D&D logo (in which case it gets listed with D&D 4.0) or the D&D 4.0 Compatible Logo (http://www.rpggeek.com/rpg/1789) in which case it gets listed with the "4e Game System Product" rpg.
  • Quick Start or "Lite" versions of rules (usually given away for free by the publisher) are to be given their own [item] entries rather than be considered [versions] of the core rulebook. They would be listed under the same RPG as the core rulebook.
  • Conversion guides should be their own item entries.

Here are examples of some of the more common items with proper naming conventions:

For the "Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (1st Edition)" game entry:

Monster Manual (AD&D 1e)
Player's Handbook (AD&D 1e)
Dungeon Master's Guide (AD&D 1e)
Wilderness Survival Guide

For the "Mutants & Masterminds (2nd Edition)" game entry:

Masterminds Manual
Freedom City

For the "GURPS (Third Edition)" game entry:

GURPS Basic Set

For the "Star Wars (WEG Original Edition)" game entry:

The Star Wars Roleplaying Game

Remember... the names of these [item] entries will always be shown with the associated [rpg] and [system] (if any) to avoid any confusion about what this product is.


Many games share a common 'system' for gameplay. A set of rules that can be used across several RPGs. For example, the GURPS3 system is used not only for the core GURPS3 line but also Traveler used it for a while. The d20 system seems to have spread to a wide number of RPGs these days. When a system is common to more than one [rpg] it is best to cull it out into it's own [system] entry and attach it to the various [rpg] entries that use it. Remember, all RPG Games have a rules system - otherwise you couldn’t play it! Whether it gets culled out to a [system] entry is simple: if it is used/shared by more than one game, it deserves to be a [system] entry linked to those games.

    • creating a System entry is a admin only function
    • a System entry will only be created if there is a minimum of TWO published RPGs linked to the System
    • we will not consider potential future products as a reason to create a System entry


For D&D, often a set of 3 or 4 modules would come out that were tied together. A classic example is the G1, G2 and G3 modules collectively knows as 'Against the Giants'. We can add a [series] called "G - Giants" and link all 3 of those adventure/module [item] entries to it. Other popular [series] for D&D would be the “Complete Book Of...” series which featured a set of books covering virtually every race and class that was part of the D&D world - the publisher tends to produce a new book in the series every few months to extract your hard earned dollars ;) Series normally have an incrementing series code which can be used to identify each book of the series - our database has a way to enter the series code (see below).

We want to draw a thick line in the sand as to what we consider a series. We don't want to end up with a slew of series that are simply themed groupings - we wouldn't consider "Monster Manual" and "Creature Collection" a series, for example. Here is the definition of what we consider a series. It must be either:

1. A series code that clearly identifies it as part of a set (e.g. G1, G2, G3) or a clear brand imprint or logo that ties multiple items together into a set.
2. A commonality in the title beyond the name of the rpg. (e.g. "The Complete Book of XXXX"). In this case it should also be material for use with the same RPG (that is, the "Complete Book of Elves" from AD&D 2nd would not be in a series with the "Complete Divine" from D&D 3rd).

There is no reason to link cover images into a series as the series will list all items it contains (and those items will have representative images which will show in thumbnail view on the series page).


Many games are part of an ongoing campaign world [setting] (such as the classic Greyhawk or Ravenloft within the larger D&D world). In those cases we can create a [setting] entry and link those [item] entries up so they are grouped.

A [setting] should be the name of the setting, not the rpg/book that covers it. For example, The Hunt: Rise of Evil contains a fantasy/horror setting from Mystic Eye Games set in Gothos, a world where dreams and nightmares come to life. The [setting] in this case is "Gothos", not "The Hunt: Rise of Evil".

A [setting] entry is used for any major setting described beyond what is included in the core rulebook (note, this doesn't mean it has to be different than the setting included in the core rulebook, but it must be fleshed out in more detail via sourcebooks, etc). We define 'major' here as: fleshed out into a level of detail that probably includes a time line, a physical world you can visualize, some of the key NPCs and some key events which take place.

The books that should be linked into a [setting] can include the core rulebook if a significant portion of the setting is described there. Sourcebooks and adventures can be linked in if they extend or add to the setting in some non-trivial way (that is, if a sourcebook simply mentions in passing something about the world, that's not enough to consider it part of the setting).

If a setting is so large that it contains one or more significant sub-settings, it is permissible to have both the overall setting and sub-settings. An example of this is Forgotten Realms which has a number of sub-settings such as Kara-Tur, Maztica, or the Savage Coast. If, for example, Kara-Tur was given its own setting then any book for that setting would be listed as belonging to the Kara-Tur as well as the Forgotten Realms. Sub-settings are approved on a case-by-case basis and generally will only be approved for the most popular of sub-settings.

Some people are confused if something should be a [setting] or a [series]. Ask yourself this question - if the items are grouped thematically in terms of describing the game world and the characters that live there -- then it is a [setting]. All of the campaign settings (Greyhawk, Blackmoor, Ebberon, Forgotten Realms, DragonLance, etc) would be [setting] groups. If the book is part of an ongoing series released periodically by the publisher to cover a wide number of additional character classes, new player options, etc... then it is probably a [series].

Both [series] and [setting] can be linked upwards to an [rpg] entry, a [family] entry and potentially to a [system] entry. See the diagram below.


Occasionally, a book will be reprinted with a special cover (new artwork, leather-bound, etc). Sometimes a new printing corrects typos and has other errata built in. And, of course, we have books that were printed in more than one language! In this case we don't want to create a new [item] since the product is, essentially, the same. Instead we create a new [version] under that item. For example, the Dungeons & Dragons (v3.5) Player's Handbook was released in numerous versions including:

The original printing (and subsequent printings all minor enough to not be broken out into their own versions).
The Special Edition (October 2004) which had all the errata included and an updated index.
The Leather Bound Special Edition
Spielerhandbuch <german>
Manual del Jugador <spanish>

We would consider all these the same [item] but different versions of it.

Sometimes using a [version] isn't enough. For example: GURPS (Third Edition) had a revised rulebook called "GURPS (Third Edition Revised)". This book was cleaned up and updated to include the two compendiums. This is significant enough that we would not consider it a [version] of the third edition book, but would have its own [item] listing instead under the "GURPS (Third Edition) [rpg].

It's obviously a bit of a judgment call as to when to use a new [version] or to split into a new [item]. Again we use the 98.3% rule - but in this case it's not compatibility that matters (as it is for RPGs) but rather the basic content/layout must be the same to consider it the same [version]]. So, if the layout in the book or the artwork or the text is basically the same (not taking into account language translations which we prefer to be versions of the base item), then make the new entry a [version]. If the content/layout has been revised more than the spirit of the 98.3% rule, split it into a new [item] entry.

Here are some guidelines we follow (there are no hard and fast rules, however - we work with the submitter and within the spirit of the "98.3% rule"):

The following would be [version] entries of the same item:

new printings of essentially the same book/module
direct translations (without significant added material)
special covers/limited editions (without added material)
electronic version (PDF, with the same content)

The following should be split out to new [item] entries:

significantly revised or expanded
the same title written for a new rules set (RPG)
translations with added(or less) material, new art, new people .. we have some that are very different
deluxe / limited printings with added material
boxed sets with extra goodies
new printings with added adventures / material
translations that are broken up into 2 or more books that can be purchased separately
Beta / Proof / Playtest editions should be kept separate from Final editions

If a PDF was released in more than one format (say, print vs. screen layout), one version will do (use the data from the print version if available) and note that it came in multiple formats within the description field of the version.

[version] entries must have nicknames associated with them. The naming here is not as strict as it would be for the item title but it should include some distinguishing characteristic of the version being entered. Some examples of names include (but are not limited to):

First Printing
Second Printing
Revised Edition
Blister Pack Version
Rare Magenta Cover
<Foreign Language Title> e.g. Manual del Jugador

If you are entering an item but aren't sure of the printing you can simply use a nickname of:

Hardcover Version
Softcover Version
PDF Version

We aren't being too strict here - look at the existing version nicknames on an item to see what makes sense. For versions which are in another language, we ask that you use the nickname field to put in the title as it would appear in that language.

A [version] entry normally has an image associated with it. We do not allow uploading of images directly to versions, instead the image comes from the parent item. When viewing the [item] you scroll down and near the bottom you will see all of the attached [version] entries. To the right you can click "Link Image" to link up an image to this version (in this way you can specifically show what the cover looked like for this version).


It is VERY important to get in a good description of the item. The first description entered for an item tends to stick - and if it's not done to a high level may never get corrected. Good descriptions now will save effort later (bad descriptions tend never to get updated).

There are five choices when entering a description for an [item]. All of them require proper attribution - there are no exceptions (see below for the attributions - an.easy way to get the formatting right is to use the link Click here for attribution formatting on the entry forms). The five choices for descriptions are (in preference order):

1. From the back of the book. Such descriptions must be prefaced with wiki-formatting as '''From the back of the book:''' or similar.
2. From the publishers website. Short blurbs about a product are okay and you preface such a description with "From Publishers website:" or "Publisher Blurb:".
3. From the introduction of the book. A short blurb from the intro is fine if you attribute it as '''From the introduction:'''.
4. Your own words. Please make sure this is your own description of the item - and preface such a description with '''User Summary:'''" of other verbiage to indicate where this description came from. Do not inject editorial or review comments in the description - keep it sterile and factual please.
5. Wikipedia can be used - though ANYTHING taken from there must include a link back to Wikipedia (it is required by their license). This should be done using our wiki-formatting as:

[size=10]''Source: Wikipedia <nowiki>[http://www.wikipedia.com/SomeArticle From Wikipedia]
available under the <nowiki>[http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/ CC-BY-SA License].''[/size]

Also note, Wikipedia is a wonderful resource - it is also sometimes wrong. Please use caution here.

Do NOT lift text from ANYWHERE else (RPG Net, RPG Now, etc) even with proper credits. It doesn't matter if you wrote it originally or not. This is really important. We take this very seriously - keep to the 4 guidelines above. If you notice anything suspicious, bring it to the admins attention and we will deal with it quickly.

Descriptions should be free from any external (i.e. non RPG Geek) links with the rare exception of a linkback to wikipedia for their Creative Commons license. The links module is used to store links, not description fields.

When entering the description for a higher-level entry such as an [rpg], use one of the following (in preference order):

1. The publisher's blurb on the game (prefaced with '''Publisher Blurb:''' in the description field)
2. The text from the back of the core rulebook (prefaced with '''From the back of the core rulebook:''')
3. Your own words summarizing what the RPG is all about ('''User Summary:''')

Do not place the logo or the image of the product into the description field. The entry will have a place for images and for weblinks - try and keep the descriptions textual.

For [version] entries, the description is not vital. Here is what we suggest for [version] descriptions:

  • Do not repeat information found at the parent item description in the [version] description - duplication is not wanted.
  • For foreign language versions, the description field should be the text from the back of the book or intro/publisher blurb just as it would be for the parent item but in the given language.
  • For special editions where there is something of note, please use the description field to highlight differences. For example, if the artwork on the cover changed, use the description field to highlight the new artist (and, of course, the artist still gets credit at the parent item).
  • Otherwise simply repeat the title of the version (e.g. "Hardcover Version" or "1st Print") since the system requires something but there is no need to duplicate anything from the parent item.

[more info]

This is much like the [description] field above but contains more user content and little factoids about the game or item. Same restrictions apply - don't lift text from anywhere, but the guidelines about what can go in this field are less strict. We expect this to be the 'wiki' portion of the entry and want users to add information as they see fit. This information should be of some use when people are browsing the item. For example, this is a perfect place to mention that Paranoia saw a 1st, 2nd and 5th editions (plus the latest XP edition) but there was never a 3rd or 4th. Please note, this field is not required for submission of an rpg or item. It doesn't even show on the [rpg] or [item] creation form.


Most of the category descriptions are pretty clear. There is some confusion over an “Scenario/Adventure/Module” and a “Campaign Setting”. The former is for single stand-alone modules. They may be part of a series (to take characters from, say, level 1 to level 20), but if the adventure can pretty much be picked up by a Game Master and run in a single session or two, it’s probably considered an “Scenario/Adventure/Module”. The classic example of an “Scenario/Adventure/Module” is the Dungeons and Dragons “B2: Keep on the Borderlands”. A Campaign is more a full book of description on the game world... fleshing out places and characters and the political system and large-scale maps and so on... this is normally a place where a Game Master can create a series of ongoing adventures using various adventure-hooks. Classic examples of campaigns would be: “Greyhawk”, “Blackmoor”, “Forgotten Realms” or “Eberron”.

There is a [category] of “Sourcebook” which is pretty general and covers all manner of books that are designed to work with the core rules. Technically a Campaign book would also be a Sourcebook. Some Sourcebooks contain Adventures. So... the challenge is how to list these. Here is the rule of thumb: If the item you are listing is a somewhat short adventure designed to be run stand-alone, call it an “Adventure/Module”. If the book is larger and fleshes out more of the game world with non-player characters and adventure hooks, call it a “Campaign”. Otherwise call it a “Sourcebook”. If a sourcebook contains a small adventure as part of the book, it’s still a “Sourcebook” - no need to also tag it as an “Scenario/Adventure/Module” also.

We are allowing Gamebooks like Choose Your Own Adventure, Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks and Lone Wolf Multiplayer Game Book to be listed on RPGG.
The category for single player Gamebook Items should be Solitaire Adventure, for multi player Gamebook Items Scenario / Adventure / Module
we will not list these Items as Core Rules (min needed to play).


Do your best to fill in the Mechanics field. The choices are fairly self explanatory now. We are trying to include parenthetical information in these choices to help with any confusion. This extra information may or may not stay when we go live. You may choose as many mechanics as is appropriate for the item.

[product code]

The product code is usually on the front or back cover (usually in the corner somewhere) or along the spine. For example, the White Wolf “Mage: The Ascension” has a product code on the back and spine of “WW4600”. That's what would be entered into this field.

[series code]

Many adventure modules come in a series – such as the classic Dungeons and Dragons G1, G2 and G3 – “Against the Giants”. The G1, G2 and G3 are the series code. Do not include them in the titles of the items – they belong in this field instead and will be prepended to the title by the UI automatically. Do not just put a series code of "1" or "2" in this field - this is only for clearly identified series codes which show on the cover and whose codes you want to show as part of the title. Here is an example of a series code (B2):

Please note, it is okay to have a series without a series code (i.e. "The Complete Book Of..." is a series without a distinct code) but it is never correct to have a series code without a series attached.


With [genre] there is a base genre and sub-genres. For example:

Fantasy (High)
Fantasy (Low)
Fantasy (Arthurian)

If you choose one of the more specific fantasy genres, you do NOT also pick the more generic base “Fantasy” genre. Only select the more generic “Fantasy” genre if a specific one doesn’t fit. Of course, more than one specific “Fantasy” genre might apply - more than one can be chosen in that case. You can choose as many genres as makes sense. That said, be judicious in your application of genres, and use the minimum number of genres necessary. Just because you have a D&D module that encounters a pirate does NOT mean that the adventure is in the Action/Adventure (Pirates/Swashbuckling) genre! The genre is supposed to describe the _essence_ or "feel" of the supplement, not the _topics_ of the supplement.


ISBN Numbers should be without dashes or spaces. That is: “1234567890” not “1-234-5678-90”. 13-digit ISBN numbers have a single dash and are formatted as follows: 123-123456789.

Please note, ISBN-13 wasn't designed until 2004 and no ISBN-13 was issued until 2005. Some people have been putting the Bookland EAN-13 barcode in as an ISBN-13 (Bookland EAN-13s start with 978). These are NOT the ISBN-13s for that book.

[designers] [artists] and [production staff]

Some of these RPG books have a slew of people that contributed to them - especially when it comes to the art department. It critical that you get the designer/developer/authors and artists in place. We also ask that you get production staff as well - though an entry will not be denied if that goes missing. For a few books that may have hundreds of artists (e.g. Creature Supplements), listing the art director is sufficient.

  • Designers, writers, authors, developers, creators and additional content providers all go under [designers].
  • Artists, graphic designers and cartographers (map makers) go under [artists].
  • Producers, production assistance, editors (except for magazines, where they should be listed as designers), typography people, managers, art directors, layout people, proof readers, technicians, translators or coordinators go under [production staff].

Playtesters, Consultants or people 'thanked' in a book do not get listed.

People who write the introduction but provide no other game content do not get listed - however we encourage this information in the "More Information" field for the item. (for example: "Gary Gygax wrote the Introduction.")

The description for a new person does not need to include all the items they have worked on, as that will already be apparent from the links to items. However, if you add a new person that isn't linked to an item yet, please add a short comment, such as "Artist for Call of Cthulhu supplement XXX", or "Contributed to MechWarrior rules". It really helps the content approvers.

If there is nobody credited in the book for one of these fields, please choose "(uncredited)" so the admins don't have to bother trying to track it down.

You should ALWAYS search for the name before creating a new one. Be creative in your searches, since "David Funnyname" might be listed already as "Dave Funnyname", search for the most distinctive starting part of the name such as "dav funny" or just "funny". If it is ambiguous whether your "David A. Smith" is the same as a "Dave Smith" entry, take the time to do a little Internet research on other sites to see if they are actually the same person. Also keep in mind that sometimes people's names change, particularly women who marry. If you really really cannot tell, only then enter them as a new person.


If you cannot identify a specific publishing entity, and the printed edition appears to be available from a print-on-demand website such as lulu.com, please add the publisher as 'self-published' and do not add lulu.com or other such websites as a publisher to the database.

[page count]

This is the total number of pages of the item typically excluding covers (unless the covers contain rules). For a box set, this should be the total number of pages for all books/booklets contained in the box. For a magazine or book, it is the last page number identified plus any extra pages at the back end. Pull out sections should be listed under "More Information" if not included in the count already. In a few rare cases the publisher put forth a continuing page count between books (witness GURPS 4th Edition Characters + Campaign guides). In this case, do your best to get the actual page count of the book (i.e. don't use the last page identified in this rare case).


We have a pull-down for common sizes though you are free to hand-enter any size dimensions of the product as needed. The dimensions are in inches only please. The dimensions of a product are dependent on the type of product as follows:

  • For a book, the dimensions are the size of the outer cover (not the pages within).
  • For a box set, the dimensions are the size of the outer box (not the booklets/maps within).


The RPG Geek Image Policies and Guidelines are posted at: RPGG Image Policy


1. Do NOT submit copyrighted material without permission from the rights holder. This includes scans of articles and directly copied rules. Any permission gained from the copyright holder must be placed in the [description] field.

2. Files found on other websites are NOT to be uploaded to BGG unless you have clear permission from the copyright holder of the material (and that permission must be pasted into the [description] field when uploading the file). Examples are "Posted by Designer" or "Posted with permission from GameCompany".

3. Links to files externally are NOT allowed directly. Instead, you must link to the target webpage (aka the "landing page") and not to the file itself.

4. For things like character sheets, errata and free PDFs (quickstart rules, etc) we can only take them if they are marked within the file itself as "free to distribute" or "permission to copy for personal use" or some similar wording. Just because a product is out of print doesn't mean that it out of copyright. Again, if permission is gained from the copyright holder, please put that permission clearly in the [description] field.

5. If the file being uploaded contains work based on the OGL or d20 licenses from Wizards of the Coast, a copy of that license must be included as part of the file (often a single page near the front of the work).

Quick References, Player Aids, Etc.

Use common sense - if it is obvious that you couldn't actually learn or play the game from such quick reference documents and that they are simply aids to someone who owns the game - go ahead and post them. These are some of the most useful files - we want to encourage their use while still providing a sane level of Intellectual Property protection for the original copyright holders. Be sure to follow the file upload rules above.

[periodicals] (Magazines, Zines, etc)

To create a new periodical, use the Misc->Create/Periodical menu option. You'll be ask to fill out the following fields:*For information on adding an [article] to the database, see [Article] below

The periodical system is setup with the following hierarchy:
[periodical] (i.e. Dragon Magazine, White Dwarf Magazine, Judges Guild Journal, etc.)

[issue] (i.e. Issue #1 - Spring 1981 or Vol 1, Issue 2 - Apr 1982)
[article] (i.e. "Paladins and Their Mounts" or "100 Ways to Defeat Dragons")

Primary Name
The name of the periodical. If the periodical has had multiple names, because it has been renamed, select the most recent one, and add a note to your submission noting the other names. They can then be added as alternate names.

The description should be a short description of the magazine and what it attempts to cover. If you know the printing history (for a magazine which has finished it's print run) please include it (i.e. "Magazine covered 21 issues from Jan 1985 through Nov 1987).

Series for Articles
We are allowing the use of the [series] database feature to tie together recurring features, columns, setting, etc found in Issues with the following rules:

  • We do not want a slew of series entries for every feature found in the issues of every periodical
  • Most of these series entries should be for prominent features that have run for years in monthly issues
  • We will judge the approval of these series on a case by case basis
  • For the Series Description field, we want the Periodical (using a link) referenced and a comment about how to find the list of articles in the Linked Items section.

The kind of periodical: Either E-Zine, Fanzine, Flyer, Journal, Magazine, Newsletter or Other.

RPG Genre
This is for the genre most usually covered by the magazine. So Dragon Magazine may have had articles about Star Frontiers (Sci-Fi) and Boot Hill (Western) but primarily was focused on D&D and the High Fantasy genre. It's only the key genres that should be listed. If the magazine covered a wide gamut of genres on a regular basis, simply link in the Generic/Universal genre.

RPG Family
The RPG Family (or families) that were most usually covered by the magazine. Like with Genres, this list should not include any families that were incidentally covered. If the periodical was not linked to a specific family, leave this field blank.


To add a new Issue to an existing periodical, navigate to the periodical and you will see an Add Issue hyperlink about halfway down the page. You cannot add an issue to a periodical that has not yet been approved.

Primary Name
Magazine Issue titles should be standardized for consistency within a magazine line (so they look pretty in table format!). In general, this should be: Mag Title (Issue N - Mon YYYY) or Mag Title (Volume N, Issue Z - Mon YYYY). Do not zero pad the issue numbers - each magazine issue has an issue index that can be used for sorting. Please check out existing and well-fleshed out magazine entries in the database (such as Dragon or White Dwarf) and follow the format.

Issue Index
Magazine issues have an Issue Index. This number is used for sorting the issues. Normally it is equal to the issue number. So Dragon Magazine #297 gets an Issue Index of 297. Several other situations exist as well:

  • If the issue number is of the form Volume N, Issue Z, then the Issue index is 100*N + Z. So The Imperial Herald Volume 2, Issue #9 gets Issue Index 209.
  • Annuals get an Issue Index of 1000 + the annual number. So Annual #1 is 1001. Annual #2 is 1002, etc.
  • Special Issues and Best Of/Compilations start at 2000+

If you unsure what the Issue Index for a given issue should be due to e.g. strange numbering, leave it blank and add a note to the submission saying that the issue index should still be set.
With the scheme above, normal issues (starting with issue #1) will sort to the top.

Publication Date
This is the date of publication of (the first version) of the issue. If no precise date is available, but you do know the month/year, you can leave the day field blank, and just enter the month and the year. Likewise, if only a year is given, you can leave the day and month blank, and enter only the year.

Authors, Artists and Producers
A listing of the people that have created the issue. Editors (including assistant editors, editor-in-chief, etc.) are listed as author, as well as any featured article contributing authors. Any graphic artists, cartographers and the cover artist should be listed as artists. See the section on [designers] [artists] and [production staff] above for more information on adding persons to the database.

The publisher(s) of this issue.

This should be a list of all the RPGs the issue provides new source material for.

A issue has versions just like an RPG item. See the Specific Field Rules section above for information how to fill these out.


Articles are, essentially, a table of contents for the magazine (including any author names and short summaries). All articles for the issue should be included though possibly eliminating recurring columns like the fan mail bag, etc. To add a new Article to an existing Issue, navigate to the Issue and you will see an Add Article hyperlink above the list of articles already in for that issue. The summary of articles will show at the parent [issue] level. We show the page number, the article title and the first 120 characters of the article description.

An article has the following fields:

The title of the article. If you are dealing with a column that has both a "recurring title" and a "episode title", add both of them, separated by a dash: recurring title - episode title. For example, for some period Dragon Magazine included a column called Bazaar of the Bizarre (the recurring title). For Dragon #227, the contribution in this column was called Dwarven Magical Items (the episode title). So, this article gets the name Bazaar of the Bizarre - Dwarven Magical Items in our database.

A short description of the article. If the Table of Contents of the periodical includes small 'blurbs' for each article, you should use these for the description. If no such blurb is available, we suggest you start the description with the following:

  • For an adventure (or module, or scenario) - List the # of players, the levels (if any) and general theme. Example: "Short fantasy adventure adventure for 2-5 players lasting 3 hours".
  • For an article, editorial or story - Mention the author and what it's about. Example: "Gary Gygax takes a look at how the Paladin summons his mount"
  • For a review - Mention the product being reviewed by name. Example: "Review of Mouseguard RPG by Jan Smith"

If can of course elaborate on the description, but since the first 120 characters are displayed in the summary, we like you to list this short description first.

Start Page No.
The page of the issue on which the article starts. If the issue does not use page numbers, this is not required.

Article Index
The position of the article in the issue. The first article gets Article Index 1, the second article gets Article Index 2, etc. This is used to sort the articles. Please note that the order of the articles should be as they appear in the magazine itself which is not necessarily the way they are presented in the table of contents. (Also note that you may use a different numbering than 1, 2, 3, etc. As long as each article has a higher index than its predecessor, it is fine. So, for example, if every article started on its own page, you could simply use the page # as the article index. The articles will then sort properly)

The author(s) of the article. Artists/Cartographers do not get listed. See the section on [designers] [artists] and [production staff] above for more information on adding persons to the database. Note: if the article contains reader contributed material (contest winners, fan mail, etc) just use (reader contribution) as the author (i.e. do not add every person that ever wrote into the magazine as a fan, contest winner, etc).

A categorization of the article. Select the most appropriate option:

  • Adventure - An article that contains all of the necessary information about an adventure for for a GM to run a group of PCs through that adventure in a particular rules system (or a generic system).
  • Art - A piece of art that is presented for the sake of the art itself, not as a comic or as a piece connected to or described within an article.
  • Article - An article that addresses game material or meta-game material. This usually includes, but is not limited to, rules discussion, new or additional rules interpretations and discussion, new character options, GM advice, player advice, discussion about etiquette at the table, discussion about player behavior, game theory discussion and interpretation, and discussions comparing existing game mechanics.
  • Comic - A cartoon/panel comic or long-form comic.
  • Editorial - The opening statement of a magazine that is usually written by the editor-in-chief but can sometimes be written by a guest editorial writer. Editorials often include an explanation for the topic focus in an issue.
  • Fiction - A fiction piece submitted to the magazine. Often these fiction pieces are set in a particular game world or contain a specific set of PCs as the main protagonists.
  • Game - A game included in the magazine that is a 100% wholly separate game produced and distributed with the magazine.
  • Interview - A series of questions and answers, usually the interviewee is a well-known or up-and-comer in the industry.
  • Map - Literally a map provided with the magazine, whether presented as a stand-alone article for GM inspiration (with or without details) or stapled to the center and removable or perforated and removable. Often this is a topographical map, but this category also includes dungeon tiles and other battle-map pieces used with miniatures.
  • News - Industry news coverage, including convention schedules and news.
  • Reader/Fan Mail - Letters to the editor and letters asking for rules clarifications, published along with the answers from an authority.
  • Review - A review of an existing/new game product, book, video game, or movie.
  • Setting - An article that contains the description and statistical information about an adventure setting for for a GM to use in their RPG campaign.
  • Zine - An insert that consists of (usually/often) fan-made material that is often focused on a specific piece of content or game and is considered either a separate entity packaged with the magazine or is considered a special insert (the magazine makes the distinction). Additionally, APAs are typically collections of Zines bound together and distributed as a periodical.

If the article matches none of the other categories, it should use the generic Article category.

Our current best line of thinking here is that if the article mentions some spells, equipment, setting material or monster stats but that's not the primary focus of the article - it should not be listed as Setting or Adventure but rather just 'Article'.

If the focus is clearly on setting (setting is a combination of place, time and notable people/creatures), mark it as Setting.

Only mark something as an Adventure if this is clearly an adventure (with beginning, middle, end - or as part of an ongoing series) should it be marked as adventure. For Dragon, these were usually very clearly marked as: "An Introductory Adventure for Characters of Levels 1-3", etc. Adventures published in a magazine would not get their own RPG Item entry here on RPG Geek. However, a full RPG game published as part of a magazine (rare as that may be) would get its own RPG Entry (and the Magazine issue would tie up to it).

When in doubt, mark an entry as an Article.

Microbadges for Article Submissions

100 mb - Hear Ye, Hear Ye: Copper Article Submitter
250 mb - Hear Ye, Hear Ye: Silver Article Submitter
500 mb - Hear Ye, Hear Ye: Golden Article Submitter


Podcasts are almost totally automated - requiring only an RSS feed to kick them off and get them into our database system.


To create a new podcast, use the Misc->Create/Podcast menu option. You only need to fill in the RSS feed for the podcast - the system takes care of the rest! You can use the Browse->Podcasts and Browse->Podcast Episodes to see a list of all podcasts and their episodes in the system. The system will check for updates to any podcast feeds in our database at roughly 4 hour intervals.

Once the Podcast is accepted, you can go back and add RPG links, RPG Item links and RPG Genre links to individual episodes as you like (it is not required but does earn a bit of geekgold).

As for whether or not a podcast should be listed here at the RPG Geek - the rule is simple: if at least half of the episodes cover Roleplaying games in some form (games, theory, actual play, etc), they can be listed. For example: Have Games Will Travel is a podcast which splits fairly evenly between boardgames/cardgames and roleplaying games - we would allow this to be listed.

What Gets Listed at RPG Geek?

The obvious answer? The game must be a Role-Playing Game. However, we've discovered this isn't all that easy to define. Here are the guidelines that we are using to determine if something is a Role-Playing game:

1. It must be a game with a defined set of rules.
2. It allows the player to take on the role of a character.
3. It allows the player free will to choose what that character does in the game.
4. The actions chosen by the player directly influence the story which unfolds during the game.

This is vague enough to include most things we think of as RPGs. However, there are some fringe areas with respect to boardgames. Games like Shadow Hunters or Lord of the Rings Boardgame allow players to choose (or be given) a character and there is certainly a measure of free will as they play out those characters. But for LotR Boardgame, the story is fairly rigid and is not really influenced by the player characters. With Shadow Hunters there is only player/character interaction - no real story. Both fail #4 above and are not listed on RPGG (but are listed on BGG). Could it be argued that these are RPGs? Sure... but we want to have some dividing line and those aforementioned games just feel better on the boardgame side. Some of this will obviously be judgment calls.

And here are the corner cases:

The Precursors

Chainmail, Little Wars and any codified set of rules for Cops & Robbers, Cowboys & Indians, etc. prior to 1974 are out. For the purposes of RPG Geek, we considering the first true RPG to be Gary Gygax's and Dave Arneson's original Dungeons & Dragons. If it's prior to 1974, don't even ask.

Books with Limited or No Actual Rules

Books which have no specific rules content but are obviously released as part of a line to support an RPG are allowed. These must follow our "no novels" rule. Examples would be world sourcebooks, ideabooks, artbooks, books of names and cultures, etc. that are released specifically and in direct support of a Role-Playing Game. Generic fantasy artbooks, generic books on histories and cultures (even fantasy ones) are not to be listed - it must be released in direct support of an RPG. Edge cases will be judged by a random group of monkeys from the San Diego Zoo and all decisions are final until whimsically changed. If unsure, please post on our forums in the "How To RPGG" section or contact one of the RPG Admins for assistance or you can add your rationale for why it should be included in the admin notes section when submitting the item.

After discussion with the publisher, Dark Osprey books are in; other Osprey Adventures books are out.

Books about RPGs, Artbooks, Novels and Movies

Books about RPGs (price value guides, books reviewing or cataloging RPGs, etc) are in.
Generic books on how to put together an RPG game group or run a session, etc. are also in.
Collections of comics about RPGs are also in - i.e. Order of the Stick, Dork Tower and Knights of the Dinner Table compilations are in but the DC published Advanced Dungeons & Dragons comic series is out (it's not about roleplaying or the hobby, it's a comic based in the D&D world).
comic clarification products supplied as crowd funding rewards are out

Novels that use a setting from an RPG (Forgotten Realms Novels, DragonLance Novels, etc) are out.
Artbooks released in direct support of an RPG are in, but generic artbooks are out. Books released to support both a novel line and an RPG (i.e. the DragonLance Art books) will be debated.
Coloring books are out.

Movies are out. Movies like the Dungeons & Dragons movie are not to be included.
Books about painting miniatures are out.

Play By Mail RPGs

PBM (and Play-By-Email and Play-By-Forum) are allowed so long as they meet the guidelines above. In addition, you must be able to play such a game at the table with other people without the aid of a computer (even if that is not the normal way of playing). That is: it could pass for a true tabletop RPG which happens to be used (potentially exclusively) for PBM.


Live-Action-Role-Playing games are allowed if they meet the guidelines above. We are specifically excluding improv theater, simulations, historical recreations, athletic games (paintball, etc) and cosplay (Costume Play). If unsure - ask.

Electronic and Computer Role-Playing Games

Any electronic version of RPG material published is fine for inclusion. This must either be new RPG material or a direct port of existing RPG material and distributed legally. This includes legal PDFs, web published entries, iPhone Apps which provide RPG material, etc. If the electronic version attempts to turn the RPG material into a playable game of any kind, we would consider it a video game and should be listed on Video Game Geek instead and not on RPG Geek. So, for example, if a "Lone-Wolf" style adventure was published online in PDF, HTML or DOC format (among others), we would consider it fair game to be listed here at the RPG Geek. However, if this were simply a playable form of a Choose Your Own Adventure game we would consider it a video game and should not be included.


Magazines with RPG content (reviews, scenarios, discussion, etc) are included. For magazines which had only occasional RPG content, only list those issues.


we do not list Blogs, Recurring web articles or other websites like RPG.net

Beta Products, Homebrews, Prototypes, Previews

Beta Products that are released in a tangible form (PDF, Book, Download of some kind) are okay to list.
Homebrews have their own special [rpg] bin called RPG Sandbox. Please make use of it for games you've developed but do not plan to publish or major derivations of existing systems that have been developed (including unofficial releases like Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (3rd Edition): Players Handbook. It's a bit of a sandbox really.

Prototypes have their own special [rpg] bin called Unpublished Prototypes. Please make use of it for games that are in development (though major games that have a definite scheduled release and are in the final stages are considered under the "Upcoming Releases" below).

As soon as a game become published (self-published is fine) and has enough polish to be considered complete and playable, it should move out of Beta/Homebrews/Prototypes and be given its own [rpg] entry.

Preview PDFs do not get listed at the geek. We consider a Preview PDF to be excerpts from the book (whether it be a page or a couple of chapters). If the PDF is actually the quick-start or "lite" rules (which are actually playable), then it can be included.

Upcoming Releases

If a publisher has a books in the works and it has as set date of release and has a reasonable amount of information available (designers, artists, etc) then it can be listed in our database. Since there is a lot of vapor-ware out there with small offerings, be sure that these entries are from reputable publishers and that it has a high probability of actually reaching a release point. We want people to discuss and get excited about upcoming releases but be sure this product is likely to see the light of day before entering it. At a minimum, it must have the following known: Title, Designer (main designer is enough), description (usually publisher blurb at this point which is fine) and a target release date. If you don't at least have those four bits of information, don't submit it!

for RPG Items please attach the (Upcoming Releases) [series] to the item during submission so that we can search for it later and fill in any missing/incorrect information for the product once it actually hits the streets.

for a RPG please attach the (Upcoming Releases - RPG) [Family] to the RPG during submission so that we can search for it later and fill in any missing/incorrect information for the product once it actually hits the streets.

When submitting Upcoming Release entries, you MUST include a link to the product/blurb in the admin notes.

The description should contain this banner at the top to show that it is an unreleased game:

{| border="1" align="center" width="100%"
| style="background-color:#FF0000; color:#FFFFFF; text-align: center; font-size: 16px; font-weight: bold; padding: 5px 0;" |
| style="font-style: italic; padding: 5px 0;" |
This game has not been released yet, therefore some of the information above may change in the future. Until this game is released, please '''don't submit images''' for it unless given direct written permission from the publisher which must be noted in the image caption.

A placeholder Image will be linked to Item and RPG entries after approval, example:

No other images should be linked or uploaded to the item until it is released, unless you have explicit permission from the publisher for an image (which must be noted in the image caption) and the image must meet all image guidelines.

You can submit a correction to have this series and place holder image removed once it is released. The description can then also be edited by anyone (it doesn't require a correction) to remove the banner.

Kickstarter (Crowd Funding) Projects

Kickstarter projects are welcome to be listed on RPG Geek provided that they have achieved their funding. Prior to funding, they can be discussed in the designer forums (for the person running the Kickstarter) or in the general forums if all else fails. Again, we want to have some reasonable assurance that the product will see the light of day so we require that the project be funded before a proper entry is made in our database. These will be listed as Upcoming Release

If the kickstarter releases 'Draft' or 'Preview' or 'Public Playtest' versions to backers (e.g. as FATE Core or D&D Next did), we will no longer list these products as Items or Versions. Instead, we will treat them as normal Upcoming Release entries. We want people to discuss and get excited about upcoming Crowd Funding products but we want to avoid filling the database with draft and pre-release versions of products. When submitting the entry, you must include a link to Crowd Funding Campaign in the admin notes.

Homemade Adventures/Scenarios/Modules

Homebrew modules/adventures/scenarios that you have created for an existing RPG are allowed and encouraged. We prefer such adventures to be uploaded by the author otherwise please get clear written permission from the author. We prefer to see these homebrew adventures for an existing RPG to be uploaded as a file (PDF, DOC or ZIP file if you have more than one file for the adventure) under the parent RPG for which the adventure was created. If the adventure is extensive enough and has seen some quality development and playtesting, you are free to enter it as a new [item] under the RPG (just as we would for any (web) published adventure). Please use good judgment here. If your adventure uses any charts/tables or images from other released books for the RPG, please obtain permission to use them before posting.

Unlicensed and Unofficial Items

Unlicensed and unofficial items are generally allowed - though this is a touchy subject. When it comes to copyright violations we want to do the right thing by the IP holders. However, we are primarily a database of information - and we cannot simply ignore everything that doesn't have an official licence. What that means is that we will generally allow listings for homebrew RPGs or scenarios using a trademarked license (Star Wars, Star Trek, etc). In addition, we will allow noteworthy item entries for RPG items which were sold without direct permission (e.g. late era RPG eBooks from Last Unicorn Games which no longer held the Star Trek license, etc). We use the word noteworthy to distinguish between a bootleg copy of (hypothetical example) AD&D called "Advanced Dungeons & Wyverns" sold in Brazil with new cover art to 10,000 people back in the early 80s from a collection of pirated PDFs distributed on bittorrent. The former hypothetical AD&W might well deserve a listing on RPGG for collecting purposes - but the later would definitely NOT be accepted. There will be judgment calls made by the moderators of RPG Geek. For all material which is of questionable origin or legality, only a database listing will be allowed. No links nor files will be accepted for such items in our database and the More Info field will be used to mark such items questionable legal status clearly. No trades nor selling of these items will be allowed on the RPG Geek marketplace. All of these items will be covered in a special series designed to group them together: (Apocryphal Editions)

Fringe Products Used by Roleplayers

Items that are related to roleplaying but not specifically designed for roleplaying are generally allowed... up to a point. That is, we would allow listings for specialty dice (Spindown dice, Fudge dice, etc), software mapping products (Campaign Cartographer, etc), character generators (Hero Lab, D&D Character Generator, etc), tile sets (Dungeon Tiles, Dwarven Forge Terrain), map sets and the like. Generally these sorts of fringe products would be listed with "Generic/Universal" as the parent [rpg] unless they were designed specifically an rpg. We draw the line at more common-use things like Ticonderoga Pencils, Whiteboards and Projectors - none of these would be included in the database.

Specialty Dice Packs

We would prefer to see most specialty dice or custom dice listed under the one Dice RPG Item so as to not proliferate the millions of specialty dice out there. However, we are allowing specific first-party branded dice sets to be listed with the core product they are in support of. Examples: D&D branded "Premium Dice" sold for use with D&D can be listed as an item for the version of D&D it was sold for. Same for the specialty Shadowrun Dice set.

Collectible Cards for an RPG

Collectible cards for an RPG (such as The Shadow Over Nentir Vale Fortune Cards (set of 80 plus promos) for D&D 4e) would go in as a separate RPG Item for the set (plus promotional cards) for that set). When each new set comes out it will get its own RPG Item entry. They will all be tied up to the parent D&D 4e RPG. Special Promo Cards released during a set's run will count with that set and can be described in the more info field - don't use the [version] field to try and add every card. Also, we just need a sample of the exterior of the booster pack (should be the representative image) and a scan of the card back - do not upload scans of the card fronts (not even as a sample).


At this time we have decided not to include Miniatures into the database as the complexities and nuances of these did not fit the existing RPG database model properly.

CDs, DVDs, Software

CDs and DVDs can be included provided they contain official content for the game. This means that it must have some game-related content (e.g. the Dungeons & Dragons movie is out). Soundtracks for RPGs that were officially produced by the company that are made specifically for atmosphere within the game are also allowed (e.g. the Dungeons & Dragons soundtrack for the game is included, but the Dungeons and Dragons soundtrack for the movie is not). Generic non-RPG-branded music CDs are not allowed. The CD/DVD must be sold separately (i.e. if a CD-ROM is included as part of a book purchase, it just gets listed in the description/more info for that book).

Software for character creation, maps, etc. that are designed specifically for a given game can be included.

Choose Your Own Adventure Type Books

This includes gamebooks such as the TSR Endless Quest books as well as the Steve Jackson Fighting Fantasy books. We have decided to generally allow these books on a case-by-case basis.

Broadly speaking, the main criterion is whether the book in question is a gamebook. Books that are more works of literature than games to be played are not suitable for inclusion in the database.

Examples of books that are out:

  • Life's Lottery by Kim Newman
  • If by Nicholas Bourbaki

For examples of series that are included in the database, see: Gamebooks.

If you're unsure, ask Stelio.

Dungeon Tiles and Models

Same as with the CYOA books, we have decided to draw a rather arbitrary line to include some types of these on the site, but not others.

Ziterdes Hardfoam Models are out;
Generic foam walls are out;
E-Z Dungeons are in;
Dungeon Tiles are in.

Something similar? Please ask.

Foreign Language Books

The database is hosted in the US and as such the native langauge for the RPG Geek system is English. However, we welcome foreign language RPGs and products that have been translated into other languages! If the game only exists in another langauge, you are free to create a new [rpg] along with any associated items for the game - do your best to give English descriptions (along with the native language if you choose). If the game already exists in English, we ask that foreign language editions of the books be added as a [version] of the English entry. See the [version] field above for more details.

Also, to help the Admins out who might not know the language: If the title should be alphabetically sorted on the second word, please write an admin note explaining that. Example game: "La Fille du Regiment" (sort on Fille).

Miscellaneous Products and Memorabilia

No hats, no clothing, no cups or other RPG-branded accessories that aren't used at the table

Images for such product can be submitted to Memorabilia, Programs, Catalogs and Other Sundry RPG Related Material

The Rule Above All Rules

  • Since not all rules can be covered adequately, we reserve the right to judge any item, image or other database entry which is not in the best interest of the RPG Geek and decline or remove it. This would be a very rare situation and we hope it never happens - the system is designed to be inclusive and we are striving to be as complete as possible.


We have a special set of Award (not for general purchase) Microbadges for uploading entries at the RPG geek. The following formula is used to determine total entries:

RPGs + RPG Items + Periodicals + Issues + Series + Settings + (0.25 Item & Issue Versions) + (0.1 for Issue Articles)

There are currently six official thresholds for RPG award badges:

mb for 10 Entries (Copper)
mb for 25 Entries (Silver)
mb for 50 Entries (Gold)
mb for 100 Entries (Platinum)
mb for 200 Entries (Herculean)
mb for 500 Entries (Ultimate)(This will also net you a place in the RPG Geek Hall of Fame)
mb for 10,000 Entries (Unobtanium) (Awarded to one user)

These awards are automated by the system and are given out once per day.

What is the RPG Geek Consortium?

The RPG Geek Consortium is a group of 35 members who discuss the thorny areas of the guidelines and continue to improve and evolve the Guide to Data Entry you are reading now. This group consists of members of the RPG Geek who are RPG collectors, administrators, site developers, publishers and RPG authors. The idea is to have a reasonable cross section of RPG enthusiasts to help make reasonably informed decisions on what gets included here in the guide. This guide was created by wavemotion and continues to be maintained by Purple (using input from the Consortium).

Final Words

Thanks to all the users of the RPG Geek who have contributed and volunteered their time to ensure that this is one hell of a resource! As always, do what is most appropriate for your interests/passion. Without passion for this, you'll burn out.

-The Dungeon Master

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