A goblin reaching for a book from bookshelves hidden behind a greenhouse's glass walls.

Art by Goblins and Gardens

The Annotated Archives of Game Design Resources

A cataloged archive of different resources to demystify the steps that go into creating, publishing, and selling ttrpg products. The Annotated Archive link.

What is The Annotated Archives?

The Annotated Archives is a site curated by Goblin Archives. Its goal is to lower the barrier of entry for designers. It brings together twitter threads, blogs and youtube videos. It provides a place to house links to advice on how to make your game/adventure/zine a reality.

The Archives includes different sections based on topics. Each entry includes a link, accreditation, and a small blurb about what the resources are. The curator reaches out to creators before including them in the Archive.

Cataloging these resources aims to demystify the design process. The push to open practice helps support the community. The Archives is a place that makes these practices easy to find.

“Goblin Archives” art by Goblins and Gardens

The Annotated Archives sections:

  • Overview: This provides an introduction to the archives and a few good resources for someone getting started.
  • Hacks and SRDs: This section provides a few different indie ttrpgs that have SRDs that support hacking their games (which makes getting started easier).
  • Programs: This section goes over different programs one can use to make their games. The focus is on free or affordable. There are subsections for markdown, character sheets, word processors, file organization, layout, image editing & creation.
  • Layout and Typeface: Goes over two of the biggest learning curve areas in game design.
  • Images: This focuses on creating your own, commissioning work, commercially licensing art, maps, and leveraging public domain images.
  • Accessibility: Is the newest section that focuses on how to leverage three major modes to provide accessible texts web / epub / print (physical and pdf). This includes resources on Accessibility & Design Intention as well as ePub.
  • Licensing: Focuses on different types of permissive licenses (creative commons, Third-Party Licenses, Creative Comrades). These can be used to create your own license for your games (or make adventures using these systems).
  • Funding: This section presents a few different funding models: itchfunding, presale model, slowfunding, and printing partnerships.
  • Printing and Publishing: Gives an overview of different options (and some great retrospectives on publishing). It also provides resources on where you can print, and what distributors you can reach out to to sell your work.
  • Marketing: The final section and has some great resources to consider when trying to market your work (such as making a press kit and marketing tips),
  • All In One Place: In addition to the site being fully searchable, the last part of the archive has all of the above sections on one internally linked page.

Social Media

You can find Goblin Archives on Twitter @goblin_archives

You can find my games at Exalted Funeral (print), Goblin Archives - itch.io (digital) or Drivethrurpg (digital). Boothpm (Japanese Translation)

You can the cover artist Goblins and Gardens on Twitter @goblinsngardens

Art Assets

The art & promotional assets for The Annotated Archives can be found here: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1OE_vScoNboQb2-ClULJuhJmLztuDLf46?usp=sharing

Team Members:

  • Goblin Archives- Curator
  • Goblins and Gardens - Cover Art

From Goblin Archives

​ Growing up in archives, I know how important it is to catalog practice in order to keep knowledge ready and accessible. As a new designer I spent hours looking over the blogs, twitter threads, and videos from creators - trying to understand all the small things that go into making a game something that can be used by others. When I finally put Liminal Horror out, I had a free website (hosted by github) and a list of resources I referenced constantly. It just made sense for me to make these resources easily accessible for others.

​ As an educator, opening of practice and supporting others in their pursuit of their goals is something extremely important to me. The archives have evolved into a place where I can highlight the great work being done and hopefully lower the barrier of entry for those new to game design.

What People Are Saying

“The Annotated Archive of Game Design Resources is a must-read collection of both wisdom and practical guidance for new and veteran game designers. Whether you’re only scratching the surface of publishing or simply looking to provide better accessibility options, TAAGDR is all you need.” - Yochai Gal (designer of Cairn and the NSR)

“The Annotated Archive has quickly become my go to resource when I need to answer questions about game design, or TTRPG industry subjects. It’s like a living creature, constantly evolving and expanding, and responding to the community’s needs and interrogations.” - Iko (host of The Lost Bay podcast and designer of Broken Luck)**

“The “Annotated Archive of Game Design Resources” is a FANTASTIC collection of fantastic resources. I reference it constantly. If you haven’t checked it out before, check it out now!” - Sean Patrick Cain (designer of Fake Chess, Long Haul 1983)

I have this tweet bookmaker, for the (I think!) obvious reason of how excellent it is :) [Resources] Aside from production resources, it also includes incredibly useful links on marketing, funding, links to potential publishers and more. A truly excellent primer and catalog” - momatoes (designer of ARC, The Magus, and member/organizer of Across RPGSEA)

Follow Up

If you have additional questions, would like to schedule an interview please feel free to reach out via email or DM me on twitter at @goblin_archives

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Liminal Horror was written and designed by Goblin Archives