Everything is Better with Pirates

I watched Dorkness Rising last night and it was one of the funniest films I’ve seen in a long time.

If you haven’t seen it yet, and you play D&D, go and get yourself a copy. Every moment in that film was a moment from my life. People I’ve played with, things my characters have done, the arguments I’ve had with other players – It is all there. The film makers managed to make a very funny film without once making fun of the game or the players. This film is laughing with us, not at us.

Avast Behind!

The central character of the film, Lodge, is a GM who is struggling to get his first adventure published. Obviously this made me think about our own adventure writing competition. Not just because the competition is for people like Lodge – talented GMs who are looking for a way to be published – but because of a great line from the film “Everything is better with pirates”.

This statement is self-evidently true, everything is better with pirates, and clearly one of the GMs entering our competition thinks so. He sent me some rough ideas for his adventure and looking at them, one particular idea jumped out. I don’t want to give too much away other than Beard Devils + Pirates can only equal a voyage from hell.

Arrgh, Jim Lad

There was another reason the “Everything is better with pirates” line stuck in my mind. I was watching a pirated copy of the film.

Here is a great example of how piracy helps creative industries. I watched a film I would of not of paid for. At the moment I don’t have the money or the time to waste on a low budget film staring no one you’ve heard of. The only reason I watched it was because I had been given a copy for nothing and because the person who gave me it really recommend it.

Me watching the film cost the film makers nothing either directly or indirectly. What it has earned them is a fan. I’m now a hundred times more likely to buy Dorkness Rising and anything these people do in the future than I was before last night. How much does a film company normally have to spend to have that sort of effect on me?

The free copying of your work, either legally or illegally, is advertising and bloody cheap advertising at that. In fact, it is the cheapest, most effective advertising in the world because other people do all the work.

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