The End of an Era

By on 15 December 2017
UK Role Players

Nearly fifteen years ago, I was sitting at home awaiting the birth of my son and reading on the Raven forums about how Raven was closing. Raven, for those who’s memories don’t stretch that far, was the organisation that grew from the ashes of the old RPGA UK network. For reasons I won’t go into, it didn’t work out and the UK was about to lose a valuable communication hub. A few months later, I started a forum sub-hosted on my espionage RPG website (Modus Operandi). Not long after that Tony Hyams (who now co-runs UK Games Expo) stepped in with a domain name and hosting. I took over the full running of the domain name a few years later and the hosting itself has moved onto an server (or three) over the years.

The ‘site blossomed as it associated itself with a number of conventions across the UK, offering a place for UK-based roleplayers to chat and find other, link-minded, folk. In 2008 I expanded the site to include news, reviews,and columns. Unfortunately, things haven’t always been so good. The last couple of years have actually been a hard slog as the server (provided for free) would go down without any rhyme or reason, spam bots would assail the forums and, once frequent, visitors moved on to other platforms (Facebook and Google+ being the prime offenders). It has almost become a full-time job to keep the ‘site treading water and has sapped all of my energy and enthusiasm. I’ve thought about closing UK Role Players before but have always decided to give it another go. This time though, that’s not the case. Fifteen years is a long time in the history of websites, especially forums, but technology moves on.

I was originally going to announce the closure in a couple of weeks but today I was accused of forcing people to use affiliate links so that I could benefit solely from the proceeds. This deeply offended me as not only have I often rejected offers of paid advertising but I give away DriveThruRPG gift vouchers on a regular basis as a “reward” for regular users. In recent years I’ve given away an average of $15 a month. The extent of my anger caused me to post the ultimate “rage quit” in the forums today. It’s not something I regret though.

I have spent as long on this website as I have raising my son (who turns 15 at the end of the month). This ‘site is like a child to me, it’s been part of my life for so long and it tears me apart to have to close it. However, if I don’t close it, I fear what may happen.

So, enjoy the next few months… they will be the last for this website.

About Dave McAlister

Dave has been roleplaying for over 30 years, having played and/or run most mainstream systems with the espionage genre being an early favourite. So much so that, in 1999, he started Modus Operandi. That same year he joined the Sarbreenar "Living" campaign team as their plotline controller before moving across to the Living Spycraft campaign team (as UK Regional Branch Director) in 2003. 2003 also saw the birth of UK Role Players as well as Dave's first freelance writing appointment (co-writing World Militaries and consulting on both US Militaries and Battlegrounds, all for Spycraft). Since then, Dave has concentrated on supporting the UK gaming scene. He has organised and run several small, one-day, events and was the RPG Area Manager for Gen Con UK in 2004. His current favourite systems are Dungeons & Dragons (specifically 5th Edition), Savage Worlds and Cinematic Unisystem. He has a (currently neglected) blog at dave.mcalister.org.uk and runs a D&D 5e SRD website at DnD5e.info.

5 Comments

  1. Mark Slater

    17 December 2017 at 6:50 am

    Dont blame you mate the internet used to be fun now it’s the domain of assholes. Thanks for your all your hard work and efforts and good luck in your future endeavours and merry xmas šŸ˜ŠšŸ˜ŠšŸ˜Š

  2. Darren

    21 December 2017 at 10:20 pm

    Thanks for all your hard work mate – all the best

  3. Ken Doyle

    22 December 2017 at 10:50 am

    Sorry to hear this. Thanks for all your efforts

  4. Pingback: UK Role Players (UKRP) closes

  5. Paul Harries

    13 January 2018 at 7:55 pm

    I remember your time here at IWARP here in Gloucester well.

    Thanks for all the hard work you put into the site all this time. 15 years already? Suppose all good things come to an end eventually.

    Thanks again for all your work
    Paul H

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