Table Top RPG Creators Corner — Designer Rose Whittaker

by Anton Kromoff

Welcome to the table.

I’ve had the opportunity to sit down with Rose Whittaker of r-n-w and talk about inspiration, the creative process, new years parties, and more. You can check out the interview below and follow Rose across platforms at her linktree to keep up with all her creative endeavors.

Anton: Hello, Rose, and thank you so much for taking the time to talk with us. Before we dive into your creative projects can you tell our readers a little bit more about yourself?

R: Hi Anton! I’m Rose and I make cute and useful things for D&D. From adventures to notebooks, game master tools to character sheets, my aim is to make everyone’s tabletop games look more whimsical and fun!

Q: And how long have you been involved in tabletop gaming?

R: I’ve been running my webshop since 2017, so for over 5 years now. And I’ve been playing tabletop games for many years before that, too.

Q: Your vintage-style TTRPG journals are beautiful, what inspired you to create them?

R: I love retro stationery, vintage notebooks, and all sorts of old writing tools. I saw a beautiful photo of some old library cards and immediately thought about how I could bring that look into something tabletop-related. That ended up inspiring the journals, as well as the Player Memo Kit and the Retro-Style Character Sheets!

Q: Now the Equipment Packs are really clever and I have a deep appreciation for clever things. Where did the inspiration for those come from? 

R: I really enjoy papercraft and tactile things in general, so when I was creating a character one day and was adding all of those pieces of equipment to my inventory sheet, it struck me that it’d be much more satisfying to have item cards to represent those objects instead. Since each of the equipment packs in D&D have fun names like “Dungeoneer’s Pack” or “Priest’s Pack”, they already lent themselves to something imaginative in terms of the bag that would carry those objects, so making little papercraft boxes to hold all of the items was a natural step for that project. We’ve had so many people come and tell us how much they love using them — in particular, a lot of school D&D clubs print out these papercrafts for kids to color in and use, which I’m delighted to hear about!

Q: The Equipment Packs have a few options including Dungeoneer, Diplomat, Entertainer, and basic tools. Is there any plan to expand with other packs?

R: The equipment packs are based on the ones that are described as the ones you get with each of the D&D classes when creating a character — if they added more to the game then we’d definitely want to expand and update the set!

Q: My players keep notes in a variety of ways from the notes app on their computer to a stack of random pages and papers that often shifts and changes like the tides. I kid you not, one of the players, an absolute legend in the RP department has this mound of random pages that contain notes from multiple ongoing campaigns in a loose-leaf stack that for the more organized induces anxiety to look upon. Your player memo kit seems to offer a solid way for players to track all their notes. Can you take us through the process of how you took this from concept to finished design? Was there play testing involved?

R: The Player Memo Kit was inspired by vintage stationery like library cards, and I particularly wanted to make something that looked really good and was fun to use, especially for stationery nerds like myself. I’d already been using the blank pages in my own journals to note what happened in the sessions I played in, so I had an idea of the type of notes that were most important to take. I also already had and used the Player Notes Stickers, which help to highlight key info in my notes, and knowing which of those had been most useful led me to choose which pieces the memo kit should include.

In that sense, the playtesting had come about naturally in the course of journaling over the years. After that, there was just the design and print-testing to make sure it all looked right coming out of the printer, and from there they went into the shop as a download!

A lot of the people who enjoy what we make also enjoy journaling, and do often request more journaling tools for players too. It was great to make this one because I knew people would enjoy using it. Quite often, ideas for what I make come from awesome community suggestions!

Q: Now I have learned you run a game every New Year’s Eve, how long have you been doing this?

R: I think it’s been about six years now — though, of course, we didn’t get to play during COVID. The New Years’ Eve games are a little different from a traditional D&D session as I make the game competitive rather than collaborative. The players are divided into teams, and each team has one goal. At the end, the winning team get a little prize, like a cute dice set and some chocolates. In the past, I’ve done maze runs, capture the flag, and even a scavenger hunt.

Q: The capture the flag-themed game you ran seemed amazing. How long did that session run? 

R: We started at around 8pm and finished at around 1am, with a quick break to celebrate the new year coming in at midnight! So that’s roughly 5 hours in total. It was a lot of fun and very chaotic — partly because of the drinking but also because of the competitive nature of the session. My favorite mechanic that we play with is something we’ve dubbed “The Witches’ Switch.”  It’s where, every so often, a witch will fly over the board and will switch the team members around to other teams — it causes confusion, triumph, and loss in one magical swoop, and we’ve all taken to excitedly chanting “Witches Switch!” whenever it happens now.

Q: Again I really appreciate you taking the time to speak with me. Before we wrap up, where would you like to direct our followers to follow your work and keep up with new projects you have coming up? 

R: Thank you, Anton! It’s been an absolute pleasure to answer your questions. You can find all manner of fun tabletop things in my shop at r-n-w.net, and I also have a Patreon project with my husband Niels where we create monthly D&D story content for larger campaigns, that’s at patreon.com/rpgtoons .

Otherwise, keep up to date with what I’m making on my socials below:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/_r_n_w_

Instagram: https://instagram.com/_r_n_w_

Tiktok: https://www.tiktok.com/@_r_n_w_?lang=en

You can follow Rose at the above-mentioned places and if her current offerings are any indication, I suspect big things are coming from her in the near future. 

 

Until next time, may you always find the notes you are looking for.

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