Category Archives: Blogging

December Blogosphere XMAS Countdown – Get your Date and Calendar!


Over the past two weeks bloggers all across the MMO and gaming blogosphere have signed up for the merry December blogging countdown and I am happy to confirm a total of 46 people are participating! I have spent the better part of this weekend finalizing a calendar-like page, randomizing dates and working out the last bits and pieces – but more on that later! While the original post already contains most of the infos and ideas behind this event, a very brief summary of what you need to know so you can start writing and planning ahead:

  • The topic of your post should revolve around “gaming and community”; share something positive that has come from gaming/blogging for you as an individual and that involves others in some way. For ideas, see the original post.
  • To identify participating entries, the title of your post should read: “Bloggy XMAS <day number>:…………..” the rest of the title being all yours!
  • Publishing time for entries is at 9am PST which translates to 12pm EST and 5pm (London) to 6pm (Paris) for central European times respectively, to meet the timezones of a majority of bloggers and readers. I am aware that this is not a perfect solution for everybody, but thanks for trying to schedule your publications accordingly if possible. It helps us to get an idea of what time of the day new posts will be up each day.

With the administrative bits out of the way, here comes the list of individual post dates for every blogger. Due to many signups, December 1st – 21st will be featuring two entries per day which is absolutely brilliant. Assignments have happened completely at random, courtesy of (so please direct all complaints there!). —> Individual posting dates by author’s name A-Z: Follow this link!

Presenting the Bloggy XMAS Calendar:
Finally, it’s time to reveal the countdown/calendar page! I’ve come to understand that digital advent calendars are in fact tricky business: having moving bits, timer lockouts and whatnot isn’t simple, especially if you’re looking for a calendar that caters to different timezones. The Bloggy XMAS calendar page is therefore kept simple, as an overview for you to keep track of all posts published on the topic of gaming community in December. It is a visual guide more than anything and like every physical advent calendar too, it’s up to your own self-discipline whether you’ll spoil all the surprises in advance and binge on the candy inside, or whether you’ll strictly open 1 window per day!

You can find the Bloggy XMAS  calendar at Henceforward, you can use the standalone page to keep track of community posts for the day (also check twitter #bloggyxmas for daily updates), as well as a daily MMO fun fact and MMO tune for the day (of course!). For those who would like to make a sticky and promote the event via their own blogs, feel free to use the banner below!


The event lasts until December 25th. The blog links provided for each day are currently directing to your main domain and will be adjusted as soon as posts have been published. If you would still like to participate in this event, let me know in the comments or via twitter. A final round-up will be published around Dec 31st.

Thanks everyone for joining for this merry event and bringing some community spirit to the gaming blogosphere this December 2014! Looking forward to many great posts!

A December Blogosphere XMAS Countdown – Sign up!

December is a special time in small countryside communities around here where it’s customary to not just buy advent calendars stuffed with chocolate and toys for children, but to turn an entire town (for reference) into one big calendar with a different house participating every night until Xmas. Participants draw a number and decorate a prominent and visible window on the house they live in, to be lit through the entire night when it’s their turn in December (and onward from there until the 24th). It is a wonderful sight on a cold winter’s night to walk through such a town and discover what people have done with their windows, whether you celebrate Xmas or not. It’s one of those orchestrated displays of community that still work on some level, or so I have always found, and everyone is welcome to join for this tradition regardless of religion.


Advent window in Toggenburg /

The MMO Blogosphere XMAS Countdown

December is almost here and constitutes the end of another year of blogging in the blogosphere as well as the end of a quarter that was difficult for gaming culture as a whole. We’ve been reminded that mainstream media still think fairly low of our pastime and that gamers are not one community. Some have stopped to identify with this label altogether, as is their right.

And yet, if we dig deeper past superficial labels, there is still a community of sorts between an ever growing number of individuals – a community by choice of active members in this here blogosphere and elsewhere, among gaming bloggers on twitter and G+, sharing daily quips or friendly advice, joining forces on cooperative events and seeking exchange and respectful discussion week after week while holding to similar standards of communication. At yesterday’s Blizzcon, Blizzard revealed a down memory lane documentary on WoW and their worldwide fanbase which was full of feels and nostalgia for this MMO. It was hard to watch without being reminded of that great idea(l), that promise of acceptance and belonging that virtual worlds still hold for so many players across the globe, no matter where they come from. To claim that it’s all just a sham would be overly cynical – every day, online gaming brings some people together.

Blogging buddies, twitter friends, kindred spirits – they exist. To many of us, they make writing about games that much more special and enjoyable. Nobody likes to blog in a vacuum. This is where the MMO Blogosphere Xmas Countdown comes into play and I call participants from all corners of the gaming blogosphere to join for this merry event through December! Sign up and turn your blog into a community window on a random day that will be assigned before the end of November! Join the calendar that is blogosphere town!


My thanks go to Belghast from Tales of the Aggronaut for graciously assisting me with the logo to this merry little event! Bel has been the host of the Blaugust blogging event this year and I am happy to be part of a community that has people like him in it.

How to join the blogosphere Xmas Calendar: Q&A

How do I create a “window”? What’s the topic?
Your “window” is a blogpost dedicated to the topic of ‘gaming and community’ which goes up on your assigned date in December. Form and content of this post are completely up to you: whether you include a number of pictures/screenshots or the official event logo, whether you write an essay or even a poem.

As for topics, the sky is the limit: write about how gaming has impacted on your life in terms of meeting new people, or what community means to you personally! Share the story of how you met a special person online, about your time in the blogosphere, times spent with your gaming buddies IRL or your guild online. Alternatively, you could take a more analytical approach as to why community building matters in MMOs and why it’s important to you. Either way, the point is to share something positive that has come from gaming/blogging for you as an individual and that involves others in some way.

Who can join?
Anyone who runs an active MMO or gaming related blog and has something to share on the topic of community! It doesn’t matter if you’ve got a dedicated WoW blog or write about different MMOs or mixed games, game design or gaming culture. The more, the merrier!

How do I join?
You can sign up by adding a comment below or by dropping me a quick line via email or twitter. Please leave a link to your blog if required.

When do I get my date / number?
Dates will be rolled out and randomly assigned to participants. An official XMAS “calendar” with all participants will be published on MMO Gypsy by November 24th including a link to your blog, so make sure to check back for your slot then!

Do I use a specific post title?
To identify posts participating in this event, the first part of your post title should read: “Bloggy XMAS <number>: ……” the rest of the title being all yours!

How long does it all last?
I am am positive that we can make the calendar go all the way up to at least December 24th, with hopefully many bloggers up to join for some merry reminiscing! More sign-ups can always be accommodated – this event being about community more than the actual holiday, I’d like to keep it flexible and go up all the way to New Year (Dec 31st) if required.

Like for the poetry slam and other blogosphere events, all entries will be rounded-up on MMO Gypsy (and potentially more sites!) by December 31st. I look forward to some great contributions again and hope to see some new faces joining the ranks! Thanks for helping to spread the word over the coming two weeks, so we can fill this December in the blogosphere with some happy stories on gaming and community.

Sign up now – and get ready to light your own window!

Creating your own custom Avatar

Avatars are kind of a big deal to online gaming folk – we use them online and offline, as identities on social media, mascots for our blogs and forum handles. Some players switch avatar for every game, others stick to a random sprite or custom image shaped in their real likeness and never change it. If you’re after your ingame characters, tinkering with either screenshots or other programs such as a WoW model viewer is usually required.

I’ve used my own custom priest avatar in WoW over the years and have made a similar thing for Wildstar; I tend to disregard those MMOs which I don’t foresee staying with for long (which is most of them). On general forums, I’ll use my blog’s mascot most of the time simply because I don’t dig randomly created forum avatars or logos that make it hard to spot your own posts on a thread. Personalized avatars are always nicer.

I’ve been asked a few times how I created my pixel sprite for MMO Gypsy and it’s quite simple: go to and browse to your heart’s content. Find something you like and change it, mix’n match different characters, add items or change colors – easy enough with some basic Photoshop skills. If you can’t find any game you like, search for old VG sprites on google image search.

Casual fun with Avatar Generators

If you’re not into pixel sprites and unfamiliar with basic image editing, using a free avatar generator is a good option for creating something custom and unique. Popular resources include Nintendo’s Mii Creator or Face Your Manga which still require you to at least know how to take a printscreen and re-size an image. I’ve played around a lot with Nintendo Miis in the past and with some patience, you’ll be able to create quite stunning doppelgangers of virtually anybody!

Another great and very detailed avatar creator I’ve recently come across is this Chibi Maker by gen8, which comes with a ton of fun customization options. After spending the afternoon (I am on sick leave, don’t judge) generating my real-life posse, I set out to try and re-create existing blogger avatars / people in the MMO blogosphere:


Syl, Liore and Taugrim

From left to right: MMO Gypsy, Herding Cats and, next to their original blog avatars.

There is some deviation but overall, they are quite adorable to say the least and I love the image quality of this particular program (which is free and downloadable too). This whole avatar creation business sure is addictive – have a go sometime and see for yourself (pro tip: change the background colors to white right away unless you’re looking to have a set background)!

Introducing: The Gaming and Entertainment Network

There seems to be a natural transition of the gaming blogger into other venues, such as streaming, vlogging or podcasting. The MMO blogosphere has seen a good portion of its longterm residents take up new projects over the years, sometimes leaving altogether to write for bigger sites or then, creating their own independent channels and collaboratives. For a while now we’ve seen an increase of great MMO podcasts hailing from our own neighbourhood, some of which I feel closely related to. I am therefore very excited to announce the launch of The Gaming and Entertainment Network – a new podcasting network by gamers for gamers, bringing the following independent podcasts together under one roof:

TGEN is a collaborative relationship between like-minded podcasters and serves as an aggregator for general MMO/gaming themed podcasts that fit together from a synergistic perspective. It’s meant to make discovery easier for our individual audiences and helps spreading the word across different shows. All podcasts remain independent in their current form. In the future, TGEN may also host regular cross-podcast, round-table discussions between its members.

I want to thank Braxwolf for inspiring this collaborative and doing the lion’s share in terms of communicating between many different parties, conceptualizing and creating a shiny and functional layout for the TGEN homepage.

Another big thanks goes to all our regular listeners of Battle Bards who have been following our quirky little podcast since April 2013 and made this such a fun and rewarding experience: Thank you for your continued support and spreading the word about TGEN. We hope you’ll stick with us on our musical journey and discover some more great and new podcasts on the way!

Links: TGEN webpage and twitter account.

Remembering Life

Last night the news of MMO blogger River’s passing (A High Latency Life) rolled over my twitter feed like a dark cloud, wrapping up a large portion of the blogosphere in shock and grief. River had been on twitter just a day before.

Syp suggested to post a picture of a scantily-clad “being” (thanks for that leeway, Syp!) on one’s blog today, in honor of a blogger with a particularly high appreciation of the female form. Over the years, I only had one or maybe three fleeting encounters with River; I wasn’t a close follower of his blog but our paths crossed nonetheless as is bound to happen in a neighborhood as cosy as ours. Hearing about his sudden death was both unreal and saddening.

(There was a bunch of naked people just behind that rock to the right)

Death is the great equalizer. It doesn’t matter who we are or where we came from and no matter our differences. In death we are all the same. Losing a member of this community that in many ways is less of a happenstance than the communities we are born into in our real lives, cuts deep. The blogosphere is full of opinionated and also polarizing individuals – yet on a very basic level I have always believed that many of us, maybe most of us have ended up in this corner of the internet for similar reasons. We’re gathered here from different timezones and even hemispheres, having so much more in common than with the person next door.

All the reactions since yesterday’s news are a testimony of how strong the bonds among us can become; internet friends and online buddies, fellow bloggers who we’ve never met in real life but who have run with us and alongside us for years. Sharing daily quips, putting a smile on our face, making us angry or thoughtful. When they leave so suddenly, they leave an empty spot behind.

Death is utterly futile unless we claim something of it. I believe the only value in death is to honor life. I value this little corner of the internet. The thought of the daily voices being silenced tomorrow fills me with dread.

But not today. Today, I am happy and glad the blogosphere exists. Mach’s gut, River.

NBI 2014: Calling all Poets

The NBI is back this month of May!
Time to grab your pens and join the fray!
Bloggers of all flavors, genres and creed
Contribute, ponder, write and read
About this special thing we do
The blogosphere – that’s me and you!

A special pen I give, nay feather
To those made from a different leather –
The wordsmiths, minstrels, frivolous kin
That fear no word or literal sin.
To you I call, just like before:
It’s time to rhyme with me once more!

Join for the NBI3 Poetry Slam!

The third Newbie Blogger Initiative of the MMO blogosphere has officially kicked off this May 1st, sporting a new web page and forums thanks to much time and effort put in by NBI maestros Doone and Roger. This NBI3 comes with a slightly different agenda than the previous ones, many new contributors and a whole bunch of events planned to bring the blogosphere together in what they do best: gaming.

And there will be writing of course, shared topics, friendly advice and yes – another poetry slam once more because why not?

The NBI poetry slam is officially back for a second round folks and here I am calling you – the veterans, the newcomers and last year’s most excellent participants to test and best the creative waters of MMO writing, be it with classic verse or freestyle!

The Rules!

The NBI3 poetry slam will be concluded by May 30th 2014. Up to that date you have time to figure out your words and contribute to this most worthy undertaking. Like last year, being there is everything; there are only winners in this competition!

The form of your contribution is free. Last year’s creations ranged from classic rhyme, limericks and haikus (17 syllables!), to screenshot poetry, song lyrics and abstract poetry. There are no limits to how you express yourself and you need no special skill level to have a go at creative writing!

However, there is one new requirement to spice up this year’s event and create a common thread among us, namely the poetry slam topic. I’m happy to reveal that this year’s poems have to pay tribute in one way or another to the following, most familiar and intriguing theme: “MAGIC”.

It’s up to the individual how you wish to interpret this, whether to take it literally and wax lyrical about spellweavers in games, magical lands or creatures, or whether you go off in a completely different direction and talk about the magic of gaming or what specific magic lies in the MMO genre for you personally. I am confident that there are plenty of ways to tackle this subject.

I look forward to some great contributions again and hope to see some new faces joining the ranks! After all, what is life without a bit of challenge, eh? Once again, all NBI poetry slam entries will be rounded-up on MMO Gypsy as well as the official NBI site by the end of May 2014. Feel free to leave me your entry’s URL in the comment section below or the respective NBI forum thread. I would hate to miss something.

With that, happy weekend MMO blogosphere and let the slamming commence!

Your MMO world on twitter

Ever since joining twitter one and a half years ago, I’ve been very happy with the overall service and benefits it has provided me since. I was a twitter skeptic for a long time and I still have no facebook or G+ accounts, yet I am not looking back when it comes to my decision to join the twitterverse. I never really expected to write this but hey – you can’t always be right, can you?

As a blogger, there’s a multitude of things twitter can do for you, once you get over that initial only-140-characters?-eeew-I’m-a-writer!-cringe. Once you stop thinking of birdchat as an alternative/competition to blogging, which it absolutely isn’t, you’ll discover an endless stream of inspiration, information and entertainment casually on offer for the taking and completely customizable to your wishes. Whether twitter becomes an active asset to your writing, interacting and researching or whether it remains a passive tool, whether you use it to chat or just to promote, whether you’ll join a wider “community” (not formalized in any kind of circles) or only ever follow your five favorite people – it’s all up to you. Don’t be surprised if your list of follows keeps growing rapidly though; once you peeped down that rabbit hole, things may develop a life of their own.


Some bloggers use twitter for link exchange only, to post blog updates and keep track of launch news and developers. That’s a great way to start out and certainly good enough for some users. Every once in a blue moon, twitter will draw a bigger crowd of readers to your blog, although in retrospective you might wish it hadn’t. If you’re one of the players who are desperate for the latest news and updates, twitter is where developers and community services usually update first, which is especially handy during launch weekends and whenever the servers have gone offline. Again.

For me, that’s the tip of the iceberg. I love how twitter opens up direct channels between fans and creators, consumers and producers. Blog updates are nice too but if you have a functional blogroll, it’s not the most important thing in the world. What twitter really does for me as a niche blogger somewhere in the heart of Europe, is opening up channels of shared interest, discovery and communication with an ease you don’t usually find in other social media. There’s a world of like-minded geeks, gamers and MMO players (who don’t blog and never will)  just one click away – all of them sharing the kind of info, interesting or hilarious content and special pearls it would otherwise take me years to come across just browsing the internet. As I’m sure is true for so many others, this is not the type of social environment I have access to in my everyday life (unfortunately).

As far as the MMO blogosphere is concerned, reading twitter has not just fueled and inspired many of my articles thanks to link or comment exchange (while waiting on the bus or filling the bathtub), it has in fact made my blogging much more personal. Fellow MMO bloggers can be talked to without formality and many will let a more private person shine through on twitter – someone who is tired at work (and playing games instead), burning dinner because of the latest Wildstar trailer, posting pictures of their cat with a Pikachu hat. Whatever other interests you bring to the table besides MMO blogging (just think VG music!), you’ll be able to build your own little neighborhood of secret agents keeping you informed at all times. You’ll be surprised to find how many other passions you share with people you’ve blogged alongside for years and oh, the laughs! There are no lonely geeks on twitter.


This brings me to the main point of this post which isn’t in fact twitter promotion (although I guess that kinda happened now) but sharing my daily twitter MMO resources for those still starting out, looking for news and community hubs, or those just generally interested in the topic. I’m always on the lookout myself too; some accounts keep eluding you for years so this is by no means a finished list.

Your MMO and general gaming news on twitter

As a preamble, I am not going to link any of the awesome private twitter accounts or MMO bloggers I follow on twitter (many of which can be found on my blogroll) at this time, nor any podcasts (separate post), single personalities or official accounts as in ArenaNet or ArenaNet’s affiliated accounts. If you’re looking for a specific gaming celebrity, company or game, you’ll have no problem finding them.

What I am going to link instead are generally bigger and therefore active MMO and gaming resources I personally follow and find useful. This means daily news and reviews, community websites/webrings and fan organizations all around the topic of video gaming and related geekery.

General MMO news / communities

General Gaming

Game design / criticism

Videogame Music

Indie Games

Retro gaming

Geek Culture

As you can see, I am sadly light on VG music related accounts, so if you have any recommendations there (and elsewhere), let me know what I missed! (edit: some new links added!)

To all my fellow MMO bloggers still resisting the urge to tweet: I’d be happy to see you there! Of course that’s a choice everyone needs to make for themselves and whatever reason may keep you from more social media is to be respected. However, that doesn’t mean I won’t be nagging you again in the future for purely selfish reasons (I am looking at you Redbeard, Bhagpuss and Jeromai!). We are gonna get you yet!

NBI: Join the Poetry Slam!

The MMO blogosphere is a colorful place full of talented people: writers, reviewers, podcasters, machinimists, painters, musicians, scientists, yes even cooks, just to name a few. And then there are the poets: bloggers who enjoy playing with the formal aspects of the written word as much as (and sometimes more than) message and meaning, people who engage in wordplay and subtle witticism to serious or more frivolous effect – quite often just to provoke a smile from their audience. It’s a beautiful thing to be creative in any shape or form and poetry is a way to be creative with language.

My love for languages and poetry is no news to more frequent readers. Every now and then I let it shine through some parts of my more serious posts, even if way too rarely or then I experiment with different writing styles just because. Poetry doesn’t only happen on the surface even if it’s easier to detect via verse, rhyme and other stylistic devices. A well-written piece of prose full of poetic magic feels like molten silver or a warm hand01blanket on the soul. I cheer every time a fellow blogger makes me feel in such a way about games.

Alas, let us shake the bonds of srs blogging bzns this lovely NBI October! Let us engage in some lighthearted forms of lyricism – the spontaneous and experimental, the ironical and conversational or if you so desire, the classics (or a parody thereof)! Too many people shy away from the ivory tower that is poetry but creative writing happens in all shapes and forms and anyone can join in for some fun and experimenting!

Let this second NBI be your opportunity (newcomers and sponsors alike) to contribute to an around-the-MMO-blogosphere poetry slam!

You could, for example, go with something simple: A haiku or limerick about your favorite NPC, your worst dungeon run, your most beloved MMO zone –

Elwynn, my lovely
How I miss your gentle tune
Too long I’ve been gone.”

“I’d rather have epics than gold,
A mantle or sword for the bold.
To tell where I’ve been,
The things that I’ve seen.
No coin tells my stories of old.”

Or, you could always check out examples on other blogs for inspiration, such as –

Any and all NBI poetry slam entries will be rounded-up on MMO Gypsy as well as the official NBI site by the end of October 2013. Feel free to leave me your URL in the comment section or the respective NBI forum thread. Challenge yourself and try something new! There’s no right or wrong ways and no winners – only participation.

And now let loose those creative juices – Happy slamming!

NBI: Blogrolls and You

I’m a blogger who enjoys discovering new blogrolls as much as updating my own. The blogroll is an important part of my blog’s layout; it deserves a prominent spot and serves different purposes. In many ways, it tells my readers that I consider myself part of a community while recommending other bloggers I enjoy reading to them. The MMO blogosphere is a small place – but my blogroll tells me every day that I am not alone. As someone who greatly values the exchanges between my own place and others, as someone who believes that my own writing can only get better thanks to blogger interaction, I can only recommend keeping an up-to-date (!) blogroll somewhere on your blog where it’s easy to access.


Whether to keep a blogroll and what kind, is a frequent concern for newly starting-out bloggers. What benefits are there to having a blogroll? How long should it be? And how do I get other people to link to my page?

…There’s not one correct answer to any of those questions. I have my own reasons to blogroll and so have others. Whether you set up a blogroll or not and what your personal approach to linking is, depends on the type of blogger you wish to be. It’s about how you see yourself, the purpose of your blog and how much you wish to connect with others. If you do however currently entertain the notion of adding a blogroll to your own site, let me share a couple of thoughts that will hopefully prove useful to that decision.

A) Why to keep a blogroll
There’s a variety of things a blogroll can do for you, more than meets the eye at first. A blogroll…

  • a personal statement; it tells your readers where you position yourself within a greater community and that you are part of it. It tells them what blogs you enjoy reading, which other bloggers you associate with and consider resources. And it tells linked bloggers that you follow them.
  •  ..spreads linklove; linking to other bloggers keeps the blogosphere alive. It lets your readers discover new resources and helps fellow bloggers to receive attention. Most bloggers wish to be read by many people and appreciate being linked – so linking to other blogs is part of a fundamental give & take. If nobody gives, nobody receives.
  • a personal resource; besides promoting other bloggers from your blogosphere, a blogroll can serve as a reader or eye-catcher while you are busy with your own blog. I use my own blogroll that way and seeing new posts from fellow bloggers pop up is always exciting and keeps me in the loop.
  • a “hub” for others; bloggers that keeps particularly long and up-to-date blogrolls are often used as a hub by readers who frequent other sites from there. I’ve been told before that my blogroll gets used this way and I can see the outgoing traffic I generate via my blogroll (as much as the traffic I receive from other blogrolls). Not all of your frequent visitors use dedicated readers for their daily reading – instead, they use your blogroll!

B) Things to consider when setting up your blogroll
Once you decide that your blog is going to have a blogroll, there are both formal and more qualitative aspects to consider. Popular concerns include:

  • Where to put my blogroll? Will you give your blogroll a prominent spot on the sidebar or is there going to be a dedicated stand-alone page? Some bloggers feel that long blogrolls ruin their layout. On the other hand, blogrolls don’t get frequented and used nearly as much when they’re not visible on your front page. It sounds lazy, but readers don’t usually go for that extra click. Ask yourself how important effective linklove is for you when making that decision.
  • How long do I make my blogroll? Are you going to be selective with your linking and if so, what criteria do you employ? Some bloggers share their love generously in an attempt to unite as many bloggers as possible. Others only link to thematically similar blogs, to blogs they read daily, to bloggers they call friends. A few bloggers keep multiple blogrolls for different interests. There is no right or wrong way here as long as you keep in mind that a) blogs you link to = blogs you are essentially promoting, and b) all selectiveness is a statement of personal preferences (it will be interpreted as such even if you don’t think so).
  • What type of blogroll do I choose? Both blogger and wordpress allow for different blogroll layouts: alphabetic order or recently updated, blog title only or including latest post title and date, with snippets or not. You can also restrict the number of blogs that are displayed in a “most recent view”. If you’re looking for a minimal and light-weight solution, alphabetic and non-dynamic blogrolls work fine. Personally, I prefer “most recent on top” with added post title and date because I use my blogroll like a reader. While blogger has always offered this type of dynamic functionality, WP users require to install “WP Link Manager” (new versions) and “WP Social Blogroll” plugins to get the same result.
  • What’s my personal blogroll “philosophy”? Over time you will develop a routine of when/why you add a new blog, as well as when/why you remove a link, be it due to inactivity or other. Again, there are no correct or wrong ways to handle this, although I would recommend to tend to your blogroll regularly and keep it updated. Horribly outdated public blogrolls don’t serve much purpose, except maybe a very sentimental one to the blog owner.
(artwork by Martin Handford)

(artwork by Martin Handford)

C) How to get on other blogrolls
This last question is often raised by beginners since naturally, you would like to start appearing on other blogrolls and get word out there of your existence. However, there are as many ways to get on somebody’s blogroll as there are different bloggers and in almost every case this process isn’t one to be rushed. So, a few basic tips from my humble experience:

  • Be patient. Keep in mind that all bloggers handle their blogroll differently; some link everything, others are picky about topic, for some it’s all about friendship and others only link in return. A mixture of all of these points probably applies to most of us, so there’s not really one way of getting on someone’s blogroll. This also means you cannot intentionally cater to somebody’s selection process; it’s too complex (and you don’t wish to do that anyway).
  • People can only link to you if they know about you. The absolutely best way of getting noticed is to read other blogs and then comment on posts you enjoyed. Almost every blogger checks out more frequent commenters and where they came from. Another way to make yourself visible is via pingbacks; include links to articles in your own posts where appropriate to reference. In time, more and more bloggers will notice you. It’s also okay to send blogging neighbours a friendly /wave via email (what I wouldn’t recommend however is linking your blog URL in comments for no good reason or asking to be put on a blogroll). For more ways to get yourself noticed, also see this article over at Liore’s (and take point 7 to heart!).
  • Be patient. Getting on a lot of blogrolls takes most people years, during which their posting frequency, quality and consistency will either win more and more people over or not.
  • Accept that you won’t be linked by everybody. Some bloggers may never link to you, even if you’ve been linking them. Don’t over-analyze this either; there could be all sorts of reasons for this, most of which aren’t personal. Sometimes your blog (=/you) just doesn’t fit someone else’s blogroll philosophy and there’s nothing you can do about it.
  • Really, be patient. Write on. Be the best you can be.

I wish you lots of fun with your new blog and good luck in choosing the right blogroll. Luckily, there are no final choices here, so you can always change your layout and approach as you keep finding out what works best for you. Allow yourself to experiment! I’ll see ya on the next blogroll!

The Newbie Blogger Initiative is back!

A year ago Syp from Biobreak launched the NBI project to get fresh blood into the blogosphere and spread link love. Many new bloggers took heart and rose to the occasion, while blogging veterans gave helpful advice as sponsors (or otherwise). Over a quarter of those participating remained, which I would personally call a great success; blogging regularly over a longer period of time takes persistence and a wide array of other skills, no matter your topic. Last year’s NBI brought us people like Jeromai, Ocho and Ravanel – just to name three wonderful writers from my blogroll.


We want you for this colorful neighborhood that is the MMO blogosphere! We are here to stay and we look forward to a new crowd of bloggers who will no doubt be inspired by newer titles, such as FFXIV, EQNext, TESO and Wildstar. For this reason, Doone from T.R. Redskies and Roger from Contains Moderate Peril have joined forces and revived the NBI with a brand new page and forum. Newbie bloggers look no further – sign up for a month of fun activities, special opportunities and extra blogosphere exposure!

Join the NBI-2 today! I look forward to many new faces.

P.S. If you would like to be a guest poster on MMO Gypsy, feel free to drop me an email or contact me via twitter.