“To buy D&D, you went to the store that sold the trains…”

I love when interviews stop being “interviews” and turn into conversations about the things we love. That’s exactly what happened during this chat with Craig Shipman on the Third Floor Wars podcast. A very fun time!

Third Floor Wars Podcast, Tabletop Talk with Ben Robbins

We cover a whole range of stuff, from when I started gaming as a kid, through the early days of story games, and then all the way up to new things like Microscope and In This World. Very “this is your life”.

Spoiler: the end is not really the end. There’s a whole post-credit bit with parts that didn’t fit anywhere else. Also one clarification: when I was talking about Capes, I meant it was the first GMless game we played, not the first GMless game invented.

Ben Robbins | December 11th, 2023 | , , , , | 1 comment

Prophecies Can Be Good or Bad

“This is part of the magic of collaborative world-building — that you can start a sentence with no pressure to finish it on your own.

Jump. Your friends will catch you.”

Jack Edward wrote a very thoughtful review of In This World after playing it with his group to brainstorm a campaign world. I highly recommend it.

I really appreciate the honest reflections on the experience, both for Jack as the usual GM and the players that are hoping to play in this world later. Lots of good observations. There’s also a reddit thread discussing the post and In This World in general.

Great stuff.

Ben Robbins | December 3rd, 2023 |

Gameplay Video: Wild Worlds of Dating

We’re back at the table, playing more In This World. What could top our Vacations game? How about Dating..???

In This World: Dating

We recorded this game a while back, shortly after the Vacations session, but technical problems prevented me from editing and posting it when I first intended. Now that In This World is done, I circled back around to finish up and share it with you.

Marc, Caroline, Al and I were joined by Justin, who had never played In This World before. Which is perfect, because it reminded me to explain every step of the game… eventually! Despite having never played before, Justin jumped in fearlessly and made our first world — that’s that Story Game Seattle pedigree shining through!

Ben Robbins | November 30th, 2023 | , ,

In This World Is Out

The full release of In This World is done! You can get it and play right now.

In This World

If you bought the early access release, you should have already received an email with your download link.

The book is about 20 pages longer than I originally planned, not because the rules changed — the rules are rock steady — but because I included more examples of play (at the wise suggestion of my backers) and also because I dug deep into the game theory mines to analyze exactly what goes on when you sit a bunch of people down and ask them to reimagine the world together. If you want to understand game design, there is a whole chapter, just for you.

Next up is doing print tests, so if you spot typos or whatnot, now’s the time to tell me! Give me a holler at info at

Ben Robbins | November 26th, 2023 | | 2 comments


In This World Halloween

You had me at watermelon jack-o-lanterns…

Ben Robbins | October 30th, 2023 | , ,

Voyage of the Astral Swan

Twinkle Twinkle Little Bar…

Calamity Vault is a new podcast playing rare indie gems. Their first game? Kingdom! And they absolutely kill it with the ‘Lost In Luxury Space’ seed:

Calamity Vault: We Make Our Kingdom Together (episode 1 of 3)

One important caveat is that they played the old edition from 2013, not the more recent K2 from 2021. If you listen to their review in the third episode, you’ll see they had some difficulty with the rules, which totally makes sense, because the old text is… cumbersome. Which is exactly why I had such a burning desire to go back and revise it into the sleek and sharp book it is now.

Ben Robbins | October 24th, 2023 | ,