Saturday, September 3, 2016


Today is the second anniversary of the death of William Butler, my friend, co-designer and the other half of Bedrock Games. It is also Saturday, the day of our regular game, and two years ago, Bill would have been our game master. So it is hard not to think about Bill today. 

Bill was a gamer's gamer. He never missed a session, and was always up to run or play in a campaign. He was in three or four different games when he died and one of the ways people identified themselves at his memorial was by what day they gamed with him. He had a passion and dedication to this hobby that I've rarely seen. 

Bill's knowledge of game systems exceeded my own. He was the one who first introduced me to Harn, he was the one who broke down the pros and cons of GURPS for me. He was good at breaking down systems and talking about them. That came in handy when we were designing games. A lot of what I know about RPGs came from Bill. 

I hope that in the last two years, I've helped preserve Bill's spirit in our books. In the past, Bill and I spent a lot of time talking about game mechanics. We spent some of that time arguing, but as time went on, we came to lean on each other's strengths and learn from our differences of opinion. 

I continue to ask what Bill would want when I make a decision about design. I've also worked to emulate his style of GMing as best I can, while still being true to my own. After he died, we continued playing on Saturdays and I assumed the GM role. Bill had an enduring style that was all about the long haul so I did my best to emulate his approach while being true to my own. I am always asking myself how Bill would handle a given situation in a campaign. 

To me this is important, because I know how much his mattered to him. He was brimming with gaming ideas all the time. We would routinely make whole games, that never saw the light of day, simply because he had so much enthusiasm and energy. I might begin a conversation talking about a movie or some show I was watching, but eventually we'd find ourselves debating the best die mechanic for some new system. 

I want people to remember Bill and know that without him, there would not have been a Bedrock Games. 


  1. Brendan, what you wrote is a nice testament to your friend and it makes me think of the gamer friends I've lost.

  2. Well said. Wish I known Bill better to be in on those game mechanic discussions.

  3. He was a good guy, he was a gamer through and through, and he is dearly missed.