Creating the Wetlander

September 19, 2020

Hello! Thanks for taking the time to visit the Wetlander. My name is Diego Romero-Aros. I’m currently 23 years old. This is my foray into the weird world of writing (blogging?), game design, and more.

I live in Claymont, Delaware, a suburb of the not-so-big city of Wilmington. For the better part of my late teens on, I’ve spent my time heavily involved in the local punk scene here in Wilmington. I played in the band Merger, which toured around the US and Canada several times, and also run the independent record label Impetus Records, documenting the music scene here. I’ve booked possibly hundreds of shows, put out multiple zines, been involved in many benefit shows, and more. We’ve managed to build a small buzz about the scene here, and things showed no signs of slowing down.

But the year is 2020. The pandemic has managed to entirely cut off our little music world, and it doesn’t seem like things will be headed back to normal as quick as people would like. And with most of my creative output stalled, I think my mind was aching for something to do.

Back in May, I suddenly had a strange urge- I wanted to create a mystery-focused RPG set in the modern day. It was oddly specific, and I wasn’t quite sure where the inspirations was coming from. I have dabbled in roleplaying games for a few years, but never anything serious. A few one-shots of Call of Cthulhu, a short Dungeons & Dragons campaign, but certainly nothing at the forefront of my mind. Yet, like most things in my life have proven, when I’m intrigued, I fall head-first into an obsession.

An early (and soon abandoned) character sheet for Streetwork.

And so down the rabbit hole I went. In the last few months, I’ve read more articles, watched more videos, and spent way more money than I thought I would ever devote to roleplaying games. Despite my limited experience or prior interest, I found that I have been fully enveloped by the hobby. I have worked around the clock on my mystery game, which I’ve since named Streetwork. From writing to playtesting to more editing, the game has seen a lot of shifts, and is still heavily in development.

A friend and I have decided to create a game publishing company, which we’ve named Marshland Games, after the swampy marshes of Delaware. While my friend has been invested in tabletop games of all varieties for many years, we’re both fairly unsure what it means to start a game company.

This site will delve into some of my thoughts and experiences while designing Streetwork and other games that will follow, as well as some thoughts and critiques on other games/systems in the hobby. I’ll also do some specific reviews of games, interviews, and whatever else strikes my whimsy related to the tabletop industry.

While this will primarily focus on the gaming table, there will likely be the occasional foray into punk/independent music, underground culture, activism and more.

I’m curious to see how this blog turns out. I’ve never been one for social media, and this seems like an effective way to communicate some of my thoughts in a more dedicated format. I’m especially curious to see how people respond to these posts. I want to engage in conversations more than anything, and this medium can serve me in a way that I think most other channels of communication can’t.

Thanks for tuning in, and hope you like what’s in store.


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