Other Minds (OM) is a community-driven webzine for RPGs and lore set in J.R.R. Tolkiens Middle-earth.
"I would draw some of the great tales in fullness, and leave many only placed in the scheme, and sketched. The cycles should be linked to a majestic whole, and yet leave scope for other minds and hands, wielding paint and music and drama..."
- John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, from a letter written to Milton Waldman, ca. 1951
Other Minds Magazine was originally created in 2005 by Hawke Robinson, as a community-based effort continuing in the spirit of Other Hands (OH) (1993 - 2001) run by Chris Seeman. Thomas Morwinsky is the chief editor since OM's inception.
The purpose of this publication is to provide Tolkien-related content of interest to Tolkien enthusiasts of all kinds and fill in the gaps left by the loss of Other Hands and other paper-based as well as electronic publications that have come and gone over the years. Other Minds Magazine additionally fills in the voids that have not been filled by either the "literary Tolkien" zines (e.g. focussed on academic topics), the company-biased or game-system-specific zines (e.g. The Hall of Fire).
The webzine is available as a PDF download. It is a non-commercial endeavour, provided by many volunteers world-wide with professional, academic and amateur backgrounds. Absolutely no fees of any kind are collected, nor paid (monetary or otherwise) for content or publication, however full recognition for authors and artists are provided.
The following content types are an exemplary but not exclusive list of possible content. All content is original (i.e. nothing available elsewhere is reprinted in OM):
- Essays on Middle-earth lore
- Maps (original)
- Artwork (original)
- Adventures for the author's game system of choice
- Source materials
- Conversions (between or for Tolkien related game systems)
- House rules for the author's system of choice
- Middle-earth related RPG news
- Product announcements (Tolkien and Tolkien rpging related)
OM is system-neutral. That means some content does not have any game system mechanics, while other submissions support specific, or a multitude of systems. Examples of possible systems (explicitly a non-exlusive list) are:
Not all content is game system oriented, but it should have some relevance and usefulness to players or game masters in understanding Tolkien's world, to better their role playing experience therein. This means the webzine is of value not only to role-playing gamers, but also to Tolkien fans and enthusiasts in general who do not role play, however RPGing in Tolkien's world is the primary goal.
Examples of such lore-related topics that have appeared in the magazine are:
- Continental cartography of Middle-earth throughout the Ages
- Dwarven mansions
- Demography of the mannish people in the Northwest throughout the Third Age
- Númenórean longevity
- Balrog's wings
- Genealogy of Gil-galad
- ... (many more)