Updated: Jan 16, 2021
With many of our projects put on hold or changing direction in 2020, we took this opportunity to reflect on the things that are important to our organization and determine how we move forward. While this has many facets, one update we knew we had to make was our brand messaging.
As some may not know, the concept behind DOTS was created when two friends wanted to work together to make tabletop roleplaying games more accessible to blind and visually impaired players. We have more information about that on our about page, including a video with Jack and D discussing the project in the early stages. Since this project first existed as something fun without the plan of becoming a company or nonprofit organization, some of the initial branding and messaging is a little outdated. We’re still working on finalizing all the updates, but in 2021 we’ll be rolling out all changes.
Though coming from a place of good intentions, the logo developed by the project originators no longer reflected our attitude towards accessibility work. We wanted to clean it up and give it a more polished look while keeping it true to what Jack and D created. The original logo which included wood doors that were broken open with an explosion is too chaotic and aggressive for how we have come to work on things, and has not been used officially for quite some time. Additionally, there is often discussion about gatekeeping in this community, and the first thing we did was make sure to remove part of the graphic with doors that could be a reference to that. Next, the dice that are the main focus of the logo needed to be cleaned up. The cracked and shattered accents on each face were removed since they don't promote feelings of consistency and security, and does not bode well for an organization that plans to be around for years to come. Changes made to lines and coloring were done to give it a more polished feel, and the gradient coloring of the dice updated to be brighter, softer, and cleaner. The braille on the sides of the dice and RPG Project letters were fine tuned and colored to match the brass look of the DOTS letters and dice edges. Though the changes were subtle and similar to what has been on our content already, we love the newfound clarity! The simplified black and white version currently used on our thumbnails and social media profile pictures will still be used since they are easier to identify on smaller applications.
Detailed descriptions of each logo:
Old logo: a stone archway with wooden doors which are broken from behind, dice bursting through them sending shrapnel everywhere. Through the open door is a glowing reddish light, behind the dice is a comic style explosion burst with many sharp points radiating from a central point between the dice and doorway. Dice are four six sided dice at different angles, always showing three faces of each die. Each die is different color gradient from dark to light (D - pink, O - green, T - yellow, S - purple) with a single letter on the top and that letter in braille on the other two sides. D O T S letters shine like brass and have accent lines through the handwriting stylized capitalized serif font. D has four vertical accent lines within the opening of the letter. O has three diagonal accent lines within the opening of the letter from bottom left to top right. T has two vertical accent lines on the left of the letter, S has four separate vertical accent lines, two each within the open loops of the letter. All dice have an edge that matches the brass D O T S letters on the top. All faces have numerous cracks throughout. Braille is a dark pink. Below dice is text RPG PROJECT in a similar though less stylized serif font as the D O T S on top of the dice. Letters are two tone broken horizontally with red at the bottom and a gradient light to dark orange at the top.
New logo: doors, doorway, explosion removed. Cracks removed from dice faces. One accent line removed from D. RPG PROJECT and braille recolored to match the brass look of D O T S.
Alongside the logo updates, our tagline and mission statement are being reworked. It’s time to do away with the old tagline, “Kicking open the doors of roleplaying games for the visually impaired.” Again, we don’t want to have any references to doors, gatekeeping, or harsh and chaotic actions. Additionally, we have grown beyond work for just the visually impaired (though it remains a large focus) and aim to expand our programs to address other disabilities in the future. A full mission statement will be updated in the near future as well, but for now we're thrilled to announce our new tagline:
Improving Accessibility in Tabletop
Roleplaying Games, One Adventure at a Time!
With this tagline we aim to communicate what we do to people from all walks of life, those who are familiar with and strangers to tabletop roleplaying. It’s important that someone who is just learning about us is able to understand quickly what we do as a nonprofit organization. We will also start utilizing the hashtag #AccessibilityInTabletop on social media, replacing our previously used #AccessibilityInGaming. The old tag has been used more and more to describe gaming of all kinds, most recently with a surge in discussing accessibility in video games. We want to step aside and allow that discussion to have its own space, while creating our own from the ground up. We're looking forward to the new growth potential and seeing how the TTRPG community will continue to build on these discussions as a whole!
The first year and a half of our life as a nonprofit organization has been an interesting one, and it's good to clarify our focus now that we are learning what we can do. It’s exciting to have this opportunity to reinvent DOTS a little bit, solidifying what our purpose and passion is. Thank you for joining us on this adventure!