Post an Activity, Something Mindful!

So.. I thought it might be useful - given that we may all be spending plenty of time alone or in family groups for a while - to have a thread of things we can share (activities, things to do, etc) to pass the time and take our minds off.... [flaps hands wildly at the nearest window]. Either for ourselves of for the young 'uns.

This is NOT a thread to discuss the you-know-what directly. There are (apparently) plenty of threads on that topic already and there are a lot of us who, frankly, need a break and distraction from it.

So... share any ideas, freebies, things to do and try, journalling activities, creative writing or art exercises, challenges, solo RPG's, peaceful walking simulators...anything you think will help each other take even just a few hours out from the chaos and take their minds of things. If it's free, all the better - a lot of folks are going to be stretched thin money-wise over the coming months.

And, of course, post your results here in the thread where possible!

If you're not feeling up to something interactive and just want to lie down and relax for a bit, i've resurrected a thread i made a few years back where you can find or add more passive relaxing things (ASMR videos, music, background audio of rainfall, whatever works).


The Call of Cthulhu Colouring Book

Drawing and Art

The Weekly Drawing Challenge Thread
Inktober 52 Weekly drawing challenge
How to get 2 free months off of your Adobe Creative Cloud subscription

TTRPG's (solo or otherwise)

The Artefact
Sigils in the Dark
Ironsworn - Solo or Coop TTRPG
Fantasy Age - Basic Rulebook

A list of free books and games available on Drive Thru RPG
The Silent Garden. another solo journaling game.

Print N' Play Board Games

Canvas (rulebook)
Afternova (rulebook)
Crypt (rulebook)
You can also get Tabletopia versions here: Afternova / Crypt

Stories to Read / Have Read to you!

Oliver Jeffers narrating his own children's books online daily.
Audible Discovery
Get a custom voice message by Spiderman for your kids

Knitting / Cross-Stitch

Free patterns available through Ravelry

Digital Games

Connor Sherlock's "Walking Simulator A Month Club" - free first volume.
Steam GDC Games Festival (until Mon 23rd)
Lord of the Rings Online and D&D online are both free (with all DLC) right now.
The "Games to Help You Stay Inside" Collection

Arts & Theatre

Social Distancing Festival
Broadway Shows - Filmed on Stage

SFW? Comics

Saturday Morning Breakfast club webcomic - free books


Sunstone, Volumes 1-6

I'll start with a couple of things that cropped up on the Slack recently..

An eldrich colouring book of weird angles and indescribable creatures. Chaosium have released the digital version of their Call of Cthulhu colouring book for free on their website.

The Artefact - a solo journalling TTRPG zine which the designer has given his blessing to share with anyone who's feeling a bit isolated right now. Using this you develop a single magical artefact, it's history and how (and by whom) it is wielded across time.

Similarly, there is Sigils in the Dark. Another solo journaling zine game in which you develop an evil wizard's spell book. Also offered for free by the author.
(note : it says there are limited free copies because of how itch works, but when it drops to zero the author just ups the remaining copies again).

If you're an art person, there's already a weekly inktober 52 challenge which is ongoing. I have fallen dramatically behind on it myself but talented folks are still working through the prompts on a weekly basis over in the weekly drawing prompt thread.

You can track the latest challenge prompt on the official inktober twitter account here.

(of course, there are hundreds of other monthly drawing challenges available on pretty much any topic under the sun as well, but this is a nice weekly challenge that's not too stressful).

IF you're looking for a meaty, solo (and free) TTRPG then Ironsworn is your best bet, from what i've heard (i've downloaded it but not given it a go yet). The author has released a "dungeon" sourcebook for it which is a paid-for product, but the base game is entirely free on DriveThruRPG.

Any parents that enjoy kids books might already be familiar with Oliver Jeffers' work.
He's broadcasting live on Instagram every day to read his books out loud and give some background about their books.

My kids love his stories and enjoyed yesterday's stream.
He streams around 12insh, but it stays online for a few days

I think... I can't wrap my 42-year-old head around Instagram for some reason

I feel like with so much demand being placed on ISP's right now, I should be trying to be less online. I think being less online in general would be a detriment to my health in these times, honestly. We're thinking of starting a crafting club or something between the roomies.

My go-to was cross-stitch, so I have a lineup of projects that I need to get started on. I have already put up a few around the house that have been completed. I'll see about putting up pics later

Great thread! I would love to see other people's ideas, as well.

My go-to is knitting. I'm participating in a speed sock-knitting contest. I've made it through the qualification round with ~1000 of my new closest friends, and we've been broken up into 26 teams. My team has 42 people to start, and 38 will make it to round 2. We'll get the pattern for round 1 sometime this week.


Once you're past the learning stage, and need less of your brain to concentrate on the knitting itself, it goes really well with podcasts or audiobooks, or TV you can follow mostly by listening to it. And there are plenty of tutorial videos online if you need to learn. And you get socks, or a hat, or a sweater when you're done!

A lot of yarn stores will be closed right now, but many will have curbside pickup or will mail an order to you in only a few days. If you need to find free patterns, I really like the Ravelry database of patterns, which you can filter for free options.

Connnor Sherlock has created a range of Monthly "walking sims", and he's made the first collection of them free for people to download and try.

Encased in hibernation-tombs strewn across the void after the heat death of the universe, the Walking Simulator A Month Club provides passengers convenient access to locations and landscapes from eons past to remember how beautiful reality once was.

• Over a dozen open-world locations to explore, ranging from 5km2 to 900km2

• Lush soundscape to accompany otherworldly locales

• No invisible walls or safety features, please watch your step

• Travel in style

• No extrinsic rewards cues like points or objectives or win states

The Social Distancing Festival

Hi! My name’s Nick. I’m a playwright in Toronto. On Friday March 13, I became one of many artists to have a production cancelled due to the need for social distancing because of the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19).

This is a site for celebrating artists and the work that has been cancelled/delayed/disrupted. So far, submissions have included clips from rehearsals, scenes done with cast-mates over webcam, recordings from previous workshops, design plans, and performers just doing the song they were really excited about singing into their webcam. It doesn’t need to be anything formal or polished!

I’m (along with 4 incredible folks from Theatre Sheridan) are collecting work to put up on the site, but our Live Streamed Events page is being updated regularly, and I’ll be featuring work throughout the week!

Please go to the Submit section of the site to send something to be included!

This is a chance to celebrate the work that you didn’t get to share, and enjoy a sense of solidarity and community with fellow artists!!!

Keep engaged! Keep creating! You aren’t alone!

Here's one that's definitely NOT for kids

Stjepan Sejic has released Sunstone 1-6 for people to read for free via his twitter page/drop box.

For those that don't know, It's a charming AF (but extremely NSFW) romantic comedy about a lesbian BDSM couple with AMAZING art. Not going to be for everyone, but what can you do


Steam are running a virtual games festival from tonight until monday the 23rd.

With so many public and industry events cancelled, people are trying to come up with alternatives. The Game Developers Conference is broadcasting on Twitch a selection of talks that were due to happen at the industry event this week in San Francisco until it was postponed. Microsoft are livestreaming theirs separately too. It sounds like this latest Steam Game Festival is also focused on substituting for GDC.

Valve say that “the Spring Edition highlights an even larger selection of games from studios who missed out on the chance to demo their games at showcases like Indie Megabooth, Day Of The Devs, and The Mix during this year’s GDC.”

They haven’t confirmed which games will be playable but you can see some of the possibilities in those events’ lineups. I really hope Dead Static Drive from Day Of The Devs is one that’ll get a demo – I’ve been keen to have a go on that for years.

The Steam Game Festival: Spring Edition will start tonight at 10am Pacific (5pm in the UK) then run until 10am PDT on Monday, March 23rd. It will be over here (the page will go up when the event starts).

Saturday Morning Breakfast Club is giving away some of their webcomic books for free here.

(link via thestarsarehigh)

pyxistyx wrote:

Here's one that's definitely NOT for kids

Stjepan Sejic has released Sunstone 1-6 for people to read for free via his twitter page/drop box.

For those that don't know, It's a charming AF (but extremely NSFW) romantic comedy about a lesbian BDSM couple with AMAZING art. Not going to be for everyone, but what can you do

Oh my! Thanks!

I’ve already got Sunstone 1-6 in trade paperbacks but may check that out to have them digitally as well.

I don't know the game myself, but Green Robin have released the Basic Rule for their TTRPG "Fantasy Age" for free.

How about some print n' play board games that R2i games are offering for free:

Canvas (rulebook)
Afternova (rulebook)
Crypt (rulebook)

(I have the physical version of crypt and Afternova should be en-route *crosses fingers*. haven't played the latter but i recommend the former, it's pretty fun)

You can also get Tabletopia versions here: Afternova / Crypt

For the knitters out there...
(posted by ActualDragon in the slack)

Apparently Ravelry's knitting patterns are all free.
and you can find more knitting related freebies and discounts here.

I think I might try making a no install door camera. I seen it on a DIY site I think while looking for something else. They connected a wired camera to a door hook, the kind you hang over a door. I have a cheap camera I'm not using so if someone steals it who cares.

Maybe do some model building. I have few gundams and one piece ships to build. I was in the store and notice no run on models or model supplies.

Might paint some weapons. I bought some God of War cheap weapons, just toys. The plan is to paint them. Wrap real leather around the handles, and replace the plastic chains with real chains. Maybe just repaint the chains to not look like plastic. Might be to much work to put real chains on.

Catch up on some reading. Currently reading The Long Halloween. Also have a black history book I want to start.

Might make a remote control car. I have the parts just haven't gotten around to messing with it. Or maybe go fly my copter or run the cars I have. Hmmm the parks are kind of empty. Would be a good time to drive a car along the paths. Oh maybe I could see if I could mount a camera on it. Hmmm I could use a old phone as the camera. This seems like a winner. Think I'll take a car out tomorrow.

I needed something quick i can just pickup and do in-between other things or when i'm feeling particular anxious, so i came up with the idea of using the VAST amount of blank playing cards i have lying around to make small mini "dungeon" encounters for my patreon page. I'll probably scribble some small encounter details on the back and use them in my 5e games as well.


This is a very specific thing, but If you're a creative cloud user (specifically an existing subscriber) you can get two free months of use out of it thanks to Adobe. Just login to your account via the website and go through the "cancel plan" procedure... The special offer will appear on the left when you get to the "offers" tab. Takes up to 48 hours to apply to your account but i just went there and did it myself and it seems to work fine. That's going to save me a bit of cash for a couple of months at least!

Here's a free list of different bit's and bobs that someone on my facebook posted.

It's got some resources for virtual tours, online learning, free music performances, arts, culture & literature stuff, etc. Not explored it myself but there might be something there of use!

pyxistyx wrote:

I needed something quick i can just pickup and do in-between other things or when i'm feeling particular anxious, so i came up with the idea of using the VAST amount of blank playing cards i have lying around to make small mini "dungeon" encounters for my patreon page. I'll probably scribble some small encounter details on the back and use them in my 5e games as well.


Those. Look. Awesome!

Does LEGO count? I find that when I’m building a set I’m working with my hands and not thinking about much else.


via igashu in the slack:

Free stories for kids of all ages. Audible Stories is a free website where kids of all ages can listen to hundreds of Audible audio titles across six different languages—English, Spanish, French, German, Italian and Japanese—for free, so they can keep learning, dreaming and just being kids.

not really an activity but i thought this was incredibly sweet...

Jake Johnson Brings Peter Parker to Life for Kids in Quarantine With Personalized Messages From Spider-Man

Since the quarantine a lot of parents have DM’d me saying they’ve been watching Spiderverse with their kids. A lot.
So, here’s my idea. If your child is home from school and wants a quick encouraging message from Peter B Peter, then send me an email with their name and I’ll try and send over a short voice note. If I don’t get to you, I apologize. #stayhome
Email here if you wanna try this:
[email protected]

Watch Broadway Shows from the comfort of your own home!
They don't like me ad-blocking so i can't say much about the service but it looks ok? If you're into that sort of thing

I updated the OP to include all the links added so far, for convenience

Just wanna say I'm loving this thread. Thank you!

A bunch of movies that were going to theaters are on streaming now. The are going for $20 though.

Here's a bunch more free TTRPG things (and some comics) available through Drive Thru RPG.