Arena.Xlsm: Play An RPG Inside Excel

Cary Walkin is a Toronto accountant and, we believe, an tenth-dan black belt Excel ninja. We say that because he built an entire RPG in Microsoft’s soul-sucking spreadsheet program… and it’s actually a lot of fun.

The turn-based game is, obviously, not the most graphically dynamic of role-playing games, looking more like a roguelike than anything else. But hey, we’re here for the gameplay, and the gameplay is actually pretty great.

Fair warning, though: You’ll need to use Excel to play (LibreOffice, at least, doesn’t work), so if you don’t have it at home, you’ll have to play it on some computer that does have Excel. We’re sure your boss won’t mind, right? You can find it here.

Walkin, for his part, wasn’t expecting this to blow up:

Reading all of your feedback. I had initially been trying to respond to everything in 24 hours. However due to sheer volume that is no longer a viable option. Please know that if I don’t respond to you I’ve at least read your comment and it has made me smile. This includes comments in a non-English language, I am reading them to the extent that Google Translate can interpret them.

By the way, he’s getting his MBA next month and is busy doing the tax returns of deaf people for free. So he’s not only entertaining you, he’s doing it in what little is left of his spare time. Hey, Microsoft, consider hiring this guy: He deserves it.