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Messages - P&P

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Pen and Paper Roleplaying Games (RPGs) Discussion / 64 page RPGs
« on: November 03, 2015, 12:47:15 pm »
OSRIC's a 400-page RPG, because I wanted to offer value for money, and one 400-page book is cheaper for the customer than two 128-pagers and a 144-pager.  My perspective is that game designers should offer complete games in one book and they aim for all killer, no filler (Scot Hoover's words).  If they achieve this the page count is unimportant.

There's something aesthetic about the OSR, and something substantial about it.  Aesthetically it likes the Weird Tales vibe, where anything from speculative fiction can go in ---- compared to post-2e D&D it's more comfortable with horror elements (Lovecraftian for mainstream OSR, splatter for the Rafael Chandler/LOTFP subgroup), sci-fi or sword-and-planet elements, etc. ---- and it has noticeably different art styles with lower production values.  I once semi-jokingly defined the OSR as "the set of people who like Erol Otus artwork", on the grounds that this is pretty much the only thing that we all agree on.

Which takes me onto the substance.  The OSR isn't a movement towards anything, actually ---- it's certainly not a movement back towards the game Gary Gygax wrote.  Because we don't need to move back towards it; the majority of us never stopped playing, or not for very long, so for most there's no actual direction of travel there.  The OSR a reaction against something ---- actually a reaction against centralised control of the right to print/publish material you could use with your old school D&D game.  There may never have been any such centralised control in reality, but people thought there was and the perception was stifling.  Matt Finch's genius was to show one route to let anyone write old school material.  That genie can't be put back in the bottle now.  For good or for ill, anyone can publish whatever they like and a lot of people are.  Some do it better than others...

2300AD is fairly hard sci fi.

Quote from: RunningLaser;850363
Not to derail the thread, but which ones are worth teaching/learning?

Avalon Hill classics.  Most of the simple strategic-scale ones use roughly the same system, so Blitzkrieg, Battle of the Bulge, The Russian Front, D-Day, etc are not much more different from each other than the TSR D&D family.  Pick any of them.  Not the naval ones (don't start by trying to learn Flat Top!) and avoid The Longest Day, which you'll only be able to play if you go on holiday to an isolated cabin in the woods with your opponent for at least a fortnight.  It'll take you the first day just to set up.

Then move on to the more complex tactical-scale stuff starting with Panzerblitz and Panzer Leader, which are really good games, and if you  love them, start thinking about the possibility of collecting ASL.  You'll need another player, another mortgage, and many years of your life.

Alternatively there's a computer game loosely inspired by ASL called Steel Panthers which you can download for free.  It comes in various flavours.  The right one to begin with is Steel Panthers: World at War (get the fan-modded "enhanced final release" version).  Register an account on this forum and follow the instructions to download and install the game.

If you love SP:WAW you'll move on to other flavours like SP:WW2 and SP:MBT.

The RPGPundit's Own Forum / Pundy is Wrong, Blue Rose is Cool
« on: August 13, 2015, 01:20:55 pm »
RPGnet is a registered trademark of Skotos Tech, used in this case without their permission.  It's thataway --->.

OSRIC isn't better than the game Gary Gygax wrote, and personally I think the game's best read in Gary's original prose.  I made no effort to imitate that, although some of my collaborators are better writers than I am so there are some places where OSRIC has a neat turn of phrase.  Nevertheless, OSRIC was always first and foremost an optional tool for third party publishers, and its main purpose is to give them a place to huddle.

Secondly, it's a source of good-value table copies of the rules so you don't have to risk exposing your precious 1e hardbacks to the puddles of beer and fingers stained with salty snacks that are such a characteristic feature of the 1e gaming table.

I have no evidence for this, but in my opinion OSRIC and its subsequent imitators are the reason why WOTC re-released the earlier editions in pdf and print.  Part of the ongoing purpose of OSRIC is to keep WOTC honest.

I never expected OSRIC to get a loyal following in its own right.  For reasons I don't fully understand, it does have such a following, and I'm obviously happy to continue to support those people, as well as OSRIC's publishers.

But I want to repeat this point so the same message begins and ends this post:-  the 1e system is best read in Gary Gygax's original prose.

The RPGPundit's Own Forum / Extract from my sentbox
« on: July 18, 2015, 07:40:54 am »
Quote from: Elfdart;842530
Isn't it an indictment of both of those sites (where you're a moderator, by the way) that you have to come here to post about it?

I'm a moderator on Dragonsfoot, so my job there is to implement Steve's policy.  I'm responsible for enforcing the site rules but I don't decide what they say.  I know you feel I do that in an intellectually dishonest way.  Luckily, I find that I can live with your disapproval.

On K&KA, I'm an administrator and theoretically I get to set policy (in collaboration with others and after consulting them; I'm not the only administrator).  I do have some input on what the site rules say there.  But K&KA's run in memory of, and in honour of, the late Jerry Mapes and it's still run according to the principles he set when he was alive, and I'm uncomfortable with changing them.

Many people would have set up a blog, but I'm not the kind of person who can run a blog properly.  You can't do a decent job of blogging unless you have something new and interesting to say every few days, which definitely rules me out.

So I came to a forum that offers a wide freedom of speech, and I used it in accordance with its site rules and general culture.

The RPGPundit's Own Forum / Extract from my sentbox
« on: July 17, 2015, 12:52:00 pm »
The excitement seems to be over and I can no longer see any Shannon Appleclines on my targeting computer, so it remains for me to say thank you to Pundit and RPGsite staff for hosting this thread.  If it had appeared on Dragonsfoot or K&KA I would have had to delete it because of the site rules.  I don't particularly like you, Pundit, nor do I agree with very many of your opinions, but I'm grateful that you operate a place that'll host this kind of thing.

Yeah, I was petty to ShannonA.  I'm not a forgiving man, nor a nice one, and I was held up to public ridicule by the drooling poltroons who moderate his forum.  I don't mind being thought petty if I can subject him to the same experience.  I hope it was salutory.

And yep, if he does publish a history of the OSR it's going to be based on rpgnet threads.  Since it's not possible to speak the truth in that place, his "history" will be about as reliable as the Daily Mail.  If there's a word of truth in it then it'll be a happy accident.

The RPGPundit's Own Forum / Extract from my sentbox
« on: July 17, 2015, 03:46:05 am »
Quote from: ShannonA;842384
Is that what you annoyance with the site is about? That forum is public so that people who have been banned came come back and read their infractions. If that's an issue, we can dig for alternatives.

Yeah: that filthy baboon Ettin posted sneering lies about me in that forum and deleted my responses out of hand.  You refused point blank to do anything about it.  Those lies were up there for years and I could do nothing.  Since then your moderation staff have lied, lied, and lied again about the OSR and you're responsible for what they say.

I've waited about five years for someone from to need something from me.

The RPGPundit's Own Forum / Extract from my sentbox
« on: July 16, 2015, 08:52:04 pm »
He can't write a useful history with the information that's in the public domain.

The RPGPundit's Own Forum / Extract from my sentbox
« on: July 16, 2015, 08:45:42 pm »
Quote from: Aos;842328
Man, I have tried.

Sounds like Kent's got talents you don't have.

The RPGPundit's Own Forum / Extract from my sentbox
« on: July 16, 2015, 08:11:35 pm »
Quote from: Bren;842319
And I repeat...

I know.  I did read your post, I just decided to ignore it.

The RPGPundit's Own Forum / Extract from my sentbox
« on: July 16, 2015, 08:00:26 pm »
What I want is to exactly mimic the effect of the infractions board: to put what ought to be private communications in the public eye.

Obviously, if it really mimicked the effect of that board then ShannonA would have no right of reply and communications disagreeing with me would be summarily deleted...

The RPGPundit's Own Forum / Extract from my sentbox
« on: July 16, 2015, 07:39:16 pm »
Quote from: JRT;842286
That's not every list he was on

Damn straight.

ETA:  I'm really talking about the Yggsburgh one.  To be clear: nobody talked to Gary much about OSRIC, nor did he express much of a view about it when alive --- there was one occasion when he was severely pressed, but the fact is, he never read OSRIC.  Still, having been on the lists would definitely help put Myth's decision to write the first draft, and my decision to redraft and publish it, against its proper background.

The RPGPundit's Own Forum / Extract from my sentbox
« on: July 16, 2015, 06:04:30 pm »
Quote from: tenbones;842270
Good luck on your quest... I trust the mod-staff here will treat you better than the mod-staff at the RPGnet has treated most of us. But then again, I guess you're counting on that.

He's got a voice and he's allowed to quote things he disagrees with and reply to them, even if those things were written by a mod.  So yeah: infinitely better-treated.  The experience of trying to have an intelligent discussion on a forum moderated by someone like Ettin would be valuable learning for ShannonA, I think.

I'm not averse to the idea that one day OSRIC's history could be written based on conversations and documents from the period, ideally by one of the people who was on Gary Gygax's email groups in 2005-6 and will therefore be able to make sense of some of the emails in context.   I'm not looking for a whitewash.

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