A blog about tabletop hobby and or strategy games, with a side order of electronic turn based goodness here and there. Now with tons of retro gaming content both electronic and tabletop. Also with 20% more self loathing douchebaggery!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Some random D&D game and forum thoughts

Over at the blog Grognardia, there was a topic about the problems of D&D. Meh. We all know Gary Gygax said some weird stuff in Dragon Magazine back in the day that totally doesn't sound like the kindly gentleman with the dark sense of humor many gamers have interacted with or heard stories about in the Internet era. Fine and dandy. However, the comments section (you know, that thing my blog doesn't really get. Maybe if it was less game diary stuff and I tried posting mini essays and all it would be different. But I am who I am.) people brought up things like "You old schoolers need to DEFINE what Original Dungeons & Dragons is", and how the retro crowd should stop hiding at sites like Dragonsfoot and the Knights and Knaves Alehouse and talk more at big sites like ENWorld.

This was my response with some basic info on why and how I got into Basic D&D and love it so much. I've probably posted in this blog why I love it so much before now, and I am sure I will do it again. Even if according to my Yahoo Group, MagicDrew loves 3.X D&D and is seriously meh on Basic. I keep trying to explain to my gamegroup our initial RPG campaign wasn't good because it was D20 D&D. It was IN SPITE OF IT. But for most of them it was their first RPG, or at least the first campaign and you always remember your first time, and usually think it was much better and more magical than it was.

Hmm.. I sorta explained it there a bit didn't I?

Interesting topic, though I am not sure the comments about DFooters or K&Kers going to ENWorld is an apt thing. Most forums turn into groupthink.

Try having a 4channer or Something Awful goon use their style of posting at RPGnet. Or vice versa. The style and mannerisms of those forums are set in stone, and would generally clash with the other place, for good or ill.

Its sort of why people go to those retro RPG sites in the first place. The more modern RPG sites are pro modern D&D and tend to be rather dismissive of the older games. (Or in ENWorld's case, probably any RPG that doesn't have the D20 logo on it and the magic words Dungeons and Dragons.)

People want to go to places where their line of thinking is at least on the same wavelength.

Of course this leads to forums like No Mutants Allowed and RPG Codex which seem to loathe anything Bethesda Softworks does with a passion. But if it makes em happy to be with folks who hold similar opinions even if an electronic RPG forum that is console oriented would find them to be completely bonkers (and vice versa!), who are we to judge?

(Except in amusing ourselves at THAT OTHER GUY'S expense?)

As to what version of D&D I would be all gaga over? Moldvay-RC Basic with some 2nd ed AD&D classes and stuff brought over.

When did I get this opinion? After 3.5 was released.

I didn't get my first tabletop RPG till 1988 and it was Runequest. (D&D wasn't permitted till 1990 or so. Thanks Pool of Radiance! )

Is it because its oldschool? No, though I do really like the older "feel" Moldvay and later on Mentzer would add. (And Elmore's B&W artwork. Sooo.. awesome..)

If being old is what mattered, my gamegroup's most beloved campaign and intro into D&D would have been AD&D 1st ed instead of D20. But I tried reading AD&D 1st, and the DMG was just full of ... well the kiddies of today would call it FAIL. I disagreed with almost every design decision on every page. (D20 has its own flaws that are just as bad, if not worse. AD&D's little secret is how few of the rules most people actually USED.)

Later on I would realize Basic D&D, which I got Red-Green boxsets for the NES ROB Robot and Gyromite was basically what I wanted all along. Simple and flexible enough for what I wanted to do, and close enough to AD&D 1 and 2 that I could bring all those lovely classes right over.

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