HomeGates & GlamoursThere is No One True Way — A Rant
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Chris T
11 years ago

“My favorite weird one was probably the one a friend used where hit points remaining were used instead of levels in the to-hit table (so the more “wounded/tired” a being was, the less accurately they hit).”

I like this rule mod.. I like it a lot – with a bit of tweaking.. : )

Mr Rients at 8.05AM: OTM.

I think sandbox may be the best way to start a campaign and let it snowball from there according to your tastes.

Randall
11 years ago

Jeff said: “I’d love to see card-based to-hits. That could be fun!” Unfortunately, I don’t know much about it. One of my players in the late 70s was away at college most of the year where one of the campaigns he played in used it. Unfortunately, he wasn’t big on rules, so he wasn’t sure how it worked beyond the basics. I’ll try to write up what I recall of how he said it worked as a post this weekend. “That dude who emailed you was way off base.” Dudes. This has been going on since I started working on… Read more »

Jeff Rients
11 years ago

“Finally, I’m tired of hearing that the only real way to play “old school” is a mega-dungeon or a pure sandbox campaign.”

Agreed. I think we should celebrate and embrace the megadungeon and sandbox as excellent tools. All the “OMG! Megadungeons ROXXORS!!!1!!” in the world won’t make it the right tool for every job.

Randall
11 years ago

Chgowiz said: “Why is there ranting in the OSR blogs lately about this?”I don't know why others are ranting on this. I'm ranting on it because I'm fed up with the emails I've been getting. I'm tired of being told: 1) Microlite74 is not really an old school game because it uses one or more of these things: ascending AC, a D20-style hit roll, different hit points, and/or the same XP cost for all classes. 2) Any use of spell points makes the game not only "not D&D" but "not old school." (I've also been told this about using psionics.)… Read more »

Randall
11 years ago

James and Dave,

I’m looking forward to your posts on this subject. I guess this came to a head for several of us about the same time.

James Maliszewski
11 years ago

Mr Rients speaks wisdom, as ever.

Gamer Dude
11 years ago

I’m with jamused…I’d love to get a look at your spell point system. I’m currently using one in my Labyrinth Lord game but I’m always on the look out for ideas.

I agree w/ everyone else here, I’ve never been a fan of “strictly by the rules” play. Tailoring the game to fit your group has always been the idea…or so I thought.

Aaron W. Thorne
11 years ago

In regards to "It's all just D&D," I run a PBeM game of Basic Fantasy RPG, and one of the players constantly refers to it as "that D&D game you run." It doesn't matter what the rules set is, as long as it involves swording orcs for treasure it's D&D to him.

Jeff Rients
11 years ago

I think a lot of us are going through the same basic experience. 1) Reading old rulebooks for the first time. Or re-reading them closely for the first time in years. 2) Realizing that there’s a lot of extremely cool stuff in those musty pages that seemed to go by the wayside in recent years. 3) Taking that cool stuff too seriously for a little while. 4) Wising up about point three, but noticing that other people are still at that stage. Seems like a perfectly natural progression to me. The key thing to learn here is there’s a difference… Read more »

Matthew James Stanham
11 years ago

I think it comes from people not understanding the rules in their youth, and then coming to understand them as they get older. The experience of discovering that “you have been doing it wrong” is somewhat akin to a religious conversion, in that the converts tend to be far more interested in converting others to their “on true way” than the folks who were doing it right from the start. Personally, I enjoy figuring out the rules as an mental exercise and understanding their relation to the development of the game, but it doesn’t stop me from using whatever rules… Read more »

Matthew James Stanham
11 years ago

I think it comes from people not understanding the rules in their youth, and then coming to understand them as they get older. The experience of discovering that “you have been doing it wrong” is somewhat akin to a religious conversion, in that the converts tend to be far more interested in converting others to their “on true way” than the folks who were doing it right from the start. Personally, I enjoy figuring out the rules as an mental exercise and understanding their relation to the development of the game, but it doesn’t stop me from using whatever rules… Read more »

jamused
11 years ago

Aw, I’d like to see your spell point system, since I’ve just finished the HP/Stamina split for my house rules/homebrew and I’m starting on the spell point system….

Chris
11 years ago

Of course there’s One True Way, and that is “however we’re doing it this week”. It goes for your game, for mine, and for every other game out there. Anything else is just solipsistic territorial bellowing from the hilltops.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to wallow merrily in the filth of my systemic and sub-cultural inpurity. 😉

Chgowiz
11 years ago

Why is there ranting in the OSR blogs lately about this? I thought this had died down? Is there an epic war regarding OTW’ism that I’m missing somewhere?

Anonymous
Anonymous
11 years ago

"At times, I feel like I've walked into some alternate timeline where the various editions of TSR D&D were played very strictly by the book…"

That's because we're so good at retconning in our games… 😉

Sham aka Dave
11 years ago

Good stuff, Randall. I actually put together three posts on a related theme, the next two are scheduled for Friday and Saturday. The last touches on your topic but loops back to why it might be best to simply call your games D&D. Adding labels adds expectations.

James Maliszewski
11 years ago

Well said.

Must be something in the air, because I have my own version of this post in draft form.