Thursday, September 6, 2012

Is the OSR Dead And Other Ruminations

Here's something I haven't done in a while. Just some random thoughts about various things in gaming and beyond...

Shhhhh! Me and Mr Holmes are thinking!

Is The OSR Dead?

A current meme that's going around is the question "Is The OSR dead?" I'll have to say that the question cannot be answered with a simple yes or no.

Will we see a reduction of the amount of new retro-clone rules? For the various editions of D&D/AD&D, yes. The ones that survive will be the ones that are the most creative with their rule design. You will see retro-clones and revivals for other games continue, and more "what-if" style rules ala Mutant Future (Basic D&D powered Gamma World) and Rotworld (Pacesetter system used for  survival horror).

When it comes to dungeons, campaigns, and worlds? The sky is still the limit. Even if WotC releases every book in their library, someone will want to make their 'cowboys vs terminators helped by psykers and fae" setting for Basic D&D. A set of retro-clone rules makes it possible to share your idea with the world (or those 10 folks who want to cannibalise your games for parts).

Even if the OSR fades away, the ramifications of what they accomplished will go down for years. Sword & Sorcery has returned in force to fantasy roleplaying. PDFs, kickstarters, and print on demand has allowed people to create their own RPGs and supplements to sell in ways not possible even 10 years ago. In the end the OSR took up the do it yourself mantle and went beyond the d20 System revolution to awaken something much greater.

Finally, a thought about WotC releasing the entire D&D/AD&D library. You do realise for every person that buys the old D&D stuff from WotC because it's "official", there may be another that says "I can use this for my Labyrinth Lord/Mutant Future mash-up" when they pick up X2 Castle Amber?

Ad Infinitum Adventures Acquires Icons Superpowered Roleplaying From Adamant Entertainment

Several days ago I saw this press release about the future of the Icons Superpowered Roleplaying game  here.

I think this is a great development. I like Adamant Entertainment. I think Thrilling Tales in both the d20 Modern and Savage Worlds incarnations are among the best in pulp roleplaying. Mars is a great mash-up of all your favorite martian science fantasy  concepts. But I'm glad Gareth-Michael Skarka went this route. Icons is a great superhero game, and it deserves a solid focus to let it expand and grow. Kudos to GMS and Steve Kenson on making this deal.

The New Superhero RPG Golden Age

While I'm on superhero roleplaying games, are we not living in a golden age of superhero roleplaying? We have Mutants & Masterminds (M&M), Icons, DC Adventures, Marvel Heroic Roleplaying, BASH Ultimate, Supers!, and two companies putting out products for Villains & Vigilantes, just for a start.

Yes, I said Villains & Vigilantes. Two companies. It's True.

Plus with various OGLs and Creative Commons there are a metric ton of great material that can be adapted for your favotite superhero RPG. Most of it is M&M 3e/2e or Icons, but from Golden Age  wackiness to dark Dark Knight-Wannabe grittiness there is plenty of Superhero goodness to go around.

I Wish I Had More Money For Kickstarters

To all my internet friends and people who've I bought games from: If I haven't donated money to your Kickstarter, it not because I don't like your idea. I think you idea is kind of sweet actually. I just can't afford to spend my paychecks on everything I want to support. Nothing personal.

Emmanuelle Vaugier is Still Flippin' Hot

Yep. Flipping Hot.

Emmanuelle Vaugier  is still flipping hot. I know it's not gaming, but I just had to get that off my chest.

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