Search Results for: old school renaissance

Art of the Genre: The Old School Renaissance

Almost two years ago I got fed up with rules. Well, sure, I’ve probably never been one to take rules seriously anyway, but in RPGs they can become cumbersome very quickly. This is probably one of the biggest knocks on D&D 3rd Edition, although I was still taken with the game the moment I laid eyes on it. Since 2000, I’d regularly played 3rd Edition in some form or other, either in 3.5 or Pathfinder, and found the boundless customizations,…

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The Cold and Encroaching Doom of Death in Space

Player and gamemasters (GMs) of tabletop roleplaying games often refer to “crunch.” This is in reference to how the mechanics of the game work, and generally (though I suspect some folks will fight me on this), a crunchier game has more context-based rules. For example, the least crunchiest game is someone roles a 20-sided die and no matter what, if it rolls above 10, it is always a success. You start adding crunch to it when the rules start to…

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Tiny Epic Defenders and the Table-top gaming Renaissance

Funny how some of us predicted video games would virtually wipe out RPGs and board games, and yet here we are. We have entered a golden age of tabletop gaming. So many new games, with great graphics, great playing pieces, and game mechanics that expand on systems that have been tried, tested, and improved on for decades. I’m certainly not the first to make this observation, but much of this game renaissance must be thanks to funding platforms like Kickstarter….

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Why I Went Old School — or Swords & Wizardry vs. Pathfinder

When I got back into playing RPGs, I chose Pathfinder over 4th Edition D&D (as a whole lot of people seemed to do). I was familiar with 3rd Edition and the plethora of rules, skill checks, etc… I’m still pretty well versed in Pathfinder, which is a great product, and I’m a big fan both of Golarion, the campaign world, and of the company, Paizo. Two members of my gaming group have never played an actual pen and paper RPG….

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A Slew of Old D&D (and AD&D) Books Now Available Digitally

Yesterday, Wizards of the Coast officially released the first wave of backlist products available in digital format. These books are available in PDF format through DriveThruRPG, and you can access all of the Wizards of the Coast titles there … or through their new website, DnDClassics.com. The move to make their classic backlist titles available was originally announced back at their GenCon keynote (which I liveblogged back in August). The ultimate plan is to have every Dungeons & Dragons resource ever published…

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Keep up on Fantasy Gaming with Kobold Quarterly

In the early days of the adventure gaming hobby, the field was pretty diverse, with a healthy assortment of successful RPGs and board games. Much like today, as a matter of fact. One major difference, however, was that each of the major titles was supported with its own magazine: Dragon (for D&D and other TSR games), Different Worlds (Runequest, Call of Cthulhu), Sorcerer’s Apprentice (Tunnels and Trolls), White Dwarf (Warhammer), Space Gamer (The Fantasy Trip), The Journal of the Traveller’s…

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Dungeon Crawl Classics – Growing Fresh from Old Roots

Dungeon Crawl Classics Role Playing Game Joseph Goodman Goodman Games (480 pp, $39.99, Hardback; $24.99, Download) Reviewed by Howard Andrew Jones I’m afraid that the Dungeon Crawl Classics role-playing game will hit the modern game audience the way a hard rocking band with great guitar hooks hits teenagers who think greatness is held by those auto-tuned voices and dancing lip-syncers. It might be that they’ll have the sense to understand something good, done right, even if it is artistically out…

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Surviving the Sci-Fi Horror of Mothership, Maybe

Mothership, by Tuesday Night Games and written by Sean McCoy, started making the rounds in beta format in 2018, causing quite a big splash amongst the RPG community. Styled as sci-fi horror RPG, its tag is: “Survive. Solve. Save. Pick one.” In other words, watch out. Mothership falls into the OSR-style of game. OSR, which stands for Old School Revival or Old School Renaissance. OSR RPGs take their cues from the earliest days of the hobby, often with a focus…

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Twilight: 2000 — Roleplaying in a Post-Nuclear Holocaust World

Nostalgia: noun — a wistful desire to return in thought or in fact to a former time in one’s life, to one’s home or homeland, or to one’s family and friends; a sentimental yearning for the happiness of a former place or time. Dictionary.com I have heard about a phenomenon in film making that when the decision makers and creators get into places of power (usually in their 40s and 50s), the public often sees an uptick in nostalgic films…

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The 1001 Treasures of Black Blade Publishing and Goodman Games: Gary Con 2018 Report, Part II

New releases at the Goodman Games table, including the magnificent Tales From the Magician’s Skull In Part I of my Gary Con 2018 report, posted here yesterday, I talked about one of the great pleasures of walking the Exhibit Hall: meeting the creative masterminds behind the most dynamic companies in old-school RPGs, like Goodman Games, North Wind Adventures, Troll Lord Games, Black Blade Publishing, Frog God, Kobold Games, and many others. Today I want to talk about the other great…

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