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Sunday, January 26, 2014

Dungeons and Dragons turns 40, DIYers owe a debt

Happy 40th birthday to Dungeons and dragons.
No matter if you are a grognard from the tan box days, or started with red box like I did, If you Like your D&D with an “A” in the front or a “3” at the tail, if you are a rabid 4th edition love or are desperately waiting for dungeons and dragons Next, we all owner the original a debt.

For me I think the thing I owe the most to D&D for is the starting of the largest do it yourself hobby the world.

Before D&D people read stories and played games, after D&D people played games to make stories. What seems plain now 40 years latter was indeed a sea change. The game is simply the framework the content, that you do your self. The DM sits down with the players and they create the content. What you used to buy in a book, you are now doing yourself, sharing with others, laughing over and remembering. No other hobby, you could argue outside of the inherent drama of sports, does that. Role playing games are inherently do it yourself and they inspire people to keep creating and innovating all the time.

A side line of this are all the games to follow, and all the D.Y.I. Lunatics who wrote them. The hobby did not exist before 40 years ago, D&D innovated it. For those of us who enjoy writing games, we all owe a debt to the original. Even if your design goal is to stay as far away from D&D as humanly possible.

So even though it's become pretty popular to kick the old girl around on the internet, lets not forget 40 years on where this all comes from. If no one ever thought of adding some personality to their war-game it's a distinct possibility no one would have ever had tunnels dug by trolls, debated “if system matters”, written Dogs in the Vineyard, kept a system alive with Pathfinder, changed the game with FATE, on, and, on, and on.
There could be no O.S.R, without old school.

Happy Birthday D&D!
Moving forward I wish The publishers only the best of luck with NEXT. In all seriousness a strong D&D is always positive for the hobby as whole.

I am going to end with some links to things that may or may not be loosely related to this post.

Have a great day

Thank you for reading.


The linkage:
Note I could post links all day to great games, but here is just a quick set of links referring to the things I mentioned above.

Compendium of free Role paying games from across the internet and acrossed RPG history. This list is almost entirely games created by those devoted DIYers. Why not find one that interests you and give it a spin..Price is right.

I referenced  Dogs in the Vineyard So here is a link to it.

I mentioned Ron Edwards essay "System Does Matter" Here is a link. Almost 10 years on it's almost as popular on the internet to kick this essay around as it is to whump on various editions of D&D. Read it for yourself.

I mentioned FATE as well.

My favorite of the "Old School Renaissance" games Dungeon Crawl Classics

This might be my new thing.... 13th Age ... I just bought the PDF, and am impressed so far

Mike Evans sums it up this way
Here is Mike Evans Page

Ohh yeah Tunnels and Trolls ... Old school as a old school

Runequest and Glorantha from back in 1978 is also old school as a motha f... Hush your beak.