Dienstag, 6. Juni 2017

OSR, Remix Culture, Boxed Sets

In a G+ Post+Alex Schroeder writes about the Unified House Rule Document Update by +James Young:
[T]his is the best part of the OSR, as far as I am concerned. People start with some sort of D&D and then they add stuff and remove stuff, tinkering and transmogrifying shit until it's uniquely theirs, and then they share it in order to help others. Download, browse, experiment, delete, adapt, lift some stuff, it's all good.
And I have to agree: The biggest advantage of the OSR is the use of lingua franca like the old D&D rules or their successors, re-implementations, clones, etc. ... Even if you left these rules behind in your games a long time ago, most parts are easily  recognizable. Some games like Lamentations of the Flame Princess create a distinct profile by adding, removing or changing particular details (like the peculiarities of LotFP classes), sometimes deviating quite wildly (like the class-less Macchiato Monsters which is still pretty much D&D-ish, but with a lot of "modern" rules ideas). And despite all the differences and deviations, you can use LotFP adventures with Macchiato Monsters, one page dungeons in most/any game, exchange/add/remove spell-casting rules, replace character classes (like I did for the original BX based Sylvan Realm) or even switch out complete sub systems like combat rules (I used the Old School Hack combat tracker with Labyrinth Lord for a while, and switching to and back from it was very simple). So, a manifold of options, remixable and changeable as you want or need for your campaign (or campaign leg).

So, the part of the OSR where we never stop tinkering is the most interesting one in my book box, as well. Which brings me to Boxed Sets (like LotFPs Grindhouse Edition box, the Tunnels&Trolls box, or the Chthonic Codex boxed set): It makes it very easy to tinker and add by just printing out a couple pages and adding them to the box. For example, while I do not need most of the house rule document linked above, the chase rules seem like a nice addition to my (tool) box, and if they're not too gimmicky I will keep them.

So, yeah: Have a box, keep all your stuff in it. If you publish a box, make sure there's some space left for people to add what makes their game complete. If you don't publish a box ... reconsider? Or at least make sure your book would fit a box. Oversized full-color hard covers are not the end-all be-all (-:
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