Sunday, November 18, 2018

Cleaning House

Today I divested myself of a chunk of my gaming collection.

On the chopping block:

Dungeons & Dragons, 5th edition. You know... D&D5e is fine. It's okay. To me, it's perfectly serviceable but bland as hell. Life is too short for games that are just okay. We had some laughs, we hooked up a few times, but ultimately I just can't see a future with 5e. I do wish 5e well, though. I think it's a far better game than 4e or 3.X, and I really like the art direction in this edition as compared to the two most recent editions (plus Cousin Pathfinder), and I hope the mainstream exposure it has right now continues to build a young and inclusive community. I'm just not part of that community.

Fate Core and Fate Accelerated. Evil Hat is kind of... yeah. I'm not a fan of the company. I also tried to get into this game, and I'm just not into it. Powered by the Apocalypse does what I wanted Fate do do for me. Mechanics-wise, Fate's oft-forgotten predecessor, Fudge, works out better and feels a good deal more organic.

Chronicles of Darkness, Beast: the Primordial and Promethean: the Created.  I don't like dice pools. I don't like social interaction mechanics. Beast is absurdly overwrought. Promethean is too narrow to appeal to me or most of the people I game with.
I have all of these books on PDF (I bought the print/PDF bundles) so if I ever have a change of heart, I still have access to the materials, but... eh.

OneDice Urban Fantasy. I only ever ran this once, and it was pretty fun, but I considered that to be in spite of the mechanics, not because of them. The math in this game just doesn't grok for me. We'll always have that one game I ran at KantCon back in 2016. I also have this (and all the other  OneDice books I've ditched) on PDF, as I am a bundle whore, so I suppose I can still use the material if I really want to.

The rest of the books were mostly just material for the above and some redundancies in my collection.

My bookshelves still teem with various systems of various genres. Some of these games I have because I play them or have and intend to play them again. Others have collector value for me. (Will I ever run any of the original TSR giants modules? Probably not. Do I like having the old white early versions of them sitting on my shelf? You bet.) Oh, and one or two books I keep because I find them aesthetically pleasing. Swords & Wizardry Complete and OpenQuest (the very first version with the wonderful cover.) I also have my entire, massive, swollen Palladium collection, because I've got a pretty big masochist streak inside me.

Currently running Monsterhearts 2 still, which is about as un-old school as you can possibly get. It's a lot of fun and I love the characters. I still want to start a B/X game to play here in town. (I drive 50 miles to play with my group, partially because they are awesome and mostly because I'm romantically involved with one of them.) Getting a B/X game in this town is no small feat. Most of the action around here is 5e or Pathfinder. Hey, a guy can dream.

I don't blog much anymore and what tiny readership I had in the past has since moved on. I have to admit I don't read most of the blogs I used to follow closely back in the day. I'm not going to shut it down, and I will still scribble the occasional missive into the void, but I think my blogging days are well behind me.

Carry on, gamers.


  1. There are a few books I have that still have collector value, even as my need for physical copies dwindles (particularly after buying a bundle of both the PDF and hard copies). Unwritten is one of those, particularly as I become more of a fan of the Myst universe in general. The original Dungeon Masters Guide is another, as it has so much food for thought; as a vintage copy, it also has that crack in the binding right at the combat charts. :D

    And if you do return to blogging, the blogosphere will be waiting with open arms. Best of luck to you!

  2. And here I was just considering picking up a copy of 5E. CONSIDERING it...still haven't pulled the trigger.

    Maybe I'll hold off a while longer.

    1. Aw man, don't make a decision based only on my account. Like I said, 5e is fine... but it just isn't my cup.

  3. I had 5e for a while and then ditched it. I still have the Middle-Earth book, though (just no plans to ever actually use it - why would I, when the b/x mechanics are so much slicker 'n' quicker?).

    On that note, I don't think I've ever had any real difficulty getting a basic campaign off the ground here in Omaha. There's still a genuine love for old D&D, and a desire to play it even among total neophytes. It just takes a little will (and advertising). Make up some flyers, hang 'em in game shops, is all I've ever had to do it.

    If you print it, they will come…

    1. A flyer is literally how I ended up in your original Shade Isle game back in... 2015?

      Normally I avoid gaming with strangers and gaming in game store hosted games. I made an exception for your flyer because I was starved for old school D&D.

      I also keep flirting with running it RAW or house ruling the fuck out of it, but that's another post entirely.

    2. >another post entirely

      Oy, I hear ya. The game I'm running now is about as close to RAW B/X as I could ever make myself get, and it's still a dozen pages of house rules. :)

  4. i feel you are wrong about 5E. It is very OSR influnced mixed with new.

  5. Bro, I can't be wrong about what I like and what I don't like.

    I did 5e for two years, on both sides of the screen, and it just doesn't do it for me.

    I ran Keep on the Borderlands using 5e and it was great. I played in a game of Princes of the Apocalypse that was balls.

    Nobody can say I didn't give it a fair shot... I'd just rather play games I like, rather than games I'm okay with.

    Thanks for coming to my TED Talk.