Classic Dungeons and Dragons and Old School Gaming

D&D etc.

"Heir to a crumbling summit: to a sea of nettles: to an empire of rust: to rituals' footprints ankle-deep in stone."

-Mervyn Peake

"...and that, my liege, is how we know the Earth to be banana shaped."

-Sir Bedevere in Monty Python and the Holy Grail

Saturday, February 9, 2013

The Black Lodge of Elemental Evil, etc.

I, like a few other people, just bought some old D&D stuff.  I got the Keep on the Borderlands (which I'm now running) and the Village of Hommlet.  I never played through these some I'm coming at them fresh. I'm not going to review or discuss these right now really except to say that when I read about the Temple of Elemental Evil in VoH more than anything it made me think of this place:

When I run this I think I'll associate each of the NPCs in the village with someone from Twin Peaks.  Of course the Inn of the Welcome Wench will serve cherry pie and damn fine coffee.

This is pretty much how most players act, right?

On another note:

Friar Dave recently asked the question, "with cheap and legal PDFs of B/X D&D, do we still need Labyrinth Lord?"  This has gotten me thinking about how there is a retroclone product that I wish existed but doesn't really.  What I want is a pdf primer/player's guide to Fantasy gaming that I can print several copies of and give away to players.  It would have:

  • A low page count, probably 24 pages at most.  I want it to cost a buck fifty or less to print. 
  • Not a lot of art, but some art for atmosphere.  Probably line art so as not to bleed through cheap stock paper.
  • A brief explanation of what the game is and how to play.
  • Have rules for character generation, the first few levels of spells and some simple adventuring rules like time and movement, light, maybe hirelings.
  • Editable forms, so the DM can modify to describe the rules of whichever particular edition or version of the game they are running.  This one is the trickiest I think, but many of the different versions of the game are similar enough that I think you could do it and cover most of them.
  • A character sheet on the back.
The Original Fantasy Player Reference that Paul made is the closest thing that I have found.  It's strictly for Swords and Wizardry doesn't have art and it's not editable though.  Am i crazy, is this a pipe dream?  Is there some complication with the OGL that prevents this?  Or is there something like this already that I haven't found?

And one more thing:
In my last post I describe my preferred vision of orcs, and I've described orc shenaegans in the past.  They look something like this:
I was reminded about these guys by Needles fantastic post of 1d10 Deep Ones loot.  For me, orcs are less Peter Jackson and more H.P. Lovecraft and Roger Corman.

1 comment:

  1. You can go to and download .txt documents of LL, OEC and AEC to create your own 24 doc that includes all the various bits and pieces of the game you want.