Direbane is an abode to share artifacts, simulacra, histories, and other items of note related to ongoing years adventuring.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

The Secrets of Blackmoor Kickstarter

Blackmoor tribute painting by Kevin Mayle.
There is a very important piece of gaming history being finalized that y'all should back in the Kickstarter, The Secrets of Blackmoor. (Fudge, I had a bad link...) Basically detailing how Dave Arneson invented the role-playing structure of what came to be Dungeons & Dragons, the actual mechanic of a player being responsible for a single fantasy hero with the idea of a referee providing the scene and the essential question "What do you do?"

It is funny, because even back in the day (from 1979 or a little later) there was this discussion our group had about Gygax versus Arneson style. This was probably provoked by the common knowledge that AD&D first edition's effect was to pretty much shut out Dave Arneson as an author of D&D (Dave was listed on the OD&D books and the Blackmoor supplement, but excluded from AD&D).

Our group was firmly in the Judges Guild Wilderlands camp of settings even though we also had Greyhawk campaigns, and bought into the bizarre mix of the fantasy and discrete sci-fi influences from City State of the Invincible Overlord and Dave Arneson's First Fantasy Campaign about Blackmoor and published by Judges Guild.

Also, for better or worse, Gygax was often affiliated with the "DM vs Player Character" mode with dungeons designed to kill and ferret out the truly "best" players, rather than cooperative exploration and breathless team combat.

The stripped-down nature of Judges Guild and Dave Arneson's Lands of Blackmoor left open the areas for modification and exploration not only by player characters, but also for the Game Judges who ran the game. Everything was messier which is the way we roll...

Tuesday, November 13, 2018