Friday, February 05, 2010

They fixed D&D!

This chart reduces most of the required die rolls in D&D to quick calculations, so that you don't have to consult a table. I like this a lot. I don't actually play D&D at the moment. If this was a product I would want to buy it, despite the fact that I don't need it. Is there a name for this phenomenon?

It's analogous to when I bump into a unicycle at a garage sale. I already have three unicycles. I certainly don't need another unicycle. But if I bumped into one, I'd be sorely tempted to buy it.

But it's okay. I'm thinking about playing this crazy retro rewrite of the very first version of D&D, called Swords and Wizardry. The neat thing about this is people have revised the rules. I remember finding my first copy of D&D largely incomprehensible. And of course this version is a free PDF, that's a big selling point. ;)

There are retro clones of other versions of D&D, including the 1981 Basic D&D by Tom Moldvay. Which means it is possible to play that version of D&D without having to dig up an out-of-print version of the game. And it is apparently possible to play and enjoy the old rules unironically; this post from the creator of Dogs in the Vineyard and Kill Puppies for Satan is inspirational in that regard, although that guy always sounds like he has great games. ;)

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