Wish List for TSR's New Owners

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Anthony Ragan

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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nos...@prefect.com (Rogers Cadenhead) screamed into the Void:

>1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
>possible to own all of the rulebooks.

2nd edition was an improvement over 1st, and all you needed as referee
were the three core books. The rest was frosting.

If there is a third edition, I would like to see the class and level
system jettisoned entirely and be replaced with a d20-based skill
system. Classes and levels were one major reason I abandoned AD&D.

>2) Produce more modules that are affordable, stand-alone adventures
>instead of expensive settings descriptions with no modules. There's
>something to be said for buying a product for a night's gaming
>session, and I don't see enough of that any more.

Agreed, and I wish more companies could find it profitable to do so.
(And I wish Adventures Unlimited magazine had survived)

>4) Establish a fair Internet policy that lets fans publish their own
>derivative work online within reasonable guidelines.

Agreed.

>5) Find Trampier and make him revive Wormy for Dragon Magazine.

Agreed 200%! (Besides, I want to know how he'd handle the Storm
Giants!)

*****
--Anthony Ragan
Snotling in Chief, Staadtholder van Marienburg
Iris...@worldnet.att.net (primary) & Iris...@aol.com (secondary)
The Warhammer FRP FAQ is at:
ftp://ftp.pvv.unit.no/pub/warhammer/FAQ3.2

Stephane Bura

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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> 1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
> possible to own all of the rulebooks.

Yeah.
And please make them black-bordered and only print a limited number
of them.
I've still got these Alpha AD&D books but they're worthless because of
the missing border.

--
Stephane Bura bu...@laforia.ibp.fr
I could put something in French here if I wanted to.

Lawrence R. Mead

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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Anthony Ragan (iris...@DELETE.THIS.worldnet.att.net) wrote:
: nos...@prefect.com (Rogers Cadenhead) screamed into the Void:
:
: >1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's

: >possible to own all of the rulebooks.
:
: 2nd edition was an improvement over 1st, and all you needed as referee

: were the three core books. The rest was frosting.

Nope. 2nd edition is only a shadow of 1st ed: you need huge numbers of
rule books because so much is left out of the only four you needed in
1st ed - the DMG, PHB, MM1 and MM2.

[other poor ideas deleted]

DMGorgon
--

Lawrence R. Mead (lrm...@whale.st.usm.edu)
ESCHEW OBFUSCATION ! ESPOUSE ELUCIDATION !
http://www-dept.usm.edu/~scitech/phy/mead.html

Mike Wilson

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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> If there is a third edition, I would like to see the class and level
> system jettisoned entirely and be replaced with a d20-based skill
> system. Classes and levels were one major reason I abandoned AD&D.

Gods no. How anyone can play ADnD without a level based system and call
it ADnD I'll never know.

> >4) Establish a fair Internet policy that lets fans publish their own
> >derivative work online within reasonable guidelines.
>
> Agreed.

I think everyone here would agree :)

> >5) Find Trampier and make him revive Wormy for Dragon Magazine.
>
> Agreed 200%! (Besides, I want to know how he'd handle the Storm
> Giants!)

I'd like to see Jeff Dee back for the Artwork of the new materials :)

--

---
Mike Wilson, 817-332-8883
Chief Technical Officer http://www.flash.net/~mwilson

Martin Terman

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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In article <3352d9c6...@netnews.worldnet.att.net>, iris...@DELETE.THIS.worldnet.att.net writes:
>nos...@prefect.com (Rogers Cadenhead) screamed into the Void:
>>1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
>>possible to own all of the rulebooks.

>2nd edition was an improvement over 1st, and all you needed as referee
>were the three core books. The rest was frosting.

Frosting needed to keep the cash flow up. That was always the problem
with RPGs. Once you sold them the rulebook, they could go from there
on their own.

>If there is a third edition, I would like to see the class and level
>system jettisoned entirely and be replaced with a d20-based skill
>system. Classes and levels were one major reason I abandoned AD&D.

Actually, I disagree to some extent. The AD&D system, at least first
edition, was amazingly fast to start a new person up with. Roll up
six traits, pick a race and a class, and you were off.

WOTC should be looking into producing a D&D game that is still that
quick on the startup. If they want to break the class/level system
they should do it in AD&D, and give an upgrade path for characters
from the D&D system into it.

>>2) Produce more modules that are affordable, stand-alone adventures
>>instead of expensive settings descriptions with no modules. There's
>>something to be said for buying a product for a night's gaming
>>session, and I don't see enough of that any more.

>Agreed, and I wish more companies could find it profitable to do so.
>(And I wish Adventures Unlimited magazine had survived)

The problem is that adventures don't sell as well as sourcebooks, at
least that's what many publishers have found. That's simple and plain
economics going there.


--
Martin Terman, Therapy and Behavioral Counseling for Troubled Computers.
Disclaimer: Sticks and stones may break my bones, but flames are just ignored
email: mfte...@access.digex.com home page: http://access.digex.net/~mfterman/
"Sig quotes are like bumper stickers, only without the same sense of relevance"

Phil Rhodes

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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On Fri, 11 Apr 1997 05:43:28 GMT, nos...@prefect.com (Rogers
Cadenhead) wrote:

>Here's a few of my early wishes:


>
>1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
>possible to own all of the rulebooks.

Hmmm. Who stole your old rulebooks? I play mostly 1st edition with
a few addons, and it works fine for me with the PHB, DMG, and MM1.

>2) Produce more modules that are affordable, stand-alone adventures
>instead of expensive settings descriptions with no modules.

I'll add to this: do it only if it makes sense, and will at least
break even. To find this out, do some *real* market research,
not the self-selecting surveys that TSR uses to make business
decisions. For an example of what can happen when you do something
like this, check out the polls for the 1932 presidential election.

>4) Establish a fair Internet policy that lets fans publish their own
>derivative work online within reasonable guidelines.

Don't hold your breath. WotC seems to be just as anal about this
as TSR is/was (this tense thing is gonna be confusing for a while).
Check out their web page. Although to be fair, most of what's
there is about art - no mechanics, really.

>5) Find Trampier and make him revive Wormy for Dragon Magazine.

Oh, lordy yes! Unfortunately, Tramp seems to have fallen off the
face of the earth - not even his family knows where he is. Phil &
Dixie, now that's another story.

>6) Fire Sean Reynolds. I like Sean and have had nothing but positive
>dealings with him personally. However, I don't know if I can endure
>any more years of arguments about his dual role of human being and TSR
>employee.

Here's a suggestion: the 'next' key on your newsreader. My
suggestion: *keep* Sean as the online coordinator, and hire
an *official* net-rep. Probably not worth the $$$ it would take.
Maybe get a volunteer for the job, like Stuart Dollar for Imperium
Games. We could post an announcement in alt.masochism, I think
that's a good place to look.

--
-Phil (Phillip...@baylor.edu)

"Baseball is dull only to those with dull minds." -Red Smith, sportswriter

Bryan J. Maloney

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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In article <5ileo5$p6r$1...@thorn.cc.usm.edu>, lrm...@whale.st.usm.edu
(Lawrence R. Mead) wrote:

> Anthony Ragan (iris...@DELETE.THIS.worldnet.att.net) wrote:
> : nos...@prefect.com (Rogers Cadenhead) screamed into the Void:
> :
> : >1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's


> : >possible to own all of the rulebooks.

> :
> : 2nd edition was an improvement over 1st, and all you needed as referee


> : were the three core books. The rest was frosting.
>

> Nope. 2nd edition is only a shadow of 1st ed: you need huge numbers of
> rule books because so much is left out of the only four you needed in
> 1st ed - the DMG, PHB, MM1 and MM2.

MM2? Nobody! Poseur! Jonny-come-lately!

TRUE AD&D 1st edition is a THREE-book game, and the optional fourth book
would be "Deities and Demigods" (Cthulhu edition, of course).

Sean K Reynolds

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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Rogers Cadenhead (nos...@prefect.com) wrote:
>5) Find Trampier and make him revive Wormy for Dragon Magazine.

They guy is MIA. Not even his family knows where he is.

>6) Fire Sean Reynolds. I like Sean and have had nothing but positive
>dealings with him personally. However, I don't know if I can endure
>any more years of arguments about his dual role of human being and TSR
>employee.

Why don't you just killfile the flames?

>If you can't bring it in your heart to fire him, do what you
>can to restrict his First Amendment rights and only let him post from
>an official capacity.

Ah, that sounds fair. :) I'm glad that someone wants
to keep me from discussing my favorite hobby.

And don't you realize that this situation will happen with
any gamer hired for this position? Or would you have a
non-gamer deciding what to put online, and building
a gamer-friendly web site?

--
Sean K Reynolds a.k.a. Veggie Boy skr...@netcom.com skr...@aol.com
"I know we don't live here anymore,
We bought an old house on the Danforth,
She loves me and her body keeps me warm ... I'm happy here."
'The Old Apartment,' - Barenaked Ladies

Bryan J. Maloney

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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In article <bura-ya02408000R...@news.jussieu.fr>,
bu...@laforia.ibp.fr (Stephane Bura) wrote:

> > 1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
> > possible to own all of the rulebooks.
>

> Yeah.
> And please make them black-bordered and only print a limited number
> of them.
> I've still got these Alpha AD&D books but they're worthless because of
> the missing border.

WHAT are you talking about? The original AD&D books had NO border at all.

Will Grzanich

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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says...

>: >1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's


>: >possible to own all of the rulebooks.

>:
>: 2nd edition was an improvement over 1st, and all you needed as referee
>: were the three core books. The rest was frosting.
>
>Nope. 2nd edition is only a shadow of 1st ed: you need huge numbers of
>rule books because so much is left out of the only four you needed in
>1st ed - the DMG, PHB, MM1 and MM2.

Oh, what a load of dingo's kidneys (IMHO, of course <g>). While I won't
claim that I haven't spent more money than I like to admit on 2nd Ed.
rulebooks, I can honestly say that I can run a very nice campaign with
only the PH, DMG, and Monstrous Manual (and the Psionicist's Handbook,
but that's just because I like psionics).

-Will
--
"All you need is love." | Check out my groovy web page at
-John Lennon | http://www.cen.uiuc.edu/~grzanich!
| New and improved!!


Glenn Dowdy

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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Bryan J. Maloney wrote:
>
> In article <5ileo5$p6r$1...@thorn.cc.usm.edu>, lrm...@whale.st.usm.edu
> (Lawrence R. Mead) wrote:
>
> > Anthony Ragan (iris...@DELETE.THIS.worldnet.att.net) wrote:
> > : nos...@prefect.com (Rogers Cadenhead) screamed into the Void:
> > :
> > : >1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
> > : >possible to own all of the rulebooks.
> > :
> > : 2nd edition was an improvement over 1st, and all you needed as referee
> > : were the three core books. The rest was frosting.
> >
> > Nope. 2nd edition is only a shadow of 1st ed: you need huge numbers of
> > rule books because so much is left out of the only four you needed in
> > 1st ed - the DMG, PHB, MM1 and MM2.
>
> MM2? Nobody! Poseur! Jonny-come-lately!
>
> TRUE AD&D 1st edition is a THREE-book game, and the optional fourth book
> would be "Deities and Demigods" (Cthulhu edition, of course).

Old AD&D 1st Edition players can and have played with just *one* AD&D
book - MM1. Hell, I remember the old days when Greyhawk and Blackmoor
were considered optional, but really neat. And anything we could steal
from the Arduin Grimiore. Don't you really think that 50 gp is all you
should pay for plate mail?

Glenn Dowdy

Jeff Heikkinen

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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In article <3352d9c6...@netnews.worldnet.att.net>,
iris...@DELETE.THIS.worldnet.att.net says...

>
>nos...@prefect.com (Rogers Cadenhead) screamed into the Void:
>
>>1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
>>possible to own all of the rulebooks.
>
>2nd edition was an improvement over 1st, and all you needed as referee
>were the three core books. The rest was frosting.
>
>If there is a third edition, I would like to see the class and level
>system jettisoned entirely and be replaced with a d20-based skill
>system. Classes and levels were one major reason I abandoned AD&D.
>

Then you're no longer talking about AD&D. There are a thousand skill-based
systems, many of them better than any skill-based version of AD&D would be
likely to be (if it was still recognizably AD&D). Mass always used to say "If
you want GURPS, play GURPS" (although you can actually substitute almost any
system). People still want to play AD&D, or it wouldn't still be the number
one RPG.

Klattu5020

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
to

In response to the last portion of this post. One might note that
supplements for the CHILL RPG were source books which AMAZINGLY included
adventures in their with them between the pages. One module even had to
adventures. WOW! someone proved it could be done.

Good Gaming,
Michael
Klatt...@aol.com

John Candy's Ghost

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
to

Lawrence R. Mead wrote:
>
> Anthony Ragan (iris...@DELETE.THIS.worldnet.att.net) wrote:
> : nos...@prefect.com (Rogers Cadenhead) screamed into the Void:

> :
> : >1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
> : >possible to own all of the rulebooks.
> :
> : 2nd edition was an improvement over 1st, and all you needed as referee
> : were the three core books. The rest was frosting.
>
> Nope. 2nd edition is only a shadow of 1st ed: you need huge numbers of
> rule books because so much is left out of the only four you needed in
> 1st ed - the DMG, PHB, MM1 and MM2.

Any DM worth his salt can run a perfectly capable campaign using only
the PHB, DMG and MM from AD&D2. Any truly exceptional DM can also omit
the MM (haven't run a vanilla AD&D monster in three years). Considering
that's one (or two) less book than AD&D1, I guess we see which one is
superior.

:^)
--
"You're about as young as a box full of Yodas."
-overheard at the gaming table
John Candy's Ghost
(bigb...@geocities.com)

Jason Thompson

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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: >5) Find Trampier and make him revive Wormy for Dragon Magazine.
My personal artistic wish for D&D in all its forms is: Erol Otus! Get that
quasi-realistic, super-weird guy back doing some of those gorgeous-but-stiff
illustration-style drawings and I'll buy D&D just for the art. ;)

Jason Thompson
Plays KULT and CALL OF CTHULHU
ja...@sonic.net

Steffan O'Sullivan

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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The product I'd most like to see is a large-size edition of the
Tom Wham game, Icebergs. One of the best things TSR ever did -
pity it was only done in a microgame format, and has been out of
print for so long.

Peter, are you reading this? Release an enlarged version of
Icebergs, please! You can read a review of it on my web page.

--
Steffan O'Sullivan s...@io.com Plymouth, NH, USA
--------------- http://www.io.com/~sos/ ---------------
"The mind is a menace to wisdom" -Chuang Tzu

Philos Sophia

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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[Rogers]

"1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
possible to own all of the rulebooks.
2) Produce more modules that are affordable, stand-alone adventures...."

YES. This is what made TSR what it is now. Get back to the basics and
let's see something of a return to 'golden' days.

Alan Kohler

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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In article <3354cc9c...@news.airmail.net>, nos...@prefect.com says...
>
>[Send e-mail replies to the address below.]
>
>If the WOTC deal goes through, I thought it would be interesting to
>compile a wish list. What would you like the new owners of TSR to do
>with their new acquisition?

>
>Here's a few of my early wishes:
>
>1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
>possible to own all of the rulebooks.

Your dreamin'! Back when I played MTG, keeping up with all the expansions was
driving me into the dirt; keeping up with AD&D books pales by comparison.
With this in mind, I see no indiciation that Wizards will change the current
state of affairs as far as that goes...

(SNIP|)

>4) Establish a fair Internet policy that lets fans publish their own
>derivative work online within reasonable guidelines.

Definitely - though once again, Wizards has a bad track record here as well.
They shut down several sites that had graphics depicting "homemade cards". At
least, legally speaking, Wizards was more "in the right" than TSR was in it's
bad netiquette. The only leg TSR had to stand on in its acusations was
trademark issues - most of its copyright claims were "off the mark" legally.
However, that's a thread that's been done already, so I won't continue on that
vein. Suffice to say that WOTC is not much more of a net-friendly entity than
TSR.

>5) Find Trampier and make him revive Wormy for Dragon Magazine.

<Yawn!>. Better: get Phil Foglio- who does work for Wizards (at least last
time I played MTG he did) to bring Phil & Dixie back to the dragon - yeah!!
:-)

>6) Fire Sean Reynolds. I like Sean and have had nothing but positive
>dealings with him personally. However, I don't know if I can endure
>any more years of arguments about his dual role of human being and TSR

>employee. If you can't bring it in your heart to fire him, do what you


>can to restrict his First Amendment rights and only let him post from
>an official capacity.

How about NOT firing Sean - he's been as helpful as humanly possible in his
position, why fire him - but adopting a "keep the customers informed" policy
- that's one department where WOTC does have a much better track record than
TSR.

--
SPAM FILTER NOTICE - REMOVE "REMOVE2REPLY" to reply by email.
Alan D Kohler hwk...@REMOVE2REPLYpoky.srv.net
"By US Code Title 47, Sec.227(a)(2)(B), a computer/modem/printer meets
the definition of a telephone fax machine. By Sec.227(b)(1)(C), it is
unlawful to send any unsolicited advertisement to such equipment. By
Sec.227(b)(3)(C), a violation of the aforementioned Section is
punishable by action to recover actual monetary loss, or $500, whichever
is greater, for each violation."


Bryan Gardner

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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Anthony Ragan wrote:

>
> If there is a third edition, I would like to see the class and level
> system jettisoned entirely and be replaced with a d20-based skill
> system. Classes and levels were one major reason I abandoned AD&D.
>

Hmm. Remove Class and Level, Add skill based system. Why bother to
call it AD&D anymore?

I like the Class and Level system, sometimes.

Bryan

Bruce L Grubb

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Apr 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/11/97
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In article <3352d9c6...@netnews.worldnet.att.net>,
iris...@DELETE.THIS.worldnet.att.net wrote:

> nos...@prefect.com (Rogers Cadenhead) screamed into the Void:
>

> >1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
> >possible to own all of the rulebooks.
>

> 2nd edition was an improvement over 1st, and all you needed as referee
> were the three core books. The rest was frosting.

I agree. At least with AD&D2 you don't have the 'class for everything and
everything has its class' sillyness we saw in AD&D1 days: Deathmages,
Witches, Necromances, and so on. Though the number of books for AD&D has
gotten a little rediculous of late.

> If there is a third edition, I would like to see the class and level
> system jettisoned entirely and be replaced with a d20-based skill
> system. Classes and levels were one major reason I abandoned AD&D.

Classes and levels were what drove us from AD&D to a skill based system as
well. In addition the magic and alignment systems were and still are a
mess.

Getting rid of classes and going with a skill based system would solve all
these problems. Magic spells would logical progress from simple to more
complex, and illogical rules like 'mage cannot wear armor' would go by the
wayside (nearly every other RPG allows mages to wear armor and have
-logical- reasons mages don't wear the real protective stuff) It would
also get rid of the 'find the monster, kill the monster, get XP and money,
repeat' problem with the present XP system despite efforts to correct the
problem.

A more logical AC/emcumberance system in which weight effects AC (for
dodging) would be welcome as would a streamlining of the 'die for
everything and everything with its die' system, perhaps to something like
GURPS where *one* die (d6 in GURPS' case) does everything: skills, combat,
damage, saves, and so on.

> >2) Produce more modules that are affordable, stand-alone adventures

> >instead of expensive settings descriptions with no modules. There's
> >something to be said for buying a product for a night's gaming
> >session, and I don't see enough of that any more.
>
> Agreed, and I wish more companies could find it profitable to do so.
> (And I wish Adventures Unlimited magazine had survived)

I still have found memories of AD&D1 modules and have never looked inside
a AD&D2 module. Are they really as bad as people portray them to be? If
so what happened to the quality?

Otis Viles

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
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On Fri, 11 Apr 1997 18:26:49 GMT, nos...@prefect.com (Rogers
Cadenhead) wrote:

>I've thought about this for a while, Sean, and the only real lasting
>solution is this: Develop new hobbies. Spock sacrificed himself for
>the good of many in one of those Trek films, and that turned out OK,
>didn't it?

I suppose we could ask you to do the same. You are, apparently, just
another of the long line of whiners who think that a person, once an
employee of a company, is always representing the company at all times
and can't step out of that role. You know, if people like you would
stop telling Sean he can't, he would stop arguing that he can and has
the right to. You're a regular self-fulfilling prophecy.

Otis.

=-=-=-=-Otis Viles-=-=-=-cie...@ic.net-=-=-=-http://ic.net/~cierhart/-=-=-=-=
"I don't know. I don't care. And it doesn't make any difference." Jack Kerouac

John R. Harford

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
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On 11 Apr 1997 20:38:22 GMT, l-b...@nwu.edu (Philos Sophia) wrote:

>[Rogers]


>"1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
>possible to own all of the rulebooks.

>2) Produce more modules that are affordable, stand-alone adventures...."
>
>YES. This is what made TSR what it is now. Get back to the basics and
>let's see something of a return to 'golden' days.


--LIttle Ringing Bells and cheers!!!!---

John R. Harford
jr...@earthlink.net
http://loki.stockton.edu/~stk3744/jrh1.htm

Matthew R Blackwell

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
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In <5im6ls$s...@xanadu.io.com> s...@io.com (Steffan O'Sullivan) writes:
>
>The product I'd most like to see is a large-size edition of the
>Tom Wham game, Icebergs. One of the best things TSR ever did -
>pity it was only done in a microgame format, and has been out of
>print for so long.
>
>Peter, are you reading this? Release an enlarged version of
>Icebergs, please! You can read a review of it on my web page.
>

Seconded. That game was fun.

WinningerR

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

> > Nope. 2nd edition is only a shadow of 1st ed: you need huge numbers of
> > rule books because so much is left out of the only four you needed in
> > 1st ed - the DMG, PHB, MM1 and MM2.

I've often heard this complaint and never understood it.

What was included in the 1st edition that was left out of the three "core"
books comprising the second edition? As far as I can tell, a couple of
character classes (monks and assassins) and psionics. The claim that you
"need" this material to play AD&D is extremely dubious. The vast majority
of 1st edition campaigns ignored all of it.

In any case, the material missing from the old core books is replaced
with: rules for creating your own character classes, new rules for magic
specialties, lots of rules for handling various special situations that
always proved sticky, many additional magic spells of all varieties,
additional magic items, and tons of additional monsters (not only does the
new MM contain more creatures than the original, it covers each in far
more depth).


Anthony Ragan

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
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lrm...@whale.st.usm.edu (Lawrence R. Mead) screamed into the Void:

>Nope. 2nd edition is only a shadow of 1st ed: you need huge numbers of
>rule books because so much is left out of the only four you needed in
>1st ed - the DMG, PHB, MM1 and MM2.

Bull. That's the religious belief of 1st edition grognards. The last
AD&D campaign I ran was a very successful (in spite of the class and
level garbage) 2e campaign. Not once did I feel the need for any of
the supplementary books.

Anthony Ragan

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

Mike Wilson <mwi...@flash.net> screamed into the Void:

>> If there is a third edition, I would like to see the class and level
>> system jettisoned entirely and be replaced with a d20-based skill
>> system. Classes and levels were one major reason I abandoned AD&D.
>

>Gods no. How anyone can play ADnD without a level based system and call
>it ADnD I'll never know.

Well, I think there's more to the game than just the class and level
structure.

Anthony Ragan

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

mfte...@access5.digex.net (Martin Terman) screamed into the Void:

>Actually, I disagree to some extent. The AD&D system, at least first
>edition, was amazingly fast to start a new person up with. Roll up
>six traits, pick a race and a class, and you were off.
>
>WOTC should be looking into producing a D&D game that is still that
>quick on the startup.

Good points, but I think the best ease-of-entry game TSR produced was
D&D (not AD&D), especially the Cyclopedia version. I used that to
introduce several young kids to roleplaying in a Summer county library
program and it was perfect.

Anthony Ragan

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

Bryan Gardner <Bryan....@worldnet.att.net> screamed into the Void:

>Hmm. Remove Class and Level, Add skill based system. Why bother to
>call it AD&D anymore?

So AD&D is solely identified by being class and level? That's all
there is to it?

Brandon Myres

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

Rogers Cadenhead (nos...@prefect.com) wrote:

: What's on your wish list?

I'd like to see all the boneheaded execs at TSR sacked and replaced by
people who have a clue and give a damn.

Other than that, I'll just be happy if they don't try to convert us all
into M:TG playing drones.

Maby they should bring back some of the products TSR foolishly
discontinued (such as Al'quadim)

Schmoopiesmomndad

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

Rogers Cadenhead wrote:
>
> [Send e-mail replies to the address below.]
>
> If the WOTC deal goes through, I thought it would be interesting to
> compile a wish list. What would you like the new owners of TSR to do
> with their new acquisition?
>
> Here's a few of my early wishes:

>

> 6) Fire Sean Reynolds. I like Sean and have had nothing but positive
> dealings with him personally. However, I don't know if I can endure
> any more years of arguments about his dual role of human being and TSR
> employee. If you can't bring it in your heart to fire him, do what you
> can to restrict his First Amendment rights and only let him post from
> an official capacity.
>


If you look at Seans posting in regards to the lyrics on the wicked
witch. You may see you dream come true.

Dan Bongard

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

John Candy's Ghost (bigb...@geocities.com) wrote:

: Lawrence R. Mead wrote:
: > Anthony Ragan (iris...@DELETE.THIS.worldnet.att.net) wrote:

:>: 2nd edition was an improvement over 1st, and all you needed as referee


:>: were the three core books. The rest was frosting.

:> Nope. 2nd edition is only a shadow of 1st ed: you need huge numbers of


:> rule books because so much is left out of the only four you needed in
:> 1st ed - the DMG, PHB, MM1 and MM2.

: Any DM worth his salt can run a perfectly capable campaign using only


: the PHB, DMG and MM from AD&D2. Any truly exceptional DM can also omit
: the MM (haven't run a vanilla AD&D monster in three years). Considering
: that's one (or two) less book than AD&D1, I guess we see which one is
: superior.

Um -- any DM "worth his salt" doesn't need the "monster" books in
either AD&D1 _OR_ AD&D2. So that's two "needed" books for both systems.
And I think we all know that experienced DMs barely even need to
look in THOSE books. You need a DM screen, maybe.

However, the 1st edition PH/DMG contained significantly more miscellaneous
information and tables (random dungeon dressing, etc) than the 2nd
edition PH/DMG. So in terms of content the first edition "core books"
are the clear winners.

The main advantage of second edition was the elimination of most of
the Unearthed Arcana nonsense and the introduction of kits.

-- Dan

Carl Perkins

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

In article <5ileo5$p6r$1...@thorn.cc.usm.edu>, lrm...@whale.st.usm.edu (Lawrence R. Mead) writes...


}Anthony Ragan (iris...@DELETE.THIS.worldnet.att.net) wrote:
}: nos...@prefect.com (Rogers Cadenhead) screamed into the Void:

}:
}: >1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's


}: >possible to own all of the rulebooks.

}:

}: 2nd edition was an improvement over 1st, and all you needed as referee
}: were the three core books. The rest was frosting.
}
}Nope. 2nd edition is only a shadow of 1st ed: you need huge numbers of
}rule books because so much is left out of the only four you needed in
}1st ed - the DMG, PHB, MM1 and MM2.

}DMGorgon

But then in 1st edition you had to get Unearthed Arcana - how else could you
play a Barbarian or Cavalier?

What? You seay you don't use those? OK - so why would you use any of the
extra supplements in 2nd edition then?

The stuff beyond the basic books is no more needed for 2nd edition than it is
for 1st.

--- Carl

Wayne J. Rasmussen

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

Rogers Cadenhead (nos...@prefect.com) wrote:
: [Send e-mail replies to the address below.]

: If the WOTC deal goes through, I thought it would be interesting to
: compile a wish list. What would you like the new owners of TSR to do
: with their new acquisition?

: Here's a few of my early wishes:

: 1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
: possible to own all of the rulebooks. I miss the days when there were
: only a half-dozen books that comprised the rules, and rules
: supplements weren't published more often than modules. The complexity
: of the latest edition of AD&D, in sheer volume of rules, was what
: finally did my gaming group in. We might come back if the game were
: more accessible.

More rules rehashing is not what we need. Entering new areas with
creativity should be the focus.

: 2) Produce more modules that are affordable, stand-alone adventures


: instead of expensive settings descriptions with no modules. There's
: something to be said for buying a product for a night's gaming
: session, and I don't see enough of that any more.

I think there is a place for both types. I feel that settings and
modules should be seperate as much as can be practical.

: 3) Do something to get Dragon in more stores. One of the biggest
: complaints I have with the all-gaming stores is there's so little
: "impulse material" to purchase (in the way of RPGs). You either have
: to plunk down $20 to $30 for something or buy nothing at all. That
: seems like a bad way to run a railroad.

Dragon hasn't been interesting to me for many years. I only purchased it
from 1985-1992 to maintain having a full set. :(

The problem is what do you want to focus on with magazine? Trying to be
all things to all players/GM is tough. Throwing on the usual house organ
dribble just adds thickness to the whole thing.

: 4) Establish a fair Internet policy that lets fans publish their own


: derivative work online within reasonable guidelines.

I agree 100% with this. What would have happened if Judges Guild hadn't
produced important material in the early days of dnd. Home grown modules
could be a useful resource for the new TSR. Let them concentrate on the
core products and let the people create modules.

: 5) Find Trampier and make him revive Wormy for Dragon Magazine.

Not likely, DT seems to have gone underground.

: 6) Fire Sean Reynolds. I like Sean and have had nothing but positive


: dealings with him personally. However, I don't know if I can endure
: any more years of arguments about his dual role of human being and TSR
: employee. If you can't bring it in your heart to fire him, do what you
: can to restrict his First Amendment rights and only let him post from
: an official capacity.

: What's on your wish list?

1) Bring EGG back to complete the world of greyhawk setting.
2) Produce Quality not quantity!
3) Be very creative.
4) A very well done dnd movie or TV show.

wayne


John R. Harford

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

On Sat, 12 Apr 1997 07:36:48 GMT, dbon...@netcom.com (Dan Bongard)
wrote:


>
>The main advantage of second edition was the elimination of most of
>the Unearthed Arcana nonsense

Well actually when it came you it was some truly fresh stuff. Now it
has been overdone to the point of exhaustion... The stuff in UA was
ripe for powermongers and munchkins. Though most of us "Old Guard" :)
AD+Ders at the time used it discreetly.


>> and the introduction of kits.

Now some of THAT stuff is nonesense. Most of what I have seen in the
Kits are fluff and nothing that creative gamers couldn't do
themselves...and probably better than the Official versions...

There were a few kits and Handbooks that were noteworthy (Thief Book,
Psionics, Dwarf Handbook) but a lot of the stuff was really
munchkinized (Elf Handbook in particular).

>
>-- Dan

RIsaacs

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

<<What was included in the 1st edition that was left out of the three
"core" books comprising the second edition?>>

It's not what was left out. It's the business philosophy behind 2nd
Edition that bothers older gamers. Yes, you could play AD&D with the PHB,
DMG, MM, FF and MM2. But what does TSR do after everyone who's gonna buy
those books has done so?

In order to increase revenue, someone realized that if you print it, they
will come. In other words, to continue making money, and thus staying in
business, TSR came out with book after book after book. This angered the
old timers as much as TSR's cancellation of Greyhawk.

My wish for TSR's new owners is to make sure the editing was more even.
One Complete book is not as good as another. In some cases, books
contradicted themselves. In others, it was clear the writer or editor has
a dearth of ideas. I would have kept buying TSR's stuff if I had any
faith that what I was buying was fair and even.

Ross A. Isaacs

WinningerR

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

>>>It's not what was left out. It's the business philosophy behind 2nd
Edition that bothers older gamers. Yes, you could play AD&D with the PHB,
DMG, MM, FF and MM2. But what does TSR do after everyone who's gonna buy
those books has done so?

In order to increase revenue, someone realized that if you print it, they
will come. In other words, to continue making money, and thus staying in
business, TSR came out with book after book after book. This angered the
old timers as much as TSR's cancellation of Greyhawk.<<<

To me, this makes even less sense. So, most people realize that the 2nd
edition core books contain more material than the 1st edition books, but
complain about the fact that there is plenty of additional optional
material to purchase? Somehow it's a bad thing that AD&D is now so
comprehensivve that no matter what sort of culture or style you intend to
model in your game world, you can probably buy a supplement or two
containing all the information you'll need?

Incidentally, are these the same "older gamers" who once complained so
bitterly about the lack of AD&D material? "Why is it going to take THREE
YEARS to produce Oriental Adventures?" "When are you finally going to
publish a supplement giving me rules for incorporating primitve firearms
into my game?" Etc.

Mark Tarrabain

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

In article <3354cc9c...@news.airmail.net>, Rogers Cadenhead wrote:
>[Send e-mail replies to the address below.]
>
>If the WOTC deal goes through, I thought it would be interesting to
>compile a wish list. What would you like the new owners of TSR to do
>with their new acquisition?
>
>Here's a few of my early wishes:
>
>1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
>possible to own all of the rulebooks. I miss the days when there were
>only a half-dozen books that comprised the rules, and rules
>supplements weren't published more often than modules. The complexity
>of the latest edition of AD&D, in sheer volume of rules, was what
>finally did my gaming group in. We might come back if the game were
>more accessible.

This will kill D&D practically overnight. As I have mentioned elsewhere, a
person can have easily spent almost $2000 so far buying the various
supplementary rulebooks and texts that have come out. Owning all of the first
edition texts was maybe a tenth of that (assuming you didn't pay more than
retail). Invalidating thousands of dollars worth of books that many loyal
customers own will kill the game in one blow.

I handle the volume of rulebooks situation as follows: All a player needs to
play in my campaign is a PH. Tome of Magic and the extra spells in Spells &
Magic are accepted, but no player is under obligation to get these books. I
have extra copies available for player perusal anyways. If a player wants to
use rules from one of the other books, I will almost always allow it under the
condition that, if I don't own the book, that they allow me to borrow the book
for a few days before using the rules from the text, and that they always bring
the book to each session, for reference during gaming. The only things I will
generally not allow are supplements which would change the way the entire game
system works unless I happen to own extra copies of the rulebook that can be
made available for player perusal during gaming, because, of course, doing this
would obligate the other players to buy their own copies of the text. Nobody
is sent into the poor house with this method. Players can feel free to buy the
books that are applicable to their own characters, and don't have to worry
about anything else. I'm not sent into the poorhouse either, since the players
merely have to give me free access to the material contained in their books
during gaming, should it be required.

>2) Produce more modules that are affordable, stand-alone adventures
>instead of expensive settings descriptions with no modules. There's
>something to be said for buying a product for a night's gaming
>session, and I don't see enough of that any more.

This is a good point, and something that I missed about first edition.

>3) Do something to get Dragon in more stores. One of the biggest
>complaints I have with the all-gaming stores is there's so little
>"impulse material" to purchase (in the way of RPGs). You either have
>to plunk down $20 to $30 for something or buy nothing at all. That
>seems like a bad way to run a railroad.

I don't know if there's anything TSR (or WotC) can do about that. You should
talk to your local hobby shop and see if they can get the sort of stuff in that
you're talking about. Then of course, with regards to Dragon, there's always
the subscription route.

>4) Establish a fair Internet policy that lets fans publish their own
>derivative work online within reasonable guidelines.

Good idea. Not likely, but a good idea.

>5) Find Trampier and make him revive Wormy for Dragon Magazine.

Oooooh, that would be too cool. I might even start buying Dragon regularly
again. However, if I could wish for just one thing to revive in Dragon, I'd
really want to see Phil & Dixie back.

>6) Fire Sean Reynolds. I like Sean and have had nothing but positive
>dealings with him personally. However, I don't know if I can endure
>any more years of arguments about his dual role of human being and TSR
>employee. If you can't bring it in your heart to fire him, do what you
>can to restrict his First Amendment rights and only let him post from
>an official capacity.

Sheesh! Give it a rest. Whatever you may personally have against Mr. Reynolds
should not under *ANY* circumstances affect his status with his employer.
Neither should his employer have any say in how he chooses to manage his life
outside of work. If you don't like seeing personal comments from the guy, I
might recommend a kill file.

My one and only wish for WotC is that they do not try to mess with AD&D. It
may not be perfect, but I, for one, happen to like it just the way it is,
endless supplementary texts and all.

>> Mark

Phil Rhodes

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

On 12 Apr 1997 04:31 CST, ca...@gerg.tamu.edu (Carl Perkins) wrote:

>What? You seay you don't use those? OK - so why would you use any of the
>extra supplements in 2nd edition then?

Because to get the *same amount* of information that was packed into
the DMG1 and PHB1, you need the PHB2, the DMG2, Creative Campaigning
(I think - just glanced through this one), the Castle Guide, and a ton
of other reference books.

One of these days I'm going to complete my comparison of the PHB1/DMG1
to the PHB2/DMG2 to try and put an end to this sort of arguement.

--
-Phil (Phillip...@baylor.edu)

Dan Bongard

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

John R. Harford (jr...@earthlink.net) wrote:
: Dan Bongard wrote:

[the main benefit of AD2e was the elimination of UA...]
:> and the introduction of kits.

: Now some of THAT stuff is nonesense. Most of what I have seen in the
: Kits are fluff and nothing that creative gamers couldn't do
: themselves...and probably better than the Official versions...

The same is true of the entire AD&D system, though, so I fail to
see your point. Kits offered a simple, straightforward way to
divide the existing classes up into subclasses. That was something
that AD&D really needed.

-- Dan

Jeffrey Krogh

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

WinningerR wrote:
>
> >>>It's not what was left out. It's the business philosophy behind 2nd
> Edition that bothers older gamers. Yes, you could play AD&D with the PHB,
> DMG, MM, FF and MM2. But what does TSR do after everyone who's gonna buy
> those books has done so?
>
> In order to increase revenue, someone realized that if you print it, they
> will come. In other words, to continue making money, and thus staying in
> business, TSR came out with book after book after book. This angered the
> old timers as much as TSR's cancellation of Greyhawk.<<<
>
> To me, this makes even less sense. So, most people realize that the 2nd
> edition core books contain more material than the 1st edition books, but
> complain about the fact that there is plenty of additional optional
> material to purchase? Somehow it's a bad thing that AD&D is now so
> comprehensivve that no matter what sort of culture or style you intend to
> model in your game world, you can probably buy a supplement or two
> containing all the information you'll need?

Yes, it is a bad thing when you consider that many gamers operate under
the philosophy that if it's published, they HAVE to use it. In a 2nd
ed. AD&D campaign, if one player wants to use kits for his PC, then
everyone else has to as well, or face not having as "interesting" a
character. This leads to everyone wanting ALL the Complete Character
Class books, which kept coming, and coming, and coming.

This wasn't nearly as true about the DM's blue books, or the various
green books, but those were far fewer.

>
> Incidentally, are these the same "older gamers" who once complained so
> bitterly about the lack of AD&D material? "Why is it going to take THREE
> YEARS to produce Oriental Adventures?" "When are you finally going to
> publish a supplement giving me rules for incorporating primitve firearms
> into my game?" Etc.

I don't remember complaining about that. From day one, in 1980, I was
always amazed at just how much material you could get for AD&D. Between
TSR's modules, books, and the Dragon (which at the time was amazingly
packed with useful options), and Judges' Guild, and our own club's
ingenuity, we had too much material even then.

-Jeff

Paul Westermeyerr

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

In article <334fdedb...@bunews.baylor.edu>, Phillip...@baylor.edu
(Phil Rhodes) wrote:

Then you will realize you are wrong. I owned the 1st edition editing
nightmares mentioned, and own most of the works you mention above. the
PHB and DMG is roughly comparable, in either edition. The castle guide
has a ton of stuff not in 1st ed DMG or PHB, like a few generic,
predesigned castles you can just plop down in your game when needed. Not
to mention the much better coverage it provides for castle construction
(the two or so lousy pages in the DMG1 don't cut the mustard).

WorldWeaver

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Apr 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/12/97
to

Phil Rhodes wrote:

>
> On Fri, 11 Apr 1997 05:43:28 GMT, nos...@prefect.com (Rogers
> Cadenhead) wrote:
>
> >4) Establish a fair Internet policy that lets fans publish their own
> >derivative work online within reasonable guidelines.
>
> Don't hold your breath. WotC seems to be just as anal about this
> as TSR is/was (this tense thing is gonna be confusing for a while).
> Check out their web page. Although to be fair, most of what's
> there is about art - no mechanics, really.

I've got no problem with a company that protects obviously copyrighted
works like card or cover art. Such actions were not what ticked most
people off about TSR. Very few people griped about TSR asking or
prodding them to remove FTPable cover art or copies of the DMG.
What ticked people off (and WotC should take note of it to avoid
stepping in the same PR bucket of something warm and brown that TSR
waded into) was people being told that they couldn't publish *their own*
D&D-based adventures and worlds on the 'Net. If WotC repeats *that*
mistake, they will rue the day they bought TSR. If WotC is to build a
customer base for D&D, they can't afford stupidity like that.
But if WotC has a higher Wisdom (tm) ;) than TSR did, and works *with*
its fans instead of against them, WotC could do great things for D&D.
Hopefully they're monitoring (and have been monitoring) these groups to
see that the customer wants.

--

WorldWeaver
Dungeon Master of NexGaea
Homepage--http://www.geocities.com/TimesSquare/4571

WinningerR

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
to

>>>Yes, it is a bad thing when you consider that many gamers operate under

the philosophy that if it's published, they HAVE to use it. In a 2nd
ed. AD&D campaign, if one player wants to use kits for his PC, then
everyone else has to as well, or face not having as "interesting" a
character. This leads to everyone wanting ALL the Complete Character
Class books, which kept coming, and coming, and coming.<<<

This is a pretty silly philosophy. Clearly, it's necessary for the Dungeon
Master to define what materials are out of bounds for the campaign. In any
case, with the inevitable exception of the odd unbalanced kit, characters
built around kits aren't any more powerful (or "interesting") than
characters created with the Player's Handbook alone.

Brian Phillips

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
to

On 11 Apr 1997, Lawrence R. Mead wrote:

> : 2nd edition was an improvement over 1st, and all you needed as referee
> : were the three core books. The rest was frosting.

> Nope. 2nd edition is only a shadow of 1st ed: you need huge numbers of
> rule books because so much is left out of the only four you needed in
> 1st ed - the DMG, PHB, MM1 and MM2.

For 2nd Edition you only NEEDED the THREE core books and the game was very
playable. However, you ended up wanting more. Some folks mistake NEEDING
to play the game with WANTING to make the game kooler when it comes to
some books.

For 1st Edition AD&D you only NEEDED TWO books, the PH and the DMG (the
old DMG had the Monster stats in a table in the back so you really didn't
NEED MM). 1st Edition had the feeling of being cobbled together because
it was a system in development with new stuff being tried and experimented
with with each new book that came out. The 2nd Edition was necessary to
put the stuff together in a more approachable fashion. They may have
dropped some stuff you liked but they also stream-lined the game (some
people complain that the game was dumbed down too, but really the major
market for AD&D is not folks who have been playing for 18+ years like me
and others around here).

Actually, AD&D is due for another edition to incorporate the new Skills &
Powers rules into the main texts and to steamline the line. That WotC
will be at the helm for this only means that they'll put their editorial
stamp on it rather than TSR pre-Acquisition.

Peace,
Brian David Phillips [Meiguo Langren Zai Taibei]
phil...@cc.nccu.edu.tw [An American Werewolf in Taipei]
Shakespeare Eclectic Science Fiction Interactive Theatre
Freeform/Live Role Playing Game Scenario Archive
http://www.rpg.net/larp

Brian Phillips

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
to

On 12 Apr 1997, WinningerR wrote:

> > > Nope. 2nd edition is only a shadow of 1st ed: you need huge numbers of
> > > rule books because so much is left out of the only four you needed in
> > > 1st ed - the DMG, PHB, MM1 and MM2.

> I've often heard this complaint and never understood it.


> What was included in the 1st edition that was left out of the three "core"

> books comprising the second edition? As far as I can tell, a couple of
> character classes (monks and assassins) and psionics. The claim that you
> "need" this material to play AD&D is extremely dubious. The vast majority
> of 1st edition campaigns ignored all of it.

Well, they also ditched some of the magic item generation rules from 1st
as well as the Random Dungeon Generation system and Solo Adventuring rules
(I could never fathom why my kid brother got such a kick out of playing
D&D by himself for hours on end - nor why a buddy would do it and then
bring all the kool stuff he managed to take from the dead bodies of
kobolds to the next game and expect the regular campaigners to accept his
new powers and levels). :-) Of course today solo players can just use a
computer.

I've an "old timer" friend who still uses those random generation systems
but for the most part folks I play with believe that no encounter should
be random - we don't play often or long enough to justify the random act
of violence, everything should contribute to the story of the campaign.

Part of the problem is that many folks are rather over-nostalgic about 1st
edition which was more of a system in flux and tremendously less well
organized than 2nd. However 2nd has now become a bit top-heavy too and
perhaps could use some trimming in its sails. IMHO.

However, in all honesty, I've never met anyone who actuallused all those
rules in 1st ed, or even 2nd ed, or in any other game. Most folks take
what they liked and ditched what they didn't - I know designers like to
hear about how wondrously useful everything they've put into the system
is but RPGs seem to be more of a tinkerer's and customizer's hobby (from
Over the Edge to AD&D to GURPS and even DC Heroes). :-) Me I like simple
fast moving mechanics that are easy to explain to the raw beginner
(especially since I work with a lot of completely raw beginners who are
not speakers of English as a native language). Others like all that
weapons speed stuff and things like individual initiatives and phases to
act on (I like Hero but the combat system doesn't work for my purposes).

Brian Phillips

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
to

On Sat, 12 Apr 1997, Anthony Ragan wrote:

> mfte...@access5.digex.net (Martin Terman) screamed into the Void:

> >Actually, I disagree to some extent. The AD&D system, at least first
> >edition, was amazingly fast to start a new person up with. Roll up
> >six traits, pick a race and a class, and you were off.

Only if you stated the game by joining a group of folks who had been
playing awhile and could explain what all that stuff meant. 2nd Ed. is
actually easier for beginners to get through on their own - but having
experienced friends show you the ropes is still needed. 2nd ed is easier
to read.

> >WOTC should be looking into producing a D&D game that is still that
> >quick on the startup.

Yes, but I also like having levels of complexity in games - light to mid
to advanced. Currently the Introductory AD&D system works fine as a very
basic beginner's introduction which is forward compatible with AD&D
(something D&D was not).

> Good points, but I think the best ease-of-entry game TSR produced was
> D&D (not AD&D), especially the Cyclopedia version. I used that to
> introduce several young kids to roleplaying in a Summer county library
> program and it was perfect.

Take a look at the Introduction to AD&D Boxed Set (a re-issue of the First
Quest Set) as it allows players to move on to AD&D without having to
redefine some of the premises of the world (Elves as race not class and
the like).

I wish more companies would have light editions or rules sections
(preferably in the basic rulebook with different sections, much as GURPS
has the Basic Rules and the Advanced Rules, albeit I wish GURPS also had a
Light section which is how I play it with my classes).

Brian Phillips

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
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On 12 Apr 1997, WinningerR wrote:

>>> Sorry, no attribution because Ray usually cuts it from his responses.

> >>>It's not what was left out. It's the business philosophy behind 2nd
> Edition that bothers older gamers. Yes, you could play AD&D with the PHB,
> DMG, MM, FF and MM2. But what does TSR do after everyone who's gonna buy
> those books has done so?
> In order to increase revenue, someone realized that if you print it, they
> will come. In other words, to continue making money, and thus staying in
> business, TSR came out with book after book after book. This angered the
> old timers as much as TSR's cancellation of Greyhawk.<<<

Except that this was the situation with 1st Edition too. It's not just
indicative of 2nd Ed. era TSR. Hell, I am the only one I know who bought
and still has WILDERNESS SURVIVAL GUIDE, DUNGEONEER'S SURVIVAL GUIDE, and
MANUAL OF THE PLANES (all 1st Ed. hardbacks). Also in the book churn at
that time, all of which I also have sitting in front of me now, were
MONSTER MANUAL II, FIEND FOLIO, UNEARTHED ARCANA, DRAGONLANCE ADVENTURES,
and GREYHAWK ADVENTURES [hell, I even had Monster Cards] . . . none of
which were needed to play but they each had one or two tidbits worth
looking at (much as 2nd ed's ARMS AND ARMOR is usually not incorporated
wholesale but folks find one or two things they like in it).

> Incidentally, are these the same "older gamers" who once complained so
> bitterly about the lack of AD&D material? "Why is it going to take THREE
> YEARS to produce Oriental Adventures?" "When are you finally going to
> publish a supplement giving me rules for incorporating primitve firearms
> into my game?" Etc.

Yes, these are predominantly the same people. they just don't remember
their youth as clearly as they say. :-) BTW, I liked Oriental Adventures
and was really bummed when it finally came out and none of my friends
wanted to play it (albeit they did let me run a couple sessions of Bushido
to shut me up). Of course, now that I actually live in the Orient no one
wants to play OA either - they all want to play Arthurian or Tolkien
characters. Sigh. :-)

No matter what RPG companies have to continue supplying folks with new
product. Unfortunately, source material sells better than stand alone
adventures (point of diminishing returns is different and the like) so
they tend to concentrate there. Well, you can only have so many new
players buying the core rule book (most folks don't buy multiple copies of
the rules and in most groups not everyone has a copy, I know I lend a lot
of my books (heck I bought two copies of AD&D core books just so I'd have
one to lend and I've plenty of copies of GURPS for that purpose)) and
designers need something to do so they create new core books through
revamps and by adding on additional supplemental info so folks will
continue to buy rules. That's just the nature of the industry. If folks
want the industry to change then they need to buy those stand-alone
adventures when they do come out. And ask for more.

Michael Schloss

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
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Martin Terman (mfte...@access5.digex.net) wrote:
: >If there is a third edition, I would like to see the class and level

: >system jettisoned entirely and be replaced with a d20-based skill
: >system. Classes and levels were one major reason I abandoned AD&D.

In other words, you'd like them to dump D&D and replace it with a system
more to your liking.

: Actually, I disagree to some extent. The AD&D system, at least first


: edition, was amazingly fast to start a new person up with. Roll up
: six traits, pick a race and a class, and you were off.

I agree. Like many, many others I enjoy playing D&D. Sure it's
unrealistic and dated, but its also *fun*. That's why I play it. If I
want to role-play seriously, I'll go play Amber, but if I feel like a
silly dungeon crawl or some such, D&D is great.


- Michael Schloss

Phil Rhodes

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
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On Sat, 12 Apr 1997 18:16:25 -0400,
wester...@pop.service.ohio-state.edu (Paul Westermeyerr) wrote:
>In article <334fdedb...@bunews.baylor.edu>, Phillip...@baylor.edu
>(Phil Rhodes) wrote:
>> One of these days I'm going to complete my comparison of the PHB1/DMG1
>> to the PHB2/DMG2 to try and put an end to this sort of arguement.
>>
>Then you will realize you are wrong. I owned the 1st edition editing
>nightmares mentioned, and own most of the works you mention above. the
>PHB and DMG is roughly comparable, in either edition.

'Roughly' leaves a *lot* of room for stuff to fall through the cracks.
It is the little things that made the DMG1 such a great reference, and
the reason it gets used often while my DMG2 sits on a shelf gathering
dust.

Take the castle rules that you mentioned (and I snipped - sorry). Two
pages in the DMG1 is 2 pages more than in the DMG2. I get along fine
with just that, and don't need more. If, however, I was a DM coming
to the game new in 2nd edition, and wanted information on DMing and
building castles, I would need *both* the DMG2 (for the DM stuff)
*and* the Castle Guide (for the Castle stuff). A cost comparision:

DMG1 $25 (hypothetical price for today)

DMG2 + Castle Guide $25 + $15 = $40

(I think the $15 is right) Granted I get more for the $40. That's
not my point. My point is that I can't just spend $25 and get the
info I want. I have to spend $40 and possibly get stuff I don't need.
This doesn't even take into account the *other* books I might need to
buy.

As for editing nightmares, I have no problem with *packing* a book
full of information with tiny fonts and narrow margins. That's
probably one reason why there was near-unanimous praise for Faiths and
Avatars. Except for that *&^(*^(*!!@! cloudy paper!
--
-Phil (Phillip...@baylor.edu)

Anthony Ragan

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
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bk...@torfree.net (Michael Schloss) screamed into the Void:

>Martin Terman (mfte...@access5.digex.net) wrote:
>: >If there is a third edition, I would like to see the class and level
>: >system jettisoned entirely and be replaced with a d20-based skill
>: >system. Classes and levels were one major reason I abandoned AD&D.
>
>In other words, you'd like them to dump D&D and replace it with a system
>more to your liking.

Actually, that quote was from me.

If abandoning the class-and-level structure means it "ain't AD&D,"
then isn't that a sad statement /about/ AD&D?

Jeff Heikkinen

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
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Phil Rhodes wrote....

>As for editing nightmares, I have no problem with *packing* a book
>full of information with tiny fonts and narrow margins. That's
>probably one reason why there was near-unanimous praise for Faiths and
>Avatars. Except for that *&^(*^(*!!@! cloudy paper!

That isn't what he's talking about; you're puting words in his mouth.
You can **FIND** information when you need it in Faiths and Avatars.
This is what people mean about the editing; no-one objects to there
being a lot of information in the book, but its value is reduced by the
poor usability. (I'd imagine you've been using it long enough not to
notice it anymore, but try to look at it through newbie eyes.) The
DMG1 has sections tossed in in no particular order and a rather poor
index. Also, have you ever wondered how much **MORE** information it
could have contained had Gygax's writing style been a bit more to the
point?


woodelf

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
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In article <19970412173...@ladder01.news.aol.com>,
winni...@aol.com (WinningerR) wrote:

> To me, this makes even less sense. So, most people realize that the 2nd
> edition core books contain more material than the 1st edition books, but
> complain about the fact that there is plenty of additional optional
> material to purchase? Somehow it's a bad thing that AD&D is now so

my only real complaint about 2nd ed. was the removal of all the useful
stuff from the DMG, shoving it into the Campaign & Catacombs and Castle
guides. IMHO, those were some of the best sections of the 1st ed DMG, and
very little was done to expand the material and make those supplements
worthwhile if you owned the original DMG. considering how slender the new
DMG is, and how essential that info is (how to run a campaign, and details
on the basic castle, dungeon, and wilderness adventure), i thought
parcelling it out to a supplement to be a money-grubbing ploy. at least
when they pulled psionics into its own book, they expanded it sufficiently
to do it justice.

woodelf
nbar...@students.wisc.edu
woo...@yar.cs.wisc.edu
http://dax.cs.wisc.edu/~woodelf

Green must fight Purple. Purple must fight Green. Is only way.
--Green Drazi
Just my luck, I get stuck with a race that only speaks in macros.
--Ivanova

woodelf

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
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In article <dbongardE...@netcom.com>, dbon...@netcom.com (Dan
Bongard) wrote:

> : Now some of THAT stuff is nonesense. Most of what I have seen in the
> : Kits are fluff and nothing that creative gamers couldn't do
> : themselves...and probably better than the Official versions...
>
> The same is true of the entire AD&D system, though, so I fail to
> see your point. Kits offered a simple, straightforward way to
> divide the existing classes up into subclasses. That was something
> that AD&D really needed.

well, the difference is that kits, by their very nature, are only very
slightly distinguished from the parent class. it's easy for me to take a
couple of proficiencies, cop an attitude, and work on the GM to adjust to
that difference of background. if i can simulate it through judicious
choice of proficiences and/or roleplaying, i don't need a "subclass." it's
when i need a whole new set of skills to do the archetype justice that i
want a subclass, and kits don't do that. frex, i think that the old
thief-acrobat was much better than the new acrobat kit, because it would
only cost a profieciency slot or three more to make an equivalent without
taking the kit, thus losing the distinction between an acrobat as a
mechanically distinct entity and someone who was merely acrobatic.

IOW, anything that is sufficiently unique to warrant a kit is more
differentiated from the core class structure than the kit system is
intended to handle.

The avalanche has already begun. It is too late for the pebbles to
vote. --Kosh

woodelf

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
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In article <334fdedb...@bunews.baylor.edu>, Phillip...@baylor.edu
(Phil Rhodes) wrote:

> Because to get the *same amount* of information that was packed into
> the DMG1 and PHB1, you need the PHB2, the DMG2, Creative Campaigning
> (I think - just glanced through this one), the Castle Guide, and a ton
> of other reference books.
>

actually, DMG1 + PH1 roughly equals DMG2 + PH2 + Castle Guide + Campaign &
Catacomb Guide. there is a little more in each of the guides than in teh
corresponding sections in DMG1, but not enough to warrant getting them if
you have the latter. there is also some stuff reminiscent of Creative
Campaigning and the Complete Book of Villains in DMG1, but the former books
have so much more on those topics that it isn't fair to consider them
merely displaced material. most of the other DMG/PH supplements (the DMGR
and PHBR series) have significant new material compared to what was
available in 1st ed. 'course, that's not always the case: my roommate just
discovered all these cool new spells in the Planewalker's Handbook--things
like Spiritwrack, Truename, and Cacodaemon--er...Cacofiend.

Ivanova is always right. I will listen to Ivanova. I will not ignore
Ivanova's recommendations. Ivanova is God. And if this ever happens
again, Ivanova will personally rip your lungs out. - Ivanova

woodelf

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
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In article <5ilots$l...@vixen.cso.uiuc.edu>, grza...@uiuc.edu (Will
Grzanich) wrote:

> Oh, what a load of dingo's kidneys (IMHO, of course <g>). While I won't
> claim that I haven't spent more money than I like to admit on 2nd Ed.
> rulebooks, I can honestly say that I can run a very nice campaign with
> only the PH, DMG, and Monstrous Manual (and the Psionicist's Handbook,
> but that's just because I like psionics).
>
unless you're completely new to gaming, all you need is the PH and Psionics
Handbook. there's really nothing in the DMG or MM that you need--just
stats and lists of monsters, treasures, etc., and a bit of expansion on the
stuff in the PH. with at least summary versions of THAC0 and Saving Throw
tables, and info on wizards, learning spells, and spellbooks in the PH,
there's nothing essential in the DMG. some nice info for the novice GM,
but nothing really vital in the way of mechanics or specific setting
details. while i open my 1st ed. DMG all the time, there are only three
tables/lists in the 2nd ed. DMG that i've looked at at all since first
reading it: the lists of noble titles, and common offices; the list of
pseudo-medieval occupations, and the list of NPC personality traits. and
using magic items and monsters straight out of the book gets old fast
anyway, so why have the book at all?

Figures. All my life I've fought against Imperialism. Suddenly, I *am*
the expanding Russian frontier. --Ivanova
But with very nice borders. --Franklin

Graeme Adamson

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
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ma...@zero.lynx.bc.ca (Mark Tarrabain) wrote:


> >1) Launch a new edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons where it's
> >possible to own all of the rulebooks. I miss the days when there were
> >only a half-dozen books that comprised the rules, and rules
> >supplements weren't published more often than modules. The complexity
> >of the latest edition of AD&D, in sheer volume of rules, was what
> >finally did my gaming group in. We might come back if the game were
> >more accessible.
>
> This will kill D&D practically overnight. As I have mentioned elsewhere, a
> person can have easily spent almost $2000 so far buying the various
> supplementary rulebooks and texts that have come out. Owning all of the first
> edition texts was maybe a tenth of that (assuming you didn't pay more than
> retail). Invalidating thousands of dollars worth of books that many loyal
> customers own will kill the game in one blow.

I disagree. In my gaming group of about 10 players (over the last 2 years
anyway), only one has bought a rule book. I own most of the core rule books
and many supplements, but if there was a "3rd Edition" with just 3 rule
books, I'd expect my players to buy a set each. At the moment it's just too
expensive for the players to keep up with what they want, and as a result
they just borrow my copies when they need them.

Graeme
========================================================
Graeme Adamson of the Clan Mackintosh
clay...@spl.co.za
Lune: http://www2.spl.co.za/~lune/
Spellfire: http://www2.spl.co.za/~lune/spellfire/
Touch not the cat bot a glove.
========================================================

Alan Kohler

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
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In article <bgrubb-1104...@10.0.2.15>, bgr...@acca.nmsu.edu says...
>
>In article <3352d9c6...@netnews.worldnet.att.net>,

>iris...@DELETE.THIS.worldnet.att.net wrote:
>
>> If there is a third edition, I would like to see the class and level
>> system jettisoned entirely and be replaced with a d20-based skill
>> system. Classes and levels were one major reason I abandoned AD&D.
>
>Classes and levels were what drove us from AD&D to a skill based system as
>well. In addition the magic and alignment systems were and still are a
>mess.

Classes and levels are a compromise of sorts - AD&D still has a large and
faithful following despite its "outdated mechanics". The class/level
mechanic, while not one I would use in any game I write, is not totally
"wrong". Skill based systems in general allow more customization of
characters, but even many skill based games have found the need to create
"templates" or "packages" as logical associations of skills. Those that do
not include such a mechanic tend to fall pray to what I call the "amorphous
blob of skills" trap - players tend to make illogical and iconoclastic
groupings of skills just because the given skill "sounds neat" or "they would
like to have". Total class based and total skill based are not so much
mutually exclusive as opposite ends of a spectrum - and 2nd edition AD&D, with
the addition of proficiencies and the players options books have moved as far
down that spectrum as it can and still remain AD&D.

The idea that class based systems are "wrong" is entirely a matter of opinion
and taste - not fact. If you don't want to use AD&D, then it's 100% your
right to play something that suits your tastes. As for me, I prefer a skill
based system for SF and Modern RPGs, but as for fantasy RPGs, AD&D2 does all
the right things IMHO.

As far as alignments go, I'll argue that the alignment system is perfectly
consistenet with AD&Ds background. Some tend to reject it because they are
coming from a modern viewpoint, and feel that one mans evil is another mans
good. But in a fantasy setting like AD&Ds, where gods exist in an epic
struggle between good and evil, and the powers of thier followers depend on
thier behavior, an absolute judgement of "good" and "evil" is pretty much
indespensible to the genre.

>Getting rid of classes and going with a skill based system would solve all
>these problems.

What problems? You've mentioned not one problem associated with a class based
system. All you've mentioned is that a class based system isn't your cup of
tea, which isn't a problem, per se. Ascribing your personal preferences as
absolutes is dangerous ground.

> Magic spells would logical progress from simple to more
>complex, and illogical rules like 'mage cannot wear armor' would go by the
>wayside (nearly every other RPG allows mages to wear armor and have
>-logical- reasons mages don't wear the real protective stuff)

"Nearly every"? Is it some coincidence that the 2 of the FRPGs that I have
played the most other than AD&D also penalize spellcasters in armor (WHFRPG
and Arcanum). And even of those that I have played that don't use a similar
mechanic, it's a "up to the GM" situation (e.g., in Fantasy Hero).

> It would
>also get rid of the 'find the monster, kill the monster, get XP and money,
>repeat' problem with the present XP system despite efforts to correct the
>problem.

That's a problem with play style, NOT the system. Almost any game can fall
prey to it. The "Gygaxian" system of XP has been largely corrected by the
idea of "story goals", and the extraction of awarding experience for treasure.

You can say anything you like about a game that you see through "shit colored
glasses"; that doesn't make it true.

--
SPAM FILTER NOTICE - REMOVE "REMOVE2REPLY" to reply by email.
Alan D Kohler hwk...@REMOVE2REPLYpoky.srv.net
"By US Code Title 47, Sec.227(a)(2)(B), a computer/modem/printer meets
the definition of a telephone fax machine. By Sec.227(b)(1)(C), it is
unlawful to send any unsolicited advertisement to such equipment. By
Sec.227(b)(3)(C), a violation of the aforementioned Section is
punishable by action to recover actual monetary loss, or $500, whichever
is greater, for each violation."


Anthony Ragan

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
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bgr...@acca.nmsu.edu (Bruce L Grubb) screamed into the Void:

>Classes and levels were what drove us from AD&D to a skill based system as
>well. In addition the magic and alignment systems were and still are a
>mess.

The only game(s) in which I've seen an alignment system that works is
the Strombringer/Elric! family.

>I still have found memories of AD&D1 modules and have never looked inside
>a AD&D2 module. Are they really as bad as people portray them to be? If
>so what happened to the quality?

Not all of them -- I haven't bought many for the last several years,
but some that I bought were excellent, as well as some stinkers.
There was one Ravenloft piece by, I think, Bruce Nesmith that was
superb. I can't recall the title, but the cover had a
"jack-in-the-box" from Hell on it and it was a variant on the
Pinocchio tale.

Anthony Ragan

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
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hwk...@REVOVE2REPLYpoky.srv.net (Alan Kohler) screamed into the Void:

>Classes and levels are a compromise of sorts - AD&D still has a large and
>faithful following despite its "outdated mechanics". The class/level
>mechanic, while not one I would use in any game I write, is not totally
>"wrong".

I don't believe I said that classes and levels were flat out wrong,
but I do think that the class and level system is an ugly design
mechanic and that there are far better ones available...

>Skill based systems in general allow more customization of
>characters, but even many skill based games have found the need to create
>"templates" or "packages" as logical associations of skills.

...such as the above. A skill system that provides loose "careers" (a
la WFRP) or in which one can build "packages" (GURPS, HERO, Chaosium's
BRP) is far better than a restrictive C&L system, IMHO.

> Those that do
>not include such a mechanic tend to fall pray to what I call the "amorphous
>blob of skills" trap - players tend to make illogical and iconoclastic
>groupings of skills just because the given skill "sounds neat" or "they would
>like to have".

I've seen that happen, but I think you're over-generalizing here.
I've more often seen players choose skills that are right for the
character, or come up with interesting back-stories to explain unusual
skills.

>Total class based and total skill based are not so much
>mutually exclusive as opposite ends of a spectrum - and 2nd edition AD&D, with
>the addition of proficiencies and the players options books have moved as far
>down that spectrum as it can and still remain AD&D.

I'll agree with the first part, but not with the statement about 2e.
The 2e follow up books that added kits and skills and powers, etc.,
showed just how much trouble it was to graft flexible options onto an
inherently rigid structure. It was truly contorted.

And why do people think removing classes and levels would somehow not
make it D&D anymore? Is that really all that defines the game?

>As far as alignments go, I'll argue that the alignment system is perfectly
>consistenet with AD&Ds background.

Only in terms of confusion and clumsiness.

> Some tend to reject it because they are
>coming from a modern viewpoint, and feel that one mans evil is another mans
>good. But in a fantasy setting like AD&Ds, where gods exist in an epic
>struggle between good and evil, and the powers of thier followers depend on
>thier behavior, an absolute judgement of "good" and "evil" is pretty much
>indespensible to the genre.

And Chaos, and Law, and Neutral, and Neutral Evil and Chaotic Good
leaning towards Chaotic Neutral (except on every third Friday) and
other hair-splitting silliness. The AD&D alignment system was a
needless elaboration on Moorcock's ideas for his Eternal Champion
series, notably Elric. I think it was a restrictive straitjacket on
good roleplaying. The only good use I ever saw for AD&D's system was
as a quickie guide to a NPC's personality in an adventure or a PC's in
a tournament.

>"Nearly every"? Is it some coincidence that the 2 of the FRPGs that I have
>played the most other than AD&D also penalize spellcasters in armor (WHFRPG
>and Arcanum).

There's a difference between just penalizing a mage for wearing armor
(as in WFRP) and flatly saying they can't do it, which in turn is
illustrative of one of the biggest problems with strict classes:
ridiculous restrictions and cookie-cutter characters.

>You can say anything you like about a game that you see through "shit colored
>glasses"; that doesn't make it true.

Maybe so, but the criticisms of xD&D are long-standing and valid,
imho. I don't know if WotC will take the time to do a major overhaul
of AD&D, but I'd like to see them try.

Bridget Farace

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Apr 13, 1997, 3:00:00 AM4/13/97
to

Mark Tarrabain wrote:
>
> In article <3354cc9c...@news.airmail.net>, Rogers Cadenhead wrote:
> >[Send e-mail replies to the address below.]
> >
> >If the WOTC deal goes through, I thought it would