No brotherhood amongst old-school players

There is no such thing as a brotherhood in the old-school renaissance community.

I play "Powers & Perils", i am simply not able to comprehend you's, your frame of mind, your viewpoint, i cannot understand how your neurons behave and act on one another, cannot come to know how your brain operate.

Much as Tolkien and Howard, or Lovecraft compared to Edgar Allan Poe, the uniqueness of fantasy rpg's is overlooked and underestimated.
This is every day clearer and clearer to me, it is an evidence: fantasy role-playing games, although they may have similarities among them, in spite of this there is an abysmal distance which separates them without hope of reconcilement making them totally different from one another.

At times i felt how "outrè" is the mere fact that i'm playing , say, Chivalry & Sorcery or Powers & Perils instead of Dungeons & dragons. I (we, if i decide to consider the tiny communities that still exist for these games), we feel kind of outsiders.

I am not saying that we are the fools and the others are doing it right, nor vice-versa.
I am just pointing out and stressing the fact that - in the final analysis - i am now playing Powers & perils and that is how the world works for me.

When you adhere to a system, when you "abide by" its principles, you forget the rest, because you have come to grasp the "spirit" of the game - and each game has a different soul, a different scent. You end up being imbued with its philosophy.

We are not a brotherhood, this is false, each one of us is alone under the system of his choice and caged inside his own brain.

You don't believe that?

Try to read, absorb, and figure out a complex FRPG such as Chivalry & Sorcery, Powers & perils, Rolemaster 2nd edition, AD&D 1st edition or even Arduin.

I'm not talking about a cursory read.
I said: read, absorb, and figure it all out.
After weeks of solitude in doing that, you will sink in them and realize what i'm trying to convey with words.

I maintain that they have almost nothing in common with one another, apart from the fact that they are all FANTASY games.

And never - under any circumstances - listen to anyone whispering in your ear they are all mirrors of the grandfather of all fantasy rpg's - that's a falsehood, but if you delve into them you'll end up recognizing the truth by yourself.

Everyone is caged inside his own brain and you will never witness a reunion of C&S, P&P and AD&D players under the same roof, be sure of that.

Choose your game carefully, choose your abode wisely.

And especially to you, who are young and have just started perusing the multitude of old school fantasy rpg's, once more i'd like to say: there is no brotherhood among us, there has never been one as far as i know; rather, know that there may be disdain among different old-school traditions, each claiming to possess the final truth, and it is likely that an old school tradition of some sort speaks disdainfully of another and gives itself superior airs.

Who is living in the ebony tower?
AD&D players, securely confined in their shining empire, or we - who dwell alone sipping the kind nepenthe that drip from defunct and forsaken games?

Perhaps none of us is - but what is certain is that we are not a brotherhood and i see no way how we could or should ever be one.


Omlet said...

I can speak only for myself, but I don't care about rules very much. Sometimes I dont use any rules at all - in most cases players need stats to feel comfortable.

lars_alexander said...

Underworld Kingdom mentioned your blog, which is why I got here.

I read some of your posts, and this seems to be the best one I read in a long time on any of the rpg blogs.

The notion that each system is different, must be studied to absorb it and figure it all out... I can subscribe to that.
My favourite system is a tiny German rpg named Saga-System. It took me years, back then, to break free from my 'AD&D, RM, Shadowrun, DSA'-way of thinking, and playing rpg games.

What I love about the old rpgs you mention here is the artwork.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts, and passion for old rpgs!

Catacomb librarian said...

thank you for your kind comment, i will try to improve my posts and my writing continuosly (i'm not english mothertongue, as you may know).

i don't know Saga system nor would i be able to understand it since i cannot read german, but it's great to have another fellow guy with similar view aboard! welcome.

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