Thursday, January 12, 2012

"I Don't Need a New Game"

One sentiment I've seen on various OSR blogs and fora this week is that which forms the title of this post. "Why bother with 5E, when I've got all my 1st Edition books, or my BECMI boxes, or my Rules Compendium, or my LBB's, or Labyrinth Lord, or whatever?" I've got to say that's a feeling I simply cannot share. One might just as easily say*...

"Why bother with Diaspora, when I've got Traveler?"
"Why bother with Traveler, when I've got Ringworld?"
"Why bother with Gamma World, when I've got Metamorphosis Alpha?"
"Why bother with Marvel Super Heroes, when I've got Champions?"
"Why bother with Champions, when I've got Villains and Vigilantes?"
"Why bother with Twilight 2000, when I've got The Morrow Project?"
"Why bother with Aces and Eights, when I've got Boot Hill?"
"Why bother with Tunnels and Trolls, when I've got Chivalry and Sorcery?"
"Why bother with Savage Worlds, when I've got GURPS?"
"Why bother with Werewolf: The Apocalypse, when I've got Vampire: The Masquerade?"
"Why bother with Unicorn Games' Star Trek the RPG, when I've got FASA's Star Trek the RPG?"
"Why bother with FASA's Star Trek the RPG, when I've got Heritage Games' Star Trek RPG?"
etc. etc. etc. ...

Or, perhaps the most relevant to many readers...

"Why bother with Advanced Dungeons and Dragons, when I've got my white box?"

(I should point out that this is not a solicitation of lengthy discussions of any of those off-the-cuff examples, or any others that anyone might come up with. Seriously. Don't be pedantic.)

Seriously, though, the reason to be interested in 5E isn't because it will be "better" than 0E, 1E, 2E, 3.x, or 4E. I'm fully in agreement with those who chant "newer is not the same as better", and I myself repeat it like a mantra in some discussions. But honestly, in this particular instance, it's not the point. Even if I fall in love with 5E, I won't stop playing Adventures Dark and Deep, and it won't stop me from playing Call of Cthulhu, or Vampire: The Masquerade, or Gamma World, or Diaspora, or Star Trek...

The choice of RPG is not a zero-sum game! Just because I play 5E (or whatever), does NOT mean I am not going to play something else as well!

Newer doesn't necessarily mean better. But it does mean different. And I'm always on the lookout for something new and different, because it might be something I enjoy playing in addition to, or maybe, yes, instead of, something else.

I am a dyed-in-the-wool fan of 1E. I wouldn't be pursuing my Adventures Dark and Deep project if I weren't. But that does not preclude me from playing and enjoying other RPGs as well. Even fantasy RPGs. So I make no apologies for being excited at the prospect of 5E, even if 4E was such a disappointment (to me, as a gamer).

Newer doesn't necessarily mean better, but neither does older. They're just different. And different might... just might... mean better. Or better for a while. I'm willing to settle for that.

* With two exceptions, all of these are games I have played at one time or another, btw... And those two exceptions, I do own and would like to play.

Sparky Needs Surgery

I try to keep appeals to my readership to a minimum, but I saw this and thought I would share. If you are able to make a donation, I encourage you to do so. Sparky is in the local animal shelter, and needs some help.

Sparky is a 6 month old wire-haired Dachshund pup who was born with a liver shunt. This is a blood vessel that's in the wrong place and keeps the liver from properly doing its many important jobs, resulting in a sick little doggie who has to be on medication and a special diet. The shunt can be surgically treated - but it's not a routine surgery - and it's costly. Please help us raise the money for Sparky's surgery. You can donate via PayPal with the Chip-in icon below, or you can send a check to BARKS, PO Box 593, Stanhope, NJ 07874. Please write 'Sparky' in the memo. Thank you!