Monday, September 09, 2013

Moldvay-Cook era

For about $5 each, I could pick up pdfs of the Moldvay Basic (my first real foray into RPGs), the companion Cook Expert set (the pdfs are the printing with the Erol Otus artwork framed by a colored border rather than the ones filling the entire cover.  I think the differences of the printings are insignificant, however.)  At $4.99 each, I could also add the modules that originally came with them, Keep in the Borderlands and Isle of Dread.  Total cost outlay: about $20. If I were to actually play any old-style D&D ever again, that's what I'd want to play.

Not that I actually do want to play old school D&D.  Rather, I think if I got those, it'd be to read them for nostalgia's sake and look back at the artwork, much of which I remember fondly.  And at that price, I'm fairly well tempted to do so.

If I actually wanted to play the games, I could always just get Labyrinth Lord for free, of course.  Or some of the less clone-like retroclones (I did mention earlier that I've been big into m20, right?) But let's face it; reading the original text and seeing the original art again; that's what this would really be about.  The rules aren't the thing, the experience is.  And reading the old modules again; wow, that would be almost surreal.

Part of me is nervous to do so, though.  I haven't exactly forgotten, after all, that I was quickly disillusioned with D&D and went looking for other alternatives.  In part, this was because AD&D seemed to completely overtake D&D itself and adopted a paradigm that was less to my liking than D&D's--but also, it's because the entire D&D experience wasn't really exactly what I was looking for.  I think I need to accept that I'm just fundamentally not really a D&D player; I'm a gamer with tastes that only sorta intersect with D&D.

But, D&D was my first, and the Moldvay-Cook era D&D was where it all started for me.  And in many ways, I still think it's the D&D I'd enjoy playing the most if we ever quit playing 3.5 in our group.

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