Saturday, July 31, 2010

Axe & Hammer's OD&D Post



A good historical post by GW is here and of all things includes an extrapolated cover (above) of my unpublished Supplement 5 for D&D, Kalibruhn.


Good, creative work, GW!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Hydra Miniature's Game at GENCON

Good ole Tim Knight at HeroPress always seems to get the scoop on really neat things; and my hat is off to him, he puts in the time and writes the "rhyme."

Now take this recent news from HP for instance.  A Pulp SF game debuting at GENCON, and sold out for all of its sessions:

WAR ROCKET

Also note their previous release


And links...





Thursday, July 29, 2010

PPP's Old Forums to Close Down


UPDATE 9/14/2011:  Yuku does not allow one to archive the information from their boards and after many different attempts to do so ended in failure we gave up.  The forums will remain in place as an information repository and can be accessed by the link below.

Our old forums here are set within the coming months to be closed down.  I am working with another person to salvage the posts collected there so these do not pass into the dust-bin of electronic history.

I want to thank every one of its 432 members who participated there since 2002.  They were good times.

Here are the final stats for the record:

Founded: 05/22/02



  • 95 Avg visits per day
  • 776 Avg views per day
  • 0 Posts per day
  • 0 Posts in last 24 hours
  • 394986 Total visits
  • 1760877 Total views
  • 65196 Total posts
  • 2343 Total topics
  • 432 Total members

Monday, July 26, 2010

Interview Link with SF Author Ian McDonald

An interesting interview.  McDonald has a "ten-year itch" when it comes to doing new things and blazing new horizons with his writing.  Well worth the read.

Comic-Con 2010 Nerds Counter Protest

Gotta love it...

Ooh. Looky Here: "No Ordinary Family"

Look at the preview that Mr. Knight posted at HeroPress.  Really cool made for TV series.  I don't watch regular TV but might make an exception for this.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

(Re-) Reading: Part de Deux





The Discarded Image, by C. S. Lewis, in my estimation his greatest work.  Especially notable is chapter VI.

A concise summary is here.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The Road Goes Ever On...

After much discussion with friends and associates and after much deliberation over the past year and specifically during the last few months, I have reached the decision to suspend PPP's publishing endeavors where these relate to D * D compatible materials.

This does not effect PPP's non-fiction, fiction and other special products, which will be available when released through Noble Knight Games.

In order to satisfy some parts of the current fan base, I have negotiated  a non-exclusive contract with a well known RPG publisher for the release of my original Castle Greyhawk levels; this will fulfill at least that prior commitment to the fans.  A suitable press release is forthcoming regarding this, so I will not speak too much about it now.  These will in all likelihood be the last "related" products that I release in that specified sub-category of D*D compatible material.

The why of this is embedded in a letter I recently sent to Marv Breig (OD*D pro-board founder), a large portion of which follows:

"In 1968 (where my history starts in organized gaming) and through and up until the release of OD*D in 1974 we were gamers/writers/designers in LG.  So many games being played and talked about and written about during those times, board and miniature ones, of course.  Perren, Bobek, Hoyer, Arneson, Reese, Tucker, Morales, Kaye, Lakofka, Carr, Crane, Stafford, Webster, Lowry, Gygax and of course Kuntz, and that does not begin to total the associations via games, conventions, letters, PBM, phone calls that we as IFW members shared.  The experiences were many and ongoing, and as varied as were the personalities participating then.  It was always changing--who was coming up/to LG to play(test) and with what game(s), or where we were going by train or auto to do the same.

I was young then (in '68) and truly an idealistic kid, and as such soaked it up and believed, truly got into it and had an almost worship-like relationship with those who proceeded me--all of them 2 to 3 times older than myself, but for some reason respecting me as a kid, as I stood toe to toe with them in games as I learned through experience and instruction.  After a while they (in a few cases, begrudgingly) respected me.  I earned my stripes then and there and those are my roots, if any, for a past that eventually produced D*D and the three castles, Blackmoor, Greyhawk and El Raja Key.

I am now left with creative choices.  Yes, I became "known" as a D*D designer. And yes, there are those "holy grail" of projects which some want to see.  But in retrospect, what I have seen is me shrinking as a designer (as envisioned from those earliest days as noted) in lieu of creating the past rather than in promoting the future.  You see, we were all then about the future, and the future did not stop then, nor will it stop for anyone who continues to look to the past as a guide to the forward steps needed to continue blazing the trail.  D*D though a large example of that philosophy we so boldly pursued then is but one example of it; and if there is anything I am sure that any of those named above would appreciate is for the fans to understand at the very least that much and what it meant then and what it means now by extension.  There is no "Old School," so to speak.  This was (and is) about creating, and one does not do that in a vacuum of time, but always by looking back on the classics and going forward; and that is what I deem that I must do to reclaim that feel again, to go full circle rather than be stuck in a circle which in essence is complete."...

What I will be involved with:

--The Convention Circuit:  Getting to and participating at different levels at as many conventions as I can.  This will include those I am already participating at and others.  For instance, I will be running from here on out a very unique game-designer's workshop at North Texas RPGcon and at any other convention which invites me to do so.  That in between stressing at these events, as I have done in the past, the need for more unique creativity in game design through such participation.

--My ongoing participation with the Three Castles Award, again aimed at established and/or up and coming designers of merit and their works.

--The ongoing work on my memoirs and essays.

And on the near horizon, a new company devoted exclusively to a large project now occupying a good deal of my time and which I hope to publish in 1-2 years.  This one has caused me the most excitement, in fact, since my days of play-testing D&D.

This and seriously working on all levels with up and coming artists/designers such as Kyrinn Eis and her fine World of Urutsk, this so that she and others can possibly pave an easier road ahead while doing so--that is, one less strewn with difficulties--while realizing their dreams (in her case, 26 years worth of endeavor).  This will occupy my spare time in various roles such as consulting, editing, development, etc. for such projects.

So I am not disappearing, but am in fact following my own advice, and those of others which follow:


"Being involved in the RPG industry as long as you have, surely you’ve collected bits of wisdom and knowledge along the way. Is there any advice you could give to budding game designers?

"RJK:  Seriously: Throw out everything you think you know, including the rules. Challenge established norms, redefine what imagination and creativity “really” are, ignore the jealous and the pundits (re: critics), push past the mundane and open up possibilities, don’t close them, no matter how absurd someone says you are, or how off base they say you appear to be. With that, follow the words of my oft-quoted author, Orson Scott Card: “How can we experience the literature of the strange if we stay in well mapped lands?”-- my advice from one of the many interviews I've given.

"If we all think alike, if we all become uniform and bland, we shrivel up and die, and the great process shudders to an end. Uniformity is death, in economics or in biology. Diversity within communication and cooperation is life. Everything your forebears, your ancestors, everything you have ever done, will have been for naught, if we ignore these basic bacterial lessons." Autopoiesis and the Grand Scheme, Greg Bear

"Most of the time I look at my work as an ocean of missed opportunities...
My lack of talent & knowledge bedevils me no end... But I realized a long time ago that my art is a race I run alone..."  Michael Bair






Monday, July 19, 2010

Simone Bianchi



Simone Bianchi is in my estimation one of the better comic book/fantasy-weird-sci-fi fine artists producing in the genre today.  Such opinion always evolves from personal taste, but I invite you to view some of his evocative and oftentimes gritty art here and here and to visit his official site.  Do enjoy.

The THREE CASTLES Award (Link)

The submission guidelines are here in pdf form.  Doug has also created a discussion topic at the NTRPGCon site forums for those with any questions or comments.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

From The Desktop: My Final Stance on the OSR Debate

My Final Stance on the OSR Debate

As many might well remember, this whole recent debate started with me distancing myself in a public statement from the OSR Movement, here.

No less than 30 minutes later, James Raggi posted this here.

The interrelated issue was this.  It is an honor issue with some of us TSR alumni, meaning, we stand by defending to the core our traditions which we are steeped in from being swept away, or minimalized, or compared to others with such broad categorizations.  Jim Raggi's reactions are here and here to Tim Kask's rebuttal and my supporting views.

For the record, here are my final thoughts on what I believe I have experienced about the OSR, its publications and its present and future.  And I say this not as the very first publisher to have released a product in 2006 to start this whole ball rolling, but as one who just continued rolling the ball that had been started so long ago, and in that matter, once again with the help of myself in 1973/74.  That is to say, that my observations are based on inforned inquiry that no other can equal by comparison as the inquiry starts at two milestone points and has contined to this very moment.

I am not part of the OSR, I never was and will never be.  For that natter, when OSRIC was first to be released the fellows in charge of that came to me and wanted me to participate with that.  I cordially delcined.  The whole issue of OSRIC's potential and merits were discussed in many threads on Dragonsfoot; some saw it as a good thing, others saw it as not needed.  I was among those who saw it as not needed.  And do note, if there was anyone best positioned to produce a D&D clone then it was myself.  But further note:  I have not done so to date.  Many asked why, and even more wanted me to do so, but I wouldn't.  I have explained my reasons to Allan Grohe and to others, and they are not as simple as "Well, we have the books already," as many might assume.  But here are the reasons as I know them and as they have grown and come better into focus through watching the "Clone Wars" (joke intended) rise over a short space of 4 years.

Very simply the reasons are:  I did not want to relive the past and I do not want to relive the past now.  I am a professional game designer. I want to design new things; and I have gone on record more than once in stating that here and elsewhere.  This has perhaps to do with my exposure to so many games and designs in my life, including RPGs.  Within that context I want these designs to reach out as examples for all as to what they can aspire to, just as Empire of the Petal Throne or D&D did through their publication.  This is my aspiration and no other.  I feel that if one strives for the best that the money will come, so one need not worry about that.  Setting such examples also raises the bar of the industry and brings in new players and in the case of RPGs, new DMs as well.  Bringing them in, again, and as I've stated so many times here and elsewhere, does not mean keeping them engrossed and participating--only good product and a sustained comittment to grow those who enter into to the hobby accomplishes that.

I do not feel that the OSR overall and as a group of companies is striving for that in whole.  And here is  my main reason for that:  There are too many clones of the rules.  IMO as a designer on one hand,  as a publisher on the other, and as a player on yet another, there are puzzles, consequences and obstacles galore with this now real development.  I could make a long list of the salient ones, but I am not here to lambast or to consult, but here's a big one out of the bunch from my "designer's" side:  all of the time spent with designing these iterations could have instead been given to producing a really rock-hard innovative product that captured the attention of the industry at large (like D&D and EPT did) or even could have earned a CRA at Origins, perhaps; it might have produced such a resulting wave of exposure to have grown the industry in a proportion it had never seen to date. Instead, time and effort was given over to various iterations which are fine as is, but really accomplish the same thing while directing attetion over and over again to a circluar motion.  This is a great disappointment to me, but when I thought about it, not unforseen.  Some of us got the idea, but unfortunately most did not.  Up and coming designers were empowered to create afresh, but instead imitated time and again.  This is fine if that is what you want to do, but even D&D finally had its weaknesses and they began to show when compared to many other product lines (such as Chaosium's).  Its strength was in the overall bones of the matter, but its life is, and has always been, what you add to those bones.  And independant companies and designers cannot nurture that strength to life without products which innovate and at the same time set examples for new waves of people to come who will be in part our indsutry's future game designers.

IMO, most everyone is playing it safe.  Was D&D safe when first projected as a product idea?  Heavans no.  It was out there.  People lambasted it, marginalized it and said it would never for too long occupy a serious gamer's shelf.  We heard it all.  Reduplicating it ad infinitum is a fine send up, but what really is telling is how much innovative flesh is added to it and through that how much punch such products deliver in a market now becoming saturated with sameness.  IOW, is this a short term "Can I do the same"? proposition or a long term, "I see what I have to do"?  Unfortunately, my gut feeeling says the former, though time will tell.

As for the rest, it has taken its course. It is not about US and THEM, it is as I said at JtL's Blog: it is about the ideology of "I".  As for being (in or part or with or through) the OSR by default, I reject that for creative and philosophical reasons.

(inserted transcript edited at request of original poster)


As a further step to point to the ridiculousness of this postulate, I recently phoned an old group of gamers I have been geographically removed from for years.  They still play AD&D with some house rules like many do.  After chit-chatting about old times, I got down to the crux of the matter:  In his estimation, I asked my friend, over the years how many players were still playing and how many had they brought into their games (and board games as well, as they are gamers, not just RPGers).  The groups varied from 4-7 over the years with 5 being a good average.  They estimated that in their years of play (and this is an isolated area of Wisconsin) that they had had as many as ten new players exposed to the game and out of those 2 still represented new full time players and some inactive and/or part time, possible players.  I asked him (I will call him B.) if they had ever heard of the OSR?  My friend said exactly this:  "What?" I explained; and he admitted that they had been doing just fine without it, but wished it luck.


And that's what I'm doing...



Sunday, July 11, 2010

GUEST EDITORIAL by Timothy Kask UPDATED

Blog Administrator Note:  Most of you will be familiar with Tim Kask.  There is not enough good I can say about his overall contributions to the role-playing industry and specifically to the Dungeons & Dragons game.  His incisive commentary is always aimed at those whose foot will wear the shoe...   Tim maintains a Q & A forum at the ever popular Dragonsfoot and he is constantly busy with many other and varied game industry related activities.



Guest Editorial


There once was a very small, insignificant little man who looked upon a great edifice of imaginative design and construction, unlike anything ever built before. This little man of no training or skill of his own felt that the magnificent construction was not finished. He took it upon himself to sneak up the side of the marvel of design and add a flagpole to the very top. As he perched upon the very pinnacle of another’s innovative achievement, looking out upon vistas never even contemplated before, he exulted to himself that his was the great achievement, for was the flagpole not the highest structure in the land? Old Delusio fable.

If there is one thing that the Internet has taught us, it is that any delusional narcissist can find an audience for his rantings. You need no credentials to proclaim yourself an expert, you need no expertise; apparently, all you need is too much time on your hands, an agenda and a very wide streak of “I love me.”

Another thing that the Web has taught us is the viral speed at which labels and classifications can spread; like viruses, the mutations along the way can be extreme.

As an example, let me use the example of the phrase “Old School Revival.” (I have also seen references to “Old School Renaissance,” which is apparently much the same concept or “movement.”) What exactly does this mean? The more often I see the term, the more confused I get with the contexts in which it is used.

OSR (whichever phrase you prefer), is, on its surface, an oxymoron. For something to be “reborn” or revived, it must first be dead. The original spirit of D&D never died; it just was buried under all the crap that came out with editions after the second. A lot of us never bought into what has now become a video game with dice and paper. However, I digress…

The very vociferousness of the self-appointed denouncers goes against the very fabric of the game as we played it in the early and mid-seventies. These Inquisitors separate and divide; the real original style was: whatever works and produces fun is OK. It was about the fun. The DM outlines the plot components and the players fill in the details.

As far as I can tell, the individuals most closely involved in this movement to “be pure again” seem to number no more than several dozen. Oddly enough, a couple of the more opinionated, and to my eye more ignorant, seem to claim individual credit for the “movement,” as though they created and/or defined it.

Two particularly obnoxious individuals have set themselves up as some sort of Star Chamber in which they pass judgments that others are actually supposed to care about and heed. Aside from vociferous vituperation, what have they to offer?

Recently, a friend directed my attention to a blog from some “OSR evangelical type” that made some of the most ill-informed, unfounded and absolutely ludicrous statements that showed his total lack of understanding. One must assume that he simply ignored anything that did not fit with his sickeningly self-congratulatory belief that the OSR is now superior to the original TSR.

What does that even mean? As a charter member of the “original school,” I can certainly assert that this dogmatic, divisive “movement” has little or no idea of what it was like gaming back then. Their ignorance cannot be excused; enough of us from the founding years have certainly been very forthcoming on various websites over the past several years. (My thread on Dragonsfoot is 160+ pages and I have answered every question put to me in that venue.)

In recent years, I have been going to cons and running adventures of my creation. Virtually every group that had never played with me before were astounded that I could run a four hour adventure without ever cracking open a book. Not only that, I forbade books at the table. With one possible exception, every group I have exposed to my style of play, which has not changed rules for 30 years, had a hell of a lot of fun. At least, that is what they told me.

Fun is what it is all about. Someone once asked me what the measure of a good DM was. My response was that when your players show up every week to play, you are doing just fine.

What we produced was the product of our minds and hands, something that had never been done before, a totally new gaming experience. What we did fed our children, paid our utilities and made the mortgage payments every month. We did it by creating something brand new. We built a market in five short years that virtually dwarfed the hobby of five years previous. In addition, we did not do it with a government subsidy or grant.

Saying that current OSR material is superior to TSR material from 1977 (just a year I was there, nothing special about it) is like saying that today’s Mercedes-Benz is superior to the farm-cart-looking wagon that Herr Daimler motorized in the late 19th century. Well, duhhh. Look at all we’ve learned since then; it had better be better. Lots of people have the ability to improve; very few can create. That is why there is a distinction between a game designer and a game developer.

Unbelievably moronic statements have been made about Dragon Magazine to the effect that it was not like Knockspell and Fight On! (both of which I have written pieces for and one of which dedicated an issue to me and Dragon—for the purposes of full disclosure) magazines of today. Well, no shit, Sherlock. The Two you tout are fan magazines; Dragon was a gaming magazine. We were growing an industry and hobby that those responsible for such utter tripe now take for granted. Neither Gary nor I had the slightest interest in a house organ, one-trick-pony thing. We squared that between us before he hired me. Before D&D truly took off, we had already planned a gaming magazine. (Big dark secret: many of our early readers were not D&Ders; some became…)

Perhaps the most singularly asinine comment that I have had brought to my attention lately came from an obscure self-styled publisher from a small European country. He opined that TSR did not act like a book publisher. Once again: well, no shit Sherlock. We were not a book publisher, we were game publishers desperately trying to protect our IP so that we could continue feeding our families, paying the bills and having light to work by. (We put in some pretty prodigious hours in those early years.)

If not for the OGL, none of these blatherers and blowhards would have anything to crow about. (Man, what a mistake that was, eh?) (WotC and the Hasborg must have recurring nightmares about OGL, d20 and all of that debacle…good, the greedy soul-less bastards…)

Somewhere along the way, OSR seems to have lost its way. If it was a movement, what has it brought to the hobby? More hobbyists? Nope; in fact, it seems to be driving some to other rules systems. Better products? Nope, although there have been a few good ones like The Dungeon Alphabet that compare favorably. Innovation? Nope, again. Has anyone ever published something like Empire of the Petal Throne? Seems to me that the OSR is long on Nopes and decidedly devoid of any Yups.

Let this serve as notice: What I am writing and will soon be publishing is no way connected to, associated with or in any way part of anything that calls itself OSR. My stuff is me and my take on what can provide some fun role-playing.

There once was short man that convinced a giant to let him stand upon his shoulders so that he might better see a parade. So intoxicated did the short man become with the view and perspectives revealed up on the giant’s shoulders that he grew full of himself, forgetting that without those shoulders, he would have seen nothing at all. Another old Delusio fable

****UPDATE JULY 12 FOLLOWS****
Note:  Tim's Response to the Initial Serious Inquiries




I really did not want to name names; I was citing a couple of recent items as a metaphor for, or example of, what I see as a bizarre schism in our hobby. Mr. Raggi (please note use of honorific, Mr. Raggi”) has successfully identified himself, and the publisher is the individual he quotes.

First, I did not "trumpet" my contributions to any publication; I listed them in the interest of full disclosure. (If Time-Warner lists what stock it owns when doing a news story in TIME Magazine, I felt compelled to be no less honest. I guess that honesty isn’t always the best policy.) If I were of a mind to “trumpet”, I would have listed several others that I have written for, and the games I’ve edited and developed, etc., etc., etc., ad nauseum.

Second, I am not "bragging" about my DF thread; I simply used it as a reference to the fact that a great many of us "old salts" have spent considerable time answering questions the past few years, about everything from how decisions were made then to the way we play our own games now.

As a history teacher, revisionist history rubs me the wrong way. I find it particularly suspect when it is apparent that the revisionists have done little or no research in any attempt to understand context. Steve Marsh, Rob Kuntz, Frank Mentzer, Jim Ward, Zeb Cook and myself (and these are only the ones I know about personally) all have threads one or more places where we gladly answer these types of questions. I don’t preach on how to play the game; I preach about having fun playing.

As I try to get a handle on this whole self-identified movement, I see several people speaking of it as though it were their doing; so who is honest and who is not? I don’t really care, but it puzzles me. In reading various threads, looking at numerous websites and even viewing a couple of blogs, I find more negative didactism  (“that is wrong; this is right), dogmatism and dictatorial behavior evinced in the “Old School Revival” movement than was ever the case back where we all began. How did this happen? This also puzzles me.

Some of what I have read lately would be akin to my trumpeting the fact that I can print a prettier Bible than Gutenberg did, without once ceding the point that without the invention of movable type I would not have collected nearly 2500 fonts for my PC.

I chose to get involved in this because of what I perceived as an egregious failure to credit the foundation of what became this hobby that so many of us love. Mr. Raggi's self-congratulatory crowing about "better,” without once acknowledging that foundation upon which he built is disingenuous at best.

The fact that my (apparently) misguided attempt at full disclosure is twisted to become vainglory; the fact that I cite an example of readily available information is then distorted into “crowing,” what kind of game is this?

On yet another blog, my very credentials are being called into question, as well as my actual contributions to the game. Rob and I know the truth. I have long made the facts available whenever asked specifics; I have never felt the need to define “my” contribution to the game as we all felt that it was “our” game. Now I am having other thread posts cast in a light that does them discredit as they are being cited as an example of my supposed bias against AD&D as they are cited totally out of context. Why would I be biased against AD&D? I helped Gary Gygax define what became AD&D; it was my job. That I prefer to play my version of D&D (3 LBBs and 1st 3 Supp.), does not mean that I am biased. We all put a lot of stuff in the various rules for the purpose of allowing people to opt out of doing all the work. Sadly, we figured common sense would always rule; we were wrong.

I was not bragging about my DM abilities (I’ll let Rob do that); I was pointing out the apparent culture-shock induced by my “loosey-goosey” style as opposed to being bound by endless charts, tables and die rolls. We weren’t there to look at books, we were there to have an adventure.

I admit that I used a couple of harsh terms, and I publicly apologize to any individual that assumed that I was skewering them.

Now, it has been brought to my attention once more that Mr. Raggi has made overtures to contact me privately. No.

Public disputation should be settled in public.

Tim Kask
1st full time employee for TSR
Founding Editor of Dragon Magazine

NOTE THIS Related Link


Lessons to be Learned

Read this

Which influences every part of our culture, including game design.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Up on A Tree Stump #6: The "I" Factor

Please follow my programmed absurdity for a moment or two...

Me, Me, Me, Me, Me, Me, Me!

Umm..

WE, WE, WE, WE, WE, WE, WE, WE!

Umm...

US, US, US...


Well, you follow, right?


It has come to my attention (again) that "I" and "my products" are being associated in some parts of the blogsphere with the OSR Movement.  Oh Dear.  That won't do. And let "me" explain why "I" am not "WE" or "US".

Start here.

Finished?  Thank you!  Now.  Please refer to the below extract from my Oxford dictionary:

movement |ˈmoōvmənt|noun
[often with adj. a group of people working together to advance their shared political, social, or artistic ideas the labor movement.
 Let "US" examine this definition closely as it relates to "Me" dba Pied Piper Publishing.
1)  I despise politics.  I am very good at them, do not get me wrong.  I just hate their overall feel.  The best political movement in my estimation belongs to the ranks of those beheaded during the French Revolution.  So.  I am a very bad candidate for such things, really.  That disqualifies one.  Now...
2) Social agendas are often unclear and ill-defined; there are many which may or may not be worthy and I attach myself to some personally, but never in group mode.  As that relates to culture, geez, I helped create a socio-cultural phenomena which exists to this day, but quite unintentionally, the why of which relates to...
3)..."Artistic" ideas... Ooh!  We're on to something here!  Let me take out my Oxford, again, for some slight guidance in interpreting that...
artistic |ärˈtistik|adjectivehaving or revealing natural creative skill my lack of artistic ability.• of, relating to, or characteristic of art or artistry a denial of artistic freedom her artistic temperament.
It appears that the examples all deal mainly with a singular case: "Her artistic,"my lack."  I would say that is generally good usage and appropriate for "Me" (and for other singular "Me"(s) which are not "Me") because of that.  I will also note, for the record, that I quit TSR Hobbies because of creative and company wrought political differences and pursued a free-lance writing career while educating myself.  This is covered in depth in my memoirs (which are making great headway), but suffice it for me to say now that I saw the vision changing which had been established from  early on and it assaulted my finer sensibilities and awakening tastes, then.  I knew what my choices were and I made them.  Further,  during an interview for Gateways Magazine #7 at DRAGONCON #1, the interviewer asked at the end of it if he could title the piece, having derived inspiration from the interview matter.  I said sure, shoot.  The title was, "The Maverick of Dungeons & Dragons."  I said, "Print it."  So for artistic measure alone, I consider myself quite singular and unique, not good for the corporate structure or flattened group think (unless one worked closely with Henry Ford in the day or in some more benign artistic companies today, by comparison, such as Tim Brown's outfit, for instance). 
So,  Where does that leave me?  Exactly where any true artist, IMO, should be.  Alone.  The OSR has its meritorious designers, but I am not here to cast a lot in favor or against them, and I hope the movement does likewise in exchange.  However, my pride at being a TSR alumnus is still with me, as I left the company but could not forsake the true friendships made and the times spent.  In fact, at DRAGONCON #1 EGG and I not only laughed and drank together for days, but we judged the final round together of the RPGA tourney I'd designed (Journey to the City of Brass).  He knew; and he appreciated everything we'd done together, and I did likewise. In keeping with my past association and camaraderie and the efforts of thousands who proceeded me at TSR, next up, a guest editorial...



Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The Dragon Approaches...

OOOH! Looky Here...



Here's a quick link and FAQ page.  Looks impressive!

Now, if we could only get someone to do "Werelords of East Bronx," we'd really have something!  ;)

Friday, July 2, 2010

Three Castles Award™ Guidelines Finished (UPDATED 1)

I was delayed by a very nasty bug which is going about, but I've recently finished the submission guidelines and forms for the 3C Award!

Doug Rhea and I will now go over same before making them available.

UPDATE 1:  Doug and I had email exchanges and a phone call that ironed out some minor details with the submission guidelines. They will be posted in PDF form tomorrow or the next day at NTRPGCON's site and I will link to that download with the next UPDATE.