Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Draconic Archeologist - Closing Up the Strategic Review With #7

Strategic Review #7 (or Vol. II, No.2) is the last issue of Strategic Review before morphing into The Dragon.  This last issue clocks in at 24 pages (including covers, so really 20) which makes it about 3 times the size of issue #1.

So, what does issue 7 offer us, the OSR or Old School gamer?

Well, EGG gives us an article on D&D magic, but really, its more then that.  It's a critique of the magic-user class and it's early players.  Heck, it could even be seen as a critique of power gamers and rules lawyers that try to distort the meaning of a rule.  That being said, EGG states that a Magic Mouth spell can cast spells that are solely verbal.  I think I missed that first go round.

Joe Fisher gives us Part 1 of a series of articles - Hints for D&D Judges:  Towns
In it he gives the starting Judge (when did Dungeon Master become the "in" title?) some pointers on providing a starting town for the new party of adventurers.  We would consider the hints very basic these days, but those were very basic days.

Mighty Magic Miscellany gives us some artifacts this time around:  The Cup and Talisman of Akbar, The Staff of the Priest Kings and The Brazen Bottle.

The Creature Features gives us a first look at the Catoblepas and the Denebian Slime Devil (of which the less said, the better).

EGG gives us a second article:  D&D is Only as Good as the DM - Let me quote from the opening paragraph: Successful play of D & D is a blend of desire, skill and luck. Desire is often
initiated by actually participating in a game. It is absolutely a reflection of the
referee’s ability to maintain an interesting and challenging game. Skill is a blend
of knowledge of the rules and game background as applied to the particular game
circumstances favored by the referee. Memory or recall is often a skill function.
Luck is the least important of the three, but it is a factor in successful play
nonetheless. Using the above criteria it would seem that players who have attained
a score or more of levels in their respective campaigns are successful indeed. This
is generally quite untrue. Usually such meteoric rise simply reflects an incompetent

To summarize - slow down the advancement if character level is going too fast.  Don't give away expo like its a xmass bonus.  Remember:  By requiring players to work for experience, to earn their treasure, means that the opportunity to retain interest will remain.  Words of wisdom.

And thus end our review of the Strategic Review.

1 comment:

  1. What do you think of the Strategic Reviews, having read them?


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