Thursday, August 9, 2012

Grumpy Beats a Dead Horse - The Resurrection of Mazes & Perils

Nothing pisses me off so much as thievery. But what's even worse than general thievery is stealing from the dead. Not once. But twice.

There is a version of the Holmes D&D rules that can be found on the internet. Edited and enhanced a bit to be a "What if?" type of rule set, but credited to Dr. Holmes, as it should be.

What's pretty fuckin' amazing is that the original theft (Mazel & Perils 1e) was nearly a word for word, page for page copy of the Holmes 77 rules you could find online. Heck, the charts look like were a copy + paste from the source right into Mazes & Perils. So, not even an original theft, but stealing someone else's reworking of Holmes D&D.

So, now what does Vincent do? Changes a few numbers, moves charts around and repeats his claim as author and copyright holder. He had to do this because the document he used as source material took passages and tables verbatim from the source material - which is why it got pulled last fall.

Why bother changing stuff around? We already know it's basically stolen.

You know what, let me screen shot the 3 tables of contents, then you can decide if Vinnie was doing an original work derived from another, or if he's a straight up thief.

From left to right - Holmes 77, M&P 1e and M&P 2e

Yep, as I thought - he's a straight up fuckin' thief.

Holmes 77 states "This version edited by Eric Holmes, Retro-organized by RC Pinnell

Mazes & Perils states "By Vincent Florio, Contributors: R.C. Pinnell" then at the end "Original System and Rules Authors: Dave Arneson, Gary Gygax and Dr. John E. Holmes". Being that the work was all done by Dr. Holmes and enhanced by RC Pinnell, I fail to see how the fuck Vinnie can claim "he wrote it". Unless he means "I changed some wording and made it mine - just like those term papers I bought in college that I handed in."

Vincent - just because you claim you wrote it doesn't make it so.

Shit, I need to go back to reading the 5e updates. At least there I didn't have to deal with outright thievery.
                                                                                                The Grumpy Dwarf


  1. ... because the 5e updates are at least copying from text belonging to the company doing the copying...

  2. Yo, Tenkar, how you really feel? ;)

  3. Huh, I tried to comment earlier but seem to have failed.

    Upshot of what I wrote before:

    I hate this because it is practically inviting WotC/Hasbro to sue OSR people. OGL would theoretically protect, but no one would have the money to defend a law suit so in reality all of the wonderful OSR micro-publishers would just have to settle.

  4. I wish I could be surprised that this is happening again. Sadly, I'm not. Even more sadly, though, is that it's the same guy doing it over and over.

  5. Can't copy tables moron, a court of law already has proven this. For your efforts in annoyance, I award you the Douche of the year award, for 2012. Congrats! Now that you've won, what are you going to do?

  6. Oh yeah I forgot, the Author pulled down the copy by himself. No one ever made him do it. Get your facts straight.

  7. I wish I had all the extra time in my life that you have to go on a "factfinding" mission against the author of this book. I hate to tell you but using the phrase table of contents is not ripping off someone. I do thank you for making me laugh with your rant...The author changed this, this, and this but it's exactly the same as the original. That makes no sense. Bottom line, what have you done lately for gaming other than bitching and moaning about this book? By the way, I printed the book for free which was pretty nice in this economy, so it's obvious the author is not trying to make a buck. I can't believe I ever wasted time reading your blog over the past few months because I thought you had some interesting points. Turns out your just a jealous child.

  8. ah, looks like John and Giada are life-long players of Argyle & Crew - Adventure in the Land of Skcos.

    It might be a lifetime measured in hours or days, but it's pretty clear they're a couple of sock puppets.

  9. Dr Evil - What have you done recently but steal the work of others? (cute sock puppet though)

    And if you pulled it the first time around, it's because you knew it was going to get pulled for you otherwise.

    Your worst offense? Claiming you wrote it.

    Offering it for free doesn't make it any less offensive.

    But hey, thanks for creating two accounts for my sake. I feel special now.

  10. First I do not need any sock puppet to talk to you. Second who appointed you the OSR police and let alone your hard on for me. Holmes77 was used as a basis with per mission by RC, I also reworked and reworded it big time. I had two people who work with in the legal field look it over, as well I contacted WOTC and gave them a copy of this. They didn't care as long as it stayed as a free PDF. It's funny how much of a coward you are, not once did you contact Me like a man and talk about it. No you just go around bashing me saying I have an ego because I'm on three podcasts? I do those podcasts out of enjoyment, and in hopes it reaches the ears of someone new and pick up the books to play. I've always said that. What do you do for the osr? Blog. And in your blog moan and bitch like a little 13 year after mommy locked you in your room for the night. So in closing I will quote a line you said last year to me, "f*ck you"

    1. Nice response. I assume before posting, you contacted Tenkar like a man to talk about it?

      Also, capitalizing "Me" went a long way towards proving the no-ego thing.

      But seriously, if you publish stuff in the gaming industry, you really need to be able to take negative comments and ignore them. Even if it pisses you off. You know this.

  11. Guess I hit a nerve?

    Didn't know I had to check in with DR Evil before posting.

    Besides, in case you missed it - you copied Holmes 77 nearly word for word first time around and yet claimed authorship. Even the original author that unofficially expanded Holmes' edition never claimed that. Your tweaks this time around don't change that.

    You podcast. I blog. That and a buck 25 might buy either one of us a cup of coffee.

    Did you really think bringing Mazes & Perils back a second time was going to be unnoticed?

  12. No, I expect some bashing, by jealous people, but not personal attacks. Attack the product. Not me.

  13. @EvilGM

    The naïveté is adorable but you need to get out more often. Blizzard's forums are 95% hate mail talking about their mom.

    And saying the original copyright holders are ok "as long as it stayed as a free PDF" doesn't go very far towards arguing that significant new creative content exists within. Otherwise you wouldn't have had to talk to wotc at all. Or "a couple of people who work in the legal field", which for all we know could be janitors.

    Tenkar, on the other hand, posted an identical page-long TOC from 3 different sources, which is a pretty serious indication of nearly identical material. Kids get kicked out of college for less evidence than that.

    I'm not saying who is right or wrong since I haven't done any of my own research. But, if you get pulled into a public argument, bring bigger guns than your opponent. Otherwise stay home.

  14. Meh. I dont know what all the hub-bub's about. Mazes and Perils is an extention of Holmes basic. ol Vinnie used RC's Holmes 77 as a starting point, If I remember correctly, Thorkhammer GAVE Vince the project, after having to deal with fucks bashing him. Is Holmes cursed or something. We all know and whisper about OSRIC, saying if it was produced in the US, it would be taken down, at least Vince had the sack to send it to WOTC to cover his arse. I am not going to get into the "who's done more for the osr" pissing contest, I know very well what Vince has done, and truthfully, it seems all of those who do put themselves out there for the osr are the ones who end up getting bashed the most. So chin up Vince, I would take it as a complement that people find you important enough to bash.

  15. I'm not bashing the product - I'm bashing the claim of authorship.

    1. Dispute what you want it's a free world. I know how much work I did and what I changed. I did exact what the loopholed OSRIC did to get that out. Thanks for the review by the way! You've only helped me :)

  16. Systems and OSR aside, and even confusing copyright issues, it's good manners to just to say Author or Editor Name + "after" or "based on original work by..." or in "tribute to" etc. Because every time someone doesn't do this they increase the chance of us all having work borrowed and reprinted without permission - no matter what the intentions of Holmes. The general principle is more important than the details, because we're not lawyers and so much of this is based on trust and respect.
    Eric is making a really good point about gamers, publishers and reviewers needing to know what is the "real mckoy" and what is purely derivative, so the praise (not revenue) goes to the right place.

  17. Seems to me that if the only real beef was the claim of authorship, perhaps a courteous side conversation would have been more appropriate. Instead we got quite gleeful a public flaying. Of course, this is all part of a larger feud that seems more like something you'd see among a bunch of vapid teenage girls. Sometimes I have a hard time believing that we are all working to support the OSR. Grow up, everyone! We must unite against our common enemy... "The Judean People's Front!"

  18. an amicable resolution has been reached:


    last comment from Vince

  19. Well I am sure that you will blog that this Amicable resolution has been reach in your blog tomorrow, its only fair right? :)

  20. @EGM - I've eaten crow more than once in my life. When the revised file is up, I will make an announcement of such.

    You will have stepped up, and I will say so.

    Fair is fair.

    1. Thank you. The new file is up and I downloaded it last night to see and it's correct. Also if you hit preview it shows you the new page

  21. updated preview noted and viewed. post will be up late this afternoon at the latest - earlier if i can find the time prior


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