Sunday, April 7, 2013

Why Swords & Wizardry?

I've been asked this question a few times since I made the announcement for the Swords & Wizardry Appreciation Day Blogfest - why Swords & Wizardry? Why not Labyrinth Lord? Why not OSRIC? Why not...

Believe me when I say I have them all in dead tree format. I have OSRIC in full size, trade paperback and the Player's Guide.  I have LL and the AEC (and somewhere OEC, but I can't find it at the moment). Obviously I have Basic Fantasy RPG. Actually, I have the whole available line in print. Way too much Castles & Crusades. We all know my love for the DCC RPG. I even have Dark Dungeons in print, the Delving Deeper boxed set, Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea (thank you Kickstarter) (edit) BOTH editions of LotFP's Weird Fantasy and will soon have some dead tree copies of the Greyhawk Grognards Adventures Dark & Deep shipping shortly.

I am so deep in the OSR when I come up for breath it's for the OSR's cousin, Tunnels & Trolls.

So, out of all that, why Swords & Wizardry? Why, when I have been running a AD&D 1e / OSRIC campaign in Rappan Athuk am I using Swords & Wizardry and it's variant, Crypts & Things, for the second campaign?

Because the shit works.

It's easy for lapsed gamers to pick up and feel like they haven't lost a step. I can house rule it and it doesn't break. It plays so close to the AD&D of my youth and college years (S&W Complete especially) that it continually surprises me. Just much less rules hopping than I remember.

I grab and pick and steal from just about all OSR and Original resources. They seem to fit into S&W with little fuss. It may be the same with LL and the rest, but for me the ease of use fit's my expectations with S&W.

Even the single saving throw. That took me longer to adjust to, but even that seems like a natural to me now. Don't ask me why, it just does. Maybe it's the simplicity of it. At 45, simplicity and flexibility while remaining true to the feel of the original is an OSR hat trick for me ;)

Did I mention we now have 112 blogs signed up for the Swords & Wizardry Appreciation Day?

1 - Chronicles of Ganth! - Homebrewed heartbreaker

2 - Secrets of the Shadowend - Something wicked this way comes

4 - Mad-Kyndalanth - 'to share good stories afterwards' 

5 - Dizzy Dungeon - New School falls for the OSR

6 - Gothridge Manor - OMG, its full of Sleestaks

8 - 19th Level - Musings on RPGs & Fiction

9 - Sycarion Diversions - "One day, Spelljammer will return!"

10 - Dorkland!

13 - Daily OSR fix - Random tables makes me smile 

15 - Realms of Chirak - "Eclectic Gaming Madness from Camazotz"

16 - Quickly, Quietly, Carefully - OD&D exegis, retro stupid fun

19 - RPG Delisi - A Turkish blog about RPGs

21 - Semper Initiativus Unum - Rethinking Classic Tropes, Sharing History 

23 - Bat in the Attic - Hexes, Sandboxes, and Wilderlands 

24 - Reverend Dak dot Blogspot - Bicycles, Beer and 20-sided Dice

25 - The Ongoing Campaign - Obscure Games and Famous Ones

28 - Once More Unto the Breach - Rediscovering the joy of roleplaying!

30 - Fear No Darkness - reasons...not rules

31 - Mythmere's Blog (Mr S&W Himself ;)

37 - The Space Cockroach's Hideout - Space, Modern and fantastic Adventures

40 - Tenkar's Tavern - "OSR To the Core!"

43 - Porky's Expanse - a nebulous region of hobby space

46 - Ilea jacta Est -  A 20-Sided Look at Life

47 - Blood & Battle - Swords & Wizardry resources, reviews, recaps 

51 - Battle Axes and Beasties - Sporadic Babbling about Various Stuff

54 - Strange Stones - Strange Stones: Demons, Rogues, and Lemurian Barbarians

56 - Le Verre Violet - Hexcrawls, Blackmoor, Carcosa and OD&Dities

57 - The Sorcerer Speaks! - Purple Sorcerer News, and stuff

59 - O Druida Hierofante (The Hierophant Druid) - Swords & Wizardry in Brasil

60 - The Rusty Battle Axe - Home of Haiku: The RPG

61 - Keith Davies -- In My Campaign - Too heavy for Tenkar's reading ;)

62 - Necropraxis - OD&D, rules hacking, necromantic musings

63 - Rended Press - Free typos deal double damage!

65 - hDan's YAGB - Traveller, D&D and related interests 

66 - Like Being Read to From Dictionaries - It's Like Reading A Dictionary

67 - Vargold - The Wolf-Time

69 - Wampus Country - Whimsical tall-tale fantasy frontier

71 - Epic RPG Blog - San Diego's RPG Scene 

72 - Kingdoms in Trevail - Infrequent & random old-school gaming thoughts :)

73 - Jeffro's Space Gaming Blog - Microgames, Monster Games, and RPG's 

74 - Swords & Dorkery - the name is the description

75 - Dice of Doom - Old School Cool

76 - Infinite Dragons - Adventure Unlimited

77 - Dyson's Dodecahedron - Award Winning Dungeon Design

78 - The Ultimate Josha - RPG reviews, stories, and thoughts

79 - Places to Go, People to Be - RPGs are easily accessible self-expression

80 - Tales From the Tower - Recaps, Campaign Info, Game Art

81 - Tenfootpole - Hypocrite reviews OSR adventures

82 - Ynas Midgard's OSR Blog - irregular musings and content for D&D

83 - Castelli & Chimere (Castles & Chimeras) - My musings on D&D (OSR)

84 - What Do I Know? - One Gamer Yapping; Many RPGs

85 - Dungeon of Signs - Drunken OSR glossolalia

86 - The Frothy Friar - Advancing back to basics
87 - Edgar's Game Blog - Recaps, Philosophy, & Games Within Games
88 - The Adventures of the Clock Caravel - Eclectic Crowdsourced Virtual Steampunk Roleplaying

92 - Pilgrims Guide to Zeitgeist - A journey into the worlds i play in

93 - Forgotten Runes

94 - @ Padre's - Dragonquest lives on!

95 - Heropress

96 - Basic Fantasy RPG Blog -  The Basic Fantasy RPG Blog

97 - Rather Gamey

98 - Into the Dungeondark - TPKs Continue Until Play Improves

99 - ubiHEX

100 - Mesmerized By Sirens - Carrying the torch of defunct fantasy role-playing games

101 - Tower of the Lonely GM

102 - The Frog God's Blog - where you can be the frog, not the flies

103 - The Dice Are a Lie

104 - Acirema Mountain - Playing the first Finnish rpg

105 - Ruthless Diastema BlogCast - Life From a Gamer's Perspective

106 - Jack's Toolbox - tools and tips for DMs

107 - Infinite Dragon - Mostly OSR-themed game blogging

108 - Lost in Time - D&D, Jorune, and other gubbins

109 - Jasper's Rantings - Random D&D/OSR/RPG and Geekish Amusements

110 - D20 Dark Ages - From 1989 to the Present

111 - The Iron Tavern - Cold Dwarven Ale and Casual Conversation

112 - Machpants' Blog - Mashing S&W for my kids

113 - My RPG Characters

114 - The Campaign Expanse  -

115 - Hexgeneration - Post Punk & Old School Role Play

116 - The Warlock's Home Brew


  1. You have the Space Cockroach's Hideout twice.

    1. can u tell i'm going slightly batty? ;)

      working on the contact info spread sheet at the moment - not looking forward to matching up the emails to the blogs on the sheet - heh

  2. I'll post this again - #2 - Secrets of The Shadowend - Something wicked this way comes.

    1. Thanks Nathan. I'm still playing catchup and have overlooked (and double booked) some stuff it seems ;)

    2. Not a problem. If I were you, I'd be going screaming mad (or, as it's called in my house, "normal").

  3. Guess I'll jump on the bandwagon at Blog #113.
    The Campaign Expanse

  4. I need to go through this list and add a bunch.

  5. Good article. I am preparing to run my local group through OSR, but I am tossing between DCC and S&W (homebrewed a tad). I ran OD&D for them and they loved it, I am just not sure the over-the-top nature of DCC, to include zocchi dice, will sit well with the team. ugh


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