Sunday, January 22, 2017

Content Question - What Resources Would Make Your Swords & Wizardry Light Experience Better? (Poll)

What would make your Swords & Wizardry Light experience better?

I'm sure that's a question that can be asked of most any RPG and in some way the answers will apply to all OSR systems, but Swords & Wizardry Light has a unique challenge - it's more than a Quickstart but less than a fully robust game system. Four pages of rules imposed some space limitations.

So, what we want to know is what you would like to have available to make your experience with Swords & Wizardry Light "better" for you and your group. Better is a relative word, so I'll give you some random ideas:

- Real play examples

- New spells

- Sample magic items

- New monsters

- Sample encounters

- One Sheet / Short adventures

- Sample setting

- New classes (currently being play tested)

- More levels (currently being play tested)

- New races

Again, this is just a small list and certainly not all inclusive. Much of this potential new content would be posted here at The Tavern and / or on the Swords & Wizardry Light Resource Page, also hosted here at The Tavern.

There is a poll attached to this post. You may choose multiple answers. Please feel free to comment and add your thoughts to the mix. Swords & Wizardry Light was written to be your game, so tell us* what you want.

*Note - "Us" doesn't refer to just James, Zach and myself, nor is it limited to FGGs. "Us" in this context is the Swords & Wizardry Light Community


  1. I don't play it, but I would think the main audience for it is ex-gamers or players who want an exremely light rule set. With that in mind I would say that short and easy to run adventures are your best bet. People would want to grab the game and adventure and quickly play. So quick and easy to reference setting could be useful too.

    Adding other stuff seems counter intuitive to the game. However I did hear on a podcast that you plan to expand the game to level 7, which I think is the core levels of all games so in that case everything you mentioned would be needed. Except for maybe examples.

  2. Short answer : none of the above.

    The initial plan was perfectly valid : if the lapsed gamer is hooked back into D&D thanks to S&W:L, let him just dust off his red box or switch to any flavour of S&W. What would really be useful for newcomers would be a "Light" adventure path of independent but linkable adventures, designed to bring the PCs to level 3, each introducing new monsters and magic items, but more crucially some examples of the OSR mindset (creative puzzle-solving, freeform combat manoeuvers, etc)

  3. I think any good introductory product, which S&W:L certainly feels like, needs a introductory hold the DM by the hand adventure. After all, experienced DM's might data mine for handy tricks, but honestly this product better serves players wanting to move up to DM or those new to the hobby period. Showing a DM how to do their job is an invaluable tool. I have watched so many first time DM's get frustrated and just give up when things got over their head. I feel like tapping into that introductory learning path and saying here are the light rules, and here is an example of their application is a win win for the product and the consumer.

  4. I think ViP makes some good points.
    Stay withing the design idea and vision. What would make the most help to transition someone to S&W or other OSR product?
    From my understanding, SWL isn't supposed to bring players back to the gaming and/or introduce others. As such, it isn't the "final" system.

    Don't get me wrong, support is great and needed. But it should be support in the original vision. Examples may be good, but an example of moving into other systems would be good too. Perhaps an example of play in SWL then the same play session with SW to show the differences?

  5. First, thanks for SWL!!! I've played through (as DM or player) in 8 sessions across three campaigns (we rotate after each "adventure").

    I would love to see (1) more classes (a player-centric 4-pager), (2) adventures (you said one sheet, but maybe at least one 4-pager including the adventure and advice, new monster, new spells (scroll?), treasure, and magic items), and then (3) new monsters. Finally, I would like to see a comparable 4-pager with more DM stuff (spells, monsters, treasure, and magic items - a page of each would be a lot). Really just more of everything (and sooner!).

  6. I don't think I view SWL as a "system" insomuch that players who would return to gaming (or seek an OSR system) would use long, if at all. My opinion (for what it's worth) is that SWL is an interesting little reference piece that's ideal at refamiliarizing those who've lost touch/have no experience with the OSR games and systems. Maybe I've totally missed its purpose, but I wouldn't use it at the table, because to me, that's not its strength.

    I only say this because I put myself in the "unfamiliarized" position. If I hadn't been playing any old-school systems for a number of years, looking at SWL would be great to knock the rust off. Likewise, had I never played any OSR games at all (I could see this given out to newer or 5e/PF only players), it'd be an awesome piece to show to give completely new players an idea of what OSR gaming is about.

    But for me and I would assume some percentage of gamers out there, that once I get the taste that SWL gives me, I would probably move on to a more complete game (B/X, LL, BECMI, S&W, etc), over multiple 4-page chunks of rules.

    But, that's my opinion. I think SWL has a nice little niche, and fills the role of "gateway" supplement quite nicely - whether that was its purpose or not. I'm of the opinion, though, that it doesn't really need any expansion, and that additional expansion is really superfluous, considering what (I feel) SWL is good at.

    But, again, this is all just one guy's opinion. Take it for what it's worth!

  7. "Sample Encounters" & "One Sheet/Short Adventures" with "Real play examples" supporting these two. The rest is pretty much "reinventing the wheel". They are plenty of sources without wasting effort on the others. Maybe pointing out those sources and how they can best be utilized with S&WL would also be worthwhile.

  8. A few magic items, reaction rolls, and a different selection of monsters. The monsters are half monstrous humanoids. I'd drop a few of them and replace with a variety of other monsters.

  9. If I recall, the original intention was to add content by way of adventures, was it not? I'd stick to the original vision as others have already said.
    I'd like to see the intro adventure with more DM advice and hand holding first, then future adventures could introduce a new race or class, a few spells, or new magic items. I'd prefer the same folded 11x17 size (4 pgs) to a single sheet so that you don't have to be too concise.

  10. Also, each adventure let's you introduce a handful of new, themed monsters as well.

  11. Excellent input from everyone! Thank you and keep it coming!

    Part of the reason for this question is I've had numerous inquiries from folks that have used SWL and like the system enough that they want to stick with it but want more. That being said, the core 4 pages do their job as a refresher to bring back lapsed players and help later edition players try an OSR system As an intro to gaming without other experienced players in the group? Not within the scope of what is what designed for,

    I do very much like the idea of comparing examples of play between SWL and SWC as well as conversion guidelines to go from SWL to SWC.

  12. In one post or another, I think it was mentioned that SWL is being expanded out to L7? That would probably be a good candidate for a third release, after the DM Aid/Intro Adventure. It would allow those who want to stick with the system to use do so, by converting adventures. Would that be just Player-facing (extending class charts, adding spells) or also include DM info, like "core" monsters? Hmm. Maybe a guide to adventure conversion is needed too...


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