On A Little Guide

Blog has gotten pretty big. . .

My players killed an honest to science dragon tonight.

Heroism isn't like in the movies, it's a bunch of people doing what has to be done, even if they know it's a bad idea. They stood and did, as heroes.

Here's a bit of an index on my thoughts.

On why stat requirements are a good thing.

On why ThAC0 and Descending AC is superior.

On why modern game 'balance' is flawed.

On why 1st edition fighters rock, and what new school changes did to harm that.

On why race as class is pretty cool.

On why party initiative (d6) is superior to individual initiative.

On why 'can only be hit by magical weapons' is a better solution than damage reduction.

On an example of handing out experience and honor in Hackmaster. In our current 1e game, we just handle experience and the process is much faster (~10 minutes at the end of the session)

On hit points, called shots, abstraction and realism of hit points, or how I found a system I liked and am sticking to it.

On the superiority of abstract saving throws! (and a suggestion for modern games)

On why modern "realism" in D&D is retarded, and level limits, Vancian magic, saving throws, and experience for treasure are good.

On statistics and the lack of a dump stat in old school games, and why all modern wizards need stupid statistics.

On why death, raise dead, and resurrection are fine.

On why talents, skills, and level are mostly irrelevant.

On why letting wizards select spells breaks the game.

On letting go of your 'ideal' version of D&D to actually play a different game.

On why 'being in character' isn't really 'role-playing'.

On why skills like 'search' and 'perception' suck.

How to not suck while playing an old school game - a list of player guidelines and advice for being a player in an RPG (not a tactical combat simulator)

Core articles that have influenced my idea of old school play.

On having a better blog.

On why comprehensive rules suck

Older posts on player agency:
On broken traps, and rules not preventing people from being jerks.
On why fudging is cheating, and death and consequences are awesome.
On the line that should make player agency go f-*k off.
On DM best practices.

Of course, there are the resources on the right of the page.


  1. I stumbled upon your blog for the first time today whereupon I immediately failed my saving throw and became trapped for the 6-8 hours.

    While been chewing through your archives I bookmarked quite a few brilliant things I want to revisit and reread with more focus, and now I discover that you went and compiled my bookmark list for me!

    Not only is your content fantastic, you appear to read the minds of your new followers and give them when you know they need.

    Keep it going!

  2. This is a really good idea.

    From what I have seen there are definitely arcs of development and it's sometimes hard to get a sense of what it's all about in a blog when you haven't read (or have forgotten) the defining milestone posts.

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  4. Thanks for the index! Brilliant stuff! If I had to stop reading all but 10 blogs, yours would easily make the cut! :)

  5. I really like the 'core articles that have influenced my idea of old school play' entry. That got me started on a few blogs I just hadn't payed much attention to before.

  6. Great list of links, thanks.

  7. I love blog archaeology. Thanks for this!


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