On Reader Mail, Your Favorite Version

Christopher writes in "I've been doing a lot of reading on Hack & Slash, and I was wondering what your favorite style of Dungeons & Dragons is. Do you prefer Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, Original Dungeons & Dragons, Pathfinder or some other version? I have been looking for ways to make my Pathfinder games better, and I am being converted more and more to the original rules of Original Dungeons & Dragons. I was just wondering what you liked best and perhaps a short description as to why. Thanks so much for your time!"

What is my favorite style of Dungeons and Dragons to play?

I am perhaps, the worst player.

Original Dungeons & Dragons: This is a version I've never run, but certainly the one I would choose to run for people who have never played Dungeons & Dragons before. How do you start? Roll dice immediately! What do you do? What you can do in life! How do things work? It is uncertain!

Basic/Expert: This is one of my favorite versions to hack and modify. The core of the system is so simple, well put together, and direct, It certainly is very conducive to adding lots of entertaining house rules

1st Edition: I very much like running this game, particularly the version known as Hackmaster 4e. It captures a certain type of adventuring spirit, where tactical considerations blend with strategic ones and the existing systems motivate both the players and the characters to continue to adventure. This is certainly my choice for a long term campaign of heroic adventure.

2nd Edition: Splitting Strength in to Muscle and Fitness? No thank you. Spelljammer, Planescape and Dark Sun are worth it though.

Pathfinder: If I were going to play with gamers I didn't know, I'd want to play this. I mean, at least that way there's some objective definition of what should be occurring. I wouldn't attempt a grapple though.

I sometimes get a jonesing for a character build and the old 3.x, but it only takes a session or two of that before I realize how much time we spend just dealing with the numbers instead of playing.

I think 4e could be a fun thing, but the fact that I need a software subscription and 900$ worth of games to play mean I'm not really interested in trying. Also, the fact that on first pass the system was way broken left a very bad taste in my mouth.

12 comments:

  1. "I sometimes get a jonesing for a character build and the old 3.x, but it only takes a session or two of that before I realize how much time we spend just dealing with the numbers instead of playing."

    Amen to that! Good post.

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  2. "2nd Edition: Splitting Strength in to Muscle and Fitness? No thank you."

    I think you are confusing the optional rules (C&T/S&P?) or some other system for 2nd edition AD&D. The core AD&D 2e system had no such splitting of Strength.

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    Replies
    1. Yes, I actually think that the core AD&D2e books make for a very nice, clean edition of D&D.

      Delete
    2. Oh, that's true. But why bother with core 2e, if you've got this wonderful muscle car of 1e.

      2e to me is all the crazy setting rules and options.

      Delete
    3. But I keep spinning my muscle car off the road. My Volvo, however, is boxy, but good.

      Delete
  3. Ouch, yeah, 2nd Edition! My right eye twitched when reading about the Muscle/Fitness et cetera splits.

    I enjoy playing in a weekly Pathfinder Society group in my area. It's fun and the folks who run the games allow for a lot of creative application of the rules.

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  4. I loved the kits and all the options of second edition. I don't really understand why it is maligned so much. I think I like 1st edition better, but I would enjoy playing or running a second edition campaign again. Most of the time when we played if rules got in the way we either abstracted them ("Hey, you can't just put 2000 GP in your pocket, how are you going to carry them?" w/o spending time calculating encumbrance or movement penalties). Second edition brought a lot of stuff to the table to mine and take/leave what you wanted.

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    Replies
    1. I enjoy the Al-Qadim setting from 2E, but my go to is Labyrinth Lord.

      @infocyde

      "Hey, you can't just put 2000 GP in your pocket, how are you going to carry them?"

      How are you going to carry 200lbs of coin? ;]

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    2. I think that it is disliked mainly because of the books that some of us think of as "2.5". That is, the "Players' Options" books and such. The ones with the black covers. I hated those, myself.

      burnedfx: 2E changed the ratio to 50 coins per pound, so 40 lbs of coin. ;)

      Delete
    3. Doh!

      I guess that'll be one small chest, instead of two large chests.

      Delete
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  6. 1st edition is such an unreadable mess of poorly thought out rules. Yet we played it for years by ignoring probably half of the pages.

    ReplyDelete

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