Friday, October 11, 2013

The mystic pull of the old school. Part 1: The path

What first led me to try out Pathfinder really was an attraction to old school gaming, but having come to late into the hobby to ever experience the first edition of d&d, my idea of what was actually the old school style was sketchy. The gaming group I joined with had already developed (for lack of a better word) towards a style that was increasingly story oriented. As a result, everything pertaining to classic roleplaying has remained a mystery for me to this day.
But that style of gaming, the dungeon exploration, the treasure and the levelling up, does have some sort of mystic pull, and so after years of playing a more narrative oriented style, I suddenly felt the need to investigate and try out something else.
Having never actually played much D&D at all - our group switched from one game system to another, never really getting truly comfortable with any of them, though I personally came close with Over the Edge - the logical choice for me was to go for the 3rd edition, thinking that everyting D&D would be D&D. Also, as someone with experience from modern game systems, the unified mechanic appealed to me.
Anyway, the switch to PF sparked a new interest in the hobby for me, and I started searching the web, reading blogs and articles on websites dedicated to gaming, trying to get advice on how to run a completely different kind of game than I was used to. In this search, the three letters OSR seemed to turn up more and more often, and seemed to be assosiated with ideas that I found increasingly appealing as time went by.
I gradually realised that what I was doing with PF basically was just continuing to play the way I had always done, but with a new system (a really complicated one), thus not really trying something new at all. The ideas of classic gaming seemed to bore their way into my subconscious and work a change at the very core of my ideas about roleplaying.
This was a very gradual process, for at first i didn't like many of the old school concepts. Killing off PCs, illogical system mechanics (more on that in part 2) and the like.
In part two I will be looking at what won me over.

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