Dienstag, Februar 19, 2013

Original D&D White Box Reprints, and all that other stuff

With all the 1e, 2e, 3e reprints, and digital copies available via dndclassics it was only a matter of time until the original white box would be made available. And now it has been made available as a special collector's box including dice, and the three original books plus supplements. (And the box is wooden, which probably suggests authenticity. A leather-bound all-booklets-in-one-hardcover edition would be cool, too. Add the dice and a leather dice bag as an extra.)
Although in my opinion it was not a matter of time, but of careful planning, and then timing. To think that WotC would not collect data (D&DNext feedback, forum posts, blog articles etc.) on the market is plain silly. And to believe that now the wizards finally got to some sense, and publishing the complete white box set were an enlightened albeit late reaction to the OSR's demand for 0e rules is ridiculous. But really, does anybody believe that at all? Guess not. They sell product, and know how to package, present and do PR. And with the 40th anniversary of D&D next year you'd be surprised if they didn't offer any reprints. They probably foresaw the 40th annivesary, let's say, when they looked at the calendar some time back while musing about new products. (If they do this even remotely similar to the way some great electric guitar companies release re-issues, they might even decide to offer a special extra collector's anniversary edition next year... with an even more faithful reproduction.)

So, now it's here. It is a reasonable addition to the WotC product portfolio, and important for the company's history with role-playing games

Who is it for? Not for me. I played 1989 AD&D 2nd Edition with the cover illustrations done by Jeff Easley. Unless they will reprint that, I'm not going to buy anything. I have no special interest for 0e rules other than that I like the OGL clones, because they are better laid out, and the rules are accessible.

The reprints will interest some of the old gamers who grew up with the white box rules, just as I did with the 2nd Edition. And the average rpg collector.

Now, about the price tag. At $149.99 it is a collector's item. Were I a collecter, I'd buy it. Were I in need of a rules-light old school system, I'd download Swords&Wizardry, or Basic Fantasy RPG. I did when I was.

Here's the link to WotC's Original Dungeons&Dragons Box Set.

Update: It will be available in November this year, 2013.  I missed that detail, and I think it's important. Plenty of time to talk, and think about it, and maybe some last minute changes to the box set, or different versions. Probably depending on the buzz on the internet.

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