Mittwoch, Juli 10, 2013

OSR and the Spell of Success

You can roll the dice to test if your character succeeds at any given task. You can define criteria that have to be met in order to run a successful game. And you can write, produce, and publish game material - in which case, success is quantifiable by the amount of distributed copies in circulation, the discourse it generates, and profit.

From my early days of roleplaying on I collected notes of ideas, fragments of stories, characters, adventure plots, and rules. I had read of people who went into the game business, but discarded the idea for myself. It is funny - a little - to think of all the creativity, and will put into a game, but never to think of selling any of it. Why is that so? Because, in a way it feels like betrayal. You do not sell things you love - if your idea of selling implies giving something away, giving it up to the hands of strangers. But, I wonder now, if you write a story, and you have it published, and the book sold, it is not given away - it is given unto the world. It manifests. It becomes.
And as long as the magic spells of the contracts are written correctly and in your interest, the profits will allow you to start out on other projects.

That is actually a good thing.

Much of the OSR material is available for free, with an option to pay for it, or donate to the authors. I bought print versions of the free games I liked. The digital copies of the games circulated, were discussed on blogs, then either printed at home, or ordered as print versions from the stores - and thus manifested on the book shelves of gamers.

I like the free stuff of the OSR, and the possibilities it opens up to spend some quality time gaming with friends, and family.
Essentially though, I only use my game system of choice, then write my own material (Morgansfort being the exception) - which, of course, is based on what I know and read before.

The Spell of Success

I should come up with something people use in their everyday lives. Something they grab, hold on to, and travel with, but I fear so many of the great ideas have already been taken - wrist-watches, coffee to go, snacks, portable music players, smartphones and their apps, daily bits of news and gossip via different kinds of media.
Why, somebody recently put out glasses that enable you to see a representation of the digital otherworld.
These are enjoyable things - well, I'll think of something to add to it.

Regardless of the profits, one of the successes of gamers, and publishers part of the OSR is this: the games are being played. A weird manifestation of ideas - and a powerful spell that makes people all over the world sit at tables, roll dice and fight imaginary dragons.

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