My on-going Black Tower adventure game had long ago stretched out beyond the initial dungeon location with transits between nearby town and back, then on to other regional dungeons, and now across the high seas. Placing before my players an far away ocean destination I had intended offer a few island locations sketched by a favorite designer Gabor Lux. Though I couldn’t recall if these were fist published in Knockspell or the Fight On ‘zines.
As I set about leafing through hundreds of pages of OSR material from the halcyon days of 2008, and thinking to myself: “there is so much interesting material here. How will I hope to recall it’s location for some future game? I need a sort of index…”
Checking with an academic friend I settled on the conspectus model, collecting details on: issue, page number, article title, article category, author, and any additional notes I might care to add.
You can find the start of this conspectus here, which currently covers the first 4 issues of Fight On! My plan is to publish regular updates to this work, but I would certainly welcome other contributors. Also I would be happy to see anyone take and expand on this format for other materials.
As this material is published in a Google sheet it should be easily sorted, filtered, analyzed, or exported. I would suggest making a copy of the file for these purposes if necessary.
I am an unabashed AD&D 1e enthusiast, but I certainly appreciate this game isn’t for everyone. For me 1e is as beautifuly complex and powerful as a formula 1 race car. Like a like a race car it needs a number of specialized tools and training to operate.
As a player one of the key tools is the classic character sheet, which was originally designed to capture as much detail any player could need for play without referring to the core books. In all my plays over these past few years I immediately returned to this familiar tool. However, this sheet requires a sharp pencil, a good eraser, and keen eyesight; all of which fail me in one way or another from time to time.
I have been playing in a regular bi-weekly game, but with our astral plane adventures I realized that my careful scribblings were an inefficient nod to the past. Casting around online for a cloud based AD&D 1e character sheet I found a number of Google Sheets that approached what I was looking for, and using one of these as a baseline I tweaked it for my own needs.
If you have an interest in playing AD&D 1e I can suggest two additional resources.
1. Anthony Huso has written extensively on playing 1e RAW on his blog: The Blue Bard
2. Allan Grohe my 1e DM also keeps a blog with plenty of interesting content on this topic: From Kuroth’s Quill
September 18 Update – Spell Cards
Print & Play spell cards, should be just shy of 2.5” x 3.5” that is the standard for CCGs. Get them here.
Equally fascinating is the the Matrix Game concept, info here.
Being holed up for the past two’ish years I’ve turned my attention back to miniature wargaming, but friends are distant and my days are often full. I said to myself “self, you ought to setup a remote game”. “Good idea self, let’s try making that a Matrix game too”.
Recruited a few friends to help me with my madman’s plan. Linked below is an evolving collection of our comms, where everything done via bcc’d e-mail – forcing a fog of war amongst the players.
We made good progress with the scenario and background setup in our first week. Then high summer hit, two graduations and a wedding yet to come. We should get back to this game in a few more week, setting up a table with some miniatures and dedicated player photos.
…and parliament I suppose, for those of you with a more puritanical bent.
There is a very fine To The Strongest variant for the ECW, titled For King & Parliament, which our club has had on the table these past few months. We are working our way through a nicely organized collection of scenarios for the period as well, the Siege of Norchester.
I’ll continue to refine this quick reference if the inspiration strikes. Please let me know if your have questions about these rules or my interpenetration. We’ve been playing a good deal and expect we will continue to do so.
Information spread across multiple sources, locations, or systems is difficult to access. This is a maximum of my professional world and applies equally to my hobby world, especially with complex or evolving rulesets.
To the Strongest is one such use case where periodic updates via the Even Stronger compilation add or clarify rules from the core book. I have taken on a small project to summarize the core rules, simplifying where I can, and adding the ES amendments.