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Questions tagged [osr]

OSR stands for "Old School Renaissance." It is an umbrella term encompassing pre-D&D 3.0 versions of Dungeons & Dragons. The various older editions are closely related enough that an answer for one is often applicable to other editions.

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15
votes
10answers
14k views

How do you optimize in 1st Edition AD&D?

1st Edition Dungeons and Dragons gives its players a few strategic options during character creation, many of which are restricted by randomly generated attributes. With this in mind, what are some ...
19
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8answers
1k views

What happens in adventure locations between adventures?

I'm running a sandbox with several adventure locations that have been visited, but not entirely cleared, and ones that have been left open for new residents to arrive. I'm looking for a method for ...
8
votes
1answer
97 views

How many spells does the Magic-User have in their spellbook in S&W Core?

In Swords & Wizardry Complete, the rulebook states that [...] a beginning Magic-User’s spellbook contains as many of the eight basic first level spells as the neophyte character can know [based ...
12
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5answers
18k views

Are there rules for increasing ability scores after character creation in Basic D&D?

Are there any rules (house or otherwise) for increasing ability scores after character creation in Basic D&D or any of its retro clones? (Other than magic items or wishes.) When we generated ...
57
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6answers
30k views

How to randomly generate a village or town for old school D&D game?

There is a lot of material written on random generation of dungeons for play. But inevitably characters have to return from the to spend those ill-gotten gains. And where else but a nearby ...
0
votes
1answer
142 views

Firing a relativistic kill missile at a god in an otherwise medieval world: How to Adjudicate? [closed]

My players have come up with a (deviously clever) solution to an impossible quest to kill a particular god-like being: accelerate an unobtanium missile at it to relativistic speeds and smash it into ...
12
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4answers
2k views

Megadungeon: How often to restock?

I am running an episodic megadungeon using Pathfinder rules, with XP only for found treasure (1 GP = 1XP). Now, I know to restock my dungeon after the PCs traveled an area. I have a restocking system ...
63
votes
6answers
14k views

What's the deal with alignment languages?

In early D&D, there was the concept of an "alignment language." The original "little brown book" D&D says only: Law, Chaos and Neutrality also have common languages spoken by each ...
13
votes
3answers
3k views

What are the differences between Labyrinth Lord and Lamentations of the Flame Princess?

I'm planning to use OSR modules like Caverns of Thracia, Keep on the Borderlands (and new material also as Vornheim) and so on in a open table project I'm running. I'm not sure whether using ...
23
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4answers
3k views

How can players learn the nature of magic items?

I'm running a sandbox campaign with Adventurer Conqueror King System (essentially Moldvay-Cook Basic/Expert D&D). My players are starting to find probably-magic items during their expeditions and ...
7
votes
1answer
206 views

What changes are needed to maintain balance if all classes use the same XP table in BX D&D/OSR?

What balance problems are created by house-ruling B/X D&D (or derivatives) such that all classes advance at the same rate (i.e. they all use the fighter's XP-level table)? What fixes can be ...
13
votes
1answer
1k views

How do I learn to run games in the OSR/old school D&D “Way”, as an experienced 3e/5e DM?

I'm a seasoned D&D 3e/5e DM, and I'm interested in learning how to run an old-school game. The trouble is, the 3e/5e "way" is trained into me (e.g. I'm very used to calling for skill checks to ...
3
votes
1answer
191 views

When was LotFP grindhouse edition published?

I have some trouble finding bibliographic information for Lamentations of the flame princess grindhouse edition referee book, or the set as a whole. The pdf of the referee book contains no ...
19
votes
9answers
841 views

Can you use a Spelljammer ship to get to Krynn?

Following on from this (can-you-use-a-spelljammer-ship-to-get-to-ravenloft) question, I seem to remember that Krynn is similarly impossible to get to, mainly for plot reasons since no character on ...
9
votes
5answers
573 views

Is there a term for OSR games which are not retro clones?

The Old School Renaissance / Revival boasts many retro clones, especially of various D&D editions: from Swords & Wizardry for OD&D, through Blueholme for Holmes Basic, to OSRIC for AD&...
11
votes
1answer
424 views

Is there a formula behind S&W White Box classes?

I intend to create my own classes for my current Swords & Wizardry campaign. I've read White Lies Admin Toolkit which deconstructs their own classes, but when I tried to run the same formulas to ...
17
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2answers
1k views

What is the average number of sales of adventures (modules) and adventure settings (hexcrawls) for OSR publishers?

I came across this post on the blog Monsters & Manuals about the campaign setting Yoon-Suin and its units sold since being published. It's interesting to read for someone who's entertaining the ...
15
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2answers
859 views

Who or what first said to “don't name monsters, describe them”?

There is an interesting GMing principle that more or less states that a GM should only ever describe monsters, and let the players name them. There may also have been mention of creating a sense of ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Does D&D 5e have rules for gaining experience from gold?

I have read in some of the Old-School Basic D&D incarnations that characters are awarded more XP for the gold value of the treasure they find than they gain by defeating enemies. I like how this ...
17
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3answers
2k views

How to determine PC genetics in D&D for the purpose of creating 2nd generation PC's [closed]

I remember watching "The Dungeons & Dragons Experience" and one of the people featured in the documentary mentioned how him and his friends had developed a way to blend and randomize attributes of ...
5
votes
1answer
165 views

Where exactly do the tunnels and vineways in Maze of the Blue Medusa connect?

In Maze of the Blue Medusa the description of room 186 indicates that there is a tunnel to room 50. In room 50 there is no mention of such a tunnel. Is the tunnel there and how easy is it to find? ...
13
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6answers
3k views

Remembering to add tracks and signs of wandering monsters

When refereeing OSR sandbox game (using whatever rules; key parts are player-driven sandbox play with neutral referee, and rules as negotiable representation of fiction) I use random encounters: ...
5
votes
3answers
714 views

How well are low level PCs able to defeat high level NPCs in B/X D&D?

For a Basic/Expert game, I want to populate the campaign area with important and influential NPCs, who are doing their things independent of the player's activities. The goal is to have the players ...
5
votes
1answer
115 views

Is the Number Appearing entry based on the stats of the monsters?

For humanoid monsters in the Basic and Expert sets there is a clear pattern of creatures with the same number of Hit Dice appearing in smaller numbers in random encounters if they have better armor ...
10
votes
1answer
291 views

How to design an introductory adventure heavily based on exploration and interaction with the environment? [closed]

Tower of the Stargazer and B1:In Search of the Unknown are two of my favorite introductory modules. The main reason is their focus on exploration; in particular, they feature extensive possibilities ...
37
votes
13answers
11k views

How do I get around players losing interest during mapping?

For the past couple months, my D&D hack game has been experiencing the same persistent issue. While all my players seem to have fun during the exploring/debating/combat/social parts of the game, ...
24
votes
2answers
4k views

Where did exceptional (“percentile”) strength come from?

I run a B/X game for a few guys, most of whom have only played 3E before. It leads to a lot of talk about the change in power level between basic and 3E. One of the things that came up was the ...
16
votes
2answers
3k views

What is the most reasonable conversion rate for a 5e “Gold for XP” house rule?

I am thinking about using a OSR-like XP for Gold rule for my next 5e campaign. Instead of handing out Combat or Quest XP, I want to use the following rule: Players can purchase XP / a level when ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the logic behind the interactions of positive and negative energy? [closed]

Positive and negative energy have a rather idiosyncratic relationship. While ostensibly opposites, creatures and spells that make use of these energies interact in ways that do not seem to follow a ...
12
votes
5answers
887 views

Has anyone released Castle of the Mad Archmage upper levels?

I'd really like to run COTMA, but for some reason the idea of coming up with the ruins and level 1 kind of intimidate me. I'd like to see some examples that I could either use as written or just use ...
14
votes
2answers
2k views

Why can't a Cleric use a sling?

So by the book 1st Edition AD&D, clerics can't use a sling. Other than game balance (it essentially means that other than the odd thrown hammer clerics have no ranged weapon ability which further ...
3
votes
2answers
845 views

How can I tell if an adventure will work with Scarlet Heroes?

The Scarlet Heroes Quickstart provides "an overlay for your favourite old-school game to make its adventures playable for single PCs," which sounds pretty great (I'm interested in twosies, but turned ...
51
votes
3answers
10k views

What is the purpose of old-school D&D class level limitations?

When I played 1E and 2E, racial level limits was one of the first rules we decided to ignore. We decided that it would prevent us from playing (say) an Elven fighter for as long as the party might ...
3
votes
2answers
720 views

How to decide if traps in OSR play should be obvious? [closed]

Obvious traps emphasize interaction with the traps, which is often interesting. Hidden traps make unexplored regions of a dungeon far more dangerous and reward careful play and cunning, as players ...
3
votes
1answer
160 views

What is the difference between Turning Undead and Automatically Turning Undead?

The S&W Complete Rulebook, at page 42, states that you roll 2d10 and consult the Turning Undead table for the result. Then, interpretation is offered as so: If the number on the dice is equal ...
3
votes
1answer
132 views

Where do the treasure types used in the books Teratic Tome and Lusus Naturae come from?

These books, as an alternative to the randomized treasure types and tables found in White Box through at least AD&D 1E, have a guaranteed amount of certain types of objects, and specific names for ...
13
votes
4answers
3k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages of oldschool D&D combat initiative?

Old D&D and D&D3E/4E treat initiative and combat order differently like so: D&D 3.5 / 4E: All participants roll individual initiative, once only at the start of combat. Each player takes ...
15
votes
6answers
2k views

Using 2x on d12 instead of x on a d6 in OD&D/Classic D&D/Clones

A staple of of early D&D is the "1 in 6" or "2 in 6" chance for surprise, finding secret doors, and so on. Recently, some of the retro-clones, mostly noticeably Lamentations of the Flame Princess ...
3
votes
1answer
236 views

How to decide the level of new monsters? [closed]

I'm running a D&D sandbox (with my own variant of D&D, of course, but it is reasonably compatible with old versions of D&D and various retroclones), and I use several adventure modules and ...
61
votes
11answers
13k views

Overview of D&D retro-clones

I'm getting more and more interested in the D&D retro-clones. I keep seeing various names thrown around, like Labyrinth Lords, Swords and Wizardry, Lycanthropes &… something else starting with ...
8
votes
3answers
483 views

Old school dungeon with undead toads

I remember reading a dungeon that involved either undead or vampiric toads as the final encounter. Now I can't find it again. Does anyone know what it was? I know it was from one of the OSR-type ...
7
votes
2answers
649 views

How can I do conversions from OD&D to nWoD?

I'm running a Changeling: the Lost game and I'm going to be running an OD&D (clone) module soon (Death•Frost•Doom) and I was wondering if anyone had tips on converting the crunchy bits to nWoD. ...
13
votes
3answers
10k views

AC differences between AD&D 1E and Basic D&D?

I understand that there are differences between the way Armor Class works in AD&D (first edition) and Basic D&D (the boxed sets, Rules Cyclopedia, etc.), but I don't have the books to check it ...
10
votes
5answers
2k views

Good source book for wilderness/road encounters?

I'm a GM and like for my players to have several interesting encounters when making long road journeys between cities. I especially enjoy when the party has options of how to deal with what they ...
2
votes
0answers
175 views

How to get players to accept DM rulings? [duplicate]

Some time ago I stopped running/playing modern RPGs like Pathfinder and 4e in favor of White Box S&W. I like S&W because of the bare-bones nature that leaves many things up to my discretion as ...
13
votes
4answers
405 views

Megadungeon or modules for a weekend of play?

I've been having gaming/camping weekends with some friends and we've only played Call of Cthulhu so far, using modules. This time I plan on running an OSRIC/1e game, and would like to run the ...
16
votes
5answers
3k views

How do I remove a poorly-designed rule without my players feeling cheated?

(This question is inspired by by Neil Slater's answer here: What are the acceptable limits for questions using the probability tag?. Other related questions are: Rules for increasing ability scores in ...
9
votes
2answers
364 views

Seeking a specific D&D retro-clone

I'm fairly sure this game exists, but I can't figure out for the life of me which one it is. I know it's not Darker Dungeons, Labyrinth Lord, or LotFP, because I just checked them before posting this. ...
34
votes
17answers
4k views

How to handle character death in adventures with save-or-dies

I am currently running an LotFP adventure using D&D Next, the amazing Better than any man. In SevenSidedDie' s great answer to a previous post of mine he touched upon philosophical differences ...
18
votes
8answers
3k views

What adventures are there out there that would fit in this old school campaign?

In a few weeks I'm starting a game of old school D&D for a group of fairly new players, and I'd like to be able to have a few published modules to drop on my hex map, so I can mix it up a bit and ...