Monday, September 9, 2013

The Many Faces of Swords & Wizardry

I first picked up on the Swords & Wizardry vibe back in 2009 when I was exploring the blossoming OSR*.  I had looked into Labyrinth Lord and Basic Fantasy at the time but there was something about the title of Swords & Wizardry and the beautiful Peter Mullen art that really captured the game for me - the game I remember playing in my head as well as the game I wanted to begin playing again.

I had picked up the PDF version of the 1st edition S&W rules (along with LL and BFRPG) and was hooked.  It was the perfect set of rules for me.  Direct and to the point and a nice handful of pages, clear and concise and open for plenty of expansion and very much the same game I stared out with (Holmes).

Swords & Wizardry evolved of these brief years.  Since our S&W campaign is starting back up again this week I thought I'd take a look at the gallery of S&W rules.

The first S&W rule book I worked with back in
early 2009. Peter Mullen's cover art captured dungeon
exploration to in but a single picture and a thousand
words - including the troublesome halfling.

Little did I know that once I received my first copy
of S&W were the Core Rules in production and
soon released. This is the rule-set we've used for
our ongoing S&W Campaign
If S&W Core wasn't 'Old School' enough,
White Box brought the rules back to their most
basic form including d6 weapon damage for all
weapons. Another beautiful Peter Mullen's cover.
Frog God released the Complete Rules.
It would take me all these years to jump on the
Complete wagon we I had house-ruled
most other classes into our Core game.
Swords & Wizardry White Box was release as, well,
a white box.  A handful of little white books in a
little white box recreated the little brown books in the little
brown box from waaaaay back.
Updated White Box single book edition.
Finally, modern times with the current Swords &
Wizardry Complete Rulebook. We have finally moved
our campaign over to these rules.  I'll be talking about
more about this rule-set later this week.
After a major hiatus from our Swords & Wizardry campaign (last session played in January), our group is once again taking up blade and dice to see what trouble can be had around the gaming table.  Look for new Session Updates to be posted soon.

*Now I know that tons of folks were still playing the original versions of the games as can be proven by the Dragons' Foot and the OD&D boards where I had frequented a year or two prior.  But with the so called explosion of these Retro-Clones the border for the 'Revival' had been drawn.