What have I learnt?
Well firstly, what have you learnt? Has anyone gone out and purchased / found / dug out a copy of the Dungeoneer's Survival Guide because of this series?
I've learnt a number of Gems
1. Without the discipline and motivation of the AtoZ challenge my copy of the DSG would have sat in a darkened loft space, for another decade unread. Like my copy of the Wilderness Survival Guide. Or Greyhawk, Dragonlance and many, many modules I have purchased in the last decade from eBay. So I thank the AtoZ organisers for the inspiration.
2. I never purchased the Dungeoneer's Survival Guide, in my day. I was still playing, but it was expensive, and I would have bought the Wilderness Survival Guide instead (all those weather systems). After exploring it for a month, I can't say I have learned to love the DSG. In the end, it's too verbose, rules for the sake of rules, too campaign setting (alluding to TSR's future publication obsessions - Forgotten Realms, campaign world after campaign world); but still their are moments when the DSG lifts one's imagination. The art certainly helps. And for that I am glad to have spent the last month with it.
3. We have yet to escape the fact that RPG companies be they LotFP or WOTC, must continue to make new products to make money. This is because in my opinion, they must sell, more to the converted. Because new sells, and old dies on shelves. The Dungeoneer's Survival Guide was part of that mentality. Publish or perish. What if we merely expanded the numbers playing, using the same old but trusted books. The world becomes your oyster, and we almost become a club trying to get new members, their membership fee, the classic books. The business model - support your current fans, encouraging them to find new fans.
Okay it's a dream. And one destined to poverty.
I have another dream.
An Adventurer's Survival Guide (produced by the OSR Community)
You see, I like rules. And I'd love to make a rules supplement to deal with different settings.
Wilderness (horse rules, carts, roads, mud, quicksand, weather)
Waterborne Travel (ship to ship combat)
Spelunking - because as we learnt the Dungeoneer's Survival Guide has precious little to do with dungeons. Deepearth and the Underdark are probably TM. Could we use Caves and Caverns, The Adventure/ Journey Beneath, Underearth (used by Douglas Niles in his Intro to the DSG, see below)
But all in OSR style.
Short, sharp, house ruleable, adaptable. With great OSR art.
Heck, Links to Wisdom wiki, almost has all the material we could want.
I can't do this alone. I don't want to do this alone.
We need a team - editing, graphics, setting out, computer skills.
We would need to get the material into the blogosphere for comment and play test it.
Is anybody with me?
I leave the final word for this April AtoZ 2011 series on the Dungeoneer's Survival Guide to Douglas Niles and his forward to the DSG. Thanks for staying with me.
Go on WOTC, release the PDF or republish. You might just get some sales.