Author Archives: thebobgoblin

About thebobgoblin

It's true. Birds are dinosaurs.

What Is ESSENTIAL To D&D? If You Said, “d20s & Vancian Magic,” Spellcraft & Swordplay Would Like A Word With You…

Once upon a time, the d20 was  optional. Dungeons & Dragons got its start as an add-on to the miniatures wargame, Chainmail.  That much, I had known for years.  What I didn’t know before reading Jason Vey’s OSR effort, Spellcraft … Continue reading

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“Oriental” Adventures Done Right: The Flying Swordsmen RPG

Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Oriental Adventures, often rendered in shorthand these days as “1E OA,” was the first role-playing product I ever bought with my own money.  As a wee gamer in the making, my tastes in fantasy had run … Continue reading

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Classic Campaign Setting Review: Spelljammer

SUMMARY: Inventive, wildly imaginative, great set of tools for the ultimate sandbox-style campaign, but suffers from too much focus on other settings and never really comes into its own. SPELLJAMMER was one of the first campaign setting boxed sets published … Continue reading

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Things To Do Different With The Drow…

Let’s be honest.  Drizzt D0Urden ruined the drow. Before he  came along, they were at least somewhat mysterious.  And not entirely predictable, either: despite their long association with The Forgotten Realms, it’s often overlooked that the dark elves first appeared … Continue reading

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Now THIS is old-school: A review of the Cavemaster RPG

There’s a school of thought which argues that a role-playing game’s mechanics should reflect or evoke its genre. I don’t agree that it’s always necessary — a good GM and her players working with a flexible set of rules they … Continue reading

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A Wild Idea; Beastly, Really

Meanwhile, I’ve been writing my own OSR game, specifically for use  with the animal fantasy genre.  It’s grown out of efforts to simplify and streamline my current 3.5 campaign, in which all the players are portraying nonhuman animals; like many … Continue reading

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In Thunder’s Wake: An Alternate Shazam-verse Concept For Old-School Supers RPGs

The most popular super hero character of the Golden Age was Captain Marvel (aka Shazam!), who out-sold Superman and Batman by millions. But it didn’t last; by the early 50s, sales of superhero comics overall had declined sharply, and Fawcett … Continue reading

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