Monday, June 4, 2012

Grognards

As I might've mentioned, I've been ramping up on the OSR thing.  There's some interesting stuff going on there, and I'm a sucker for random tables (and, now, drop tables).

That means that my Google Reader account's bloated the heck up with a ton of OSR blogs (looks like my RPG folder's got 60+ feeds in it at the moment).  That's where the thinking's going on, right?  And, unlike any other RPG phenomena, it really seems to be driven by individuals rocking out on blogs.

Related: I suggest that @SlyFlourish's definition of "Grognard" is off; there's nothing wrong with liking old stuff. The transition from "fan of something old" to "grognard" happens when someone hates something new, because it is new and they like something old.

Nobody has to like 4E. As with "Tastes great!" vs. "Less filling!" or Breaking Bad vs. Mad Men: different strokes for different folks.  It's cool; whatevs!

What drives me up a dang wall, though, is uninformed bitching about it. You don't have to like it, but if you're going to complain about it... please don't be talking out of your ass when you do it. Comparing 4E to an MMO, for example, flags you as someone who just doesn't know what they're talking about.

And that's the problem I'm running into with OSR blogs: these are folks who keep getting derailed from talking about things they love by a need to complain about things they believe they hate. (I say "believe they hate" because, if they're demonstrably ignorant about something, can they really hate it? Or just their imperfect understanding of it?)

I want to read these folks because, when they're talking about something they love: they're interesting and informative.  I come away with new ideas and perspectives; at the very least about what the game was like. When they sidetrack themselves, not only does it sidetrack me (because someone's wrong on the internet), but their peevish ignorance undercuts their authority.

On Warpstone Pile, I try very hard to be positive. There's a lot of miniature hobby stuff out there that I don't like / kinda hate (Warmachine, the current state of 40K, comp systems for Fantasy), but bitching about it isn't going to change anything except possibly alienate a reader. Going off about how little I care for Colossals isn't going to motivate anyone to look at my painted toy soldiers. (I don't always succeed, but I very much actively avoid negativity there.)

I probably shouldn't let it bug me that much... it's hardly a new phenomena, and there are better places to vent about it. But, as my RSS reader's filling up with this stuff (particularly with the D&D 5E stuff rattling around lately), it's starting to get unbearable.

tl;dr - Positivity good! Negativity (particularly uninformed negativity) bad!

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