The Great Gloranthan Read and Old Games

Writing about some RPG “gonna do”s here because I need to distract myself from the world right now. I’m not a big fan of wishful thinking posts, but I have no other outlet right now.

Two things happened at Chicago Gameday last month that spurred me to the following intents.

First, my overall feeling of “meh” at running some new hotness has me thinking about all of the RPGs I own, and how it’s maybe about time I stop always looking to new hotness and instead finally get around to giving a go to some games on my shelf that have been unjustly ignored for decades. The heavyweight contender here is Glorantha stuff in general; I own more of it than just about anything other than HERO, yet I’ve never read most of it, much less played it.

So, I loaded up everything Gloranthan I had in PDF onto my iPad and have started reading. I’m half way through RuneQuest Classic right now and enjoying the hell out of it. Of all the “old school” stuff I own, RQ is probably the game I’d most love to get to the table someday. I’m gonna try and be good and just keep plowing through it all.

Second, Gameday happens at a FLGS with a huge selection of games. Yet, blame it on Kickstarter or not, these days I have to hunt pretty hard for anything I feel like buying. I used to drop hundreds of dollars there every Gameday, but lately I spend nothing.

The one game I had my eye on a bit was 7th edition Call of Cthulhu. (Yes, I can hear you all groaning.) Still, I have a bit of a soft spot for CoC, and the fall Gameday usually happens around Halloween, so I figure it’s not a bad horror game to have on hand.

But.

7th ed. is freaking huge. It’s also really slick-looking, which, as I flipped through the books, turned out to be big turn-off for me. I kept thinking, “Is there anything in here that I can’t basically do with the old 2nd ed. copy I bought new back in ’81?” I mean, that’s such a nice, tidy edition of CoC. The main book is, what, 64 pages? 80? And so humble-looking. No fancy color monster art; just black silhouettes that leave details to your imagination.

And, I dunno, it just triggered a whole wave of nostalgia in me. I get the OSR aesthetic of staple-bound ‘zines and B&W line art; that kind of thing evokes so many memories for me. Seriously, why not run games with my dog-eared copies of CoC, or Champions, or who knows what?

So, there you go. Maybe it’s just Kickstarter fatigue, but that’s where my head is at right now.

18 thoughts on “The Great Gloranthan Read and Old Games

  1. Right there with you, buddy. I’m re-evaluating some old games. My only experience with BRP/RQ was playing some Stormbringer 1st, 2nd and I think 4th? a loooooong time ago. Just bought Mythras (RQ 6) and I’m looking forward to seeing how the system has changed, since I haven’t looked at it in a good…26 years?

    I’ll be reading up during the weekend.

  2. < ![CDATA[Right there with you, buddy. I'm re-evaluating some old games. My only experience with BRP/RQ was playing some Stormbringer 1st, 2nd and I think 4th? a loooooong time ago. Just bought Mythras (RQ 6) and I'm looking forward to seeing how the system has changed, since I haven't looked at it in a good...26 years? I'll be reading up during the weekend.]]>

  3. I literally cannot imagine cracking open, reading, then using CoC 7e. Too much, too much, too much.

    The oldest thing on my shelf that I’d be excited to run would be a return to King Arthur Pendragon. But I know resistance is strong locally, at least among one of my former KAP players.

    I have nothing older than that on my shelf. Oh oh. I have a copy of Top Secret: SI here. I paged back through it recently, wanted to see if I’d get the itch. Absolutely fucking not. /dicapriogif

    So, like…what’s the bare-bones minimum it would take to get The Glorantha Experience, do you think?

  4. < ![CDATA[I literally cannot imagine cracking open, reading, then using CoC 7e. Too much, too much, too much. The oldest thing on my shelf that I'd be excited to run would be a return to King Arthur Pendragon. But I know resistance is strong locally, at least among one of my former KAP players.
    I have nothing older than that on my shelf. Oh oh. I have a copy of Top Secret: SI here. I paged back through it recently, wanted to see if I’d get the itch. Absolutely fucking not. /dicapriogif
    So, like…what’s the bare-bones minimum it would take to get The Glorantha Experience, do you think?]]>

  5. Paul Beakley I dunno if should even try to answer, as I’m really such a newb. I feel like HeroQuest Glorantha is probably a great all-in-one package, and it’s relatively “new school” rules-wise. Chaosium is releasing a whole campaign for it that I figure would walk you through Glorantha 101, 21st-century style.

    “Classic” Glorantha would probably require a whole pile of Runequest 2nd ed. books, though.

  6. < ![CDATA[Paul Beakley I dunno if should even try to answer, as I'm really such a newb. I feel like HeroQuest Glorantha is probably a great all-in-one package, and it’s relatively “new school” rules-wise. Chaosium is releasing a whole campaign for it that I figure would walk you through Glorantha 101, 21st-century style.
    “Classic” Glorantha would probably require a whole pile of Runequest 2nd ed. books, though.]]>