View Full Version : RE: Dungeon Crawl Classics
12-03-2006, 06:37 PM
Gah, just reading the teasers in the latest ones (#38 - 40) make me all the more glad that I grew up on D&D, but wrote my own adventures. Those module descriptions give me the hives!
12-03-2006, 08:37 PM
Even with a good module in my hands, I can never pull off running anything but my own material very well. I can see some appeal with these "classic dungeon crawls" though. Every once in a great while, it is nice to do something off the beaten path--maybe something silly or purely hack n' slash like some of these. And, the newbs need something to cut their teeth on, eh? :D
12-03-2006, 11:47 PM
I'll grant that it can be some good old fun to just carve through things. I'm not an elitist gamer. That said, I'd never introduce a newbie to something like this. I do everything I can to make sure a newbie gets a premium experience that shows the roleplay and combat ;)
12-04-2006, 07:23 AM
Pre-packaged dungeons are ok if you don't have time to plan for an adventure with the party, but I run a home brew world, have run the same one almost exclusively for the last 20 or so years, so when I do by pre-packaged dungeons, I've got to go in and make changes to them, so for me, unless I need to get some inspiration, the pre-packaged ones don't work.
But like I said at the beginning, they work for those GMs who don't have time to plan for adventures, due to oh, real life!;)
12-04-2006, 09:35 AM
That said, I'd never introduce a newbie to something like this. I do everything I can to make sure a newbie gets a premium experience that shows the roleplay and combat ;)
For a veteran, the hack n' slash, story-lite (if at all) feel of the old modules may be passť, but to the newcomer, it can still be just as exciting as it was for us in the beginning. I guess it is hard to say, to some degree. When I started, no one I played with knew the first thing about roleplaying or creating unique and believable stories. Still, I was enamored with the game from the very beginning. After years of playing, my style began to refine -- as did my tastes. Monty Haul and Hack n' Slash gaming without a driving story became very unappealing. But, I wonder, from the eyes of the new gamer, maybe these old classics would fill them with wonderment just as they once did me.
12-04-2006, 01:49 PM
I agree that the ephemeral experience of killing and item acquisition can be a lot of fun. Most video games that call themselves RPG's are nothing more than this with a simple story tacked on. That said, most of the people I 'introduce' to the game are adults, and they quickly see through the hack n' slash side of the game and are left asking 'Is that it?' if that's all they see. Give them a little story, a little opportunity to roleplay, and bind that with a tactical environment that has some BOOM!!! factor and it's suddenly fun.
While I don't think hack n' slash is juvenile, I do think that there is something to the fact that there is a clean pattern of kids who start with the game favoring it and then 'growing' into other elements. Does it have something to do with the age of the players? Yes... let me pull a link and quote.. from The Daedalus Project (http://www.nickyee.com/daedalus/)
Younger players are more likely to be driven by advancement, competition and understanding the underlying mechanics.Pulled from the article Motivations: The Bigger Picture (http://www.nickyee.com/daedalus/archives/001299.php?page=3).
While the site, and the article, are focused on the players of MMORPG's and not table top games, I would imagine that the findings would be markedly similar should someone poll the tabletop crowd. Younger people enjoy the function of the game itself to a great degree -- which translates to hack n' slash gameplay. As people age, they begin to explore other areas that gaming offers, and enjoy that as much as, or more than, the actual mechanics of play.
Note that the article and research (which is academic and sound) also supports the stereotype that women aren't as focused on mechanics and rules as men are.
None of that is to say that you can't find exceptions, you will -- but that does not invalidate the general trends.
The Daedalus research site is amazing btw. Very good information. I wish someone had the time to poll us D&D geeks in a similar fashion. The data would be very useful to the game companies!
12-04-2006, 02:20 PM
That said, most of the people I 'introduce' to the game are adults, and they quickly see through the hack n' slash side of the game and are left asking 'Is that it?' if that's all they see.
You have a point. I'm thinking back nostalgically to my teen years, and when I am picturing in my mind new players, I am tending to think of them as young teen to early twenties.
02-11-2007, 11:54 AM
for my gaming group, the dungeoncrawl classics brought us back in time with the campy storylines, vintage Earl Otis artwork, player handouts, the standard blue graphed out maps on the inside module cover... ah... :D
sure, i'm not gonna run a campaign around any of them, but for a joke packed, 80's nostalgia afternoon- they fit the bill!
02-11-2007, 10:17 PM
Sometimes the unplanned dungeon crawls brought out some excellent character interactions.
One time I when I was DMing a group of six, there were two psionic characters who were rivals (parton the lack of details, this was about 15 years ago). They were competing to outdo each other, and sometimes working against the other. Quite by accident I had an ambush planned by some Mind Flayers, as part of a hook for a later module. Anyway the two psionics were drawn into a mental battle while the rest of the party watched. The four others laughed while these two fierce rivals were pleading for help with one desperate voice. "Beware of Mind Flayers" became a running joke when they resumed their rivalry after the encounter.
* Farcaster's D20 Dice Roller rolled a number between 1 and 29. It could have been anything, but this time, it rolled 5! *
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