In light of recent events, I'd like to state clearly that, whatever our philosophical differences, I think Monte Cook is a good fellow. I received an email from him yesterday in which he offered me access to his Dungeonaday.com so that I could see for myself what he was up to. He did this without any strings attached and in fact said upfront that, if I didn't like what I saw, he'd have no beef with my saying so here. He didn't have to do that and, honestly, after the uproar my posts caused, I'm mightily impressed he did so. Monte is obviously a bigger man than I.
More than that, though, he's a man who's interested in engaging in discussion about the points I've raised here. Our initial email exchange ranged over a number of topics pertaining to the "old school" question and I'll admit that I was taken aback by some of what he said -- not in a bad way but because a lot of it sounded like things I myself have said here on this blog. And as I'm constantly reminded by some of my commenters, I like nothing better than having my prejudices confirmed by others. All the better if Monte Cook is among them!
That's not to say we agree on all counts, because we don't, but I didn't expect we'd agree on half the stuff we do agree on, so those sources of disagreement seem a lot less significant by comparison. In any case, I certainly hope to continue this dialog with Monte; it's already been immensely useful to me as I grapple with a couple of issues related to the "old school" question. I'll also be taking a good, hard look at Dungeonaday, as I said I would in my initial post. Once I've had a chance to do so, I'll compose my thoughts into a review, with an eye toward its utility for gamers whose understanding of "old school" is roughly similar to my own. My first peeks at it left me with a positive feeling. There are things I already know I dislike about it, but there's also a lot to admire and approve of. But I'll save those thoughts for another time.
My hat's off to Monte Cook. He's one of the good ones.