Thanks to the kindness of Tim Brannan, who saved me from having to pay Lulu's ungodly Canadian shipping costs, I now own a shiny, new, hardcover copy of OSRIC. I'd already seen the final release version of this game in PDF form months ago, but that couldn't compare to the, well, majesty of holding all 380+ pages of it in my hands this afternoon. OSRIC is an extraordinary piece of work -- by far and away the most ambitious of all the retro-clone/simulacrum games published to date. I'm frankly in awe of what Matt Finch and Stuart Marshall accomplished and there's no question I'll get a lot of use out of this book.
That said, I'm still a bit disappointed that OSRIC isn't a fully open game like Swords & Wizardry and Labryinth Lord. Had it been released in such a fashion, I suspect that OSRIC might be getting wider use by publishers than it seems to be. I admit I may simply not have noticed evidence to the contrary, but, from where I'm sitting, it seems as if S&W and LL are garnering more attention and support, both by gamers and third party publishers. That the 1e conversions of Goodman's Dungeon Crawl Classics aren't using OSRIC disappoints me. Heck, even Expeditious Retreat Press's Malevolent and Benign, which is explicitly sold as "a first edition bestiary," isn't an OSRIC product, which strikes me as very odd.
I'm sure there are reasons why OSRIC, the original retro-clone, now seems (to me anyway) to have been overshadowed by its younger siblings, but it's sad nonetheless. I was, for most of my gaming existence, a staunch 1e aficionado and I still retain much love for AD&D, even if my own tastes have moved closer to OD&D in recent years. Consequently, I want to see OSRIC prosper. Even if it's not likely to be my go-to game for old school fun these days, I think it's important that the standard bearer for the Gygaxian patrimony of the hobby be successful and widely used by gamers and publishers alike, which is why I hope my perceptions are mistaken.
Regardless, the print version of the game is simply awesome. Many hearty congratulations to everyone involved in its release and much thanks from me for making the kind of contribution to the old school renaissance I can only dream of doing.