The growing awareness of Goodman Games' upcoming (in 2011) Dungeon Crawl Classic Roleplaying Game has once again generated the chorus of "there are too many clones," etc. that we hear every time someone decides to produce a new old school fantasy game. My own position on the matter remains the same, namely:
1. The more old school games that are available, from a variety of publishers, the less likely it is for any one of them to become the old school game, either in theory or in practice. Speaking for myself, I prefer diffusion to centralization, as it's a good safeguard against repeating the mistakes of the hobby's past. Likewise, the more games available, the more cross-pollination of ideas we'll see and that too is an unqualified good in my opinion.
2. However, my position is predicated on the assumption that these clones are all roughly compatible with one another, sharing similar mechanical roots, so that cross-pollination is encouraged, if not actually facilitated. I prefer that new clones make their rules available for free, as Labyrinth Lord, Swords & Wizardry, OSRIC, and James Raggi have done for this very reason, but it's not essential. At the same time, when a publisher introduces a proprietary "old school" RPG, my skepticism is heightened. That's why I tend to view games like HackMaster and Castles & Crusades differently than the aforementioned games, even though I find a lot to like in both of them. I suspect I'll feel similarly about the DCC RPG, but it's too early to tell.
The old school movement is a gloriously chaotic mess of creativity. That chaos fosters creativity and impedes the centralization of authority in any one game or publisher -- both positive outcomes in my view. So, the more, the merrier, I say.