There is enough chance in the dungeon encounters, however, that sometimes a character like this will survive and advance to a position of power and importance.That single sentence encapsulate a lot of what I consider to be the essence of old school gaming. Ability scores are not destiny, especially in the LBBs and Holmes, where their mechanical effect is negligible. Moreover, D&D is a game of chance, which means that, even an above average character might well suffer a bad roll that brings him to a bad end, while a supposedly "hopeless" character not only survives but prospers. Some of my fondest early gaming memories are of characters with thoroughly mediocre ability scores who outlived their better endowed peers to become pillars of the campaign.
Holmes suggests that players be allowed no more than two characters at a time in the campaign and notes that most DMs allow only one per player. OD&D's inheritance rules, complete with the 10% tax, are mentioned, along with the possibility that a player might simply choose to retire "wealthy and covered in glory" before his luck runs out and he is slain in the dungeon. In discussing character death, removing the miniature figure that represents him from the table is explicitly mentioned, suggesting again that miniatures, while not necessary, were treated as a commonplace aspect of the game. Attention is drawn to raising the dead through magic, in which it's stated that "A seventh level cleric can raise the dead, if you can find one!" This implies that 7th level is a noteworthy and rare achievement and that the campaign should not include many such characters.
The Blue Book assumes that the player characters will hire NPCs to join them in their dungeon delving, although, as with most things in Holmes, the decision to allow or disallow this possibility rests with the referee. That said, there are rules for recruiting hirelings, albeit of a very loose sort. Unlike OD&D, where there are explicit game mechanics associated with Charisma, Holmes is more "free form" and relying on the good judgment and creativity of the Dungeon Master.
Holmes differs from OD&D in adopting a fivefold alignment system (Lawful Good, Lawful Evil, Neutral, Chaotic Good, Chaotic Evil), which first appeared in Strategic Review #6 (February 1976). Neutrality is equated not with balance here but with self-interest, with thieves being offered as prime examples of the alignment. Alignment change is noted as a possibility, but one that brings with it the loss of experience points as a penalty. Alignment languages are present in Holmes, as they are in OD&D. Learning other languages is a function of Intelligence and the formula for determining the exact number of languages a character can learn is identical to that in the LBBs.