It is a semi-constant refrain of this blog that I regret never having played as much RuneQuest or Stormbringer as I ought to have when I was younger. I think very highly of both those games and consider them classics of old school game design. I frequently amuse myself with thoughts of starting up a campaign for either system and, given recent events, those thoughts have popped up much more than usual. But every time I consider such a thing, an image comes into my mind and it's this one (or one like it):
That's a page from Apple Lane that provides the combat stats for five trollkin -- five. Gamers complain about the stat blocks of 3e monsters and rightly so, but it should be noted that Basic Roleplaying, at least in its RuneQuest and Stormbringer forms pioneered the lengthy stat block by providing ability scores, skill percentages, and hit points for each body part for every NPC the characters might conceive engage in combat against (which, of course, means all of them -- this is old school, after all).
Certainly it's true that those stats are still much simpler and more straightforward than those of D&D III, but they're also much more complex and convoluted than those of OD&D (or AD&D). BRP combat isn't as abstract as OD&D's; that's one of its selling points and I can tell you from past experience that, done well, combat in Stormbringer (with which I have the most experience) can be a lot of fun. But it's also a lot more work than that in OD&D: takes more time, requires more dice rolls and more paperwork. I have no doubt that, with time and experience, it can run very smoothly.
Still, the thought of it frightens me. I'm just not sure I have what it takes any more to run a very complicated RPG, which is kind of a shame, because, one of these days, I would like to play Stormbringer or RuneQuest or Chivalry & Sorcery. Ah well.