Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Wizards' World

If there's a guy in the old school community these days who's doing more than Dan Proctor to preserve old RPGs, I'd love to know who it is. Over the past couple of years, Dan has acquired the rights to Starships & Spacemen, TimeMaster, and Sandman, in addition to publishing my favorite retro-clone, Labyrinth Lord. His latest acquisition is Wizards' World, a fantasy roleplaying game published in 1983 by a tiny outfit called Fantasy Worlds Unlimited (not to be confused with Fantasy Games Unlimited).

While in some ways nothing more than someone's AD&D-inspired house rules, there's nevertheless a charming enthusiasm to Wizards' World that serves as a reminder that there's no more primal way to show one's love for this weird hobby than by publishing your own RPG, no matter how derivative some might see it as being. I've been enjoying reading my copy of it, with its funky races (metamorphic dwarves, demon halflings, vampires) and strange sub-classes (attacker, defender, destroyer), among many other delights. It's a window on another time and I'm very grateful to Dan for not only making games like this available once again in their original, unadulterated forms but also in making them more widely available nowadays than they probably ever were at the time of their original releases.

15 comments:

  1. Now, if he'd just make it available in a print edition, like he did with Starships & Spacemen on Lulu.

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  2. I'm with you 100%.  It's great that these old games are being preserved and re-introduced.  It would be a shame to lose them altogether.

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  3. In a way, these games are in a better position than say, WFRP. Sure, there might be a game called WFRP, but it isn't the game that was released in the 1980s. That game has been 'vanished', and has zero chance of being brought back into print.

    (Although, after writing this, I do concede that WFRP2e is still available in .pdf form. Grossly expensive unprintable .pdf form, but available all the same) 

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  4. I've been friends and a co-gamer with the designer of Wizards' World for almost 20 years now.  He's one of the smartest gamers I know and a great guy.

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  5. "Demon halflings" is oddly appealing....

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  6.  So glad I have multiple copies of 1E at home.

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  7. Goblinoid GamesMay 8, 2012 at 7:07 PM

    Thanks for the mention James!

    Print version now available!

    http://www.lulu.com/shop/david-silvera/wizards-world/paperback/product-20111616.html

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  8. Goblinoid GamesMay 8, 2012 at 7:08 PM

    Thanks for the mention, James. Print version now available:

    http://www.lulu.com/shop/david-silvera/wizards-world/paperback/product-20111616.html

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  9.  http://www.lulu.com/shop/david-silvera/wizards-world/paperback/product-20111616.html

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  10. Wow, I actually own a copy of this.  A HS friend went to college with one of the authors and I got one.

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  11. Now if only Dan could get  the rights to publish all the stuff  from Wee Warriors,  Fantasy Factory Games and Fantasy Art Enterprises, I would be a happy campier.

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  12. Actually, it is: 
    http://www.lulu.com/shop/david-silvera/wizards-world/paperback/product-20111616.html

    Kinda pricey, but it's there!

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  13. I have a copy of Fifth Age...

    A few years ago, when I was in NYC, the Compleat Strategist on 33rd east of Fifth (by the Empire State Building) had all these ancient RPGs hidden behind a bunch of shelves. If someone is near NYC, check it out; let us know. If James promotes it, it'll help the shop owners move material and help the OSR discover some lost gems!

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  14.  I have a few of the Fifth Age book, but never played the game. I like the central concept of the setting, that the PCs form licensed archeological exploration company. Gives a nice rationale for going out and looting ...er... exploring all those ancient ruins. :)

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  15. Hm. Either he added it after I looked, or Lulu's search feature is not working well.

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