The Dave Arneson's Blackmoor Discussion Forum



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 Post subject: Re: Blackmoor reading list
PostPosted: May 31, 2011 6:59 am 
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Lord of the Regency Council
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Cool,
I am checking out the Wikipedia article now. I recently got a couple of Chalker's novels in the mail and tried starting to read the first one last night, but it was too much of a struggle. Might try again when I am not so tired ;)

Markovian and Well of Souls are the only one I noticed too.

Edit:
[quote=Wikipedia]Mavra and Zinder crashland in the Southern Hemisphere after their ship is disabled while flying over a non-tech hex, [/quote]

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exiles_at_ ... l_of_Souls

8)


-Havard

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 Post subject: Re: Blackmoor reading list
PostPosted: May 31, 2011 7:25 am 
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I went over the first one this weekend, and even got a good quote with the description of the Well by Chalker (basically, a big magnetic wall), but the pin I had put in the book fell out. :(

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 Post subject: Re: Blackmoor reading list
PostPosted: Jul 12, 2011 8:20 pm 
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Dave Arneson wrote:
Both Gary and I read the old Conan books but I think that Fritz Leiber was more of a influence. I preferred Poul Anderson, especially Three Heats and Three Lions.

As for a test there are several points to be made. 1) Is Simply that the referee have a good basic knowledge of the rules. (Which ever ones are being used.) Too many don't. Close to that in m 2) book is being able to tell a story 'on the fly'.

At some point a group of 'experts' should look in. This is after all a 'living' campaign and noe set a stone. Good knowledge and good story and covers a lot.. But, neither can quite stand on it's own.

Dave Arneson
Dark Lord of Game Design


Source: http://odd74.proboards.com/index.cgi?ac ... 815&page=1

Emphasis mine.

-Havard

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 Post subject: Re: Blackmoor reading list
PostPosted: Jul 31, 2017 1:16 pm 
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Havard wrote:

In his interview with Mortality Radio, Arneson suggested that he was responsible for including Regenerating Trolls. However, since they are already in Chainmail, I think he might have been misremembering that one...

-Havard


Speaking of.... That is the same interview with this:

(Question: Gygax listed a bibliography of inspirational books. What were some of the books that inspired you when you were creating original D&D?
82 minutes into the program)
Dave says:
“As far as books go, fantasy books, science fiction/fantasy books that inspired me, we’re talking about Poul Anderson, Robert Heinlein, and a lot of the other authors, like the author of the Horse Clans series. (Robert Adams) Gary Seems to have listed every book he’s ever read in his bibliography, and I’ll be blunt, I don’t think I’ve read a lot of those books. Although, after having read a few thousand books, I really can’t remember which ones I’ve read anymore… So a lot of it is, Yes, I was inspired by…; but where does the inspiration stop and the game design begin? I mean, you’ve got to make changes. You’ve got to do variations. You can be influenced by something you read and don’t even remember reading, because you want to include “oh here is something neat I can incorporate into my world.”

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 Post subject: Re: Blackmoor reading list
PostPosted: Aug 02, 2017 2:58 am 
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Thanks, Aldy - this is one of the key questions: How much literary tradition can really exist in something that is build interactively and more or less spontaneously?

For Gygax, the external authorities were always important, but that's because he had to position himself inside the market.
Arneson didn't have to do that, and so his answer is way more direct.

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 Post subject: Re: Blackmoor reading list
PostPosted: Aug 02, 2017 7:20 am 
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Rafael wrote:
Thanks, Aldy - this is one of the key questions: How much literary tradition can really exist in something that is build interactively and more or less spontaneously?

For Gygax, the external authorities were always important, but that's because he had to position himself inside the market.
Arneson didn't have to do that, and so his answer is way more direct.


Excellent points.

To be fair to Gygax, I also think his appendix N was at least in part intended as an "here is more stuff you can read as inspiration for fantasy RPGS", but positioning himself as you say was also part of it of course.

Aldarron wrote:
82 minutes into the program)
Dave says:
“As far as books go, fantasy books, science fiction/fantasy books that inspired me, we’re talking about Poul Anderson, Robert Heinlein, and a lot of the other authors, like the author of the Horse Clans series. (Robert Adams) Gary Seems to have listed every book he’s ever read in his bibliography, and I’ll be blunt, I don’t think I’ve read a lot of those books. Although, after having read a few thousand books, I really can’t remember which ones I’ve read anymore… So a lot of it is, Yes, I was inspired by…; but where does the inspiration stop and the game design begin? I mean, you’ve got to make changes. You’ve got to do variations. You can be influenced by something you read and don’t even remember reading, because you want to include “oh here is something neat I can incorporate into my world.”



I think Greg once spoke about how they would read anything of sci fi and fantasy that they could get their hands on. I think that was probably true for Dave, Gary and most other gamers at the time. I think Dave makes a great point about how common it was to borrow sample ideas from all over the place. I would also not be surprised if the game designers often read books solely to see if there were monsters, races, spells, magic items etc that could be raided from the books rather than out of interest for other aspects of them, but that is just speculation on my part.

-Havard

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 Post subject: Re: Blackmoor reading list
PostPosted: Aug 11, 2017 6:57 pm 
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FWIW, I think the recent discussions on behalf of that, over on OD&D '74, were profoundly misguided: As one user there, "ritt", pointed out, reading too much into it seems sort of contrary to the spirit of the hobby. D&D is "oral literature", but it did not start as a meta-literary exercise, or anything alike. I also don't think it's very wise to think of th St Pauls group as "game designers", as per the modern understanding of the word - or that humor of all sorts was not one of the main goals of their get-togethers. - Actually, I find the thought that these were just a couple of friends who wanted to have a good laugh pretty good; that's the same reason me and my folks get together, after all... :)

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 Post subject: Re: Blackmoor reading list
PostPosted: Aug 30, 2017 2:33 pm 
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Rafael wrote:
FWIW, I think the recent discussions on behalf of that, over on OD&D '74, were profoundly misguided: As one user there, "ritt", pointed out, reading too much into it seems sort of contrary to the spirit of the hobby. D&D is "oral literature", but it did not start as a meta-literary exercise, or anything alike. I also don't think it's very wise to think of th St Pauls group as "game designers", as per the modern understanding of the word - or that humor of all sorts was not one of the main goals of their get-togethers. - Actually, I find the thought that these were just a couple of friends who wanted to have a good laugh pretty good; that's the same reason me and my folks get together, after all... :)


I think that is a very good point. It is easy to start overthinking some of these processes. It seems to be a pretty widespread mistake across the board of gaming historians though, not just in this small niche of Arneson fans :)

-Havard

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 Post subject: Re: Blackmoor reading list
PostPosted: Aug 30, 2017 8:25 pm 
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Thanks! :) it's one of the reasons why I have mostly withdrawn from that sort of debates, actually. Most scholars - or, rather, internet pundits - in the field seem to critically underestimate the value of improvised storytelling when they talk about gaming - or rather, they ignore it because ignoring it allows them to create more reliable models with specific source material. And while that is convenient, I don't think it's the right direction, at all.

The way more interesting question would be to determine the daily vernacular of nerds in the '70s. You know, what the vernacular, conversational standard was when it came to fantasy literature: Did people know "Conan the Barbarian", and did they refer to him the same way we do, now? - Stuff like that. Much harder to investigate, though.

:)

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