Tuesday, March 30, 2021

My OSR Journey

This is just the stuff I've got in physical form, there's a ton more in PDF and waiting in carts.

I bought Lamentations of the Flame Princess Rules & Magic in January of 2019, since then for the last two years I've been absorbing OSR material. 

I've been gaming for 30 years, but I always played Chaosium's Basic Roleplaying, mostly Call of Cthulhu, because of the Satanic Panic of the 80's I wasn't allowed to played D&D. So I missed out on playing BX or AD&D, but I always wanted to. By the time I got into D&D it was 3rd Edition. If we wanted fantasy we played 3E, if we wanted sci-fi it was West End Games' Star Wars d6, and for horror Call of Cthulhu. 

That was the rotation until I got sick of 3E and went exclusively to Call of Cthulhu, and Basic Roleplaying for everything else, from fantasy to superheroes. BRP is a GREAT system, its where we cut our teeth, but I was kinda getting burned out on it. 

When D&D 5E came out I got into it because I still had an itch for classic D&D, or fantasy, that wasn't 3E. But after awhile I felt like 5E really had all the same problems as 3E, rules bloat, piles of expensive, heavy books, and it wasn't old school enough for me. I wanted death, I wanted resource management, I wanted hexcrawl! I wanted the players to have to think and work as a team. So, I turned to the Retro-Clones. 


I tried OSRIC first because I wanted old-school d&d, but 1E is clunky AF, even with the better layout of OSRIC. I wanted simpler, more streamlined, so I checked out Old-School Essentials, back when it was still BX Essentials. I really liked the smooth layout and easy reference, but it had race as class, which was so strange to me at the time. But I gave it try and found I kinda liked it. So I was debating which one to buy a physical copy of, and Lamentations of the Flame Princess won out because of the art and more mature theme, and it was readily available on Amazon.

So for the last 2 years I've become an LotFP addict, a Flaming Lamenter, or a Lamenting Flamer, or whatever. But the OSR is vast and varied. It's awesome for its compatibility and there are tons of awesome games out there. The OSR has rejuvenated my interest and participation in gaming. It's what I've been missing my whole life.

Here's a quick note on some of the OSR products I've picked up.

LotFP, my favorite, the best in my opinion. Not for kids, deadly, weird, historic.

White Star is very awesome for sci-fi. You can recreate any classic sci-fi trope with this game. Star Wars, Flash Gordon, Transformers, you name it.

Old-School Essentials, perfect for referencing with its easy to read layout. Being able to reference spells and monsters quickly and easily at the table is very important to me. 

DCC is a massive tome that I have only scratched the surface of. But they seem to have a ton of weird adventures out there.

So, my OSR journey continues. There's plenty more I'd like to pick in the future as funds allow. 

OSR is King! Long Live the OSR!


  1. Congratulations on discovering the OSR! It's not one-size-fits-all, but an expansive buffet. Take what you want, leave what you don't.

    Since you like the stuff listed above, feel free to check out the products of Kort'thalis Publishing by Venger Satanis (that's me).

    Welcome home, hoss!

  2. What adventures have you been running? I'm currently running isle of dread

    1. Currently I'm running through some various LotFP adventures.

  3. Just came across this. Great post. I did a similar system retrospective post about running a 4+year weekly Dark Fantasy Campaign with multiple systems and why the gang and I always come back and much prefer OSR for our campaign. Looking forward to reading more posts. Happy Gaming!


  4. I got the print Colony of Death in the mail...just about to start reading it...do you go to 1d4con in West Virginia? That's where I first played LotFP, a session of Scenic Dunnsmouth in 2017. I also made the jump from 5e to OSR soon afterwards (though I'm mostly into Warhammer Fantasy these days).

    1. First, thank you. and yes I went to, I think the first 1d4Con, was that 2017? I haven't gone since because it looked like it was mostly DnD5 and CoC7. I didn't know LotFP was being played, of course back then I wasn't aware of it.