Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Owl & Weasel Wednesday #21 December 1976

Lets got back 38 years to see what was hot in gaming!
Ok let's look at issue 21 of Owl & Weasel.  First off the zine is looking more and more like the White Dwarf it will become.
The Editorial covers both Games Day (February) and also now a D&D Day (March). A couple of typos are dealt with.

Page 3 covers two new games from "The Little Soldier" in Maryland.  The first is Ringbearer. This is the same company that gave us the Book of Monsters, Book of Demons, and the Book of Sorcery that were later re-released by Gamescience (which you can still find at Gen Con).  OF course there is no record of this particular game any more thanks to lawyers at United Artists (who had the Tolkien rights at the time). Basically this little game was a re-enactment of the plot of LotR.  The game sounds a bit like many of the mini-games of the time; one player (The Dark Lord) vs a group of other players.  The next is "Der Fuhrer" a little "political" war game set in World War II.  It sounds interesting in the sense that the battles are more propaganda and street teams than bullets and bombs.

Page 4 covers some news including a bit about GW being featured in the Times.
The growing D&D Society gets a full page treatment later on.  Well, most of a full page. One thing is obvious from the letters is that D&D is growing, rules are being questioned and O&W is more than happy to oblige.

The last page covers all what GW has to sell (as usual).

The articles tend to be much longer in this issue but the downside to that is the zine is still at 12 pages, so fewer articles.

Given this is the last Christmas issue and Christmas is on the way here too, here is Slade's Merry Christmas Everybody. The song is from '74, but this looks like it is later 70s, maybe 76 or 77.
I am sure they got really tired of having to lip-synch to this every year.


JDsivraj said...

a buddy of mine had a copy of Ringbearer it was a minatures game with rules neither my pal nor I could figure out.

phf said...

Yes. Ringbearer is a tabletop miniatures game. The table is set up to represent Middle Earth with the Shire in on corner and Mount Doom in the opposite corner. Yes, there is a large amount of fudging and distortion with the terrain. And don't try to think too much about ground scale. There are two types of combat - HTH and mass battles - and there are sieges as well, IIRC. Designed for multiple players. Theoretically each of the nine fellowship could be a player though personally I wouldn't do that. Saruman, Rohan, Gondor and Sauron are all player positions. The Ringbearer has to do what he did in the book. The Black Riders have to stay on the limited road network unless the Ring is used at which point they can head directly towards Frodo (or the current Ringbearer!) The Ref is encouraged to act the part of the Ring and make suggestions to the Ringbearer...Great stuff!