Tuesday, April 21, 2020

The *Other* Basic

I have been doing a nearly two-year-long dive into the D&D Basic game. I have been playing with, working with and talking about D&D Basic and the various retro-clones that emulate it.

My focus has largely been on the Moldvay/Marsh-Cook versions of the Basic and Expert games (B/X) and a little bit into the Holmes Basic. I also occasionally dip into the Rule Cyclopedia.

But there is a Basic set I almost never talk about and actually have very little experience with.  That is the Mentzer BECMI sets.

In fact I don't even own much of the BECMI sets save for a Basic Set (box and imported book).

Yes, the dice are still in their plastic, the crayon is intact and that is Frank's signature.

I do own them all on PDF from DriveThruRPG, and that has been great.  It's a D&D that a lot of you all know, but is somewhat new to me.

There are obvious reasons.  I have never really got into this edition and now seems like a good time.  Also, my kids' Second Campaign is now in the Serpent Peninsula in the Known World (Mystara), so reading these books gives me a good vibe on how I want to run those games.

Mind you, I am not going into these without knowledge. I have picked through my Basic set a bit and read over the others.  I do have printouts of my DriveThru PDFs, so I am not completely in the dark here.

I am not expecting to find some deeply hidden truths here, or even anything really new.  Though a gem or two of new knowledge would be welcome. I am sure there are things in the Companions, Master and Immortal rules that would be new to me.

It's not a quest for knowledge. To quote Clark Griswold, it's a quest for fun!

Obviously not my collection


Bruce Heard said...

You need a copy of the Rules Cyclopedia! :D

Timothy S. Brannan said...

I have three! ;)

Bruce Heard said...

LOL! That's more than me.

Jens L. Larsen said...

I have all those boxed sets. Basic, Expert and Companion were bought new in 1986/-87/-88, I believe. Master and Immortals bought used a couple of years later. Basic and Expert are disintegrating. The others are better. Never got to play games at their levels... ;-)