Tuesday, May 26, 2009

You Guys All Suck

And by "you guys" I'm referring to my fellow old school bloggers, who apparently chose the Memorial Day weekend to have a big discussion/argument about the definition of the term "old school". I guess I can excuse any non-American from wasting the weekend in that fashion. Ex-pats like Raggi get a pass as well I suppose.

Even so, I'm pretty sure I win the weekend. While you all were squandering your free time on the internets I was hanging out with my buddy Pat, enjoying mind-enriching/numbing TV and eating too much food. We saw the Doctor Who serial "The Mind Robber" (The Karkus rules, by the way), a couple episodes of Carl Sagan's Cosmos, and a metric crapload of Planet of the Apes and Star Trek cartoons.

Anybody reading the ol' Gameblog ever participate in the chess variants hobby? I haven't been active in several years, but in the past that scene spent a fair amount of time trying to define the term "chess" and also inventing new variants that intentionally push the limits of the various proposed definitions. For the most part, I don't give a crap about finding a final, definitive bright line that can be drawn such that everyone can agree games in group A "are" chess and games in group B aren't. Personally I just like puttering around with chess variants and don't need the certainty of an exacting definition to do that.

I pretty much feel the same way about old school gaming. Even if we all agreed to a definition, some edge case would come along and set off a new round of discussion. That being said, the discussion itself and the process of inquiry could still be useful. The destination might be lame but that doesn't have to color the entire voyage. For example, without this weekend's brouhaha we might never have gotten this extremely useful post from Alex Schroeder or this delight from Amityville Mike.

Besides, I've already given the hobby an exhaustive theoretical framework to use. Why everyone in the old school movement doesn't just adopt my threefold model as the gospel truth remains one of life's little mysteries.


  1. I went to the Indy 500 w/ my dad. My weekend reigned supreme!

  2. I went outside with my gaming friends and we threw the frisbee around and I grilled tasty burgers. I also got a tan from the weekend.All in all not very geeky.

    On the other hand, it sure beat trying to engage in the OS blogstorm. And according to Mike's table, my game is 99% OS, so I guess I already know what Old School is.

    I'm just not gonna tell anyone because I'm a meanie.

  3. I played Risk (and lost badly) at a family cookout that wasn't "out" (rained all weekend). I also lost at speed scrabble...

    That and worked on my "The Resistance" game.

  4. My new bride and I had some family over for a bit of a wedding reception. I didn't even hear about the brouhaha until I got online last night.

    And even then, I didn't understand it -- I guess I don't read enough of the "old school" blogs. I just read the fun ones.

    Like this one, for example.

  5. Didn't even go on the computer this weekend. On Saturday I scored very high in the solo bagpipe competition at the Costa Mesa Highland games (then drank a lot of whiskey to celebrate), and more importantly spent all day yesterday drinking, grilling, and watching the Land of the Lost marathon (which I just blogged about - check eet out).

  6. @Zach: That's awesome. I watched the Race and then some Nascar later on. :)

    We got last Monday off in Canada (Victoria Day), so this wasn't a long weekend for me.

  7. Some people just love to argue the toss and will take any opportunity to do it. I suppose this whole ol' school debate is gonna keep coming around time and again but I remain safely oblivious in my womb of indifference.

    As for my weekend, we did have a Bank Holiday in the UK, but since I had to work Saturday and Bank Holiday Monday it wasn't anything special. Went to the girlfriend's parents for a bit and then had my D&D game cancelled cos a friend had to work; it was a bit of a blow out.

  8. I went to Disney World.

    I win the thread!!!