No Value in old RPG books?!

So hubby likes to peruse the forums/Exalted forums, and often likes to tell me some of the crazy things he reads. I don’t mind this most of the time, I’m coming to the realisation that I can’t really be bothered with forums it takes time to rifle through them, read the stuff, post stuff, time I can better spend elsewhere like say knitting, reading a book or writing. Often its the same topics that come up again and again and this morning was no exception, but this time I felt the need to write a blog post about one of the topics on the Exalted forum because well… It’s a bit of an odd one.

Someone commented on the forums that no one where he lives wants to play Exalted because they think its a finished line.
I’ll give you a moment to re-read that sentence. Or perhaps to put it another way. They don’t want to play the game because it’s old and no longer supported. (Which in this instance is not the case, White Wolf have simply switched to PDFs and a print on demand service as this is cheaper than physical books.)
Neither myself or hubby can quite comprehend this idea. This would be like someone saying that they don’t wish to read Jane Austin, Oscar Wilde, Shakespeare, Edgar Allan Poe, H.P Lovecraft etc etc etc  Or if I said I don’t want to watch Casablanca,  Brief Encounter, My Fair Lady, Dr Strangelove etc etc etc.
Look the point here is that there are a LOT of good old things, if you just write it off because its old, how do you know you’re not missing out on something really good?
Ok yes older roleplaying games could well be hard to get hold of, especially older editions. But in this instance we’re not even talking about not being able to get hold of the game. Nor are we talking about people not liking that particular genre of game. In this instance someone had the books, the others didn’t even want to play because they felt the game was ‘old‘ and ‘not supported‘.
Now if you’re new to roleplaying then yes it makes sense to simply buy the latest edition of whatever game it is, but if someone wants to run a game in an older version then don’t just simply write it off. (Unless perhaps the rules work better in the new edition, I for instance don’t think I could really play 1st ed Exalted any more, I like 2nd ed.)
A part of me wonders whether this weird attitude is to do with how roleplaying games are sold. Walk into a book shop, there’s a classics section, walk into a DVD store and classic movies are mixed with contemporary ones.  Walk into an RP store? And they will probably only have the latest edition of whatever game you are looking for. I’m not arguing against this, there are limits to space and you have to sell what people will buy. But does that give people the idea that because its not on the shelf no one is going to play it ever again?
Additionally this whole releasing new editions of systems, again I understand why, you’re trying to improve the system, sometimes by completely changing the gaming mechanics. (e.g. Basic, 2nd Ed, 3rd Ed, 4th Ed D&D) but again some people seem to have the impression that because the new edition is out you can no longer use the old one.
And this idea of the system no longer being ‘supported’ we aren’t talking software here!! (Unless the system is truly riddled with errors and lacks substantial errata – but that’s what house rules are for.)
Not trying to pose any kind of solution here, and I believe these people are in the minority, but I just find it a really odd world view to take!

1 Comment

Filed under Books, Gaming

One response to “No Value in old RPG books?!

  1. M

    I remember people saying similar things on the forum back when they announced the original World of Darkness was coming to an end. Think it might be because White Wolf tend to put more emphasis on an ongoing metaplot than most games.

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