Friday, February 21, 2014
D&D 40th Anniversary Blog Hop Challenge -- 1st D&D books I ever sold
So yes. That image sort of displays how I encountered the newer versions of D&D. I felt really great about "grid" based D&D early on and then gradually came to really not that great about it.
So as for the question I can honestly say I've never really "sold" any D&D books. Not some dyed in the wool D&D purist thing, no really they just don't hold their value. You buy the stuff at a heavy discount on Amazon and as we all know the average RPGer doesn't spend anything on the hobby. Its the DM who has most of the books and the rest of the people just mooch. There are always a dedicated one or two players who owns a PHB. So there just ends up being this glut of extra core books for pretty much every system. Sure there was a spike with the core 3.5 books there for a brief while they were worth more than their initial MSRP but that was short lived. Generally the average D&D book is pretty cheap (again not talking obscure/rare modules, etc.) so unlike my constant buying and selling mini gaming stuff on eBay I've pretty much never sold RPG stuff, it just isn't really worth my time and effort to make $3 or $5 bucks and though I'm not living fat like I did back in the six figure days, I'm still not so poor that I am going to spend all the time listing stuff on eBay hauling books to the post office, etc. etc. to make a couple of dollars. So they've just sat on my shelf.
Books are easy to store as well. With other hobby stuff like minis, for me anyway I get frustrated with all the stuff taking up space so I try to downsize occasionally. With all my RPG stuff I have large bookshelves in the basement and they are there expressly to store ... books. So my wife is never nagging at me to clean it all up, I'm never feeling like I could really do a whole lot more with that area, so I just don't have strong incentive to even pay attention to all that stuff.
Anyway I did give away my 4th edition stuff. Which I just gave to a friend who was going to give all of his stuff to one of his childhood friends who was a little tight on money but looking to get into the hobby just with his son. For whatever reason that person (who I don't know and who lives half way across the country) was apparently getting into 4th. ed. So anyway long story short my friend Scott gave all of his 4th ed. stuff to him and I chucked my stuff in with his. I never saw myself ever, ever playing 4th again so it seemed like a no brainer ... help a fellow gamer out with something I was never going to use anyway (and really couldn't sell even if I wanted to ... lol).
Now this isn't a bash 4th ed. piece here, please don't see it that way. I very much dislike ALL grid based D&D. I really do not enjoy it. To me it isn't D&D, it isn't even role playing. I see grid based RPGs as a bastardized hybrid board game-skirmish wargame-RPG. Its really a watered down board game, a watered down minis game all combined with a very watered down RPG. The focus is always going to be on getting into combat really quickly, and then staying there for most of the session. The mini game side of things is on one hand too tactical for my taste but then again, not really tactical enough. As for being a board game, I think 3.5/4e would be fine "Descent" emulators. In fact I sold off all my Descent stuff this last year when I cam to that realization. So someday perhaps I will use my old Pathfinder shit to run a Descent game, I"ll just pre-gen up some characters for people and run them through railroady dungeons. That could be fun with my kids I guess.
Overall though I had come to the decision that I really will never go back to the grid, after several different 3.0/3.5/4e/Pathfinder games with several different groups, at conventions, and just from reading blogs, podcasts, and message board posts. Everyone who was playing at an "optimized" level sounded a hell of a lot like the guys on Bell of Lost Souls running "optimized" warhammer 40K armies. Its all about the power game, its all about combat and it rarely was about having a good time gaming. Of course most home game groups were playing 3.5/4e just like we used to play 2nd ed. Hell half of the groups out there weren't using the grid or minis (which was so laughable to me) and I recall many arguing "you don't even need minis or the grid" which always made me laugh. Sure you didn't but then you were fudging and hand waiving half the rules ... so why the hell not just go play basic, or any one of the the fine OSR options.
Mind you this was all for me in the pre Dungeon World days so that was not an option yet. I never took the plunge with Castles and Crusades or Labyrinth Lord though I own printed copies of both. I have a pretty massive collection of 2nd edition D&D as well. I never could get anyone to really want to play 2nd. I just knew that the groups I was playing with wouldn't have wanted to do it. Most of the groups I've played with have honestly been 3.0era fanboys. They all started in that era and so they think that is real D&D. For some that is true, not for me. Anyway I didn't mean to turn this into a bash any particular version of D&D. All my ranting aside, I think that if people enjoy grid based RPGing more power to them. I have enjoyed being a player in 3.5/Pathfinder/4e games. I will never say never on being a player in a grid based RPG again I just know I wouldn't run one of those types of games. Thus no need to own any rulesets. I do still have my Pathfinder books which again I'm holding onto on the off chance I get a wild hair to run a home brew Descent campaign where we just do a series of one shot dungeons.
This post does have me now thinking about all those books though. I have the better part of all 2nd edition White Wolf stuff. I really should get rid of all that stuff. Hmmmmm ...