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View Full Version : How is OSRIC different from AD&D



Yora
2011-02-05, 06:34 PM
Osric is released under the OGL, but practically changed everything compared to the SRD.
I never played 1st Edition A&D and barely understand the rules of 2nd Ed., but there doesn't seem to be anything that I'd recognize from the SRD, but also nothing that seems different to AD&D to my unschooled eyes.

Is there even any difference?

Also: Osric seems to be highly popular, but people rarely mention any 2nd Ed. clones. What's the difference between 1st and 2nd Ed that makes many people go for the former?

mucat
2011-02-05, 06:46 PM
I've only looked over OSRIC briefly, and my knowledge of 1st/2nd ed D&D is entirely from memory of the Old Days...but from what I can see, OSRIC reproduces the "crunch" of first edition exactly.

As for the difference between first and second edition...it's much more like the difference between 3.0 vs. 3.5. There were changes (often to take the edge off some of the most idiosyncratically Gygaxian rules) but it was still recognizably the same game. Back when we played AD&D as kids, we didn't even know there was a first and second edition, though we were aware that the rules gradually evolved over the years.

Premier
2011-02-05, 06:53 PM
How is it different:

- Ruleswise:

Pretty much not at all, they're 99% identical.

- Formatwise:

Well, obviously, it's different. Different phrasing of the same rules, might have sections in a different order, but I wouldn't really know.

- Legally:

This is the big one, and the reason OSRIC was created in the first place. If you're a small print RPG publisher or a self-made creator and you want to write, publish and sell for money any sort of AD&D material, you can't. Well, not legally, at least.

However, if you write, publish and sell the thing as an OSRIC product, it's legal. And since ruleswise they're 99% identical, it's like selling an AD&D product: AD&D players will be able to use it without any difficulties or not to convert rules.


As for the 1E / 2E thing, that's a bit more complicated.

The rules in 1E and 2E if you only take the Player's Handbook are very, very similar. Compare 3E and 3.5, and you won't be very far off the mark.

However, 2E in its later years changed in a direction that did make it rather different, not in terms of actual game mechanics so much as in general design principles. In a way it became sort of a forerunner for 3E by offering loads of "kits" (modifications to a class, kind of like a cross between 3E templates and prestige classes), then went even farther with Skills & Powers which largely demolished the idea of archetypal classes in favour of more extensive mechanical customisation. That didn't sit well with players who happened to like the general design principles of 1E.

Another departure was in adventure module design. Generally, there just haven't been many truly memorable 2E modules, while there has been a deluge of extremely linear, painfully railroady adventures, thanks in no small part to the Dragonlance setting. This sort of tied in with other changes in how the company was run: the large number of "D&D novels", a new business model which created a few memorable campaign settings and quite a few poor ones while driving TSR into bankruptcy, etc. etc.. The fact that Gary Gygax was ousted - in a very disgusting manner - from the very company he founded not too long before the publication of 2E certainly didn't endear it to a significant section of the fandom, either.

Having said that, there is, or at least was, a work-in-progress 2E clone. You'd have to dig around the Dragonsfoot forums for more specific info, though.

Knaight
2011-02-05, 07:47 PM
Osric is released under the OGL, but practically changed everything compared to the SRD.

The OGL and SRD are unrelated. Anyone can release anything under the OGL, which can mean stuff unlike D&D at all. Take Fudge, the 10th anniversary edition was released under OGL and it doesn't have so much as a single die in common with d20.

hamlet
2011-02-07, 08:18 AM
Another departure was in adventure module design. Generally, there just haven't been many truly memorable 2E modules, while there has been a deluge of extremely linear, painfully railroady adventures, thanks in no small part to the Dragonlance setting. This sort of tied in with other changes in how the company was run: the large number of "D&D novels", a new business model which created a few memorable campaign settings and quite a few poor ones while driving TSR into bankruptcy, etc. etc.. The fact that Gary Gygax was ousted - in a very disgusting manner - from the very company he founded not too long before the publication of 2E certainly didn't endear it to a significant section of the fandom, either.

Having said that, there is, or at least was, a work-in-progress 2E clone. You'd have to dig around the Dragonsfoot forums for more specific info, though.

Not 100% true here. There were a number of excellent 2nd edition modules, just most of them didn't come straight out of the TSR publishing house. Rather, they came out of Dungeon Magazine, though there are a couple notable examples of good modules from TSR itself.

Also, the clone for 2e was, last I saw anything about it, called Gold and Glory or some such, but was less a direct clone and more of a "2nd edition done the way we like it" model. I know little about it, however.

Draz74
2011-02-07, 12:15 PM
I remember some pretty wacky differences between 1e and 2e. Like how Rangers got two Hit Dice at Level 1 ... weird. That went away in 2e. And the disappearance of the Monk and Assassin classes, in favor of the Illusionist and Bard ... pretty significant.

I'm not sure these changes were bigger than 3.0 -> 3.5 or anything, but they were pretty significant. And I haven't so much as glanced at OSRIC in a long time, but I don't remember it including the funkier aspects of 1e (such as the double Hit Dice at Level 1). It might be more 2e than you think.

Mark Hall
2011-02-07, 02:09 PM
The OGL and SRD are unrelated. Anyone can release anything under the OGL, which can mean stuff unlike D&D at all. Take Fudge, the 10th anniversary edition was released under OGL and it doesn't have so much as a single die in common with d20.

As I understand it, what allows OSRIC to work is that things in the SRD were released under the OGL, so those terms are now freely available under the OGL. Want to call that hobgoblin-looking-thing a hobgoblin? Go nuts. It's in the SRD, so it's OGL.

This opens the door to a lot of innovation (True20, SIEGE), or reverse-engineering (OSRIC).

Matthew
2011-02-08, 02:37 PM
As I understand it, what allows OSRIC to work is that things in the SRD were released under the OGL, so those terms are now freely available under the OGL. Want to call that hobgoblin-looking-thing a hobgoblin? Go nuts. It's in the SRD, so it's OGL.

This opens the door to a lot of innovation (True20, SIEGE), or reverse-engineering (OSRIC).

Exactly so.

As far as the differences between first and second edition, they are mainly aesthetic. Even the very different direction the game eventually developed in was preceded by a great deal of similar first edition material. I suppose you could make a case for the "bells and whistles" being different.