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    Orc in the Playground
     
    Finagle's Avatar

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    Question What's the difference between BECME, Labyrinth Lord, B/X Essentials, BFRPG, and S&W?

    If this has been covered elsewhere, what's the difference between Basic Fantasy RPG, BECME, Labyrinth Lord, B/X Essentials, and Swords & Wizardry? If it hasn't, what's the difference between these different systems?

    If the answer is "it depends" then what I'm looking for is the oldschool style of dungeon exploring, with rules fixes for modern convenience. Based on Moldvay.
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    PaladinGuy

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    Default Re: What's the difference between BECME, Labyrinth Lord, B/X Essentials, BFRPG, and S

    OK to start off with the games that are Dungeons & Dragons as produced by TSR:
    • Holmes D&D - the 1977 version of the Basic rules box authored by Holmes.
    • B/X - the 1981 version of Basic by Moldvay with the Expert rules by Cook
    • BECMI - the Metzner rules: Basic, Expect, Companion, Master, Immortal


    The others are all retro-clone systems written to capture the different authors' key aspects of D&D. I know nothing direct about any of them, but quite a lot of information is available on the internet.

    Something to watch out for is the different between BFRPG (Basic Fantasy Role-Playing Game) and BRP (Basic Role Playing) - the latter is the core system underlying Call of Cthulhu and RuneQuest and is totally unrelated to the the retro-clones.

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    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Imp

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    Default Re: What's the difference between BECME, Labyrinth Lord, B/X Essentials, BFRPG, and S

    Quote Originally Posted by Finagle View Post
    If this has been covered elsewhere, what's the difference between Basic Fantasy RPG, BECME, Labyrinth Lord, B/X Essentials, and Swords & Wizardry? If it hasn't, what's the difference between these different systems?

    If the answer is "it depends" then what I'm looking for is the oldschool style of dungeon exploring, with rules fixes for modern convenience. Based on Moldvay.
    B/X essentials is a very faithful reproduction of B/X (Basic/Expert) dnd. Supposedly with much better organization and usability.

    Swords and Wizardry is also based on odnd aka old dnd. Its the booklets that were published before 1st edition adnd and classic dnd, for chainmail, basically the oldest version of dnd. I think however you needed chainmail to make sense of the booklets so swords and wizardry provides some consistency.

    Labyrinth lord is also based on B/X dnd, but it expands the progression beyond 14 levels and IMO is a bit overgenerous with saves and spell slot progression. It also has an expansion that adds adnd rules to it.

    Every old dnd version has many many small and big differences, there are too many to mention if you want to ask sth go ahead!

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    Orc in the Playground
     
    Finagle's Avatar

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    Default Re: What's the difference between BECME, Labyrinth Lord, B/X Essentials, BFRPG, and S

    OK I am specifically interested in Moldvay D&D. It appears I phrased my question poorly. Not interested in Gygax 1975 D&D, Metzner 1983 D&D, or AD&D.

    B/X sounds great, but I'm worried it might be a bit *too* faithful. I'd like modern conveniences. BUT I understand some re-adaptations go so far as to implement 3rd edition skill sets, etc.

    I know quite a lot of information is available, and I've been reading and watching these past few days, but I can't quite find anything that goes into the differences between the systems. No direct comparisons. Maybe someone has done a big writeup on this topic but I sure can't find it.

    So the competitors appear to be:

    • Basic Fantasy RPG
    • Labyrinth Lord
    • B/X Essentials -> now known as Old School Essentials
    • Adventurer Conqueror King


    Not interested in grimdark theme of Lamentations of the Flame Princess, or any gonzo game, or any game that can fit on one sheet of paper. I've spent the last 3 days reading and nobody addresses this question!
    Last edited by Finagle; 2019-11-21 at 02:40 AM.
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    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Imp

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    Default Re: What's the difference between BECME, Labyrinth Lord, B/X Essentials, BFRPG, and S

    I don't know anything about basic fantasy rpg.

    Don't know about a modernized moldvay retroclone.

    From the ones you mention the most innovative one is ACK. It's not based on moldvay though, that said it being based on b/x dnd is propably as close to it as you will get.

    I hope this helps you http://taxidermicowlbear.weebly.com/dd-retroclones.html

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    Default Re: What's the difference between BECME, Labyrinth Lord, B/X Essentials, BFRPG, and S

    Quote Originally Posted by VladtheLad View Post
    VtL has the right of it right there. Check that list out.
    But of those, and the ones you mentioned:
    Quote Originally Posted by Finagle View Post
    • Basic Fantasy RPG
    • Labyrinth Lord
    • B/X Essentials -> now known as Old School Essentials
    • Adventurer Conqueror King
    a lot of them are free, or have free Quick Start/No Art versions. So you can take a peek for yourself and see what fits you best.
    Sounds like a fun quest for sure! Good luck and happy gaming!!
    Last edited by rredmond; 2019-11-22 at 11:09 AM.
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