Squidman, over at Elves ate my homework, recently mentioned that he’s been taking a break from the blogosphere, and I can’t blame him. If it weren’t for Old School Rant I’d probably be following no more than a handful of blogs (Grognardia for sheer volume and quality, plus I’m mesmerized by the Dwimmermount reports; Playing D&D with porn stars because Zak is just a bottomless pit of good ideas; Eiglophian Press for my RDA of Weird Tales inspired goodness; I guess I could just point to the blog roll over there which I started mainly to give my own contacts some entry points to the OSR). But in fact I find that I can’t even keep up with the blogroll, and barely have time to check in on some others that are in my bookmarks but not yet on the blogroll (Cyclopeatron, with its demented art, Save or Die!, with its rather high-concept back-to-basics sandbox, etc.). Which is ok. All too many posts here have been riffing on what I’m reading elsewhere and frankly what I like about other blogs is their own unique content, not their commentary on other blogs, and so I think I’ll be trying to keep my posts limited to stuff I’m doing, not a report on the other blogs. I still have a ton of figures to paint poorly and photograph in bad light!
As an aside, I think someone some day could do a fascinating study of how these little blogosphere ecosystems develop over time. They seem to reach a tipping point where some kind of aggregator is needed to manage the sheer volume — Old School Rant arrived exactly when we needed it! On the other hand is also interesting to see how ideas, themes, and links proliferate. One week everyone is posting about playing with their kids, and another week everyone is posting about level limits for demi-humans, and another week everyone has some ideas or questions about Chainmail — it is really interesting to see how we feed off each other and how ideas travel. I’d just stumbled on Ramblings of a gentleman gamer and his link to the TSR writer’s guidelines/code of ethics, and a day or two later Grognardia is posting them in full and igniting a shitstorm of discussion about them. Whoa. Old School Rant points to Grey Elf’s OD&D supplements and A paladin in citadel discovers them too a few days later. And compare this to this! (It’s OK, Middenmurk, I’m not mad at you! Your comments are right on.)
The blogosphere will eat itself. Or else we really are more monolithic in the OSR than we think. Or more likely we are connected enough to pick up memes from each other and not even realize it. Or maybe we just tend to think about similar stuff because it is inherently interesting and we have similar tastes.
Anyway, let’s hope this my last entry with an “Other blogs” tag! I have a few half-written posts that I’ll still eventually publish but my plan, for now, is to concentrate on the figures, on Dungeon Delvers, and games I’m playing.