Bless you, Hivemind!

I take it all back, Hivemind. I still love you.

OK, so the awesome thing about the “Hivemind” of the OSR is the collective memory and elbow grease. I asked about an obscure ad in a Dragon Magazine and in less than a week someone stopped by with the answer. Thanks, Telecanter! You could be a librarian. And many thanks too to James Maliszewski and Old School Rant for spreading the word about my question! Thanks also to Pookie for checking Schick’s Heroic Worlds, the only real bibliography of RPGs (which is in desperate need of updating).

In fact, searching a little deeper with Telecanter’s info lead me to a post in the RPG Bomb blog, <UPDATE: as of 9/30/2011, this link is broken, and sadly not archived in the wayback machine or Google cache> where this very issue turned up before, just a month ago.

So, was it a scam? Probably. The ad promised a package including rules, 100s of spells, a bestiary, regular updates, and more. The ad also sort of suggests there are 5000 members of “the Paragon Society for Wargaming” but actually the ad just asks the reader to imagine what 5,000 gamers could do… But the ad also asked for the age of anyone wishing to “join”, which makes me wonder if that was for demographics or to screen out adults who might have the gumption to demand their money back, call their state attorney general, etc.

Anyway if you think about how Pathfinder was developed, with hundreds or thousands of D&D 3.5 edition fans working on revisions, it would appear the the Paragon Society for Wargaming was just a little ahead of its time.
I wonder if they could have actually done what they (claimed to) aim for, with the tools that are now available.

When my brother & I sent in our $25, we waited hopefully and got a big envelope of loose sheets which probably covered the basic rules of an RPG (I can’t recall any details except the combat system inspired us to experiment with extremely detailed weapon damage calculations that included reference to whether a weapon was bladed, blunt, spiked, or pointed, and balanced or unbalanced, a bit like GURPS) but no spell book, no bestiary, nothing else at all. We put them in a binder and maybe tried rolling up a few characters and forgot all about it.

Published in: on March 29, 2010 at 8:30 am  Comments (1)  
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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Buzz buzz. Ha ha, my pleasure.

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