FAQ: Part the First

Posted in Uncategorized by akesher on January 14, 2010

Over the next few days, I’m going to be posting our brand-new FAQ document. Like all such documents, it will certainly be tweaked, and undoubtedly be updated. We, as always, welcome questions, comments, suggestions.

So, pretend we’re on an elevator—what is TARGA?

TARGA is the Traditional Adventure Roleplaying Games Association. We’re a bunch of gamers who like to play “old school” games—those being defined as “original” roleplaying games, most of which are now out-of-print. We organize old school games at conventions, game stores, events and even out of our homes. We try to keep the flames alive for these old games and provide resources, support and fellowship to all gamers who may feel like they’re alone in their love of do-it-yourself, traditional, games.

Which games are you talking about, exactly?

Here’s a non-exhaustive starting point:

Original D&D, Holmes (Blue Book) Basic D&D, AD&D 1st Edition, Classic Traveller, Tunnels & Trolls, Harn, Original Runequest, Chaosium’s Basic Roleplaying, Rolemaster, Holmes/Moldvay/Mentzer Basic D&D,  Bushido, Star Frontiers, Boot Hill, Gamma World, Chill, Empire of the Petal Throne, Arduin, The Fantasy Trip, Marvel Superheroes, Original Champions, Call of Cthuhlu, Chivalry & Sorcery, Mechwarrior 1st Edition, Original Hackmaster, Metamorphosis Alpha, Top Secret, and The Morrow Project

We also play and support modern “retroclones” or “simulacra” of these games, such as:

OSRIC, BFRPG, Castles & Crusades, Labyrinth Lord, Mutant Future, Swords & Wizardry, Spellcraft & Swordplay, GORE, Searchers of the Unknown (along with all its derivations!), DUNGEON SQUAD!, and X-plorers

In a chronological sense, we support games mostly released in the 1970s and earlier 1980s (and the modern games that directly simulate/clone/emulate them). When we get to games in the 1990s, such as AD&D 2nd edition, things get blurred and murky. However, WE’RE NOT THE OLD SCHOOL POLICE—while we might not play or actively support the 1990s/2e and later games, if you want to play them, by all means, go have fun! It’s just not our particular sweet spot.

What exactly is an “original” game?

It’s a game that is no longer printed or actively updated, like the original 1974 version of Dungeons & Dragons, Gamma World, Arduin or Boot Hill. For those games still in print, it’s usually the “first” version of the game.
Hey! Not all those games you listed above are out-of-print!
We support a lot of games. Some games are still in print today without having really changed or abandoned their old-school roots! For example: Call of Cthulhu, or Tunnels & Trolls. We also support the newer “retroclones” or “simulacra” games that directly clone/emulate/imitate the original, out-of-print games.


5 Responses

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  1. mthomas768 said, on January 14, 2010 at 2:38 am

    I’m very glad to see things coming back to life here. Though I’m by no means an Old School purist, my roots are firmly planted in an awful lot of the games you list here. Cheers!

  2. Andreas Davour said, on January 14, 2010 at 9:17 am

    I really take issue with the suggestion that T&T should have abandoned its old school roots. The newest edition of the game might have the editing quality of a modern game, but the game mechanic and the GM suggestions are as old school as it gets. That is, they are like they were in 1975 which should be old school enough.

    • chgowiz said, on January 14, 2010 at 12:01 pm

      Andreas – the text says:

      Some games are still in print today without having really changed or abandoned their old-school roots! For example: Call of Cthulhu, or Tunnels & Trolls.

      We agree with you – T&T has retained it’s basic old school qualities since it was in 1975.

  3. Andreas Davour said, on January 14, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    Hmm. Have that text changed since I read it this morning? I should probably avoid posting anything before I’ve been awake 6h or so…

    Do you believe me if I say that there was a section which said T&T had abandoned its roots? Jikes. Sometimes I complain when I get a comment from someone who didn’t read what I posted…

    Have I made a fool enough of myself for this week now?

  4. akesher said, on January 14, 2010 at 8:01 pm

    Hey, Andreas—no harm, no foul!

    Thanks for taking the time to respond, bleary-eyed or not… 🙂

    And you know, T&T probably deserves mention for being, as far as I know, the only old school game that has an unbroken history. Vive la St. Andre!

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