Our debt to the Wizard of Chicago

Posted in Uncategorized by akesher on May 5, 2010

So, I’ve been waiting to write this sorta naively hoping Mike would change his mind, put up his blog, and keep going like he hadn’t been gone. Looks like that ain’t gonna happen, so all I can say is, chgowiz, sorry I didn’t write this sooner.

Mike’s a passionate guy, a straight-shooter, and TARGA, not to mention the OSR in general, couldn’t have asked for a better champion. He helped save us from inertia, built our presence on the Web, freely gave up copious amounts of time to spread the word, and spearheaded our first ever Charity Auction to benefit the Gygax Family Memorial Fund.  His blog was read by good-lord-who-knows how many people, and you could always count on a thoughtful post, a spirited discussion, or a new and intriguing project.

I can’t pretend to understand all his reasons for cutting loose from the environs, but I can respect that he understands it. It’s also hard to write this thank-you post without it sounding at least a bit like a eulogy, but that it most definitely is not.

Mike, we know you’re still out there. Thanks for your time, optimism, and creativity, and I’m still hopeful to see you across the gaming table some day!

Aaron Kesher

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More ITGW Goodness

Posted in OSR News, Uncategorized by Victor Raymond on April 6, 2010

Here’s Rafael from Brazil: “March 27 we had our ITGW game. Unfortunately, just 3 people showed up, but lots of players from other states gave us good feedback on the event, as how they thought it was a great idea and such.

“I DMed ‘The Goblin’s Lair- The Red Hand Trail’, a adventure for beginners using the ‘New! Classic Dungeons & Dragons‘ black box game, with pre gen characters, miniatures and some tiles. All to introduce 2 friends to their first RPG game ever, and the other one to the ‘true way of gaming.’

“I started talking about what was a RPG, then explained the basics and then began the game. It started very well, as the characters (a dwarf, a wizard and a elf, all 2nd level) got hired to eliminate the goblin menace that threatened the village. They explored a little, but decided to go AGAINST their own thoughts and went to a blocked path. So, they used force and got the rocks away (one of the new players even said ‘wow, the goblins would never had the strength to put those rocks here!.’ (Editor’s Note: that might’ve been a sign that perhaps that wasn’t the smartest idea….)

“The thing is that they released a wight, and that was the end of the adventure: everyone was slain by the 4** HD monster. A hour and a half game full of laughs and good moments! In the end, I gave out and explained the ‘quick primer’ guide, translated by me, and got the points where they ‘failed’, like not protecting the mage, not trying to ‘finish’ the cave and such. The payer who had ealier experiences with 3.x and 4 ed said ‘oh, that was great! my DM never puts a challenge (monster) stronger than the players.’

Now as I´ve wrote the experience in our site, other people can see how much fun it was and maybe next year, they could do the same!

link (in portuguese):http://www.vorpal.com.br/2010/03/31/red-hand-trail-meu-jogo-na-itgw/

Tyler in Vermont posted about this in comments to the last post, but here’s a bit more for everyone to see:

Labyrinth Lord: Downward to Adventure!
Left to right: Lasoleg the Elf, Gringo the Halfling, Bob the Cleric and Pope the Dwarf. Fittingly, Dingus the Thief cannot be seen.
For International Traditional Gaming Week, I rounded up some players to delve into Castle of the Mad Archmage using the Labyrinth Lord rules. For most of the people at the table, it was their first time with an old school ruleset, including myself. On their way to explore Castle Greyhawk for fame and fortune, Lasoleg the elf, Gringo the halfling, Bob the cleric, Dingus the thief and Pope the dwarf found themselves abruptly tumbling down into unexplored depths when a hidden quicksand pit deposited them on the outskirts of a sprawling underground complex.” (More adventuring goodness on his blog.)

Thanks to everyone who made ITGW a success this Spring!

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This Week in the OSR

Posted in Uncategorized by Victor Raymond on March 27, 2010

We’re taking a break as we decide what is the best way to improve the “This Week in the OSR” column.

Meanwhile, there will be TARGA representation at North Texas RPG Con and GenCon Indy! Updates about this spring’s ITRW will be up shortly.

We also have a number of interesting projects underway, soon to be launched. Thank you to everyone who provided feedback this past week – we appreciate your interest and support!

Gary Con!

Posted in Uncategorized by Victor Raymond on March 22, 2010

On behalf of TARGA, I made the trip to Lake Geneva to Gary Con to present a check for $350 to Luke Gygax for the Gygax Family Memorial Fund. This was an amazing opportunity to help support Gary Con, and further TARGA’s stated purpose “to assist in promoting traditional gaming, recruiting new players into the fold, and providing organizational support for judges.” If this ensures that there is a Gary Con 3 next year, then we are definitely doing our job.

Here are some photos from the event; I had an absolutely wonderful time, and look forward to being there next year. Thanks to everyone who helped make this donation happen, including Gene R. for the photos, and specifically Michael Shorten, without whom this would not have taken place.

(I’m standing on the left, with the presentation check, and Luke Gygax is on the right in the black long-sleeve Gary Con T-shirt)

Check presentation 1 of 3

Check presentation 2 of 3

Check presentation 3 of 3

Luke Gygax presenting medallion to Tom Wham

Luke Gygax presenting medallion to Bill Hoyer

Luke Gygax presenting medallion to Jeff Easley

Recent OSR Controversy

Posted in Uncategorized by Victor Raymond on March 21, 2010

We would like to take a moment to recognize that a great deal of discussion has been generated over the recent TARGA news post, specifically about “I Hit It With My Axe” – Zak’s new project which debuted on The Escapist. It has engendered a lot of debate, which is generally a good thing, and no small amount of hurt feelings, which we regret.

We are interested in what you think about this topic – do you feel that concern about adult issues is warranted? Conversely, is censorship an issue here? With so much going on in the OSR, what should we pay attention to – and how do we figure that out? Share your thoughts and feelings – and in a polite and respectful manner, please. Thanks!

Auction success and International Traditional Gaming Week comes soon!

Posted in Uncategorized by Michael "Chgowiz" on March 18, 2010

Wow. Simply wow. You guys rocked hard and helped TARGA to collect $350 in the Pledge an Auction drive to donate to GaryCon/Gygax Family Memorial. With TARGA’s mission being “putting butts in chairs at traditional roleplaying games”, our support of GaryCon just all fits right in and it’s great to see us able to help. I don’t know if $350 is a drop in a bucket or a big help, but I certain hope to see a GaryCon 2011 and I hope our contribution goes a long way to making it happen. Keeping Gary’s legacy of playing games and having fun is very important to us.

Most importantly, those of you who contributed items, bid on items and won, you guys made this happen so THANK YOU VERY MUCH! I can’t say that enough.

GaryCon kicks off tomorrow and it should be a great time! We hope to hear some great game recaps. GaryCon also marks the kickoff of TARGA’s International Traditional Gaming Week! It is just sheer coolness that we have 3 B2-Keep on the Borderland adventures going: I’m (Chgowiz) running a 12 hour Holmes/B2 marathon, Norman of TrollandFlame blog is running B2 and so is Bat of AncientVaults. It would be neat if we could get some Gamma World, Metamorphosis Alpha, Tunnels & Trolls, Classic Traveller or just some regular games listed, but we’re working on that. Small steps, grasshopper, small steps.

Last week of TARGA Pledge an Auction for Garycon

Posted in Uncategorized by Michael "Chgowiz" on March 10, 2010

With 5 days left in the auction drive for GaryCon, we have collected over $300 (with the current auction at a $4.95 bid price) and I personally could not be prouder of all those involved. I really hope that you can get in any final items – we will be writing the check to the Gygax Family Memorial shortly before GaryCon so the donation button will stay up till then.

Thanks and happy bidding/auctioning!

Requiescat in pace

Posted in Uncategorized by Michael "Chgowiz" on March 4, 2010

“ONCE UPON A TIME, long, long ago there was a little group known as the Castle and Crusade Society. Their fantasy rules were published, and to this writer’s knowledge, brought about much of the current interest in fantasy wargaming.

But those whose imaginations know no bounds will find that these rules are the answer to their prayers. With this last bit of advice we invite you to read on and enjoy a “world” where the fantastic is fact and magic really works!

– Men & Magic (D&D, Vol 1, 1974)
– E. Gary Gygax (July 27, 1938 – March 4, 2008)

Thank you, Gary. We miss you and we game on in the worlds that you opened the door to.

TARGA Pledge-An-Auction drive update (3/3)

Posted in Uncategorized by Michael "Chgowiz" on March 3, 2010

With just twelve days left, I’m proud to announce that we hit our $300 goal! We will be able to give GaryCon/Gygax Family Memorial a significant donation towards future conventions and (assuming things go well) the Gygax memorial.

Thank you to everyone who’s donated an item or money, so far… but we have some time left! I know I have one more item donated by the ever-cool Jeff Rients to auction, and I’ve been told of at least one more item from our ever-helpful Victor Raymond. If you want to stand up and help us out, please do so. I’ll auction the darn item for ya, as long as you ship it out… come join us!

TARGA Pledge an Auction drive update

Posted in Uncategorized by Michael "Chgowiz" on February 24, 2010

With just under three weeks left till the end of our Pledge-An-Auction fundraiser (March 15th), TARGA has to date collected over $260 for the Gygax Family Memorial and GaryCon. We’ve had (and have) some great items up for auction, including:

  • Classic Traveller books and box sets
  • Rare fanzines (Dungeoneer #2)
  • Modern OSR publications (LotFP bundle)
  • Rare RPGs (Bunnies & Burrows – still taking bids!)

If I had a personal goal to set, I would have said $300 or $400 dollars – it looks like we might be able to make that $300 mark. That’s fantastic!

If you have any old school items you’d like to auction off and give to a good cause – the 2010 GaryCon and future GaryCons and possibly the Gygax statue, please – please – please, we’d really like you to donate the proceeds. The GaryCon list of guests is a who’s-who of old school TSR alumus and people who enjoy old school, traditional gaming. There will be a wide variety of games there, including sci-fi, board games and of course D&D.

I know that auction-wise, we have a near mint copy of the reprint of S2 on deck… it would be great to get more up there.

For those of you who’ve donated so far, or bid and contributed, thank you!