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Friday, 14 July 2017

Actually, There may be a 4th Wave OSR After All; It's Just not Venger's

Infrequent or first-time readers might not have any idea about what the title of this blog refers to.  But you loyal frequent readers already know it's going to have to do with my earlier blog of a few days back, where I presented a rebuttal to Venger Satanis' claim that there was a "4th Wave of the OSR", and that this 'wave' consisted basically of people who made any game they liked and called it OSR.

That's obvious nonsense, but then something got me thinking. And that something is the book I'm currently working on a review for: "These Stars are Ours!", a setting book for something called the "Cepheus Engine".

If you weren't aware, the Cepheus Engine is basically a retro-clone of Traveller.

While D&D fanatics have been generating all kinds of amazing OSR stuff, there's been a whole movement of making new versions of various other games, or new settings for other games.

So maybe there's been a 4th Wave OSR for a while now: made up of games that do for other old-school games what the rest of the OSR does for D&D.

At least, that's certainly a better claim than any other attempted definition.


Currently Smoking: Lorenzetti Oversize + H&H's Chestnut


  1. I am happy that the book I sent to you for review provided insights beyond its own scope. :-)

  2. New wave, old wave. It is a continuous wave. It's called design with all of its pitfalls, histories and ridiculous assertions of prime, secondary, preeminent, cutting edge, my school, your school, no school, individual, group, in for a moment, out the next, back again, static, and round-about. Within the scope and relevant history of design the OSR is a flea on the elephant's ass and takes itself way too seriously like Wall Street gurus and, then, incidentally, not serious enough. When someone spouts, wallah! I have broken Arneson's base conceptual model, that's when yours truly will give a hoot and blink. Otherwise business as usual in wonderland where measuring sticks for design are very tiny indeed.

  3. I'm not sure "4th Wave" is the right expression. Some non-D&D clones are already quite old.

  4. My 4th wave OSR claim is legitimate. Crimson Dragon Slayer, Alpha Blue, and The Outer Presence attempt to recreate the old school feel that many traditional RPGs from the 70's and 80's originated back in the day.

    1. "Old school feel" and "OSR" are two different things.
      That said, the actual mechanics of your setting feel much more like things that were popular in the early 1990s, than in the 70s or 80s.
      The feel of your SETTING may be 70s/80s, but the mechanics don't match.