Wednesday, August 25, 2010

So much for the hobbyists...

From Frog God's website (and hat tip to Sean at Bite the Bulette for pointing this out):
We are not the guys who are going to offer bargain basement junk for a quick buck. We won't sell you hand drawn maps and clip art laid out by amateurs and posted up on Lulu.com as a cheap book that you look at and discard.
Wow.

That just makes me sad, considering that the original Swords & Wizardry Core Rules were filled with "hand drawn maps" and "clip art laid out by amateurs" - I was one of those amateur artists, as were a lot of other people that Frog Gods just took a dump on. I mean, Fight On winning Lulu contests - Knockspell was done by volunteers up until the last issue, I believe.

I had high hopes for Swords & Wizardry moving (yet again) but this gives me serious pause. Man, I wish Matt and Black Blade well, but if that's the attitude of Frog Gods, I'll stick with my Core Rules hardback made by amateurs when the love was for the game, not for one's damn fucking Froggy ego. We'll have to see how this plays out.

ETA: Made a screenshot of the page in case the inevitable re-write and "who us?" comes.

85 comments:

The Acrobatic Flea said...

Just can't fathom what they were thinking!

Didn't it dawn on them that they were dumping on their core, potential customer base?

Oh well...

BlUsKrEEm said...

So much for market research

Joseph said...

Holy crap...

Anonymous said...

"We are the guys who are going to offer expensive junk for a quick buck. We will sell you CAD drawn maps and art laid out by professionals and bound up in hardback as an expensive book that you look at and want to discard. But you don't because you paid too much for it."

Brutorz Bill said...

........

ChicagoWiz said...

@Anonymous - you win the Internets today, good sir!

Yes, the "professionals" are here to save us from our DIY-selves. (end sarcasm)

Josh said...

I commented on this at the main S&W site so I won't repeat that. I will say that Frog God's comments do seem out of line especially given the history of S&W.

That said, I think we need to step back and calmly explain out position to Matt and Frog God and hope for the best. We don't need another dust up.

N. Wright said...

Classy. Does Frog God Games realize that without people producing "cheap, disposable clip art filled books" that there would be no OSR?

Well, fuck 'em. I need another high-gloss, "professionally made" rulebook about as much I need a hole in my damn skull.

Fandomaniac said...

I'm right there with you. I'm very disappointed by this statement and attitude. Btw, I love the original artwork!

Alan said...

Step 1 - Open mouth
Step 2 - Insert foot
Step 3 - insert OTHER foot
Step 4 - ???
Step 5 - Profit!

Badmike said...

I won't be punishing Matt Finch for a badly worded "rah rah" press release that I'm sure he didn't see before it was posted. Put away the pitchforks, guys.

More than anything, these guys are in need of someone that can write a non-flammable press release, can't be that difficult....

ChicagoWiz said...

@BadMike - agreed. Matt's gotta be feeling a slight hangover right now, waking up next to the woman he thought was a 10 and seeing the neighborhood lined up outside ticked off from her bad behavior. I think this reflects on Frog, not on Matt. He's tryin' to keep making a buck on what is probably a shrinking revenue stream on S&W.

marjasall said...

I've never heard of them (Frog God). Should I know who they are?

ze bulette said...

couldn't have said it better than BadMike, and hat tip to Sean @ Bite the Bulette just for the record, not to be confused with that other clown... ;)

bighara said...

I think I get what they were TRYING to say (maybe), but it was a terrible way to say it.

Frankly, beyond my admiration for Mr. Finch's insights on old-school gaming, I have very little interest in the move. I have my core S&W that I occasionally read through and that's all I've needed. As one of those "not-fully professional" (i.e. I don't do it for a living) publishers, I'm too busy trying to get my products to look decent at a fair price to get too worked up about it.

Zachary The First said...

Ugh. Was going to leave comment, ended up an entire blog article instead...

Al said...

lol - this is a textbook case of "taken out of context" - Frog God has been up and running for months now - for the 3.5/Pathfinder crowd - so this is more a comment on the glut of cheap d20/3.5 stuff out there, hence the rest of Bill's statement that everyone's omitting: "We won't fill your players coffers with millions of gold pieces and powerful magic items either, at least not without great efforts. Our encounters won't be "balanced" to make sure no one dies, and a 3rd level monster may or may not have 50.2 gp (like its supposed to in certain rule books). Death will be frequent, but fair, and players who fail to use their heads will surely lose them."

Bill's a DIY OD&D/S&W gamer running the Wilderlands, and an obvious fan of the old-school community.

ChicagoWiz said...

@Al - the whole thing reads like a constant snub, I think the context is more than appropriate. It might be OK to take a crap on the old 3e/OGL glut and the DIY'ers on lulu for some - but as one of those DIY'ers, I think it's a shitty thing to say and it really doesn't impress me or serve for Bill's supposed bona-fides.

Erin said...

I thought the same thing as ChicagoWiz when I read this. I appreciate Al's full context, but however you slice it, I can't imagine the OSR crowd interpreting this in any positive way.

The Dungeoneering Dad said...

Bill Webb has stated more than once he plays S&W, so this whole situation is rather ironic. Leaves me scratching my head.

Al said...

@Chgowiz - Its never a bad idea to try and *not* interpret things in the worst possible light - it'd be nice to keep the old-school community known for its kick ass creativity rather than for its seemingly constant state of outrage over every little perceived insult ;)

Its not like we're a bunch of 13 year old ballerinas here for fux sake :)

ChicagoWiz said...

@Al - it's also not a bad idea to call someone on their bullshit attitude and remind them that the cash they're about to make is due to the hard work that those "amateurs" performed. Pride in one's work, yannow. That same "kick ass creativity" is what made S&W so palatable to the money sharks so they can try and get a few more bucks from the suckers. The cheerleaders don't like it when the suckers bite back.

Zachary The First said...

Hey, they might be hardcore S&W players, and they might make a great product. But it doesn’t hurt to call them on the BS. That line about “amateurs” and the hand-drawn maps and clip-art cuts to the quick for a lot of the potential audience. You can’t really do too charitable a reading on that, IMO. At best, it’s a foot-in-mouth moment.

Will Douglas said...

Doesn't matter WHO they were aiming at. Cutting somebody else down is just no way to raise yourself up. That should be basic marketing.

I blame the election season which is already making me dread turning on the tv or the radio...

ChicagoWiz said...

I blame the election season which is already making me dread turning on the tv or the radio...

There's an election season? I thought the yammering on Faux News and MSLiberalNBC was just the norm...

Anonymous said...

Wow you people who read this blog are a bunch of tools.

ChicagoWiz said...

@Anonymous - and that would make you... ?

Wayne Rossi said...

This bothers me not so much because it's a foot in mouth thing, as because I am in this for precisely the opposite. I want things that are amateur, I want PDFs mocked up and thrown on Lulu.com. Trying to make it a point of honor that you aren't that is BS and nothing more. The OSR is a movement that has embraced the ethic of the early years of the hobby, and to be honest I don't want to see more "professional" products. I want labors of love.

Anonymous said...

Do you honestly think they meant to insult everyone? I'm sure they didn't mean "junk" to be as harsh as it came across, and were just saying "here's what we offer" not "wow, do those other idiots suck!"

Necromancer was always awesome, and is probably the only "big time" publisher that really truly *got* how to make new modules that actually felt like the old classics, without rehashing existing modules. And their black and white illustrations were always stellar and captured the mood and look of a dungeon adventure perfectly. The only flaw was they never ditched the d20 rules!

If Frog God delivers stuff like Necromancer did but compatible with S&W, I cannot wait to see it, and they have every right to be proud of it, and tell us what we are getting for our money. The word choice was somewhat unfortunate, but good lord, must we have another outrage and take the comment in the worst possible way? Hey, let's just spin it as negatively as possible and work everyone up into a nerd rage, shall we? *sighs*

ChicagoWiz said...

I honestly think they could give a rat's ass less about the hobbyists - after all, they only lost maybe $5 or $10. Then again, who cares, right... it's just hobbyists and people who took pride in what they did and are just as quickly tossed aside.

Yes, let's all line up with money in hand... after all, the newer/shiny stuff is so much better.

Sorry, ain't drinkin' that Kool-Aid. Maybe an apology would go a long way to fixing it, but it's still a shitty thing to say. Bragging about how good you are is one thing. Dumping on the amateurs is another. You think that's OK, fine. I don't.

BTW, come out with your real name anonymous...

Randall said...

This has really upset me. Perhaps it is just badly worded marketing hype as some say, but it still shows an underlying "amateurs aren't needed in gaming, leave everything to the pros" attitude that I personally abhor in the gaming industry. Considering that "old school" is all about reviving DIY amateur stuff, I will not be buying any Frog God Games product nor will I recommend it to others.

ChicagoWiz said...

And while we're talking about Necromancer Games, lest we forget how Clark and Necromancer felt about the OSR and OSRIC prior:

http://necromancergames.yuku.com/topic/9969?page=4

"ORCUS" (aka Clark) - "OSRIC is totally illegal and I wont be associated with it in any way. Please dont bother to defend it by saying they havent been sued. It is illegal and totally unethical. I refuse to be a part of it. "

So yes, this spin is just SO NEGATIVE without basis... because Necromancer just loved the DIY/OSR scene.

John Miskimen said...

The question is, why does Frog God feel the need to disrespect others to make themselves seem more professional or otherwise superior? There seems to be a hole in this line of thinking.

JM.

Justin Alexander said...

I'd like to sell you a can of Skin Thickener 2000(TM).

You're freaking out over someone saying "we aren't going to sell you bargain basement junk".

If you believe that your work was, in fact, bargain basement junk, then you have cause to be offended. If you think that you were producing something that was actually worth paying money for, then you don't.

ChicagoWiz said...

@Justin - and I'd like to sell you a bottle of perspective. I just commented to LotFP:

"S&W was the RPG of the little guy and it feels like it was just traded up and we can go pound sand... or rather go flocking to FGG with dollars in hand.

Fuck that. Ain't gettin' a dollar from me with that attitude. Let's see if they keep supporting the hobbyists like Matt and MG did in the past."

Anonymous said...

I wanted to point out that the post being commented on is at least 2 months old and is in FGG'S "About us section" and obvious to me that it is not pointing fingers or calling anyone specifically out. If people feel threatened by this mission statement from FGG then possibly they have cause to be worried.It has nothing to do with the recent announcement of FGG releasing Swords and Wizardry.

Secondly Clark Peterson is not Affiliated with FGG.

And if you were to go to the Necromancer Forums you would find many posts Praising old school gaming, the posters their are frothing at the mouth for old school gaming materials. I think this who thing has been taken well out of context and people should obviously do their own research and decide for themselves the postings of a lone individual.

ChicagoWiz said...

@Anon - said posts were by NG represetatives? Not that I can see.

How people position themselves says a lot. If these are the professionals, their message sucks - a DIY'er is a DIY'er.

BTW, you can start using your real name now. The whole anonymous thing is just too pussy-fied.

Wayne Rossi said...

Justin: It's not a question of thick skin, for me at least it's a question of what we want. I want stuff that's by hobbyists and for hobbyists. It's a beautiful thing what some guys have managed to put out so far and I think trying to say "Now we've got REAL PROFESSIONALS involved" is totally missing the point. I don't care what REAL PROFESSIONALS come up with, I want cool material from other hobbyists to use in my hobby.

tsathogga said...

Wow guys--so much infighting. The only real intention was to bring more stuff to the market. Heck; I am pricing modules at <$5 in pdf--with great art. I play S&W; that's why Matt and I teamed up.

I don't think anyone who knows me thinks for a second I would dump on grognard's....heck I am one. If I write crappy ad copy, shoot me...

Anyone who thinks I am making a bundle of cash at this should switch paychecks. I do this because I love the game. Someone said hobbyists for hobbyists...did anyone check out my list of writers? All gamers folks. Most of the material is from my or someone else's campaign.

Tell you what. Ping me with what you would like to see...business or content. Let me know if we are too expensive. I do listen to the audience...ask anyone who knows me and you will find out. That being said, artists and writers make better stuff when they get paid.

I am quite sincere about feedback. email is necromancergames@yahoo.com.

keep rolling dice:)

Bill Webb

ChicagoWiz said...

What I would like to see... is what you haven't given. An apology.

Lost opportunity, that.

John Miskimen said...

2 Months ... ancient history, huh?
Gold mined a year ago is no less valuable for being newly minted, wouldn't you say?

Those who tout "They're just raising the bar" are ignoring the fact that LotFP-WFRPG recently did raise the bar without disrespecting anyone.

tsathogga said...

Ok, as requested; I apologize for any offense...certainly not my intention. If it was, I would not be posting this. Buy books, don't buy books, its up to you. I admit my ad copy is often...well, typical non-conversational adcopy--

specifically; Nwright--yes; I do realize that the home made stuff got the game back; heck, I have published home made stuff (see the maps in our early books, for example). My goal is to develop a broader audience before all of us olld geezers keel over.

So yes, I am sorry if I offended...I certainly did not mean to be a jerk.

Wayne Rossi said...

Those who tout "They're just raising the bar" are ignoring the fact that LotFP-WFRPG recently did raise the bar without disrespecting anyone.

Huh? Jim Raggi pissed a LOT of people off, or don't you remember the whole "OSR better than TSR" kerfluffle?

John Miskimen said...

All I've seen on these blogs for the last couple of weeks is pretty much unified praise for the man's boxed set, which is all I'm talking about.

tsathogga said...

Yup--I wrote ad copy just as bad 2 months ago.

A Paladin In Citadel said...

"Ok, as requested; I apologize for any offense...certainly not my intention. If it was, I would not be posting this. Buy books, don't buy books, its up to you. I admit my ad copy is often...well, typical non-conversational adcopy--"

Looking forward to seeing and buying the great products coming out of Frog God Games. Thanks for being a class act.

Doc Grognard said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Josh said...

I've had enough. I'm gonna go read Playing D&D with Pornstars...

tsathogga said...

@Josh--lol sign me up

tsathogga said...

Couple last points__

1. Clark is not involved
2. Legal vetted S&W as within the OGL
3. I have played OSR for the last 28 years...never really bought into anything at my home table after Gods Demigods and Heroes, well, except Judges Guild

Welleran said...

I'll buy some Froggy stuff...if it lives up to the hype!

Matt Finch said...

Working with FGG actually puts us in a much more powerful position to support both DIY gaming and to support direct at-the-table gaming. I'll probably rouse myself to write more about this in depth on my blog or somewhere, but here are the thoughts that have been kicking around recently.

1) The old school conventions, GaryCon and North Texas, seem to me to be a developing core for getting people together. I've already been talking to BadMike (a month ago, I think) about what FGG can do to support the North Texas RPGCon.

2) Participation of old school gaming at non-old school conventions - building a foothold. I think it goes without saying that affiliation with a big publisher will give us a huge leap in terms of getting old school gaming interest at modern cons. There will be much more table presence. I don't yet have a good plan for how to take advantage of that opportunity, but if anyone has good ideas, get in touch with me.
3) There will still be the ability to do a compatibility statement for S&W even with the Complete Rules. Plus, anyone who is doing a compatible product will be offering that to a larger market, and that means people have more incentive to write.
4) I can't think of what 4 was going to be, but I bet it was good. Hopefully I will remember it and I'll include it in some DIY/S&W manifesto somewhere.

Anyway, I wouldn't be working with Bill if he weren't committed to the DIY - hobby gamer - creative spark approach I've always been doing. It's not like I got bought out or anything, I just don't have to slave ineffectively over layout or spend way too long trying to draw an adventurer's hands in an illustration any more. I can spend much more time writing, now.

ChicagoWiz said...

@Bill - Glad to hear it from the horse's mouth. Color me skeptical, but open to that you are the Real Deal. Time will tell.

Look, I'm really unhappy about it all because it smells and feels like S&W is being taken from us. Maybe it's the way it rolled, maybe it's the attitude and maybe it's just sadness because it feels like we're (hobbyists) being taken out of the loop. I hope not, but I'm skeptical and I'm cautious because the history of this industry is not in our favor of this happening well. There are surprises - to whit the OGL, but more than not, we see the TSR v. fans approach.

I personally have a lot of emotional coin involved in S&W. It's the first time I ever felt like part of something that was created that ended up cool, but this all feels like the parents just came and took the cool toys away. So I'll cop to having an emotional reaction coupled with some history from your progenitor coupled with an unease over how this is rolling.

You've got a lot of people watching you hoping you don't roll a 1.

ChicagoWiz said...

@Doc - now that's just a dick move - writing all that smack, then deleting the comment when you knew I would get it. Keyboard commando... here, let me help you:


Doc Grognard has left a new comment on your post "So much for the hobbyists...":

One can easily be amateur and home brewed and still not just produce crap for a quick buck; and conversely, crap isn't ennobled by being labeled amateur. The current market for both Pathfinder and D20, and quite honestly 'real' D&D is suffering from a surfeit of crap, and it doesn't help the hobby as a whole. It occurred in the "olden Days", too, the difference was, there was less opportunity to make some money by putting out a hasty slipshod piece of crap, nor was there a venue like LuLu or DrivethroughRPG to distribute it.

So, Sorry Chigwiz et al, you are wrong, both about the post, the earlier posting, and the attitude you think you see. Crap is crap, and if you don't see it in the market, you're either lucky or sheltered; Put the quote in the context of what it was aimed at rather than your own personal part of the hobby, and back off; or alternately, keep on and do as much damage to the product and companies and producers that your apparent sense of entitlement requires.

If you want apologies from people, you may want to think about starting the ball rolling by apologizing, or at least acknowleging your (I hope unintentional) out of context and incorrect reporting of the situation.

UPDATE: Wow, he apologized. Very cool & classy. So Chig, gonna man up and apologize for your part in all this ? How bout at least acknowlege it ?


Here you go. There was absolutely fucking nothing incorrect about it - time will tell if FGG does really give a flying fuck about the hobbyist. I'm still skeptical, but we'll see. I'm glad Bill's going to engage us and I hope he takes his "ad copy" down or changes it to reflect the values he says they have.

And dude, next time, have the balls to leave your shit up.

tsathogga said...

bah; a year from now we will all be friends; you guys will forgive me for sounding like a jerk, and I think most will be happy w/ what Matt and I do:)

Zachary The First said...

@Bill: Thanks for the apology! Handshakes all aroubd, I hope.

Hodgwick Coinfoot said...

Just chiming in after reading the post and the comments. I think that as badly as some might read into Tsothagga's quote, people should have some patience and give FGG a chance to prove themselves.

I've had some direct contact with Bill through email recently and he's been a gentleman and a scholar at every turn. As somebody who's taken a casual interest in the OSR for a while now, this move is getting me (a 22 year old who cut his teeth on 'modern' games) to go all in on S&W, and I'm really looking forward to it.

Come November, I'll be putting my Pathfinder campaign on hold to try out a copy of the new S&W rules, whether my players like it or not.

Let me reiterate that Bill has been awesome in my experiences with him, so give him a chance to make up for that quote- I put my money that this change will be beneficial for all the fans of the game.

Zzarchov said...

I am going to go say something that is going to get me flamed. I liked the original post, and do think that you shouldn't sell "bargain basement crap".

Maybe its just me, but the DIY scene can produce things that include hand drawn maps etc and its AWESOME.

If you SELL people hand drawn maps and work full of typos, that bugs me and you should be considered "bargain basement crap". I produce an RPG featuring typos, public domain art etc. I don't feel bad because ITS FREE. If I charged people for it I would be ashamed.

The best part of the DIY spirit in my books has always been sharing your ideas and creations with others, a great melting pot. When it comes to commercial endeavors, I expect quality and gloss. If you invite me to dinner I'll be more than thrilled to mow down on some overdone pasta and overcooked porkchops. If I go to a restraunt it better be worth the money.

Chasity said...

Bill ran what was, as far as I know, the only S&W game at PaizoCon this year. It was great and I only caught the tail end. And FGG is about as DIYer as you can get and still be a publishing company. There's no money in it but it's fun to do, and when the opportunity came up to support S&W with it, Bill jumped at the chance. So he's as legit as you can get on this stuff.

That said, FGG certainly isn't taking the S&W away from anyone, it's just going to put out some stuff hopefully in a larger circles and get it some more mass exposure. All DIYers are just as welcome as before. No changing of the guard here, just a new advocate for the game.

Yeah, I know it says it says, "Chasity says..." :-/

Greg V.

Suicidepuppet said...

It was inappropriate. I don't think they quite grasp the audience they will soon be playing to. The slick approach is covered by the majors in the industry (which are failing)and the hobby's strength right now are folks who are more concerned with having fun and not with $60 fancy paper publications. The economy is not helping the situation and I have returned to table top gaming as a result of the OSR. I guess us 'cheap junk' folks will just have to continue having fun. It's just so sad isn't it :).Oh well, good luck to them and here's to them finding their footing soon for the sake of the fans of the system.

Scott said...

Just speaking for me personally, there's some level of "scene pass" for anyone involved in the scene at the grassroots level. I don't mind paying roughly the same amount of money for a more-or-less DIY CD release by a local band made up of people I know as I would, say, a new Arcade Fire album. And I don't expect the same production values.

Some of the dollars I'm spending on products by members of my local scene are effectively earmarked as "support kindred spirits" dollars, and the sense of connection to the people making it compensates for the fact that they're not (in any scene I've ever been around) working with the same production values as "the big boys."

Obviously, dollars have no conscience, and people have every right to decide they expect equal value for whatever money they spend. But other people place a premium on supporting other folks who seem to share the same values and with whom they feel some sense of connection.

Off-topic (maybe), but has Bite the Bulette disappeared???

Akrasia said...

As is clear now (I hope), the comment in question was not made towards the 'DIY crowd supporting S&W'.

FGG has been around for a few months producing d20 material for 3e/Pathfinder. The comment that caused this brouhaha has to do with that material, viz., the loads of d20 rubbish floating around.

It is sad the way that so many people were not willing to give either Matt Finch or Bill Webb the benefit of the doubt.

Why the enthusiasm to assume the absolute worst? At the very least, it seems both polite and sensible to wait for more information before rushing to a negative conclusion.

Doc Grognard said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Doc Grognard said...

Chig - I deleted the above to rephrase it, fear not:


@Doc - now that's just a dick move - writing all that smack, then deleting the comment when you knew I would get it. Keyboard commando... here, let me help you:


Actually, I decided after posting it, very soon after posting it, that I was being a pissy knee jerky bitch, and taking out a shitty day on someone I didn't know. Plus, I had already made the non-pissy comments elsewhere. So, rather than stir up shit just to pump up my own sense of entitlement and generally keep the drama queens onstage, I decided to take it down; obviously, it didn't work. Sorry about not pissing in your cereal bowl, I guess, but us keyboard commandoes are like that.

BTW, Congratulations on acknowledging his apology. Any chance of you taking down your misattributed quote about OSRIC?


And dude, next time, have the balls to leave your shit up.

I guess if having balls means not being able to man up and fix a mistake I made, I'm fine without 'em.rinterie

Saeblundr said...

My shelf is almost solely S&W (Chgowiz Quickstart being prime piece, front and center).
The comment on FFG is very pointed, and i cant see how anyone can see it as different, and i dont have a personal association with the works being criticized... and i cant really see how it can be anything other than that, unnecessarily pointed criticism.

Bizzare... it all seems bizzare...

ancientvaults said...

Sheesh! 65 posts and going strong! I hope that this goes in the right direction and I don't see anyone trying to break us any more than we do ourselves. It would be bad business to alienate the clientele. Normally/usually/mostly I side with ChigagoWiz, but I believe that maybe good things will come of this. I just ask that the Frog God remembers that the look is part of what makes it oldschool.

Gurdy said...

ChicagoWiz said: "Look, I'm really unhappy about it all because it smells and feels like S&W is being taken from us. Maybe it's the way it rolled, maybe it's the attitude and maybe it's just sadness because it feels like we're (hobbyists) being taken out of the loop."

Stop worrying about it. If TSR, WotC, and Hasbro couldn't take OD&D and AD&D away from us hobbyist types, nothing can. If all of our S&W pdfs and hardcopies instantly vanished, and all mention and material was expunged from the the web, we'd have the other retroclones, the original versions of the game, and someone would immediately start authoring something new to fill the void.

Besides, he's clearly kicking other people in the nuts, not the old school crowd.

Take it easy man, this isn't worth another meltdown.

ChicagoWiz said...

@Scott - you've got the right of it. When the band goes big time, something changes in the transaction. It always does. Same here. We're not going to have the S&W of old.

@Gurdy - that's an easy thing to say, but to the people who put a lot of emotional coin, time and effort, it's a hard thing to take when it's yanked from you and given to someone whose front door has a "fuck you" sign. And whether or not it's pointed at us or the 3e/d20 crowd, it was a pretty fucking negative thing to say. Fine, the guy's got a blunt baseball bat like I do, I can accept that and that's fine. It still hurts and it still leaves a bad taste that's gonna take time to wash away. We'll see. Like I said, color me skeptical.

@Doc - you're under the misapprehension that I apologized for you or your request. You'd be sadly mistaken. The quote is very relevant because it's our history of this whole deal - lessons learned and doomed to repeat, perhaps, we'll see.

The cheerleaders want to give a pass, the skeptics don't. If someone's displaying a "fuck you" sign or a Confederate flag or any other sign of divisiveness, there's still the underlying attitude even with the nice-nice. You may be kissing cousins with Bill, but he's presenting an image and a front to a community - he took responsibility for the comment and fine - but there's still an underlying attitude that I hope gets nuanced.

We're gonna heap scorn on the 3e/d20 publishers, but you don't think those fuckers had some sense of pride and DIY attitude to put stuff up on Lulu? I bet you'd get just as pissy if a bunch of 4e bloggers started ripping on OSR material - it's already happened. So sure, we can say "oh, it's not US, just those losers..." and I think that's kinda a fucked up approach to take. Yea, I'm sure there were some who put shit together to make a buck - that's fine. There's just as many who tried damn hard to DIY - why shit on them? Just because they're 3e/d20? C'mon... any other day, people get ripped for the big sticks. I'm getting ripped myself for assuming - ain't the only one here though that is being selective.

Bottom line, if you're gonna rip ANY DIY'er, whether they're 3e/4e/OSR - you better suck it up and expect a shit storm. I hope they lose the attitude IF that's the underlying attitude...

... because when you put together Clark's old comments and this "ad copy", man it's a kick in the balls. To any DIY'er, whether they're old or new.

Zachary The First said...

I'm actually working on an interview over at my site with the FGG guys. Maybe that will help clear up some things. I know I definitely read it negatively, but hey, they showed up, engaged people, apologized, and put up the olive branch. It's hard to argue with that.

ChicagoWiz said...

@Zach - time will tell. Like I said elsewhere, it's left a really nasty sour taste in the mouth. Gonna take a lot of sugar to make it better.

Akrasia said...

The childish hysteria displayed over a piece of minor ad copy that has nothing to do with S&W is both hilarious and sad.

I also note the complete absence of any explanation of how FGG's S&W products could in any way 'squash' the DIY material being produced for S&W.

Hopefully once the petulant outrage dies down, people will be willing to judge FGG's S&W products on their own merits.

ChicagoWiz said...

Akrasia - kinda like visiting all the blogs to say the same thing over and over?

I'm gonna quote Enimem from 8 Mile (heh, that's a fucking first):

"Didn't you listen to the last round meathead? Pay attention your saying the same shit that he said.

Matter a fact dawg, here's a pencil. Go home, write some shit, make it suspenseful and don't come back until somethin dope hits you.

Fuck it, you could take the mic home with you."

People don't like what was said, how it was said or the way things went. Shock! Horror! We must cheerlead everyone back in-line!

Akrasia said...

"Akrasia - kinda like visiting all the blogs to say the same thing over and over?"

Hey, I edit at least a few words each time! :P

Seriously, though, I continue to note your complete failure to explain or justify, in any way, your earlier claim that this agreement somehow means the end to the hobbyist aspect of S&W.

Despite this little dust-up, however, I still appreciate all that you have done for S&W and old school gaming in general.

ChicagoWiz said...

@Akrasia - it's simple. Do you really think we're going to be able to participate, shape, influence and contribute to FGG S&W like we did last year to 2nd Printing or to WB? Really? Seriously?

If they do, great. Based on history, attitude displayed and the way this deal feels, I'm skeptical. Oh, I'm not allowed to have a feeling or opinion, ya, forgot about that. Gotta get in line, hand my cash over and enjoy it.

Time will tell.

Fuck, now I'm starting to repeat MYSELF. Not really much more I can say about this shit until it plays out.

Meantime, we still have WB.

Akrasia said...

"Do you really think we're going to be able to participate, shape, influence and contribute to FGG S&W like we did last year to 2nd Printing or to WB? Really? Seriously?"

I see absolutely nothing in the FGG-Mythmere agreement that will prevent anyone from producing the kinds of products for S&W that we've seen over the past couple of years.

Why would you think otherwise?

How could FGG possibly stop people from producing material for S&W?

"Oh, I'm not allowed to have a feeling or opinion, ya, forgot about that. "

Sure you're allowed. Who ever said otherwise?

But others (like myself) are also allowed to point out why your opinion is completely unjustified.

tsathogga said...

@Chigwiz

All rules stuff will be open; write away.No change there. Without DIY folks there would be no OSR. Lots more in my interview questions on Zach's blog later thsi week.

I publish more fan submitted modules (about 30 so far) than any other publisher. We accept submissions.

Oh, please ask around the game community if I (we) listen to feedback. I think you will be a pretty good answer that you will like.

ChicagoWiz said...

Hey Akrasia - how about asking Peter Mullen how he feels about the whole deal? That whole cover thing is exactly what continues to leave me skeptical. I should have mentioned that earlier.

Eli Arndt said...

Really, the only reason this bothers me is that I am not a huge fan of folks who feel they need to poke holes in and cast names at other people and their products to promote their own.

There are ways to promote your ideals without slamming others, even if meant in jest. It just seems unprofessional and poorly thought out.

My own feelings on glossy books and "polished" products aside, I just think it wasn't the best thought out attempt at what may, for all we know, have been an attempt at humor.

-Eli

P.S. Anonymous posters with opinions are really weak.

Verhaden said...

@Chicagowiz

Why doesn't the artist who made this cover deserve to have his work represent the "Complete Rules" just like you argued Mark Allen did for "WhiteBox"?

ChicagoWiz said...

@Verhaden - WTH? Apples and oranges. My argument for Allen was based on the arrangements made and he deserved to be on the WB. My note about the switch on Mullen was pointing out that things are changing away from the hobbyists to corporate.

Akrasia said...

Hey Akrasia - how about asking Peter Mullen how he feels about the whole deal?

Yes, that might be a good idea before rushing to any negative conclusions!

I assume (and hope, but do not know) that the Mullen cover will continue to be used for the 'core' S&W rules.

The new cover is going to be used for the 'complete' S&W rules (the version with all the extra classes, rules, etc.).

You do realize that there is a difference between the two rule sets, right?

However, even if (for some reason) the Mullen cover is no longer going to be used for the S&W 'core' rules, I am not willing to rush to any negative conclusion without further information. In any case, Pete Mullen already has been compensated for his excellent work for the covers of both the S&W core and S&W WB rules (the latter of which, of course, is no longer in use, and you seem to be okay with that).

Matt/Mythmere has been an online friend of mine for 6 years now. He has always displayed a lot of integrity in his interactions with others. Moreover, he clearly does all this for sheer love of the hobby (i.e., not to 'make a buck').

What I find most disappointing in your recent behaviour is your willingness to assume the absolute worst about Matt's judgement in making this deal.

Rob Lang said...

It's nice to get recognition from Frog God at last! ;-)

The Acrobatic Flea said...

And Frog God must be thanking you mightily for all this publicity - having no interest in Pathfinder/3.5, I'd never heard of them before and I bet a large proportion of the Interwebz would have said the same until a couple of days ago!

ChicagoWiz said...

In any case, Pete Mullen already has been compensated

I think this is the point where I just will stop debating with you on this subject. If you can't understand that emotional coin goes way beyond "compensation", then there's really no way you or I will ever bridge the divide to have a meaningful. I'm respectfully asking you to go away now, I really have nothing more to say to you on this.

Justin Alexander said...

"@Justin - and I'd like to sell you a bottle of perspective."

I think you'd be better off taking a few big swigs from that bottle yourself.

(1) You assumed they were talking about you. They weren't.

(2) You're mortally offended by someone promising high production values.

The only way someone could reasonably take offense at these comments is if they were honestly unaware that crappy RPG books had ever existed. And the only reason I'm willing to concede that Frog God's website was poorly worded is because, obviously, there's plenty of irrational people out there just waiting to be offended by something.