A few days ago on the OSR subreddit, a user asked "Why Play B/X?" in the context of many modern games like Into the Odd, Knave, and Mork Borg being excellent at what they do. I had no skin in the game as I have a high regard for B/X and Old School Essentials (though I don't run them), but I got involved in the conversation when the predictable "Sure but you can't sustain an actual campaign" criticism was leveled against the so-called ultralight games currently vogue in the scene.
It continues to blow my mind how often I hear this about rules-light games.
- User 1: "OSE feels like it has more depth and is more suited for campaign play whereas stuff like Mörk Borg seems to struggle with anything that goes beyond one- or few-shots."
- User 2: "I ran Mork Borg for three months."
- User 3: "But can you run Mork Borg for 6 years, like our longest AD&D campaign?"
- Me: "I've been running a diceless campaign for five."
- User 4: "Rolling dice is one of the best parts of role playing though!"
- Me: "I don’t disagree, but you don’t need them (or much infrastructure at all) to facilitate engaging, meaningful, and long-term play."
- User 4: "How do you handle the aspect of randomness/chaos that dice offer? Or how do you facilitate as being impartial when things happen if you don’t use dice? Also how do players hit or not hit then?"