Many people may have noticed over the last few years that the "retro-clone backlash" has been building. Increasing accusations of a lack of innovation, contempt for not "getting on with the times" and other variations of these arguments have suggested that retro-clones should not exist or have no place in the gaming world of today. Some publishers wanting to break into the market created by the growing interest in retro games try to distinguish themselves by "innovating" 3e lite in different ways for new RPGs.
I've always prided Goblinoid Games on being responsive to customer demand, so after much soul-searching I've decided to discontinue Labyrinth Lord in it's current form, and revise and re-envision it with a stronger 3e lens. It's time to adopt the superior rules that have been developed by better-informed game designers! But wait, this won't be yet another retro-clone!
There are a number of similar games out there already, and others in development. There are already 3e lite versions that try to present a pseudo-1e or classic feel with the innovative and updated 3e mechanics, and still more in development that use some aspect of the original game as a spring-board, such as reinterpreting the entire game based on Appendix N of the 1e DMG. I'd like to take advantage of a spin like that before someone else beats me to it, so the new Labyrinth Lord will be totally redesigned taking inspiration from Appendix J: Herbs, Spices, and Medicinal Vegetables.
What if Gygax and Arneson had not been quite so interested in medieval battles and weaponry, but had degrees in botany instead? What if they were less inclined to war games but instead spent their Saturdays creating tinctures and tending their herb gardens? Think about it. No really, think about it! Not only that, but what if they didn't have to design all the rules themselves starting from proverbial sticks and stones, but could instead base their game on "more advanced technology," if you will, that already exists in the 3e SRD?
If you can wrap your mind around all of those alternative histories, you start to get a feel for what Labyrinth Lord: Herbalists and Vegetable Adventurers is all about!
You're not a hero. You're a vegetable in a world of vegetarians. You battle for your perennial lives in dank light-less worlds inhospitable to photosynthesizers, against creatures with an insatiable hunger for plant-based nutrients!
Traditional Vancian magic, classic races, and standard classes will be removed. All races will be built as race-classes on the concept of sentient vegetables. Labyrinth Lord: Herbalists and Vegetable Adventurers will feature the following classes:
Beet Herbalists, and last but not least,
In the coming weeks expect to find previews of some of these classes, and a sneak peek at some of the new monsters that will strike fear into the plant vascular systems of characters! Here are just a few of monsters you will see:
Zinc Deficient Zombies
Alluring Algae Amazons
...and many more!
This is an exciting time for retro gaming! Appendix J!