OSR Interested in dipping my toe into OSR but don’t know where to start. Any recommendations?

payn

He'll flip ya...Flip ya for real...
Oh, a second plug for Forbidden Lands. The system does exploration really well. A combo of stat and skill makes your dice pool. You can press your luck at risk to your PC if you really want to accomplish something. Combat is quick and nasty, so you dont want to enter it often. That is also why I like it for old school feel. The big deviance from D&D is that your stats are also your HP. Though, the system cleans up all the wonky ass mechanics that are part of old school. For some, thats part of the charm, but I just want the experience and to have the system get out of the way. YMMV.
 

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TerraDave

5ever, or until 2024
Also following this, and thanks for all the recommendations.

Is there an OSesque game with unified (roll high) d20 mechanic?

Its interesting, and a little surprising, if there isn't.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
what the specific style DCC tries to emulate is like?
DCC is an interesting case, because it is specifically not trying to emulate older editions. It is Goodman's response to the idea of 4E, of what je would do if he could go straight back to basics and write an RPG from scratch to emulate old pulp fantasy. His essay about Appendix N in the rules is a pretty great read. The goal is to provide a game that gives the framework where stories similar to old Sword & Sorcery publications emerge in play. It's more 3E and a bit of Rolemaster than it is OD&D , BD&D or AD&D, structurally speaking, but really fast and loose compared to 3E. Worth checking out the free intro rules. The Advebtures also pretty much work with other games, like 5E, pretty smoothly.
 

I’m a strong proponent of encumbrance, but sometimes it can be like pulling teeth to get players to actually track it. A slot-based system or something streamlined like PF2’s Bulk would probably be ideal for me.
OSE will have you worried about one and only one thing in your inventory: coins, be it silver or gold pieces.

You pack a weapon or two, a piece of armor, and a backpack full of stuff and go adventuring. You note the weight (in coins) of those items with the backpack worth 80 no matter what you put in there (common sense applied by the referee), and that's it! Fixed encumbrance for basic gear and guns. Everything else you will track in terms of encumbrance is acquired treasure (or an ally body) that needs to be carried back from the adventure site. Each character can drag only 1,600 coins max with them, and your fighters are probably already carrying 800+ encumbrance from their armor and weapons.

You'll manage resources during exploration, and encumbrance when you hit the blackjack.
 
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Charlaquin

Goblin Queen (She/Her/Hers)
DCC is an interesting case, because it is specifically not trying to emulate older editions. It is Goodman's response to the idea of 4E, of what je would do if he could go straight back to basics and write an RPG from scratch to emulate old pulp fantasy. His essay about Appendix N in the rules is a pretty great read. The goal is to provide a game that gives the framework where stories similar to old Sword & Sorcery publications emerge in play. It's more 3E and a bit of Rolemaster than it is OD&D , BD&D or AD&D, structurally speaking, but really fast and loose compared to 3E. Worth checking out the free intro rules. The Advebtures also pretty much work with other games, like 5E, pretty smoothly.
Oh, interesting! Doesn’t really sound like my thing, but definitely neat.
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
Oh, interesting! Doesn’t really sound like my thing, but definitely neat.
It's fairly different from what you described in the OP, for sure, and is quite unique. A Level 0 funnel is quite the experience, but not really representative of higher level play.

One of the neat things is that magic is all done as d20 Skill checks, with each spell being a Skill with a page detailing possible results. Spellcasting can be...tenuous...so a wise wizard, like Gandalf will use magic as little as possible, and someone who casts spells like it was 5E might end up in deep trouble.

Also, the "Die Chain" system is interesting: it's a 3E style d20 system with a twist similar to Advantage/Disadvantage. Instead of rolling more dice, the factors that would cause Advantage ot Disadvantsge change the die type up or down, and stack. So a d20 roll van become a d12 or d30 roll...but the target number doesn't change.
 
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payn

He'll flip ya...Flip ya for real...
It's fairly different from what you described in the OP, for sure, and is quite unique. A Level 0 funnel is quite the experience, but not really representative of higher level play.

One of the neat things is that magic is all done as d20 Skill checks, with each spell being a Skill with a page detailing possible results. Spellcasting can be...tenuous...so a wise wizard, like Gandalf will use magic as little as possible, and someone who casts spells like it was 5E might end up in deep trouble.

Also, the "Die Chain" system is interesting: it's a 3E style d20 system with a twist similar to Advantage/Disadvantage. Instead of rolling dice, the factors that would cause Advantage ot Disadvantsge change the die type up or down, and stack. So a d20 roll van become a d12 or d30 roll...but the target number doesn't change.
I'll second most of what Parmandur says about DCC. It is a very fun game in short hard hitting doses, IMO. Funnels are interesting romps, but I have had a good time in tournament play. A friend of mine runs one for DCC every Gencon. He asks to practice on me and a few friends here at home. A few pregens, a weird dungeon to delve, and just see how far you can get challenge. A good dive into skill play without having to devote tons of time to the playstyle.
 

Greggy C

Hero
Isn’t, OSE is a clone of B/X, not AD&D? I wouldn’t expect it to be as big as the AD&D books, especially with the presentation cleaned up compared to EGG’s meandering prose.
OSE is small compared to the basic D&D red box.

I just don't like flipping through a tiny tightly bound book that can't be laid flat, its just not for me.

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Greg K

Legend
If you are concered about skill resolution using different dice, there are some d6 and 2d6 skill variants for B/X that replace the d%. I found a couple over the past two days while Google searching B/X house rules. I think that there are also a few such variants on drivethrurpg or its dmsguild sister site. B/X, however, still uses race as class.

Edit: Here is a link to a 2d6 + ability modifier skill system by Erin D. Small of Welsh Piper, the publisher of BX Options: Class Builder. It is located toward the bottom of the article.
 
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