I've got a good feeling about things.
Lamentations Of The Flame Princess Weird Fantasy RPG appears to have been a runaway success (Raggi's running out of boxes...).
The Necromancer has reanimated and Frog God Games is going to be publishing and promoting Swords & Wizardry.
Labyrinth Lord has released the means to run a simplified version of AD&D that's pretty much in line with the way a lot of folks played it.
We've got lots of great adventures and multiple magazines supporting old-school versions of D&D, as well of all sorts of wonderful supplemental material.
The "Public Red Box" meme is spreading and seems to be working.
My prediction? 2011 is going to be the year that things really blow up!
Sure, it'll never be like the glory days of the 70s & 80s, but wheels are in motion; folks are getting fired up; things are definitely happening.
As far as I'm concerned, this may be the best era so far for old-tymey D&D.
And I'm all about keeping the momentum rolling.
Now what I'm saying here is nothing nobody else hasn't said more eloquently before, but, if you have any interest in the return and growth of this aspect of the hobby, we gotta:
Keep finding new players. We've got to provide them with a supportive yet challenging experience. Lapsed D&D players; non-gamers with "genre" interests; computer/console RPG players (and there's millions of those out there!); friends; co-workers; kids. We've got to keep on pushing a pulling. It's not going to be everyone's cup of tea, but I believe that we have a great, fulfilling, social activity that'll turn a lot of folks on.
And we've to not only cultivate another generation of players, we also have to cultivate a fresh, new crop of bright-eyed, enthusiastic Dungeon Masters.
Do you know a players with an interest in DMing? We have to encourage and support them, turn them on to the great resources and wisdom available. Get them a copy of Swords & Wizardry and show them how easy it can be to Dungeon Master; turn them on to all the free retro-clones and online resources available.
That's one advantage old-school versions have over the "modern editions"; you don't have to be an accountant-cum-lawyer to run an early version of the game, as long as your somewhat creative and organized, it can be a snap.
That's something we need to communicate, how simple it can be to run or play these games.
If we want this movement to flourish we've got to lose any tendencies to be insular; to be cryptic; to be fussy.
So, if you want, I heartily encourage you all to keep finding new players; participate in your local "open/public old-school game movement" or help start one up in your locale; and encourage and cultivate a new generation of DMs.
This is something good we have going, something real, something vital. Keep the fire alive and game on!