- The first and second paragraphs are the first very faint indication that maybe B/X is more "new school" than I or others may realize. Moldvay says, "Sometimes I forget that D&D [sic] is a game and not a novel I'm reading or a movie I'm watching." A novel or movie implies plot and plotting an adventure is considered not to be old-school. There are a number of instances where B/X contains "new school" characteristics such as balance, plot, and character-centric adventures that may would consider to be foreign to old-school D&D. I will try to touch on them as we go.
- Acknowledgement that OD&D was written by gamers for gamers and was not intended to teach the game.
- A brief mention of the goals for B/X: 1. easy to read, and 2. teach the game to individuals that have never played. I feel that B/X was a resounding success at the first goal but missed the mark by a bit on the second. I learned to play D&D with B/X but not without some stumbles.
- "No rule is inviolate..." A key point.
- My minor quibble about the cover comes into play again in Mr. Moldvay's story. Killing the dragon with a single blow is very unlikely in the Basic rules.
- "dragon-tyrant" I like that moniker. I may have to use it sometime.
Thoughts while I read the Acknowledgements:
- Lots of recognizable names. It still seems odd not to see Gary Gygax or Dave Arneson listed. I understand why Mr. Arneson isn't listed but it still seems strange.
Thoughts while I read Part 1: Introduction
- I was incorrect, the first paragraph of the Introduction also mentions "role playing"
- The first paragraph gives the first sense of character motivation, "fame and fortune"
- The reward mechanic is also mentioned, "Characters gain experience by overcoming perils and recovering treasure" (emphasis mine)
- The first reference to the Companion rules
- Mentions that the rule book has 3 holes drilled so it can be cut apart and placed with the Expert rules in a binder. Did anyone ever do this? I know I didn't.
- A full paragraph stresses that the rules are just guidelines.
- I find the glossary definition of "adventure" to be interesting. Adventure = game session. Also, the adventure begins when the characters enter the dungeon and ends when they leave and split up treasure. These basic rules focus solely on adventuring in a dungeon. Based on the definition of adventure, there is no wilderness or urban adventures (contrary to B2 - The Keep on the Borderlands).
- The Caller. We always used a caller when we were kids. It is a habit I have gotten away from. This paragraph addresses many of the arguments that arise against using a caller. "The caller should make sure that he or she is accurately representing all the player characters' wishes. The caller is a mediator between players and the DM, and should not judge what the player characters should do." The caller does not have any authority to determine what other characters do but instead is a single voice to reduce chaos.
- Basic is deadly. It is already hinted at in the introduction that death of a PC is no big deal since you can simply roll up a new character and continue playing.