Something I’ve starting writing about a few times over the past couple of years but never put together in a way I’m happy with has to do with the discussion of “heroic” or “non-heroic” player characters.
Yes, I do see how the “heroic” approach could easily become the default standard in a game with inflated ability scores, generous amounts of magic, and railroad-y world-in-the-balance plots, but it’s not a given. And, even more importantly, I don’t think that the older versions of the game are necessarily designed for play where the PCs are expressly “not heroes.”
Isn’t is up the players in both cases? I don’t want to overstate my opinion, but so often it sounds like critics of later versions of the game or certain styles of play take an extreme militant stance against heroic play. Fine, but don’t tell me how to play.
Tip of the helm to Lord Gwydion on this topic.