I've been mulling things over when it comes to my gaming desires...which have of course evolved over the course of the last year and three months since I made a definitive return to table-top roleplaying.
I'm taking some time to step away from the GM's chair, how long I'm not yet sure. However long it takes to clear my real life of the crapstorm I'm under, and also to alleviate some RPG burnout from overloading myself with all things roleplaying.
I've been thinking: maybe pure old-school play is just not for me. Resource management? I've been good at depleting PC's ration stores during my gaming career (a day passes, everyone ticks off a day's rations). But keeping track of those torches and lantern oil flasks? Gimme a break. I'm not really into being a "bean counter."
I've never used encumbrance, really. The closest thing was the truly simple Lamentations of the Flame Princess system. Otherwise, it's all common sense ("No, you can't strap that chest to the dwarf hireling's back! Well, you could, but he would be extremely hindered in movement and combat...not to mention pissed off.")
Oh, and I think I'm getting tired of by-the-book experience points.
All of the above go for the two D&D-like games I've played over the last year or so: Castles & Crusades and Labyrinth Lord. I love both games, and for me they stand high above the vast selection of other retro-clones and D&D derivatives.
Yes, I can ignore those rules I don't like or create house rules to replace them. And I've done so, to my satisfaction and those of my players (at least it seems that way).
At this time in my life, I think that the statements above are endemic of my current situation: with only one session a week, and some of those skipped due to responsibilities, I don't want to be bogged down by what I consider superfluous.
Take experience points. It can take a long time for PCs to level up if you're going by the book. Not that my players are power gamers, but it would be nice to have a chance to have them experience higher-level play.
I think I favor the drama of the unfolding adventure to bean counting. There's a balance to be struck, and I'm trying to find the sweet spot.
All I know is, my style of play is indeed informed by what the OSR holds up as the gold standard for old-school gaming. But it's not the mechanics of the games I care about. It's the "attitude," the spirit, fostered by the editions of the game the OSR favors.
I shall babble no more today on this matter!