Old and New School?
You once asked when we started talking about the game in terms of 'old' and 'new' school. Now your friends had already joined you then and were whispering their sycophantic pleasantries in your ears, so I imagine that you missed my laughter.
Let me correct that here and now.
We started delineating between the old and new back when sandals and togas were considered high fashion and men drank poisonous teas rather than admit they were wrong. But you knew that already as your point wasn't to ask such a foolish question but rather to set up a little straw man where you could then argue that we had moved away from the soul of the game and bastardized it to the point where only fools and sodomites were playing the new school.
It was argued that we, of the new, couldn't begin to grasp the simplistic beauty of the old as we had been too corrupted by the ways of the modern world. We liked Linux and watches with too many buttons; so it was clear that we couldn't be bothered with your dropping Armor Class and weapon speeds.
Our art is wild and scandalous with naked women cavorting with wild animals and chicks with dicks drinking from fountains filled with wine. See, see, I heard you scream through the froth that had made its way down your neck, they objectify women and masturbate to their Dungeons and Dragons books! We would never have been so crass as to do that to a Donald Sutherland!
Have you forgotten the naked women that graced those early books? Surely you don't expect me to have forgotten them - or what you did with them that has you wanting to shame us for doing the same.
What's that I hear you say? Our rules are too complex?
Have you gone mad?
We do algebra in eighth grade now and calculus two years later for college credit. We're writing code and creating super viruses in labs at eighteen. Too complex! We have ipads, android phones, gaming systems that can launch nuclear missiles, and at breakfast we reprogrammed our phones to work as the television remote. We have cars that start without us plugging a key into the steering column and computers that are so small and light you'd almost mistake them for air. Too complex!
Don't make me laugh.
Let's get to the point of all this then. You want to mark a line between us and you. For you, you have claimed all the virtues of the game: role-playing, creativity, and the beauty of a simple game. For us you have thrown the leftovers: roll playing, trite repetition of favorite themes of the old, and the ugliness of a bloated system. What we like is so clearly not D&D; while what you love is.
Allow me to correct you.
The game is the same whether we're playing Fifth Edition or Basic. Our terms may change and many of the mechanics will vary; but at the core, we are still playing a role-playing game. A game where we lay down the burdens of our life for a few hours so that we can pick up an imaginary sword and chuck fireballs at trolls, goblins, and dragons. Your old and new delineations are simply designed to drive a needless wedge between us so that you can feel superior about your game while we foolish kids amuse ourselves.
So fuck your bullshit argument.
What matters is that we're enjoying our games. Whether you're playing Basic, Second, GURPS, FATE, Rifts, Pathfinder, or Next is irrelevant to the conversation at hand. Find what works for you; love the hell out of it; and tell the world about why it rocks. Fuck worrying about what some douche bag labels you.