Dark Heritage on D&D and the Picaresque


I was browsing through the Castalia House blog, and I found a link to this gem from Desdichado at Dark Heritage: D&D and the Picaresque

The notion that D&D doesn't have an implied setting, or that it's in any way generic, is laughably false. You may be able to use D&D to create a wide variety of settings, but the implied setting details mean that there's a much wider variety of settings that you cannot create without house-ruling fundamental core concepts within the rules. And contrary to Maliszewski's (and others') implication, this really doesn't have anything to do with the generational divide between older sword & sorcery fans and newer (or younger) high fantasy fans. It's something that exists completely independently of that generational divide.

The cultural dominance of D&D in this area makes it hard when people want a setting that doesn’t match up with foundational assumptions of the game. It would be better to just play a different game, rather than insisting that one specific game change to allow something that doesn’t fit.