Were you born 200 years too early, or 200 years too late?
I had a teacher that asked the class that question years ago. You had to pick one or the other, and I selected 200 years too late, one of maybe half a dozen students out of 30 to do so. In the discussion that followed I came to the conclusion that I value old things more than most people. This happened when I was in my teens, I'd wager that becomes more pronounced with age.
Listening to the It Came from the Tabletop podcast this week I could clearly hear a joy for Moon's old game Andromeda in the broadcasters’ voices, as if they weren’t merely taking joy because it’s a good game, but joy because it was old as well. That may have been a misread, but I couldn’t help but think I heard a sense of discovery coming through between them.
We live in an age of extended progress in the state of things, but that's not always been the case. There was a period for centuries where much of Europe lived in the shadow of “old” where the word meant "magical". Aqueducts that towered over the landscape, impossibly high buildings and concrete piers poured under the seawater were just part of day-to-day Roman operations in AD 150. But the people living on the land 1000 years later looked at these structures as something beyond . . . not beyond their understanding, but beyond their ability to duplicate. They were treasures. Old was valuable. That is not the case anymore. Old is seen as outdated or obsolete.
I'm curious to know how many newer table top game players look at an old game on a shelf and wonder if it might contain something magical, some arcane wisdom, versus how many look at it and just think "old." Granted the difference between hidden treasure and hidden garbage depends on what box you open, but taking that part out of the picture, how do you view old things in general? When you see an old game on a shelf, do your eyes linger on it, or do they move on?