Over at the Department V blog, Smiorgan has written a really interesting post that deconstructs Dungeons & Dragons as a series of interlocking mechanics and looks at all the various systems and how they interact with each other. The post starts off looking at conversation that occurred on a public G+ post, and then expands on it. There are some fantastic graphics here showing how things like Attributes and Armor Class and Hit Points stack and touch each other, as well as how some elements lock down access for certain functions of play. Also included is a discussion of how the system can be hacked (as has been done since the game first came out) and comes up with a number of conclusions about D&D in general and how it’s designed: essentially it’s like Linux where you can drop in/out modules that you don’t want to use and replace with parts that you prefer instead.
The one overall flaw with the post is that there’s equating of D&D=OSR, which isn’t necessarily the case, depending upon your definition of what the OSR is. Even the original G+ post mentions other game systems.