#RPGaDAY, Last Year: Day 3 – First RPG Purchased

It’s the last of the pure reposts! I’m going over the writing prompts from last year, to see if my answers have changed at all. But I’m just doing reposts from my G+ feed for the first three entries as they’re just about the first games I encountered. We’ve already gone over the first game played and first one I GMed.

#RPGaDAY, Last Year: Day 3: What was the first roleplaying game you purchased?

I’m going to skip past D&D because while I know that was the first one played, it was a gift. In those early days, we played a lot of D&D, but branched out and played quite a few other role-playing games like Rolemaster and Champions. I was also big into Car Wars, but… You know, it may have been Autoduel Champions. Or Villains & Vigilantes. Because it was so long ago, I’m not sure who owned what back then. (I recall AD&D books on the shelf, along with some Grimtooth’s Traps books.)

Instead, I’ll jump to when I moved overseas, because that’s when I definitely would have purchased my own stuff.

So Twilight: 2000 it is.


When I picked this up, it was overseas, in West Germany (remember that?). In that game, the war against the Soviet Union went completely tits up with nuclear exchanges and an ongoing ground war, and we, the military kids on a US base, were sure the game was an accurate foretelling of the future.

We only played one session.

But oh, I loved that post-apocalyptic setting!

twilight2kFunny story. When I was getting into graphic design in the hobby games industry, I saw that someone had purchased the license for the game and were about to bring it out as Twilight: 2013. I inquired about laying out the book and didn’t get the job. But there was more to it than that.

The initial posting about T:2013 seemed to indicate that there was going to be a narrative-heavy “story game” version of play included. I inquired about that in the company’s forum and received a slightly negative reply from another fan of the company who hated, absolutely hated, games where players have any narrative control. No big deal. This Ed person seemed polite in his response, actually. He’s prominent on the message forum, so I look at his profile. Hey, there’s a link for people to come visit his LiveJournal (remember that?). So I do. And that’s where there was a full page of him calling me a “fucking little pansy” for liking games where players could make up things. “Shut the fuck up, bitch.” “Come back to my table when you grow a pair!” It reads like he was skipping out on taking his serious medication. (You can read his bizarre rant at http://ed-t.livejournal.com/61203.html. It’s all the more insane when you realize he’s railing against people being duplicitous in conversations, when his public response to me was rather courteous.) Reading other LJ posts of his reveal him to be a very, very angry person.

Meanwhile, I’m in talks with the two people at the company about layout. We’re sending emails back and forth. Right when I suggest that I actually be compensated for design work, I never hear from them again.

Also about that time, they publicly announce that they brought the angry guy on board.

Anyway, Twilight: 2000. Pretty cool game.

#RPGaDAY, Last Year: Day 2 – First RPG GMed

Revisiting the writing event from last year, I’m checking to see if my answers have changed at all. However, the first few entries in the month are all about the first game played or purchased and barring access to a time machine, they’re not gonna change. For these few, it’s a repost from my G+ feed from about this time last year.


#RPGaDAY, Last Year: Day 2: What was the first roleplaying game you GMed?

That’s answered a bit in Last Year’s Day 1 post, but I’d like to expand on it a bit.

The first adventure I GM’d was included in the D&D boxed set. I don’t remember too much of it, but I do remember the door maze. Something stupid huge like a 60’ x 80’ room divided into 10’x10’ rooms with doors on all four walls. I thought this was amazing! The players would be spending time mapping out the room, opening doors and there is an identical room with three more doors to go through! This was such a great idea for a dungeon that I included it in nearly every one I created over the next two years until I realized it was pretty stupid. Lost? We just leave the doors we walked through open. Or just mark all the doors. Or break them all. And what dungeon lord decided to purchase/build two hundred-odd doors and install them all in an oversized room?

Gods, that was dumb.

I ran that module several times. One time we had a large group of adventurers and they decided to split up right at the beginning of the dungeon, so I had to split my time between each half of the group. You know the phrase “never split up the party”? It’s not because the GM will kill off the characters, it’s because half of the people at the table aren’t playing for half of the game. And the GM will kill off the characters.

Advanced_Dungeons_and_Dragons_2nd_Edition_Players_Handbook1We played the heck out of that, but weren’t sure how to continue with D&D. The choices were very strange. We could play D&D, but then there was Basic D&D and Expert D&D and Advanced D&D… We didn’t understand what the deal was with those and that some were in a series, but hey, we were the smart kids. We could totally handle Advanced, so we skipped over Basic, Expert, and whatever came after that. We were better than Basic. We were Advanced.

AD&D 2nd Edition was the flavor of D&D for me. I played the heck out of that until I discovered Shadowrun, but that’s a tale for day five.

#RPGaDAY, Last Year: Day 1 – First RPG Played

I’m planning on revisiting last year’s entries for RPGaDay to see if my answers have changed at all, but the first few entries won’t — they’re about the first RPGs played, GMed, and purchased. So I’ll be reposting these from my G+ feed from last year over the next few days, eventually getting caught up to Now, Last Year by the end of the week.


#RPGaDAY, Last Year: Day 1: What was the first roleplaying game you played?

DNDMy first roleplaying game was the same thing as several other people in my feed: the Holmes version of Dungeons & Dragons. It was the one with the chits you could cut out and draw from a cup in case you didn’t have any polyhedral dice.

I picked this up in 1982 as a hand-me-down from adults who heard it was pretty cool but didn’t understand how to play. Back then, if you wanted to buy dice, you had to go into a store full of model trains, planes, and r/c cars. Maybe behind the sheets of balsawood, they would have some dice ready to buy. We picked some up from a store that summer. I devoured those booklets. I couldn’t wait to fly back home and play with my friends.

When I returned home, I broke the game out and we were going to play with David and Eddie. I had a product that had just caves after caves printed on gridded paper. Eddie had us starting off in a cavern with three enemies: blink dogs, displacer beasts, and barbarian foes awaited. “No!” I cried out, because that didn’t make any sense: we all know that the blink dogs and the displacer beasts would have been fighting each other and the barbarians would be fighting them. These three wouldn’t be just hanging out together in an underground chamber waiting for a band of heroes to attack! So Eddie and David walked around the block and I became the GM.

Since then, I’ve always seemed to be the GM. (I really enjoy it.)

diceI still have some of those dice from the first dice purchases. There’s a powder blue set that came from another box set (or a separate purchase) and a multi-colored set. Of the multi-colored set, I still have a green d8 and yellow d20 that I can see. The d4 is around here somewhere. The powder blue one, I have a d6 that is still in fantastic shape. There’s a d10 (probably in the basement) and d12 in my stein of dice, right by the computer monitor I’m typing this on.