Your stalwart old lady grognard finished her first fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons campaign last night! And my character survived!
First, a little backstory. A little more than a year ago, I read about Nerdarchy on Facebook and watched some of their videos. I learned they were right across the river in New Jersey! At the time, I hadn’t played (as a player) a D&D game in decades, and I’d never played 5E D&D. However, the popularity (it seemed everyone was playing it) and my desire to play D&D again caused me to reach out to the Nerdarchy guys. But how to make myself stand out from the thousands of emails, comments and fan mail they received each day? Hmmm. I know! I’ll rattle off my gaming resume! (TSR, GW, etc.) And they responded!
Gaming was far different in the era before the internet. A person needed to actually be in the same room to play an roleplaying game or card game. There were play by mail games (Diplomacy was huge for this) but many players didn’t want to wait a week to hear the result of a move.
The gaming business was also vastly different. When I joined the gaming industry in 1991 there was a three-tier distribution system (I think it still sort of is, but I don’t know). Manufacturers would sell their games to distributors and the distributors would then sell them to the retail shops as well as the few mail order outlets. The stores would call distributors who would ship them their orders. When I started with Chessex Game Distributors in ’91, there were also still traveling reps who would go from store to store selling games on behalf of a distributor, but they were becoming a dying breed.
Twas the week of Christmas/Hanukkah and all through the… Oh, Hell, I can’t think of a fun rhyme. In any case, this time of year many gamers have visions of dice rolling through their heads. Hopefully you all avoid rolling 1’s (unless you’re playing Squad Leader).
My spouse is not a gamer, so my holidays were practically game free. As I’m an old grognard, I was around for first edition Dungeons & Dragons and Advanced Dungeons & Dragons by TSR. One Christmas I received an amazing (for me) Christmas gift I didn’t expect. This is that story, so gather around the fire with your eggnog or whatever (I’ll have a Glenmorangie, please) and I’ll tell it.
Hail and well met! I’m Sophie, and I’ve been invited to contribute to this esteemed community. I know — big deal. So, let me tell you my qualifications. Well, to start with, I’ve been playing hobby and tabletop roleplaying games since 1977. I started Dungeons & Dragons with the basic “blue box” edition back in 1978. That means I have dice older than some of you. Probably most. However, it’s not just that I’m older than the Nerdarchy guys, I also spent 13 years working in the gaming community.
Salutations, nerds. Today we’re going to be talking about cultural point of view and the way history is recorded. Particularly, we’re going to be talking about how that applies to your gaming setting and the things you present to your players in games like fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons or whatever your favorite game happens to be. One of my absolute things in games is the effect you get where you know “x” happened, but everyone who was around to talk about it after believes it happened differently.
Dungeons & Dragons editions questions and conversations come up quite a bit. Much more often than I would expect, that’s for sure. Whether it’s someone on Twitter asking what everyone’s favorite edition of D&D is, the impromptu discussion I had with Nerdarchist Dave earlier tonight, or the person who tasked Nerdarchy with convincing them to switch editions from Advanced Dungeons & Dragons to fifth edition D&D that inspired the video below, I’m always up for a trip down D&D memory lane. Me? I’ve enjoyed every edition of D&D more than the previous one, and I love them all. Is there a best edition of D&D? Absolutely.
Fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons players have been clamoring for it for years. Diehard fans have homebrewed content for it. Popular streamers like Maze Arcana have embraced it wholeheartedly. And now it’s here. Wayfinder’s Guide to Eberron dropped at both the Dungeon Master’s Guild and D&D Beyond, opening the door to a whole new world of adventure. The book provides an overview of the core themes of the D&D campaign setting and rules to connect Eberron to current campaigns. The continent of Khorvaire and the great city of Sharn are covered inside, along with races like kalashtar, shifters and the megapopular warforged, dragonmarks, magic items, and a guide to further reading to learn more about Eberron.
Every weekday at noon eastern, the Nerdarchy YouTube channel welcomes guests for a live chat. Industry personalities from the top companies in the tabletop roleplaying game sphere like Wizards of the Coast and Monte Cook Games, creators sharing their work with Kickstarters, streaming or produced video content, blogs, artists, podcasters – the whole gamut of folks making and sharing cool content in the tabletop RPG space join the Nerdarchy community to talk nerdy. Super Geek Senda Linaugh, who joined Nerdarchist Dave to talk about the wide array of projects she’s involved with, really got me thinking about how many fantastic RPGs are out there. One of my favorites from back in the day is Talislanta, an RPG now available completely free!
I’ve been thinking a lot about games I used to play as a kid, in no small part thanks to some games I’ve been playing as an adult in similar styles.
The point and click genre is always going to have a special place in my heart. I can’t tell you how many hours I sunk into King’s Quest and Mixed Up Mother Goose, even after current Windows stopped supporting them and I had to resort to using DOSBox to get them to play.
There’s a school of thought floating around out there suggesting whatever a person is into when they’re 12 years old will stick with them the rest of their life. I’m a believer of this notion. Personal experience and ad hoc research (i.e. asking around here and there) bears it out.
So it’s no surprise that Phantasy Star II holds a place of reverence in my nerdy heart.
Shogun Warriors history
Long before most in the United States had heard the words “manga” or “anime,” and a generation before the world would discover the Power Rangers, there were the Shogun Warriors.
Based upon Japanese television shows, the Shogun Warriors were a collection of toys, mainly robots though there were also a few vehicles.
[caption id="" align="alignright" width="350" class="zemanta-img"] An Atari 2600 four-switch "wood veneer" version, dating from 1980-1982. Shown with standard joystick. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)[/caption] You still have your very first, original Atari 2600. And play it often. You know how to make games for the Atari 2600. ...
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YpBK1lZg32c&w=560&h=315] Class was in session when Professor Bill from Comic Book University (aka Nerdarchy staff writer William C.) took a group of mild-mannered nerds for a trip to the heart of the Marvel Universe for a game of the Marvel Super Heroes Role-Playing Game. [caption id="attachment_19932"...
[caption id="" align="alignright" width="350" class="zemanta-img"] Publicity photo of Leonard Nimoy and William Shatner as Mr. Spock and Captain Kirk from the television program Star Trek. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)[/caption] Like a lot of kids who grew up in the 1970s, I watched a lot of Star Trek....
1987. Ah, the good old days. Guns ‘N’ Roses was just hitting big. Nintendo was at the top of the video game market. Spider-Man hadn’t yet been cloned (at least not that we knew of).
A couple of other things happened in 1987.
For one, Apple released its Macintosh SE personal computer, which was a big improvement over earlier Macs and quite a popular computer for the next decade or so even though Apple stopped making the SE in 1990. Sure, the SE was a dull gray and had a bulky mouse, but it came with its own hard drive! Yeah, doesn’t sound like such a big deal now, but it was huge back then.
Another thing that happened in 1987 was a company known as Semicolon Software released a Mac game for shareware. That game? Scarab of Ra.