I’ve been gaming since the early eighties… I started in 4th or 5th grade with Dungeons & Dragons and Star Frontiers. After that entrée, AD&D 1st then 2nd editions were the primary staples all through grade school and college. I’m a HUGE Forgotten Realms, Birthright and Planescape geek.
I added BattleTech to the mix in high school, and then the various Storyteller games after college. Over the years, there were various other games sprinkled throughout… some had some staying power amongst my various gaming groups (Cyberpunk, Call of Cthulhu), others quickly fell by the wayside (Shadowrun, RIFTS, GURPS).
The past decade has been peppered with a lot of indie gaming. I don’t remember the names of 90% of them… my gaming group in Boston had a nice jag of running mini-campaigns in a lot of different systems for awhile a few years back. One that I’m currently digging is InSpectres (which I am currently using as of this writing in March of 2010 to run Howard Hughes’ Men of Action).
Oh, and Castle Falkenstein. Love, love, LOVE Falkenstein. That counts as an indie game, right?
I’ll admit: I don’t read a lot of gaming blogs. While I enjoy the hobby, and I’m interested in the nuts n’ bolts of game design and tinkering with rules, reading the kind of wonky game theory or after-play reports one finds on sites like The Forge, Story-Games or RPG.net doesn’t really appeal to me. I’m a working professional who is rapidly approaching middle age, and I have other things to do with my valuable free time… that Netflix queue isn’t going to watch itself! But I did read 20×20 Room back in the day because I personally knew many of the folks involved, but more importantly: I respected their opinions. Many of those same dudes are here now, so I followed. And since I had gotten bit by the DIY bug and written my own game (Caper! A Game of Pros and Cons), Chris asked if I wanted to contribute, so I figured “well, if you want to hear about my existential wangst over being neither a simulationist grognard nor a narrativist hippy, sure.” To quote the Bard: One foot on sea, one foot on shore; to one thing constant never.
I guess I see my role here as mostly being a gadfly– the slightly ignorant outsider (or: the slightly out-of-touch insider) who asks dumb questions, tips sacred cows, and tilts at windmills.
Okay, maybe gadfly isn’t the right word… how about barstool boor?