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Games I’ve played- AD&D

December 22, 2007

This is the first in a series of posts which I will do now and again, just talking about various campaigns I’ve played in, and talking generally about the play overall.

It was 1997, I had moved to Vancouver BC and gotten into a longstanding AD&D2E game.  Pretty much everyone was in their early to mid 20’s, with something like 5-8 rotating players.  The GM had the classic 3 ring binder with the hexmap of the world, including close up maps of various areas and fat pages of town descriptions, NPCs, etc.

The group naturally suffered from rifts in what everyone wanted out of the game…

The GM was pretty heavily into Sim playing his world, which he was really good at- he was excellent at playing a wide range of NPCs, describing thing and adding color.  The setting he had built up was full of interesting locations and NPCs and history.  He also had a funny way of tying the fantastic to real life.   He’d do stuff like show off his construction hammer and point out, “-This- hammer, is exactly the weight of a real warhammer, here, imagine getting hit upside the head with this!”

One player was not so much a gamist, as much as a guy with power issues.  He’d always find some way to argue about the rules, but not consistently- it wasn’t that he was trying to follow the rules in the book, it’s that he’d argue to get them selectively used, always in his favor.  The GM was solid about following the rules, but this guy would eat up about 45 minutes to an hour and half of play with looking up rules because he was always finding something to argue about.

Pretty much the rest of the players were there either on the same Sim play goal or for the simple purpose of hanging out with friends.

The big thing I walked away from the game with was a strong appreciation for the GM’s descriptive techniques and roleplaying characters.  He really did a great job painting the world and making it feel wonderous.

Second, he also had consistent rules within his setting about how money got spent.  From a game design standpoint it worked well because our party was never overloaded with goods, there was always a reason to go treasure hunting, whether we wanted to up a mage’s spellbook or get more level training, or simply afford passage to the next island.

This was probably the only Sim game I got into, and mostly because it was pretty much built like a “Sandbox” game.

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