Early summer, 1991. I ran (2) friends of mine through "Zanzer Tem's Dungeon" (the introductory module that came with the "Black-Box" edition). The game lasted around (4) hours or so. It was a TPK, but man, was it fun!!! ;D
It would've been '78 or '79. I had heard about this "cool game that was like The Hobbit" at school, and I mentioned it at dinner. Coincidentally, my father had heard about it at work (he was a Captain in the Army, at the time), and had purchased the Holmes Basic Set (with chits), so he surprised me by bringing out the rulebook and going "Hey, look here..." He hadn't played it, yet, so he spent a few hours (which seemed to last forever, to me) creating a dungeon (the one-level dungeon of the mad wizard, Kraylor).
Then I rolled up some PCs and took off into the place. Dad had stolen liberally from B1 (which had come in the boxed set), although I didn't know that at the time. He had three "alcoves" in the entrance passage, including magic mouths in the last one (I tried to attack a magic mouth with a battleaxe). My first real encounter was in a room with a single hobgoblin, which was swiftly dispatched. He had a locked wooden box that held my first treasure, which was a few copper pieces. I remember being disappointed with copper, and my dad seeming disappointed with my reaction to the treasure. Not that it was a big downer or anything, just both of us learning how all this worked.
The most vivid memory of that dungeon was a chute trap that party fell afoul of. The slid down and landed in a giant spider's web, which was build horizontally across a room that chute terminated in. Dad ruled that the first two PCs were stuck in the web, but that the two others landed on top of them, so weren't stuck. The web was a few feet off the floor, and the spider was up in a corner, and started coming for us as soon as we hit the web. Long story short: two PCs died, the web was burnt, and the spider slain. I think a third PC died on the way out, but can't remember what killed him. One survivor made it out with some loot.
D&D never really caught on with dad. I took over the Holmes set and ran with it, from there.
Post by foster1941 on Mar 20, 2008 17:05:20 GMT -6
My first D&D adventure was the solo in Book 1 of the Mentzer-edit D&D Basic Set with the rust monster (I was down to my dagger before I finally finished that bastard off!). I don't remember what my first D&D adventure with an actual other person was -- I suspect it was either with my mom (me as DM running the sample dungeon in Mentzer Book 2 with the carrion crawler) or my friend Brad (him as DM running (very badly) The Keep on the Borderlands).
My first time GMing was in fall of 1977. My friend had just received the original edition of Basic D&D (light blue mono-tone cover). I was initially not interested in playing so Friday evening I just watched them play. Then when they quit, I took the book, and stayed up all night reading and absorbing it. In the morning, I had them make characters and we started playing. Play soon migrated to the back of my friend’s dad’s station wagon as we headed off to the major birthday event - a visit to Battleship Cove in Massachusetts. Through the course of the day, we went through like 3 sets of PCs with them reaching 3rd level, and then starting over.
Since this was pre-module days, all we had was the tiny dungeon in the back of the book (I think I mostly ignored it), and the dungeon geomorphs and the monster and treasure assortment (the 2nd edition of the box would eventually be packed with module B1 Into the Unknown).
I know I struggled a lot with the rules. We didn’t figure out hit points and hit dice quite correctly. I also didn’t think that all weapons should do the same damage, and proposed that weapon damage should be based on the cost (at which point, one player declared he would use a boat as a weapon since it was the most expensive piece of equipment…). I forget how I actually did weapon damage, but there I was, hadn’t even started playing and was already concocting house rules (it should be pointed out that I had been playing WWII miniatures war games for quite some time, in fact, earlier that year, I had chosen to buy Tractics instead of D&D because I couldn’t figure out why anyone would want to play this paper and pencil game over a miniatures game, and many years before this, I had started working out my own board wargames, having cut my teeth on Tactics II at something like 10 years of age).
My first game was at the school wargame club, a bash at The Thieves of Badabaskor as a 4th Level Cleric. I recall all went pear shaped when we crossed over with another game in the same dungeon going on in the club at the same time (some clever DMing from 12 year olds) and the other party tried to rob our lot - our DM hadn't noticed that the other mob averaged 8th level, and we were massacred.
It was good fun, for all the carnage, and I pestered my mum to get me the Basic set which led to many, many expeditions to the famous B1 dungeon.
My first D&D game was in 1982. I knew nothing about the rules, but I was given a fighter with a Strength of 18/00 to play. He ended up running away from a goblin with a knife. The DM just looked at me and told me "you're like 6'6", covered in armor, carrying a 5' long sword and strong enough to uproot a tree!" And I just replied "yeah, but he had a knife. he was gonna stab me!"
Following that, I ended up playing Villians & Vigilantes for a year or so.
In 1984 my friends wanted to give D&D another try. Since I'd kind of inherited all the old D&D stuff from some of the older kids who had moved on to other games, I ran the adventure. I put the party through The Lost City, and remembered just why I loved sword & sorcery in the first place! We ran a mishmash of Classic and AD&D with classes like Elf and Dwarf side by side with assassins and paladins. Basically whatever the players wanted to play was fine with me. In the end it turned out to be more about the adventure and story than about any actual rules, and a lot of the rules details that I didn't know I just made up as we went along. Nobody was any wiser, and the game rocked!
1979, in high school. The chess team was big into AD&D, so our president, Deen Hergott (at the time he was Junior Canadian Chess Champion) ran us through B1 In Search of the Unknown using AD&D. I played a Magic User who used his Magic Missile spell up on his first turn and spent the rest of the dungeon skulking around. Two people got eaten by a bag of Devouring, and two people jumped into the acid pool . i was hooked.
Malik, Human Thief lvl 1, AC 7, HP: 6, sword/dagger
Post by vladtolenkov on Apr 27, 2008 4:16:53 GMT -6
The first time I "properly" played D&D was an AD&D 1E game which was run by my friend Jeff's older brother. I rolled up a Ranger which he started at 8th Level because he ran us through G1 Steading of the Hill Giant Chief. I remember vividly sneaking passed the sleeping Hill Giant guard at the entrance. Good times. I'm pretty certain that was where I first saw the Monster Manual. A book of monsters that you can fight? I was sold! I've always had a soft spot for the beasties. Guillermo Del Toro says about his films "If there's not a monster on my call sheet I don't show up." I know exactly what he means.
Previously a group of us had played a D&D type "Dungeon Game" with a single six sided dice during our 3rd Grade English class. I guess Mrs. Hen was just glad we weren't being too disruptive. There was one room where we had to fight like a hundred dwarves. Ridiculous but fun. It wasn't D&D but it was enough to get me hooked. Somewhere in there I saw the Moldvay boxed set advertised in the Sears catalog and bugged my parents for it for Christmas.
The first adventure I ran as a GM must have been B1 Keep On the Borderlands although I don't remember much about it to be honest.
I don't remember much about my first game, it was something cobbled together from the Geomorphs and the Monster and Treasure assortments. But I definitely remember my first character, Gantor the Invisible. Why the title Invisible, you ask? He was a magic user, with only 1 hit point. Any time a fight started, after he threw that one spell he was GONE. After he picked up another level and some more hit points he got a little bolder, but the name stuck.
Any fool of a DM can kill his players, it's as easy as "Rocks fall, everybody dies". The Art lies in giving them the opportunity to kill themselves, in as entertaining a manner as possible.
Winter, probably of '76-'77, but memory is fuzzy*. I was in elementary school. Mom & Dad had gone out for the night and hired a high-school (?) or college (?) guy as a babysitter.
I got up to use the bathroom, and saw stuff that didn't look like any homework I'd ever heard of. An hour or two later, I was hooked. It was another year or two before I got my hands on "official" rules and polyhedral dice. In the meantime, I made up my own games.
Funny thing: Some of my mates got turned on to D&D about the same time, but it was only years later at a con that we shared the enthusiasm with one another. Our somewhat similar, cobbled-together and mutable "Galactic Conquest" game went on, though.
The adventure in Holmes' book with his version of the rules in 1980 while in college. A friend had loaned me and another couple of guys the book. We didn't have dice, so we used the old playing card substitution trick. IIRC, my character was CE and the other player's was LG. At first, the alignments didn't make a lot of sense to me, so I thought that CE was better than LE. Why? Cause if my character were LE then he'd have to be evil all of the time, but a chaotic character would only have to be evil some of the time. Did I mention that I didn't understand alignments all that well at first?
I still don't understand them. Maybe Home Team, Visiting Team and Fans would work for me.
Or possibly Home Team, Visiting Team, and everybody who is sick and d****d tired of all the traffic around the stadium.
Heh. So true. I thought for a minute there you were going to say sick and tired of sports analogies. But you know, Life really is a lot like Football.
I know I've posted this across the net a few times before...but here it is again anyway. My first game, which was also my first time as DM, was an attempt by me to jump right in. I had the Holmes box, B1, B2 and some confusing 'Advanced' module, D1. I convinced my neighbor Alex, and my Mom, to play. I gathered them together, told them a little bit about the Caves of Chaos, and showed them the funky dice.
I'm not sure how we did the characters anymore. I think I just told them they were adventurers looking for treasure, and had them keep track of hit points. Not much else. I doubt we even named the characters. It was just Mom and Alex.
I then proceeded to unfold the B2 map, and placed it at the center of the kitchen table (our old one, which was now a gaming table in the basement), you know, Monopoly style.
I told them what was where, and it was decided that the Kobolds should be the first targets. Then my Mom rolled a d6 in order to move to begin play. I had to chastise her for not understanding the rules! Sheesh.
Anyway, I learned how to play (and also how NOT to play) later at a friends house using the LBB in a long running home brewed Tolkien-esque campaign. I quickly moved to AD&D and the rest is history. A fairly common shared-history, as I am finding out all these years later.
"Most of the rules are only between my ears and they're constantly changing" - Dave Arneson
Post by James Maliszewski on May 20, 2008 14:34:18 GMT -6
I have only the dimmest recollection of my first game. It would have been over Christmas break in 1979, when I cracked open the Holmes Basic my mother had bought my Dad the year before. He'd been reading about D&D in all the newspapers and talked about it a lot, so she foolishly figured he'd want a copy. He never opened it and it sat unused in the linen closet in the hallway for a year, until a friend of mine got a copy of the Dungeon! boardgame for Christmas and it reminded me of that "weird" game in the closet. I snagged it, opened it up, and tried my best to make sense of the thing.
Our first adventure was loosely based on module B1, which came packaged with my Holmes set. Aside from our many other points of confusion, there was the fact that my box didn't include any polyhedral dice but had chits instead (and a coupon for sending away for some dice). We wound up using just D6s and rolled as many as necessary to get close to the range we needed (for example, we used 3D6 for D20) and muddled our through it. We had fun, of course, but my friend's older brother, who was a gamer, laughed at us and then deigned to instruct us on the "right" way to play the game. Despite it all, we were grateful for his help and he eventually DMed us through several adventures (along with my friend's Dad).
I can't recall anyone's characters or exactly what happened. I recall a lot of deaths and green slime seemed to be everywhere. I also remember that the room in Quasqueton with all the pools of liquid was an alternately deadly and hilarious place.
I know I've told the story here before, but what the heck: It was probably the spring of '78, I was in 9th grade, and was smack in the middle of Gygax's 'target audience - sci-fi and fantasy geek, medieval history/warfare freak (already knew the difference between a Lucerne hammer and a Halberd), and a wargamer since 5th grade. I talked my mother into taking me to the mall so I could spend my hard-earned allowance on SPI's massive "Middle Earth", but for some reason, the Holmes edition box caught my eye, and I decided to take a chance on it. I read through the rules (well, skimmed), by the time I read the 'sample game dialog' I groked the basic idea, and so I cut apart the dungeon geomorphs (this was the earlier edition that did not have the B! module in it), populated it at random with the Monster and Treasure Assortment, and suckered my brother into rolling up a character and giving it a try. We spent the rest of the afternoon at it, and were both thoroughly hooked. When I got back to school on Monday, I started converting my friends like some 'Invasion of the Body Snatchers' pod-person.
I never did manage to get that copy of Middle Earth...
Happily chasing game systems down dark alleys, clubbing them senseless, and rifling through their pockets for loose tables since 1978 Shameless plug
Right. My first D&D session, which was also my first RPG experience and also my first attempt at GMing happened sometime during the mid to late 90's. I forget the exact year.
To make a long story short, I noticed one day that my colleague who sat besides me in physics class had an odd-looking hardcover book titled "Rules Cyclopedia". He spent most of that day explaining what the game was all about, lent me the book for a week and I decided to get my hands on a copy.
Sadly it proved quite hard and it was not until months latter, on a trip to the capital that I found a gaming shop and bought the basic D&D black box with Zanzer's dungeon and ran it for two mates. I know we never got past the first session and details are fuzzy. But I clearly remember one of the characters finding a rod of resurrection "just lying around" in a room to bring his companion, who had died in the first encounter, back to life. For some reason the players learned to hate bugbears with a passion.
My first game was in 1978. My friend Bob had bought the game and had played it already; he was trying to describe it to me and I couldn't make sense of the description. He told a story about a group of adventurers in a maze looking for gold. I didn't understand what the board looked like, or how it worked, but I figured that out as we played. Later, we sat down to play. Bob C. was DM, and if I remember right, Don, Jay, Ray, me and Bob W. were players (I may have forgotten someone). We each got out a sheet of notebook paper and rolled SIWCDC as instructed, then chose character classes. It was determined that I had an elf which meant I also had infravision and a magic missile spell. We bought our platemail, iron rations and coils of rope and headed off to the dungeon. The dungeon was, apparently, just a short walk from town. There was a hillside with an iron door, long stuck open, that led down into the darkness. I just remember slowly filling up a sheet of graph paper with random shaped rooms as we explored. We were so excited I think we played several times a week, burning through a lot of player characters. We would periodically retrace our steps out of the dungeon, dragging our dead along (or just leaving them) and then head off to the tavern to recruit new PCs to replace the fallen. I remember fighting giant rats, kobolds, goblins, etc., and hunting around for treasure. I think the DM may have used the Dungeon Geomorphs and the random monsters and treasures. It seemed like every single treasure chest was trapped. At some point we ran into an undead creature (I think it might have been a wight or something) and it was killing or draining the party members but our weapons couldn't hurt it. My character saw a bright sword hanging on the wall so I grabbed it and killed the monster, which caused the party members who had been infected with 'undeath' to fall to the floor as well, but the blade of the sword melted away. We were too relieved to have survived to feel gypped.
Last Edit: May 26, 2008 15:40:39 GMT -6 by Deleted
I do! I was even the DM. Here's how crappy it was.
"You are standing in front of a worn-down looking hill with a door in the side. What do you do?" "Oooh let's dig a hole right here and see if we can find a secret entrance!" "After 10 minutes of digging, your shovel hits a wooden chest. What do you do?"
Etc. etc. etc. ad nauseum
"There is one good thing about Marx: he was not a Keynesian." -- Murray Rothbard
Post by Haldo Bramwise on Jul 2, 2008 19:42:31 GMT -6
A Thursday night in October 1984. I was a Junior in High School and my geeky friends told me about this cool game with magic users and rangers.
I spent nearly and hour creating my first character, a fighter with 17 strength. We started gaming that night using the Temple of Elemental Evil. Off we went to the Moat House. As we entered the fallen tower of the Moat house, a giant spider fell on my character and bit him. I failed my saving throw and my first character died without even swinging his sword in anger!
My first game was in 1998, when I was 13 years old.
We were at one of our farms, down here at Argentina. In our main base house in a small wood, quite devastated by a hurricane a couple of years ago. It was night and we had just finished eating lamb. A lamb we had selected from a small troupe and killed that morning. My brother told me and my friend that he'll run that night a game of Dungeons & Dragons. He was 26 by then.
I played a human fighter and my friend an elf fighter. The game started with both of us in separate rooms of the house. Each was crossing "the woods". My brother told each of us that we heard cries for help from a boy and the laugher of some grotesque voices. Both of us decided to go to help and so we both ran down to the living room where the gaming table was ready. When we got there, 2 orcs where tormenting a hobbit. After a very emotional first time ever D&D combat we had saved our little new friend. He told us that a band of orcs had stolen his "magical dagger" and had escaped to "a dungeon not so far from here". He asked us to accompany him and help him recover it and in return, he promised us we would keep all treasure found.
So of we went to the dungeon and descended down into it.
We actually got lost and never found the dagger. We where constantly invaded by an odor of a something like a dead person. It got stronger stronger and stronger as we traveled through the dungeon. (Remember we where playing in a house in the middle of a wood in the middle of f**king nowhere! At night, with the light of fire only!)
Suddenly the odor was tremendously strong and a GHAST showed up. We had an EPIC fight against it. Including a moment in which the whole party was paralyzed and the ghast started eating one of us slowly. But he got too confident and suddenly one of us de-paralyzed and back stabbed him from the back! The halfling didn't survive that battle.
We where very very weak down to 2 or 1 hps each and we luckyly found a secret door with some treasure and some healing potions. We drank the pots, took the treasure and ran the hell out of that d**ned place!
Last Edit: Jul 31, 2008 12:48:27 GMT -6 by Zulgyan
I really wish I could recall, but my memory is fuzzy. I know I was 8 years old and that I ran the game, but can't recall the details.
I do know it was either B1 or B2, as I got the Moldvay Basic set for my 8th birthday in '81 and before I even knew the rules, I'd already spent my lifes savings on both B1 and the AD&D Monster Manual (what 8 year old didn't love monsters?). I played my first game with my neighbor, Mark, a friend from School, Dan, and my younger brother, Jeff.
I probably ran it completely wrong and/or cheated up the place, too. But it was the beginning of an all new world for the 4 of us, one that kept us playing and entertaining for years!
I lost track of the other two, but I wonder if my brother would want to pick up the dice again someday... we both have kids who are just about there... ;D
Post by scottenkainen on Sept 22, 2008 11:48:34 GMT -6
It was the summer of 1982, I was 11, and my friend Erik had the '81 D&D Basic boxed set and module B4 The Lost City. It was just the two of us, so he gave me a handful of sheets of lined notebook paper with pretty generic human fighters statted on each of them. I half-paid attention to the boxed flavor text until I encountered the giant fire beetle. With no sense of scale or place, we had my fighters surround the beetle and, in a few melee rounds, dispatched it with their spears. We didn't play much longer, but I was already hooked. When I went home, I told my mother all about the combat. On my next birthday, I received a copy of the same boxed set (if the '83 boxed set was already out that May, we didn't know about it).
It was 1980-ish in Junior High. My friend invited me over and I played his older brother's girlfriend's character ( she had something better to do I suppose...) Naraemer the Mage. Who, in the second room was able to pot a kobold with his magic missle. That left 7 more who cut Naraemer and most of the party into kobold bite size bits.
I then rolled up my first character, a fighter. Stark the Destroyer. While of middlin' to wussy stats started life with 10 hit points. ( no take your best roll for HP's back then). He went on to glory. I was hooked
Post by gazeboslayer on Jan 16, 2009 14:55:09 GMT -6
I vaguely remember being in a party charged with sneaking onto a pirate ship to steal something other. My brilliant character (or maybe it was me) decided he would swim to the ship and climb the anchor chain rather than risk sneaking up the gangplank. He was promptly eaten by something in the water. I was hooked after that.
Dec 1975 MGA/MDG/UDG Detroit Game Con. - Wintercon IV, I think Blackmoor was just released as it was the prize for "winning" the game along with a gift certificate of $9 which I spent on the new Ral Partha minis, expensive but worth the 60 cents? each. A group of seven of us who all played games like Tractics together went out to fight a Black Dragon, also a girl who knew the GM came with us. I was a Paladin. We slew the Dragon in a swamp taking some wounds, but when it came to the treasure tretchery was also found. My older brother and one of his friends tried to kill the rest of the party. I think I was killed, but the GM let me live to claim the prize because the only one left standing was the girl who knew him. She polymorphed into a gold dragon using an item from the treasure slew the traitors and flew me to safety. What a Great Game!
My first game I watched as the group played the game. All I remember was although I wasn't playing that night, I had a blast. The next week was outside on a picnic table...I started with an Illusionist named Skellnag the Wonderous..lol...he didn't last long, but I was hooked.