I started gaming in the early 80s when my brother and I learned about "Dungeons and Dragons" from my cousin Chris Alvord, who later went to work for Games Workshop. We played a little Car Wars
too, and Risk
was the game of choice over the summer with my non-gamer friends.
Update: My cousin Christ passed away in his sleep in 2015. Rest in peace, cousin.
Fast forward twenty years. In 2005 I was on vacation in Portland and stopped by Alternate Worlds in Burlingame/Hillsdale. I bought a copy of Lord of the Fries
, googled it, and discovered Boardgamegeek.
Now I have about 45 games and pretty much just buy stuff I can play at home with my family. There isn't much time to game, as it is not a priority for my significant other, so I find my interest fading somewhat due to lack of playing opportunities and other life tensions.
Another version of this story:
We played the $10 starter box of Dungeons and Dragons and eventually bought advanced D&D, but I can't remember if that was before or after my cousin introduced us to Car Wars
. I also bought a few games at our local hobby shop, like UFO: Game of Close Encounters
which I never ended up playing, and Time Tripper
which I played once or twice. The protagonist was a U.S. soldier in Vietnam who was dropping acid. We got into Traveller: The Classic Games, Games 1-6+
and also bought Azhanti High Lightning
which hit the table a few times.
When I graduated from high school I stopped playing, then spent two years overseas in the Marshall Islands, went to college, got married, went to graduate school and got a full-time teaching job.
In 2005, almost 20 years since high school, we were visiting my wife's family in Oregon and I stopped by a local game store and bought a copy of Lord of the Fries
, which was on sale for a couple of bucks. I got back to my Father-in-law's place, Googled the game and discovered this site. BAM! That led to building a collection, playing with a local group, etc. for a number of years. Now I'm pruning my collection to just awesome, essential games, having slowly realized that finding the right combination of time, players and games is very, very difficult, and that collecting is kind of a lame substitute game (for me) to play. Also, it now takes a lot more for me to get excited about a game than it used to.