Semi-native of Winston-Salem, NC in the U.S. (lived here since I was 8 years old). Same story as many, grew up in a family who often played games together: Scrabble, Clue, and Monopoly come immediately to mind. Uno with grandma and Chess with dad. Stratego, Battleship, and Risk with friends.
Around age 13 or 14, I found the D&D section hidden away in the very back corner of our local Waldenbooks store (where I later worked and met my wife). I bought the basic set, colored in the polyhedral dice (wow!) with a crayon, and figured out the rules with a friend. God, we loved to play that game!
Around the same time, my parents gave me a TI-99/4A computer for my birthday. I played a few video games on it (notably Parsec) but spent most of my time learning how to program BASIC and then Extended BASIC. I owe a lot to parents for introducing me to computers, which was to later become my chosen profession.
But high school came, and with it girls, and I completely forgot about programming for years and years. However, in my early twenties, I rediscovered programming when I was exposed to SQL for the first time around 1993. After a few different gigs, I am now at Wells Fargo as a web developer doing ASP.NET and C# work, soon to switch to Java.
Around 2006, I returned to a very changed world of board games when a friend directed me to the 'Geek. I could not believe what I found: an astounding array of board games and an entire subculture of cool people who played them. For a while, my friend and I played FFG games exclusively. A little later, I bought my first Eurogame, Tigris & Euphrates
. I remember being initially perplexed - is this an internal or external conflict? But it was the game that started my eventual switch over to almost exclusively Euros.
In late 2008, I finally decided I really needed to find some other gamers in my area and so I formed a local Meetup group called Camel City Gamers
. The group plays six or seven times a month and has grown to over 200 members, with about 25% of those being active. I'm very proud of this, and I have been making very good friends through this group, in particular:
That's me on the right and John on the left in the photo above.
Nowadays, I almost exclusively like multi-player, fairly heavy strategy games because I find them the most engaging, but every once in a while, I’ll play the lighter games or co-op games or even something like A Touch of Evil
once in a blue moon.
In the past couple of years, I have spent a lot of time thinking about designing my own games, and I will soon have my first one published in early 2012, Garden Dice
. If it's successful, I'll have another one after that. Come to think of it, even if it's not successful, I'll do another one.
My spouse is not a gamer, though she will play some of the card games I own and is pretty tolerant of my hobby. We have a cat named Phineas. I play the banjo, listen to vinyl records, and two of my favorite bands are Porcupine Tree
Thanks for reading, and see you on the 'Geek.