Dungeons and Dragons (Part 1)

on Tuesday, June 26, 2007


This is the story of my experience, while I was at University, with the strange gaming world of Dungeons and Dragons.

The Initiation
The world of Dungeon and Dragons is a strange and secretive one. I was always interested in it and made my interest known but I got no response from my colleagues other than some vague mumbling about how they had read about it somewhere. Yet every Monday, I saw sleepy, bloodshot eyes all around - evidence that each weekend, there was a secret gathering with long, wild, serious D & D marathons going on.
For weeks, I felt left out. Then one winter day, Karen asked me what I was doing for the weekend. I said "Nothing much - feeding squirrels."

"How would you like to see some real action?" she asked teasingly. Of course, I was ecstatic. "Meet me outside the labs at 9.00 am Saturday. Come alone and don't be late!"

I was there early and had to wait for her. Eventually, Karen appeared out of the blowing snow and led me into the white landscape. We took some creative short cuts through some hedges and fences and we walked along some streets for a good fifteen minutes. I realised that we had been going round the same cul-de -sac for the last five minutes and it was a familiar cul-de-sac too.

"Karen, are we headed for Wally's pad? I ask only cause we've gone round it four times."
"Shhh!" and she pushes me up the driveway and to Wally's front door. "Had to make sure we were not followed" she offered.

She tapped the door three times, paused and then tapped twice. Wally, opened the door and ushered us in without a word. Only when we were inside did they both relax. "Sorry about the cloak and dagger but not every one's significant other or supervisor knows where we are today and we want to keep it that way!"

I was led into the den and there assembled were six other comrade at arms waiting and eager for the coming adventure into the Dark Realms.


The Rules
I enthusiastically asked lots of questions but nobody really wanted to waste time helping the novice out. So the rules were simplified and summarised for me. Chose a character. Play the character. When the character does something, I get to roll the dice which determines the outcome of the action. Everything else was under the control of the Almighty Wally our host and Dungeon Master.


The Pecking Order
The wonderful thing about D & D is that you get to chose from a variety of characters. For example, you could be a wizard, not unlike Gandalf. Or perhaps a super-righteous defender of all that is good, a Paladin. Even a Ranger with special abilities like talking to animals seemed like a cool character. Or perhaps a cleric, skilled with knowledge of the supernatural.
"Why can't I be the Paladin?" I asked.
"Andy is the Paladin." Karen replies.
"How come he gets to be the Paladin?"

"He brought the beer."

"Ahh!"

"Druid?"

"Jaime. He brought the chips."

"Ranger? Wizard? Elf?"

"Taken, taken, taken."

"What's left?"

"You can be a thief."

Beggars can't be choosers. "Okay!" I said cheerfully. "I'll be the best thief there ever was. Let the games begin."

(end of part 1. To be continued......)

13 comments:

leslie said...

...anxiously awaiting Part Deux.

Anonymous said...

I am a level 4 blogger dual class level 3 pirate.

Also , I eagerly await part 2, where we find out that your thief gets his hands chopped off for slighting The Gods

CS said...

My kids are into a game that I think is called Runescape. Or Runequest. I'm not sure. But it's a role playing game and I totally don't get it.

Ellie said...

I have always been interested in knowing more about this game. Interested in hearing the outcome. I wonder if it is as sinister as I have been led to believe it can be?

http://www.creativewriting.ca said...

Great bit of uh, technical writing--writing your can actually learn from.

Yes, we're all waiting for Part Two.

LGS, are you left-handed?
That makes you sinister. :)

Ivan.

Josie said...

So... didn't they have a squirrel? Seems to me there should have been a squirrel.

Waiting for part two. Do we have to follow you through the snowy hedges?

EA Monroe said...

LGS, I'm with everyone else and eager to read Part 2. What happens to the thief??

We used to role play our own version of The Man from U.N.C.L.E back in the day. Wow! Did we ever have a lot of fun sneaking around town (usually after dark) tracking and chasing each other and ending with a good ole choreographed brawl.

geewits said...

You would love my husband. We have a large cabinet full of D&D stuff. He still gets the magazines and draws maps but he's only actually played omce in 10 years. He didn't enjoy it because he wasn't the Dungeon Master. I just try not to roll my eyes in front of him.

Lorraine said...

mmmm I heard of those games, watch your squirrel :)

nancycle said...

Gahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!

To be continued!!!!

*huff*

I will wait in patience. I will wait in patience. I will wait in patience...

Janice Thomson said...

When my children were younger this was played with some serious consequences at college...to the point where lives were at stake...like the rest I'm interested in the outcome...

Lone Grey Squirrel said...

leslie,
Oh, no! Now I feel the pressure of expectations.

anon,
Welcome. Are you a regular visitor? I see that you anticipate a gruesome end to my character. Let's not get tahead of the story! LoL.

cs,
Role playing is like play acting in a make believe world. Don't know anything about these new games.

ellie,
there is a sinister side but I don't believe it is inherent in the game. It's not that the game promotes the occult or anything like that. However, it can be addictive and a small proportion may not be able to tell between imagination and reality. Addiction can occur with anything fun.

ivan,
I'm right handed. Or at least, I think so! I might be a suppressed leftie!

josie,
Squirrel. Thief. About the same!

ea,
Oooo. Man from UNCLE. Now that brings back some memories. Ilya Kuyakin (not sure of the spelling) and it was something Solo.

geewits,
I sympathise with your husband. The anticipation and preparation is probably more satisfying than most games but like surfers, we keep hoping for that perfect wave.

lorraine,
The squirrel's fate was sealed.

nancy,
patience is a virtue. Didn't Yoda say something like that.

janice,
Aarggh! more performance anxiety as I get ready to post part II.

Top cat said...

fascinating, I'll be back to read 2.
tc

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