Armagideon Time

Archive for the ‘Role-Playing with the Changes’ category

I was supposed to attend the University of Wisconsin in Madison. I applied, got accepted, paid the deposit, and even managed to snag a dorm room despite the cautionary language about housing availability in the school’s admissions prospectus. Unfortunately, my weird legal status — where my grandmother had custody but my father still held legal […]

This feature’s purpose was to chronicle my teens through mid-twenties through the various role-playing games I played or purchased during that timeframe. That product-plus-personal-anecdote formula breaks down when it comes to the stretch between the December 1989 and October 1990, when my interest in the hobby took a steep nosedive. There were many overlapping reasons […]

Excalibur Hobbies in Malden Center was my game store of choice from the last days of the Eighties up through the middle of the Nineties. It was at the midpoint of the walk between the Orange Line station and the New England Comics store where I bought my funnybooks, it had a fairly deep inventory […]

Sometime in the autumn of 1989, I stumbled across a glowing magazine review for the Dungeon Lairs. The box set supplement was a Games Workshop effort which followed up on the publisher’s previous sets of mix-and-match tiles aimed at bring ease-of-use and some visual flair to table-top RPG loot crawls. As the title suggested, Dungeon […]

We’re going to go a little out of sequence with this one, because I am an old man and sometimes things get lost in the mnemonic shuffle. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade hit theaters at the tail end of my junior year in high school. I was never a huge fan of the franchise. […]

I got into role-playing games in the mid-Eighties, well after the hobby’s faddish push into mainstream culture had come and gone. As far as my peers were concerned, it was a done deal to be spoken of in the past tense and I considered myself lucky when I stumbled across a handful of hold-out enthusiasts […]

When I started my ongoing autobio series about role-playing games, the plan was to cover everything. Each box set, system, module, sourcebook and so forth from my teens and early twenties would get a write-up regarding its personal significance. In practice, however, that proved to be an impossible task. There were a number of items […]

Looking back at my RPG purchases from that year, 1989 was apparently “The Year of the Expensive Hardback.” I bought three of the damn things during those twelve months, each one wielding an outsized influence that went beyond the gaming table. While I underwent a good deal of buyer’s remorse over Realm of Chaos and […]

Through the rest of the spring and early summer of 1989, I got into the habit of picking up stray issues of White Dwarf from Excalibur’s large inventory of cover-priced back issues. I tended to stick to the ones that included relevant material for Warhammer Fantasy Role Play, but ended up spending more time checking […]

By the time the spring of 1989 rolled around, the post-traumatic shellshock I experienced following my mother’s death faded into a constant state of restless boredom. I welcomed the sense of stability living with my grandmother provided, but there was a part of me that had difficulty adjusting to a life where horrible shit didn’t […]

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