Hmmm. Interesting one. Not something I think about…
Let me think back a couple of years to before my children got me back into D&D. Scottish Country dancing was my hobby, but due to a bad political experience I’d been pretty much put off it. At work I was on a phased return on a new project after two months off with stress and burn-out caused by my inability to convince the other two members of the project management team we were heading for disaster. (The fact I’ve since been proved right is little consolation.) I had been struggling with depression for a couple of years, and I had just changed drugs for the third time after my wife told me she missed me when I hadn’t been away (fluoxetine works for many people but just turned me into a zombie; I’ve now been on citalopram since then and that’s the one which works for me and allows me to function almost like a normal human being).
Then (I can’t remember why) the topic of D&D came up around the dinner table and my children asked to try it out, so I dug out my old BECMI books and ran a couple of sessions for the family, clearing out Caldwell’s castle (which was the start of the development of my Clifton Caldwell, merchant extraordinaire in Threshold and beyond).
My wife and daughter were distinctly “meh” but my son was hooked, and it got me back into D&D. I investigated the current state of play and started investing in 5e. I dusted off the old gazetteers and found the missing ones as PDFs on DriveThruRPG. I had an interest again. I immersed myself in the world of Mystara and D&D. But I didn’t really have anyone to play it with apart from my son.
Now let me think back almost exactly one year. I went to visit my mother in the North East of Scotland (a 4-hour journey from Edinburgh) and on my way home I was thinking about D&D and how participating was a chore for my wife and daughter. And I wondered if there were any people in Edinburgh who might be interested in joining a new campaign.
When I got home, I got onto the Internet and found the Open Roleplaying Community (ORC). I advertised for intrepid adventurers for a new D&D 5e campaign, saying I was particularly open to less-experienced players (since it was so long since I’d played, and I was not familiar with 5e). I pulled together my initial description (which still forms the basis of Melestrua’s Mystara on Obsidian Portal) and got a group together.
So, how has gaming changed me?
It’s given me back an interest and introduced me to multiple new circles of friends I might otherwise not have met.
BTW: you may have noticed that it’s no longer August and I’m still on day ten of RPGaDay2018. You may also have noted there’s been quite a gap since the previous post.
One of the things I have had to learn with my chronic illness (otherwise known as depression) is to accept my limits and do what I can. Completing RPGaDay in August would have been nice, but it wasn’t going to happen (particularly since the end of August and start of September have been particularly tough from that point of view), so my goal is just to keep going and finish it at some point…
Next: what is your WILDest character name?