The Beatles and Role-Playing Gaming collide in my mind once again, when I consider the role of searching history for relics
Evolve:83? I can’t speak much beyond AD&D, which was my go-to at the time, but 83 was the year TSR USA put out three of their finest modules - Tracy Hickman’s I4 and I5, which completed the Desert of Desolation series, and Tracy and Laura Hickman’s I6 Ravenloft. Those modules might not have changed things as much as the Beatles, but they confirmed a new direction for D&D, shifting away from the dungeon crawls of old towards a much greater emphasis on story. Meanwhile, TSR UK was playing its own part, kicking off the fabulous UK series with Dave Brown, Tom Kirby and Graeme Morris’s excellent UK1 Beyond the Crystal Cave, and launching Imagine magazine. It really was a cracking year.
am with you on Art & Arcana - loved seeing all those old covers, monsters, etc in a lovely big art-house book. Like that kind of stuff. I also really enjoy Shannon Appelcline's history of RPGs through the decades. Enough history facts, with the key game designers, companies, why they did well/ badly, how gaming evolved... Dice Men was a nice nostalgia trip - although I strongly suspect it is a rose-tinted glasses view of GW's development. Still a nice read. Ben Rigg's Slaying the Dragon is a little dry at times, although still interesting - but had to be read in 'chunks'. Ready Player One was a much more fun to go retro - although it was a novel.... Nice read - keep up the good work & wittertainment! Somehow it keeps me from going totally mad. That plus running my weekly game!
Ah...J H Brennan. Grailquest was my entry point into RPG World. The adventures had a real whimsy to them and Stonemarten Village and the Crypt Fiend still have a big place in my affection for the books. Grailquest then lead to Fighting Fantasy and on to a homebrew RPG that we'd play at lunchtimes at school. The rules were based on a skim-read of the AD&D Players Guide and a collective imagined version of what RPGs were. When I eventually got the D&D redbox it turned out we weren't far off the mark. Redbox really kicked off RPGs for me, which brings me back around to 1983 - that's the year it came out.
My mum saw the Beatles and the Kinks in the 60s which continues to blow my mind.