I think it’s time I admit it, I was born in 1971, and started finding my interests through the 80’s as an individual. Much of the work I do and ideas around tabletop RPG’s that I come up with today are launched from that place in the mid 1980’s. BECMI, First Edition Advanced Dungeons and Dragons, on through to Second Edition Advanced Dungeons and Dragons. It’s not productive to incite an edition war, but there is a reason I always open the First Edition Advanced Dungeons and Dragons books to get inspired. It was where it all began for me, it was the first time the land of imagination expanded out from my feet and the adventure really began.
My friends and I first broke in with the Red Box basic set, but we gobbled up the added complexity of Advanced Dungeons and Dragons as we grew.
In this time of the 80’s there was a lot going on around TSR and it seemed it had really hit a stride. The world was changing and with each roll to hit, we helped make it. Our young lives, as happens with most teen lives, were fraught with struggles as we tried to learn societies rules. By role playing we were able to think through the possible situations and interact with our friends on an entirely new level. This formed some of the strongest lasting bonds of our young, and old lives. This was often the result for many young people sitting around the table, across the country, then across the world.
Tabletop RPG’s create some immediate friendships and bonds that quickly delve into our personality places that a traditional friendship may take years to explore… if ever. When a group of gamers get together at a convention or at home there is a quick link that gets forged about the time dice start hitting the table. It’s the time we are swept back to the 80’s being teenagers and trying to figure out society. A time when we rely on our friends heavily to explore ourselves and each others thoughts and feelings.
Obviously this relates back to me personally being a teen in the 1980’s. The result though, is similar with groups that came both earlier and later to tabletop RPG gaming.
What does all this have to do with ANYTHING?
In those days when I was most inspired by gaming, there was little or no money for adventure modules. We made our own adventures. Sometimes with no plan at all, we would sit down to the table.
For our small gorup, usually of 3, of which I was almost always the DM, the story often started as follows:
You are in a tavern, and there’s an old man in the corner mumbling, sometimes yelling, and carrying on about a dungeon just outside of town!!
This would be enough for us to embark on hours of fun, laughs, and excitement. It was quite possibly the simplest of beginnings and it was all made up on the fly. Sure sometimes there was a laid out plan, but not always.
Those best quest springboards were inspired by a couple of books I had in my stack. The book of Lairs and The Book of Marvelous Magic.
Sometimes I could piece together a night of ‘by the seat of your pants’ gaming with a flip through the monster manuals for an instigator or villain, but it was the quick launch of the Book of Lairs that always created the best inspirations.
This softcover book would dedicate a few pages to a lair, or encounter set-up with a few details about what was happening and a LOT of room for the DM to alter the difficulty and flavor on the fly. It was possibly the most used, but under-read book I had. It was enough to get things flowing. It was very easy to get the core of the idea, put in some of your own twists and make it into something bigger or smaller than what it was.
Now so many years later, I have created Micro Quest Cards. Each card is inspired by the book of lairs and that original feeling. A single lair, an encounter, a simple jumping point waiting for the DM.
The format seemed simple to me as I had recently created RPG themed greeting cards.
But more than that, if you can, recall the feeling you get when a loved one gives you a card. It could be Birthday, bar mitzvah, holiday, wedding… whatever. It really is a little hollow feeling. Some sentiment, and a signature. Like they were some sort of rockstar.
Then comes the guilt. the HUGE wave of guilt after a couple months of living on the refrigerator when you finally put the sentiment from your loved one in the garbage! We all do it, we all have to get through it. Then it may occur to you, that it happens to your loved ones after you have given them a card. The guilt as they throw away your sentiment.
The Micro Quest Cards are like taking a page out of the book of lairs, adding in that feeling of gaming in the 80’s with your teen age friends, and handing it to your friend or loved one on a special occasion. when it is opened, there is no hollow feeling!! This is a GODDAMM ADVENTURE! it won’t be thrown in the trash later, it will be added to the gaming collection and the DM arsenal!
With these cards you are giving the sentiment of the card AND a great gaming supplement!
But to bring this to full vibrant life, I need your help. Back the kickstarter now and get your cards as rewards.
Help launch the idea and change the way Tabletop RPG gamers give greeting cards!