D&D 40th Anniversary Blog Hop Challenge, which consisted of a D&D-centric question a day, every day, for all 28 days of February, but one this, the last day of the month, I'm going to half-assedly answer them all!
Day 1: First person who introduced you to D&D? Which edition? Your first Character?
I introduced myself to it by buying a couple of gaming books with no foreknowledge of what the whole thing was all about. I just liked looking at the monsters, y'know? The books were AD&D 1st, and by the time I started playing, maybe 2-3 years later, I was the DungeonMaster and didn't have to make a character.
Day 2: First person YOU introduced to D&D? Which edition? THEIR first character?
There were four of us discovering it together. Mark made a noisy warrior called Blackthorn. Al was a magic-user called Elric. And I don't remember the cleric's name, but he was played by Roger.
Day 3: First dungeon you explored as a PC or ran as a DM.
Good question, no idea. I would take any map I could find, from gaming books and magazines, fantasy novels, and of course, use grid paper to make my own. We were not in an area with a comic/gaming shop at the time, nor did the Internet exist, so we just poached from everything and made do.
Day 4: First dragon you slew (or some other powerful monster).
I've never slain a dragon personally. I'm sure it happened in our over-powered campaign, I just don't remember it (give me a break, it was back in the 80s).
Day 5: First character to go from 1st level to 20th level (or highest possible level in a given edition).
I've played so few games, I never really got beyond whatever level I started at. My original players, in that bastardization of AD&D (we combined various editions and systems, whatever worked) all got to level 20 in their original class super-fast then started dual-classing and getting up to demi-god status by our third year.
Day 6: First character death. How did you handle it?
Those guys were immortal. We did kill Blackthorn off, but though it seemed like a demon-queen's doing, it was one of the other players whose assassin just hated the guy and had prepared an elaborate hoax using magic items and time stops to cover his tracks. My own first death was when we were invited to a well-established campaign and the older GM managed an accidental Total Party Kill that infuriated his regulars so much he waved it away as an illusion. I was amused and bemused by his lack of forethought and embarrassment.
The original AD&D Monster Manual with the primitive art on the cover. I forgot it on a plane that same year and bought the next edition as soon as I could. Still miss that cover. (In any case, all my AD&D 1st books are in my little brother's possession, unless he got rid of them.)
Day 8: First set of polyhedral dice you owned. Do you still use them?
When we started, an older student (didn't know him) gave us some old powder blue dice from one of the original D&D boxes, with the numbers mostly smudged off. They're still in my dice bowl and get some use.
Day 9: First campaign setting (homebrew or published) you played in.
A homebrew using elements of AD&D taken from various Monster Manual-type books mixed with Fantasy Wargaming and later, Arcanum (I converted to AD&D proper only near the end at the 4-year mark). The setting was a mix of everything, ever. The players wandered all over. I remember using the maps in such books as Guardians of the Flame as a template.
Day 10: First gaming magazine you ever bought (Dragon, Dungeon, White Dwarf, etc.).
Dragon Magazine #116. I discussed it HERE.
Day 11: First splatbook you begged your DM to approve.
Never happened. I was DM, and splats didn't really exist. Reversing the question, my player of Chinese descent really wanted to play an Asian archetype and asked to play the Ninja class from an issue of Dragon. Does that count?
Day 12: First store where you bought your gaming supplies. Does it still exist?
Day 13: First miniature(s) you used for D&D.
I still have everything I painted (and everything I didn't). Not sure what came first. I'm thinking some AD&D 2nd stuff, possibly a trio of orcs, or some of the Forgotten Realms heroes. The beholder was a challenge, but I know I definitely used him on the play mat.
Day 14: Did you meet your significant other while playing D&D? Does he or she still play? (Or just post a randomly generated monster in protest of Valentine's Day).
Random monster it is.
Day 15: What was the first edition you didn't enjoy. Why?
3rd. I was a big fan of 2nd, though by the time d20 rolled around, I wasn't playing sword&sorcery anymore. Saw someone else's books, in their tiny tiny script, and read a lot about the edition, enough to know it wasn't for me. 2nd had hit the sweet spot, and I hated 3rd's innovations and basic look. Still do. And what little d20 in other genres I've played, I've always come out hating the system itself.
Day 16: Do you remember your first edition war? Did you win? ;)
I always win. I guess slapping the kids down for playing 3rd, if you want to call that a "war".
Day 17: First time you heard D&D was somehow "evil."
I remember the Afterschool Special on TV that had a kid so mixed up he went down to the sewers and hallucinated his D&D campaign, and my mom did ask, just the once, if there was anything to these allegations of Satanism, etc. I explained there wasn't and she never mentioned it again.
Day 18: First gaming convention you ever attended.
Never have, not really my thing.
Day 19: First gamer who just annoyed the hell out of you.
I wish I could say it was Blackthorn's player (see above), but nah, it was actually these two intense rules lawyers I met at Question 6's game invite. When you're pulling out the Manual of the Planes to make your point, you've gone too far. We never went back.
Day 20: First non-D&D RPG you played.
Day 21: First time you sold some of your D&D books--for whatever reason.
I'm not sure I ever sold any. I gave away most of my AD&D 1st books to my kid brother at some point.
Day 22: First D&D-based novel you ever read (Dragonlance Trilogy, Realms novels, etc.)
It was R. A. Salvatore's The Crystal Shard, and I probably only read that first Drizzt trilogy. I liked fantasy a lot back then, but there was much better fare than D&D tie-in books.
Day 23: First song that comes to mind that you associate with D&D. Why?
My D&D years predate my ability to create soundtracks for my games (which I nevertheless started to do on cassette tape well before the advent of the mp3), so I'm coming up dry on this one. If I rack my brains, I come up with more recent silliness like Stephen Lynch's D&D Song. Sorry about the lack of insight.
Day 24: First movie that comes to mind that you associate with D&D. Why?
Day 25: Longest running campaign/gaming group you've been in.
That first one lasted almost five years and was very nearly a weekly thing, 10 months a year. My Dream Park game probably lasted longer, and involved way more players in the same continuity, but with more spaced-out chunks of gaming. It can hardly be called a "campaign" though.
Day 26: Do you still game with the people who introduced you to the hobby?
No. I think I'm the only gamer left standing.
Day 27: If you had to do it all over again, would you do anything different when you first started gaming?
I would have loved to have all the right books from the start, though I guess that would have made me a poorer GM in the long run. As it was, I was all about homebrewing, game design, and trying out different systems, and that package has stayed with me.
Day 28: What is the single most important lesson you've learned from playing Dungeons & Dragons?
Why the Crash of the Dice is important to role-playing.
Now if you want to read the posts of someone who actually put in the effort, I recommend Tim Knight over at Hero Press.