Tuesday, September 16, 2014
My D&D Part Two
Picking up from part one. I discovered AD&D and from then on that's all my friends and I played. We happily merged AD&D and Basic. We ignored things we didn't like or seemed not fun, like weapon speed and encumbrance. I ran all the classics: Tomb of Horrors, White Plume Mountain, Expedition to the Barrier Peaks, Lost Caverns of Tsjocath, the entire Giants- Drow-Demonweb campaign, Temple of Elemental Evil, and even some Dragonlance.
During this time I discovered other games. I remember playing Star Frontiers and Marvel Super Heroes a lot. In high school I joined game club at the local community college and suddenly every game was opened up. If there was an RPG published in the 80's, I played it. For some reason, and I don't remember why anymore, I lost interest in D&D. I really got into Rolemaster and Runequest. I think I must have been searching for more complicated rules.
Rolemaster. I started my Rolemaster campaign in Middle Earth. After a while though, I wanted that D&D "feel". I had the characters magically transported to the Forgotten Realms and converted the Curse of the Azure Bonds adventure to Rolemaster. I don't remember it being that hard. I think there must have been D&D to Rolemaster conversion rules in one of the books. Looking back, I think Rolemaster was intended to be used as a D&D rule replacement. After that I only used D&D conversions. I converted the entire Ruins of Undermountain campaign and the Night Below campaign. Somewhere in there was another run through Tsjocanth as well.
When I went on to college, I lost touch with my Runequest GM but I still wanted to play. I recruited my friends and we played a Runequest game that lasted almost my entire college years. I still have a lot of notes and characters sheets from that game. (Including, unknown to me at the time of course, my future wife's character.)
I still wanted to play D&D though. I wanted my new players to experience those great old D&D adventures. I picked 2nd Edition D&D at a used bookstore. I wasn't impressed. I thought about converting the adventures to Runequest, but that seemed like a lot of work. I fell back on my old friend Rolemaster, except by this time, I had tired of it's complexity. I created aof mash up of the two games. The characters were created using AD&D and I used the combat system from Rolemaster. I had a single sheet of rules that I wrote up that told how to compute your Rolemaster combat stats using the AD&D stats. It was actually pretty easy. The magic system didn't quite fit, but no one seemed to care. I ran my former Runequest players through the Temple of Elemental Evil campaign and everyone had a blast.
Unfortunately, that was the end of D&D for me for a quite some time. The D&D/Rolemaster game ended sometime in 1994. I didn't play D&D again until 3rd Edition came out in 2000.