One piece of collateral damage from the implosion of 38 Studios that few would take notice of but affects me personally very much is my D&D game. I sort of knew all along that I would never be part of a gamer culture as intense as the one I enjoyed at 38, but when the company started to collapse I had bigger issues on my mind. Things like job hunting, house selling, and unemployment insurance all took the forefront of my attention, and my D&D game, much like this blog, went ignored.
Well, OK, not completely. The thing is, with all of us now unemployed, we tried very hard to keep the D&D game going to maintain some level of normalcy. You would think that wouldn’t be too hard when most of us had no jobs to go to during the day, but the fallacy of unemployment leaving you with very little to occupy your time is one I had dispelled very quickly. The first two weeks saw cancelled games as players were flying about the country to go on job interviews and I spent lots of time trying to sell a house I thought I had already sold. Eventually we managed to get it together and re-institute Wednesday night as game night, but each week since then we’ve been lucky to get 4 of the 8 players to show up. And while I’m very proud of my friends for doing so well in finding lots of promising job leads, many of them seem to be in distant states that will clearly preclude gaming.
At this point, I only know for certain that two of my players will be staying local and be available to play (they have landed a jobs not too far away and show strong interest in continuing the game). Three players have already flown the coop and bowed out completely. There are a couple others that are still looking to stay in the area, and I hope very much they find something, but the future for them is less clear. My intention is to keep the game running for as long as I can. If we can find new blood to do so, then that will be excellent. If all else fails, we might try to do something online using g+, but in person gaming is always preferable when possible.
I keep wanting to say that I never knew how good I had it in terms of gaming culture over at 38, but I know that’s just not true. I was pretty aware of it, and marveled at how easy it was to recruit players and keep my campaign going. I flatter myself that there was almost a line to get into my game. Perhaps not quite, but I pretty much always felt confident that if someone left the game it would be trivial to recruit another player from the ranks of the office pool. So I won’t say that I regret not taking better advantage of that, I think I pretty much milked that experience as best I could. I had a long running weekly game, I ran occasional one-shots, I even tried to run a lunch-hour game for a time. We had board game nights and war game campaigns. Curt even encouraged us by providing some pretty sweet equipment and space. For some reason lots of folks chose Wednesday as their night, and for a while Wednesday night at 38 was like a mini gaming convention in itself, with 2 or 3 RPGs running and board games as well.
So don’t feel bad for me, perhaps it ended sooner than I expected, but I always knew it couldn’t last forever. As Dr. Suess said, “Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.” I will always look back fondly at my time at 38 as the golden age of my gaming experience. And there are still conventions to attend and games to be run. I have not given up on my Wednesday night game yet, nor will I if it can be kept going by any means.
Dice will roll.