17 February 2007

Workplace D&D, Redux

So, about the workplace gaming group.

The players in the group (thus far) include Deana, one of my Purchasing Dept. co-workers; Jeff, who earns his money as a materials analyst when he isn't writing screenplays; and Roya, our Marketing Dept.'s product manager. We've been trying to recruit others (as discussed previously) with little luck. There have been a couple of folks (one of our QA inspectors, as well as a product engineer) who have gaming backgrounds, but their current obligations to family prevent them from becoming involved.

Even after going to the trouble of getting approval from Human Resources, the group decided that it would be better if we met somewhere that provided the freedom to imbibe reasonable quantities of fermented beverages, not to mention snack foods. Locations such as local bars and restaurants were discussed, but I ultimately discarded these ideas. Trying to keep a game focused in a public swillhouse or bar & grill, given the noise and nosy passersby, isn't my idea of a good time.

In the end, we settled on Deana's house for the first game. We can still use the meeting rooms at work, should we so choose to (and we may yet do that if all else fails for a particular session). It makes our choices a little broader, I think, having that option open to us.

Jeff's experience with D&D goes back to the Basic Set, which he and his friends played in junior high school. He even has his old books and dice (which require the numbers be colored in crayon). He hadn't done any gaming after that, so he's practically a fresh fish when it comes to "modern" RPGs.

Deana, on the other hand, attempted to play AD&D once, several years back. A friend of hers (referred to as "Flounder") convinced her to spend hours rolling up a character, only to kill her off with a malicious bit of PvP after five minutes of actual game play. The experience soured her on role-playing, but I somehow managed to convince her to give it a shot. I promised her that her character wouldn't die in the first five minutes.

Unlike Jeff and Deana, who have some point of reference to fall back on insofar as what RPGs are about, Roya had no experience whatsoever. She seems like the type of player who will want to lay waste to bad guys in an attempt to vent her day-to-day frustrations. This is fine with me; we all game for different reasons, be it fun, catharsis, or escapism. With me, I guess it's a little of everything.

As for the first game, it started off somewhat roughly. Due to unforseen circumstances, Roya had to bow out. There were some customers in town, and she had to babysit them and do some other related work that kept her in the office well past six o'clock. Deana and Jeff and I decided to go ahead with the game, and we told Roya that if she could get out of work by 5:30 that evening, that she should drop by and jump in.

More later.

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