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I never was a devout Dungeons and Dragons gamer. Part of it was just the logistics of where I lived; over in Europe, you had a very short supply of American goods in the Base Exchange, and often, the people who ordered for AAFES didn’t necessarily know how to cater to teens, much less the sub-cultures within 1980’s youth. Simply put, you couldn’t buy 20 sided dice, or even the most basic of dungeon modules on base. On the local economy, I remember D&D material being available in High Wycombe’s hobby shop. But they were expensive, partly because they’d been imported from the US.

So, materials were scarce, and as a result, so were interested people ready to roll up character traits. So, when I was seven or eight, I can remember only a few role playing games. Though, the few times I did play, I loved it thoroughly. So, even if I wasn’t a frequent player, I can easily say Gary Gygax had a positive impact on my life.

Those few D&D sessions sparked my imagination in ways television never did. It brought a touch of fantasy to my life, and even more, it made me love living in England even more. Up to a point, I had mostly gone to DODDS elementary schools. For reasons best saved till later, my parents thought it best to pull me out and place me in a British school. Once there, some of my lessons stopped being boring — I learned that there was more to history than Lexington, Washington, and The Boston Tea Party. In British school, I learned about Romans, Celts, and King Arthur — which seemed so mythic and captivating. Since then, I’ve always had an interest in history. For that, I have to thank Gygax for the influence, however slight, that he offered.

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