Thursday, July 15, 2021

Role-Playing Games Anonymous


There should be a secret society for those who play role-playing games. It would need a cool acronym. RPGA is taken and is, honestly, sorta bland. RAGE! That’s a good acronym. Now I just need words to fit the acronym.

Yesterday’s post had me reminiscing about the early days of gaming. For those of you who have come to The Game recently, it may come as some surprise that playing Dungeons and Dragons or any of its derivatives during the 70s, 80s, and 90s was frowned upon. Gaming was reserved for geeks, nerds, losers, and social misfits. At least, that was the common perception. Like most social lumping, it was inaccurate. Though, to be honest, I did meet quite a few basement dwellers during that time.

But they were mostly into comics.

Today there is little negative association with playing The Game or being part of the hobby. Those gamers grew up to become doctors, lawyers, actors, politicians, successful tradespeople, etc. We did not become serial killers (as far as I know). I myself went on to become an archeologist and later, along with my brother, founded the game company Troll Lord Games. There is some lingering derisive negative connotation coming from some people, but nothing like it was during the heyday. Gaming, cosplay, computer gaming, and most related hobbies are somewhat trendy now, even popular.

A secret society seems unnecessary now.

Back in the day a secret society was necessary. There was a lot of negativity surrounding tabletop role-playing games (TTRPG – cool acronym). Ask any of us aged old coots knocking on death’s door and we will all have a story to tell. We kept our playing on the downlow. At least we thought we did. My group was a mixed bag of jocks, honor-role students, and my friend we called “lips” (because his lips were so big). To maintain our ‘social status’ we kept our gaming secret. Our ‘status’ was, in retrospect, non-existent.

But we thought highly of ourselves.

We should have formed a secret society, had secret handshakes, hand signals, and the adornment of those organizations. Like the CIA or NSA we could have exchanged furtive glances, slipped notes to one another, had meet-up points, drop-off locations, safe houses, etc. All those things the secretive and reclusive Knights Templar or Masons have to this very day. We could even have had swords and uniforms and rituals and taken over the world. We could have been HYDRA. Our moment passed though all because we did not have a secret society. It would not have worked though.

We would have been more like a Koalas Club.

RAGE would not have worked. No one was mad or had notions of overthrowing governments or running the world. We were just kids playing games. KPG. That is it. The KPG. Today I am starting the KPG. Don’t tell anyone. If you want to join just let me know.


The first rule of KPG is, you do not talk about KPG….

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