There’s no one game I can point to here. 3e was the game that brought me back to the hobby, but it was the early d20 explosion that got me to join in the larger RPG community. Sure, I had been pretty active on Usenet, but it was ENWorld that actually put me in contact with other people in meatspace, got me into regular gaming groups that met for years and made me an organizer for the local Gameday. It also helped “train” me as a forum participant, paving the way for my later connection to the Forge.
Honestly, say what you want about d20 as a design, but there were some cool games getting made back then, and I’ve never seen a trad group more open to trying new games than I did when everything had a d20 logo.
Champions was foundational for me, but it was also probably the first RPG where I felt like players started with a truly blank slate during chargen. Sure, it was supers, but that’s practically a meta-genre — you can do anything if you can figure out how to spend your points. Plus, chargen was so involved that I think I couldn’t help but feel heavily invested in my PCs.
Chicago Gameday 50 is happening on Dec 8, starting at 9:30 a.m.
Are you local to Chicagoland? Do you want to play some RPGs? If so, head over to our Warhorn page and sign up for a game! Chicago Gameday is a free event held at Games Plus in Mount Prospect, IL and welcomes all comers.
#10RPGs — 2/10 Foundation — Basic D&D, Holmes blue book.
My mom bought me this set after I saw some kids playing D&D at summer camp and I begged her. As D&D tends to be, it was totally unplayable out of the box — mine was the chit edition, so it didn’t even come with dice. I had no idea how the game worked and didn’t really even do a close reading of the text until years later. Nonetheless, I made up some rules — as we all did — muddled through and realized that yes, this is what I want to do with the rest of my life.
There is no other non-foundational RPG that had a bigger impact on me than this. I purchased the first edition based on an RPG.net review, and it became my portal to the Forge, to my first larp (the roden one, GenCon 2004), and led to my fundamentally questioning how RPGs work and how I interface with them. Plus, I met an entire community of people, many of whom are now close friends.
This is the game that I’d been waiting for my whole life. And I’m still figuring it out!
Happy New Fria Ligan Kickstarter Day, everyone. I’ve got my corpse-tree up and decorated with empty bullet casings. I can’t wait to see what the mutants leave me tonight. Assuming I survive the assault, of course.