As I have mentioned, on Sunday my wife’s roleplay group finally defeated the Ultimate Boss (with the Bar Äijä’s TV pumping out YouTube “end boss” music clips through its blu-ray player, come on – that’s style right there) in their massive and drawn-out AD&D campaign. I believe props belong to Aleksi for dealing the killing blow, but there was much glory and honour, not to mention some sneaky use of Wishes, and a couple of attempts to change sides mid-fight.
The group was amalgamated from die-hard roleplay fanatics left over from three different teams who started out in the high school roleplay club Mrs. Hatboy instigated at the school where she was working before the whole baby-thing started. When school ended and the campaign didn’t, the roleplayers continued to meet up in their attempts to take down that despicable Temple of Elemental Evil.
 Boom boom.
I don’t know much more about it other than the name, despite having been seated on the sidelines trying to listen to the TV while the campaign went on, for years and years and years. You’d think something would have sunk in. But no. Something about nodes, and skulls, and Thornbush, and rolling your exes, and necrophiliac rapist ducks.
 I don’t know, sounds like a terrible idea to me. Unless that was shorthand for “roll your exes up in a rug and toss them off a bridge.”
 No, I know, I know, it was “roll your ‘x’s,” meaning that when you succeeded in using a skill in the game you put an ‘x’ next to it, then at the end of the session you rolled those skills up to see if you had a shot at improving your stats in those skills. Don’t suck all the life out of my jokes. Anyway, what I’m saying is, for about ten years now “roll your exes” has been my cue that the party is about to end and so I shouldn’t bother rolling another episode of Stargate SG-1.
These were the three original groups, as illustrated by me on the event of their high school graduations, and “inked” by Photoshop. Danged if I know who was what, here. But look at those filters. Man, Photoshop rocked. Just ignore the weird scale issues between mule, horse and moose going on there.
It’s also amusing to note that in every roleplay group, there’s always one person who has a wacky character who collects all sorts of random and crazy shit.
And so the game went on.
Some of them married and moved on. Some of them just moved on. Some newcomers joined in, by a process of geeky osmosis. Some of them, to quote Homer Simpson’s revised wedding vows, blasted across the alkali flats in a jet-powered monkey-navigated…
But none of them grew up. That’s my point.
Heck, a couple of them even married each other. Indeed, in order to fully illustrate the group as characters – and as people – I can do no better than to share the wedding portrait I made for the two of them celebrating the event. Photoshop was gone, and my drawing skills were slightly improved by necessity, but all in all the more things change, the more they stay the same.
It was very cool, incidentally, to get to know people at that wedding by introducing myself as “the husband of the bride’s Dungeonmaster”.
These are the guys who have left me half-bottles of cola, half-bags of chips and candy, and assorted other snacks on a regular basis, like kids leaving cookies out for Father Christmas. These are the guys who have invaded my house every other week since it became my house in 2007 (and for a couple of years before that when it was my parents’-in-law house, how do you apostrophise that anyway?). And I’m going to miss them.
I’m not, however, kidding myself that it ends here.
Roll your ‘x’s, people. And figure out what you’re going to play next.