Do you still game with the group that introduced you to the hobby?
Hah, no. I don’t even game with the guys I played with in high school…I don’t really talk to those guys, for a variety of reasons ranging from “dude never actually liked me but we both wanted to game” to “dude did a thing I can’t forgive” to “dude doesn’t like Facebook.” We did get back together on a break from college to run a 3.x game, and that was a ton of fun.
My original group, though? I haven’t talked to any of them since I skipped a grade, because skipping a grade in middle school is the sort of thing that’s pretty impactful vis-a-vis relationships you had with people before the change. I don’t begrudge it, or particularly regret it.
There are collections of gamers I wish I still played with, because the collaborations were so incredibly rich and satisfying. The crew I played with on the Pits of Evil largely left en masse, with us going to DnDOnlineGames (which isn’t called that anymore, so don’t be spooked by that link) and then on to Myth-Weavers. We shed some folks with each jump, and picked others up, and then gradually went our separate ways in addition chunks as folks got deployed, or were furious about edition changes, etc.
But at MW I fell in with another great group of guys and gals; actually, a couple. There were a good several years there, but eventually some personality conflicts cropped up and the nature of the PbP cut things short in a lot of cases. Grad school plus long-distance for myself and my then-girlfriend/now wife sapped a lot of my personal energies, too, which made me a brutally unreliable player. I’d take runs at games, make an incredible character, and them–poof–have no drive to actually play and slink back into the shadows. I was given lots of challenges, and while it was partially because that’s what we all tended to do I know that I was very fortunate with the patience folks showed me, and eventually I just stepped away. I still lurk around the forums and check up on the games folks are running, and honestly it seems like the system has moved more to the Skype-style approach that I think works better.
I’ve also played in a couple of campaigns with that method in the last six months or so, which were middling and great, respectively. But, again as I mentioned in the last hop post, scheduling really kicked in there. Just like with my on-ground groups here, merely having something scheduled every week is something I find so enervating that it sucks a lot of the joy out of the actual experience.
But that, more than anything else, is a function of winter! I’m getting the itch again and expect that I’ll be throwing dice with more than six sides before too much longer, and I think it’ll be a return to 4th because I want goblins to die to swords. I always want that.