Saturday, July 9, 2011


I hope this blog proves useful and I invite you to join my journey as I head back to the gaming table after an almost 20 year hiatus.  A lot has changed...and pretty much all for the better!

Why a 20 year hiatus?  Mostly due to my inability to juggle work, family and a gaming life.  I need one or two of those chainsaws I was juggling to shrink in size.  After 20 years, I have retired from active duty in the US Army and the kids have grown up enough where I now have the time.

I have been hooked on gaming since High School.  My first gaming love was the old Avalon Hill Squad Leader Series back in 1980...went through all the modules and graduated to Advanced Squad Leader when it came out.  In 1986 I was introduced to the WRG 7th Edition Ancients rules and MicroArmor using the old "Angrief" WWII rules.  I was hooked on miniature gaming from that point.  I even dabbled in Warhammer 40k and Blood Bowl...liked Blood Bowl a WHOLE lot more than 40k.

I lived in the Jacksonville, Florida area at that time and learned 7th edition Ancients from the Great Derek Downs.  Got trounced royally during that time and I think I beat him only once in the 5 or so years I was in his group.  Those 5 years were the last time I was REALLY at the gaming table.

Graduated college, joined the Army, got married and had kids.  Priorities shifted, but I was always able to keep on foot in the hobby so to speak....modelling.  Being on Active Duty (and I am sure many civilian jobs as well) left little time for other things so in between training exercise and deployments I tried to maximize my time with the family.  This was very important to me as I grew up a Navy brat and knew what that absence of Father figure felt like.  So I focused my down time with the wife and kids, enjoying every moment of home life from doing homework and working with the kids as they went from rec soccer to competitive soccer...well maybe not every moment, but still wouldn't trade them.

So what did I do for "ME?"  I focused on the modelling aspect of the game and did a lot of painting with the intent to play where I could.  Most of the paint time was early in the morning on weekends.  This way I got my "Me Time" done while the wife and kids were sleeping and maximized the family time for the rest of the day.  When the kids were young they would "help out" by paining figs I had in the bit times.  After 10 years serving I left the "field," but still found myself still getting up around 4 am every day, so on those days when that happened (which is like 6 out of 7 even now) I expanded my "Me time" to a couple of hours before work. 

To quench my gaming thirst, I focused on computer gaming during my early morning "me time."  Played email chess for a long while.  Then I discovered Steel Panthers 2 and 3 and the Play by Email revolution.  Once true multiplayer came out I played a lot of MechWarrior, Mech Commander, Starfleet Command and the Combat Mission Series.  I used to scoff at FPS games, but have played a lot of Battlefront 2 and 2142 and Combat Mission WaW, MW2 and now Blackops and look forward to the new versions., one daughter is in her 3rd year of college and the other daughter is a high school senior.  Both don't seem to need the guiding hand of the Pater Familias for homework any more.  Competitive and school soccer is over and I find myself with TIME on my hands.  Is it possible....that I can start actually gaming again?

Join me as I share some of my old stuff and how I try to get back to the gaming table.  I am also interested to see how those other parent gamers out there handle the timeshare situation between family, work and gaming.  My way was one of the extremes.  I would love to here how you handled this.

No comments:

Post a Comment