My first D&D character as he appeared for the first D&D game, created with 3D printing.

First step, ready for action

First step, ready for action

Being somewhat second hand, the sword is a bit tarnished.  Notice a glaring omission for a DUNGEONS and Dragons?  No torch.  The DM took pity on me and declared there to be several torches along the corridor for my use. 

Opening Move

About 45 years ago I played my first D&D game.  My player character started out with very little funds, only able to equip himself with leather armor, no shield. A couple of side weapons, and a great sword surplused from his time in service of the Pfalzgraf.

Over the years, I collected and painted several lead and alloy figures to represent my characters. The problem was, they all looked like everyone else's, except for maybe some of the paint colors.  Very briefly did I attempt to sculpt my own figures but it was a disaster, so I grumpily  muddled along with the same piece of metal that everyone else was using - although nowhere nearly as magnificently painted as mine, or so I deluded myself. 

It only took about 2/3 of my life but now thanks to commercial 3D printing, I can create a mostly accurate rendering of my main character, modestly and wildly creatively named after myself.  After a very lucky and impressive game the first time I played with other players, one of the players who had read all of the Tolkien books christened him "Frederick Orcrist," or "orc slayer," which stuck as my noms de guerre.

I photographed and cropped these photos with my phone, which is also how I created this feature. Please excuse any failings of quality the images. Let's take a look at Orcrist.

Not well equipped as he would become

Not well equipped as he would become

His only "stand off weapon" is his dagger, which he could throw.

Big sword, useful ax

Big sword, useful ax

A two-handed sword in a dungeon was limited. I used it a few times and quickly grabbed the ax.

Different backdrop ( White ); which do you like better, this one or the previous ones?

Game Recap

First game, solo. I believe the first critters I slew were some giant rats, and then I met a goblin. I recall my first strike against the goblin was a critical hit which all but cleaved it in half. Then a pair of goblins. The DM had them in an agitated and hurried state but they had to go through me first. They did not make it. While I was looting them, I noticed something approaching down the hall that would explain their desire to be somewhere else - a gelatinous cube. The torches slowed it down but I learned that henceforth, I better have some vials of oil with me.

I managed to win enough copper and silver pieces to buy a shield.  I think it took three adventures before I had enough to hire a henchman to carry my stuff and to watch my back.

In one of the first games, while rolling for treasure, the DM rolled a very low probability result. He decided to reroll again and rolled the same thing.  THE DICE NEVER LIE!   As a result, my first-level character wound up with a treasure far out of proportion to what low level characters should have; most DMs allowed me to use it although there were one or two who would not allow me to use it in their game. I survived anyway, despite some hard-nosed uncompromising unsympathetic Dungeon Masters, ol' Orcrist was a major part of my hobby life for about 5 years. He's still around, only semi-retired in that I ended up being everyone's DM instead of a player.  But then we all ended up heading off into the military or our careers, and the opportunity to actually play became few and far between.   Even though we friends constantly talk about getting together for another game someday, the last D&D game I played was on April 1st, 1993.  Now, however, my kid and her friends get together every Monday night for D&D.  It's fun to listen to their antics and, like the grumpy old timer that I am, regale them with how D&D was "back in the good old days."



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