And this was the year that I realised that my gaming could only go in one direction, the direction that any avid roleplayer at least considers dabbling in to test their mettle, try their hand and attempt to revolutionise the industry.
I was going to attempt to self-publish my own roleplaying game.
So I did.
And it was shit.
I had done loads of work on The League Of Seven years before but it had petered out and all that work was still sat on my hard drive, doing nothing. I had to do something with it and with support from my wife-to-be Lisa I set up an account with www.lulu.com to try it out. Did I playtest, edit and scrutinise the work I had done? No. No, I didn't. The system was broke and useless, the setting wasn't filled out properly and the art... the art I did as fillers and guidelines for a proper artist. But, considering that an artist was not going to work for very little (ie free), I ended up using that. And it sucked.
I suppose I was under a bit of pressure. You see, I was also going to be a dad.
That's right. Nerds breed.
I had taken a long, hard look at my roleplaying collection which consisted of pretty much an entire bookcase and decided that 90% of it wasn't being played and it should go on Ebay, to fund my son's arival into the world.
So, my collection went from this:
2300AD plus 2 supplements. Advanced D&D 2nd Edition plus 8 supplements. Advanced D&D. Alternity. Amber Diceless. Basic D&D first three boxsets. Battlelords of the 23rd Century. Buck Rogers XXVc plus 1 supplement. Bureau 13. Call of Cthulhu plus 14 supplements. Champions. Conspiracy X. Cyberpunk 2020 and 2 supplements. Darksword Adventures. Elric! Everway. FASA Star Trek plus four supplements. Fighting Fantasy plus one supplement. Ghostbusters. Golden Heroes. GURPS. Judge Dredd plus 2 supplements. Manhunter. Marvel Super Heroes. Mechwarrior. Megatraveller. Men in Black. MERP plus 18 supplements. Mutant Chronicles. Paranoia. Pendragon. Prime Directive plus 1 supplement. Runequest and Advanced Runequest plus 1 supplement. Shadowrun plus 2 supplements. Star Wars D6 (including 2nd Edition and Revised) plus every supplement published except for 2 books. Stormbringer. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles plus 2 supplements. The D6 System. Twilight 2000 plus 3 supplements. Vampire: The Masquerade. WFRP plus 6 supplements. WFRP 2nd Edition plus 2 supplements. I also had the games: Aliens Boardgame, Dark Future, Dragonstrike, First Quest, Star Trek III Starship Tactical Combat, Warhammer 40K, Warhammer Fantasy Battle.
Star Wars D6 RPG (1st edition) with the Star Wars Sourcebook, Imperial Sourcebook, Rebel Sourcebook, Rules Companion and Gamesmaster's Screen. WFRP (1st edition) with Warhammer Companion and Gamesmaster's Screen. Buck Rogers XXVc. MERP boxset. Fighting Fantasy.
Yes. That was quite the cull. Still, it not only paid for my son Bruce, there was lots of money left over for other things, too. I have no regrets. Well, maybe the Cthulhu stuff. But that's it. And my Basic D&D boxes.
So, my life was changing and roleplaying was still helping me through it.