Time Line:

Monday, October 26th, 4000 BC.  – The (“Real World”) Universe Was Created – or so believe quite a few math challenged literalists who fail to take into account that the Christian Bible has been edited and re-written and had whole sections of the Truth removed by very nasty men who want to control every aspect of your life. (Don’t listen to a word they say.)

Before Colour Television: The world was black and white, no, wait a minute…

Before I was born (this time?): This world may have been black and white. But then again..

Circa 1990-91: A friend invited me to join her in playing a game on GEnie: “Dragons Gate”. Playing that game back then cost $6.00 an hour between 6 pm and 8 am and on the weekends. Prime time was from 8 am to 6 pm and cost $18.00 an hour. GEnie encouraged anybody with the writing bug to write stories about their in-character involvement in any games they hosted and submit them to a contest. I have always been a slightly obsessive writer (born on Leo Tolstoy’s birthday (adjusted to our Gregorian calendar), I can’t write a shopping list in under 100,000 words…) I submitted two stories, won a second and third place prize and have some nifty certificates to prove it. During prime time $18 an hour time, I “fleshed out” a couple dozen signs for D-Gate, at the request of in game Elder (“Gamester”). I also sent ideas and a map of an area for a race they didn’t have in the game.  Dragons Gate’s owner (one of them) encouraged me to learn as much about the game as I could and dangled a paying job or “some kind of compensation” in front of me. Shortly thereafter, after a couple players ‘burned’ him, that owner looked very sour and said it would be a long time before he hired anybody new after that. I had written 10,500 room descriptions (each room description could only be 254 characters or less, including mention of signs) I told the owner, he said that was way too big. I never actually showed him the room descriptions, I never had a ‘Do Not Reveal’ document plopped down in front of me. I had run up $2,000 worth of GEnie bills in a couple months and I felt burned.

1991-1995: My D-Gate friends were mainly among the finesse role players who spent incredible amounts of time and energy working on their characters and their role playing styles. One race of Vampire-Like humanoids in the game had to drain Player Characters of energy in order not to rapidly lose their stat bonuses. This rapidly degenerated into lots of soul-raping idiots draining and killing player’s characters and a lot of angst. I killed one of those characters and felt sick for two days, thinking that I might have permanently killed that character. They could only come out at night. When in game night fell a lot of my friends either signed off or switched to their vampiric characters in order not to be ripped apart. When you were attacked and drained by one of them, you lost hit points. You’d get your hit points back next time you trained and gained a level in one of your skills, and you wouldn’t stay dead, you could “depart” and wake up in the morgue/house of the dead (if you killed a vampire character (temporarily) they remained dead for 24 hours in real time, I think… or maybe 12 hours? 24 game hours? Being temporarily brain dead as I write this has its draw-backs) They wouldn’t stay dead unless you decapitated them or killed them in sunlight or with fire.. but anyway.. A couple of us would get on with our characters that had ESP and whine to each other on the Psi channel. One day I grumbled about some decision the elders had made and one of my friends said, “So why don’t you write your own game?” When the shock wore off I decided to try that. I wrote a game in applesoft basic. Memory limits for programs in applesoft basic were 32k. that is not a typo. I got myself a 286 intel machine and switched to “C” and wrote 5 megs of heavy text programs and linked them together. The compiler was supposed to be unlimited, but things got wonky if your program was compiled at more than 1 megabyte. After I learned to shut down one program with a call to start up another, I thought I was in business. I had some real life issues pop up, like, my father got sicker and died, my mother aged about 15 years in the last two years of his life. I was constantly on call to race him to the hospital and stuff like that. When the dust settled I tried a couple other systems/shells (Most notably SlashMUD) and got pretty far, but had to do stupid stuff like keep my body and soul together, so my hopes and dreams kind of faded and retreated to the back burner. I never gave up. I kept dreaming things about my game world. { Like the race of Tiger Spiders…  I dreamed I was in a field of tall grass and was contacted by a psi character who explained that the Tiger Spiders had been hunted to the bring of extinction by Sectoids and were willing to start weaving spider silk armour and stuff like that in order to form an alliance, because they knew their survival depended on them forming alliances with the ‘two legs’/’walkers’. I also dreamed I was explaining to an angel ((an actual angel from heaven?)) how to write a dice rolling routine. The ‘angel’ got a good hearty laugh out of the concept that everything in a game world could depend on many many rolls of computerized dice (( srand(2) because ‘random’ in ‘C’ had been de-randomized so they could verify loads of things by calling random routines with predictable results.))… }

1999: I met and started IM’ing with the wild and crazy love of my life, who just happened to live in Canada.

2002: I packed up and moved to Canada.

(I better stop here)

About aerendeldev

TaleRocker~DreamCat Creations is the heart of the Aerendel Development Team. We'll tell you about the rest of the team when and if they decide to 'go public'.
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