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I am a diehard grognard of AD&D; I have been playing since July of 1981 and DM’ing since June of 1982. I have literally run over a thousand sessions of gaming; mostly AD&D, but I have also run campaigns in Top Secret and Gamma World. I have played in other DM’s campaigns using the D&D 3.5 and 5e rules, and while I enjoyed it, I played enough to realize that the 1st edition is still my favorite.
In my life outside of gaming, I am married with 6 children and 3 grandchildren. I have been a contract mechanical designer/engineer for 30 years, but I have also worked as a mechanical designer, freelance artist and writer, and web designer.
For 39 years now I have been creating material for D&D in my spare time: monsters, races, classes, magic items, artwork, adventures, and an entire, quirky campaign world. Now that I'm unemployed again thanks to the coronavirus, it seems that the stars have aligned and I will soon be releasing my work, for sale and/or for free.
I'm an easygoing guy. Whatever kind of game you want to play, I can do that. That being said, I much prefer AD&D 1e, I prefer to play in my homebrew campaign world of Sixles, and I prefer to play my version of "AD&D 1.99e" with all of my extra classes and races and house rules. I am also equally comfortable playing "old-school" 1e with just the DM Guide, Player's Handbook, Monster Manual, Fiend Folio, Monster Manual II, and Deities and Demigods. I can also do "AD&D 1.5e" and incorporate Unearthed Arcana, Wilderness Survival Guide, Dungeoneer's Survival Guide, Manual of the Planes, and even Oriental Adventures if desired.
I also have DM'ed games of D&D 0e, Top Secret, Gamma World (I loved that game), and D&D 5e. I feel quite confident in my ability to run any of those games as well.
Contrary to what seems to be the standard notion of old-school D&D, characters never died en masse in my games. At least half, maybe two-thirds of the characters in my games lived to reach the higher levels. I would chalk this up to a combination of characters being cautious, and myself being lenient occasionally with dice rolls if the players are playing well. Players who don't play well, start fights within the party or are dicks to the rest of the party die rather quickly in my games, however.
I have never played with the attitude of "DM vs. the players". If I did, the group would die quickly and horribly 5 minutes into the first session of gaming, because I'm the DM and I could do that if I wanted to. DM's who play with that attitude miss the point of D&D and are the lowest form of pond scum, IMO. Being a DM is a bit more like being a parent; you WANT the group to succeed, but they have to do it on their own, and if they fail there are consequences.
As a player, my characters are very well fleshed out. I come up with backstories, mannerisms, voices and lots of odd quirks for my PC's and NPC's. I like them to be a bit cartoony, with exaggerated, outlandish personalities. My characters may not be the smartest or sanest people, but they're sure to entertain you.
I'm an excellent player, in my own totally biased opinion. I could be accused of being a power gamer because I'm always looking to maximize my character's effectiveness in or out of combat, but I prefer to think of my style as merely good playing. I am much more interested in role-playing an interesting and hilarious character than I am interested in playing the most powerful character possible.
As a spell caster, I like to coordinate my spell lists with other casters so as to avoid pointless duplication of spells. I feel that the group should work together as much as possible. This also goes for any other abilities possessed by other members of the party. People who don't do this miss the point of D&D.
I like to role-play, but not all the time, and I don't care what other players do. If you like to role-play and it's entertaining, great. If you don't want to or feel self-conscious about role-playing, that's fine too.