I’ve been telling stories/drawing pictures since forever. At first, it was about capturing critical play moments with the toylines and cartoons of my youth. As I got older, my influences changed. I transitioned from cartoons and books to comics and film. I was always scurrying away to some unbothered corner where I could pour ideas out of my head into notebooks. Notebooks I still have mind you. Notebooks that give me a 20-year library of ideas and sketches that we can turn to for inspiration.
The more immersive, the better. But it wasn’t until I discovered games that I had a means to bring all of my friends together under one roof. Our favorite worlds calling to us with an incredible gravity.
If we didn’t have something to play, we invented it. In the 5th grade, it was dice and pictures in the form of Robo-Wars. In the 6th grade, it was the great G.I. Joe war. But it wasn’t until the 7th grade that I hit my stride. My first “board game” called Shattered Seas turned in as a book report, I wrote the rulebook, drew all of the interior art, and kitbashed a bunch of models for the play board and the pieces. The connection to the source material was pretty loose if I’m honest. I read a book about Wake Island, then created a storyline 100 years later where humanity had retreated beneath the waves to escape a nuclear winter.The point of the game was to search through the wreckages of old naval battles to scavenge for the raw materials needed to survive.
Console Games, Pen&Paper RPGs, Board Games, Tabletop Wargames, TCGs, you name it, we played it.
It looked better than it played, but it was a lot of fun to make. The first of many homebrew settings.
Comment to share any homebrew settings you created growing up!