The Red Box Blog

Ramblings about D&D.

My Life in Polyhedrons – Tournement in Stone

Dungeons and Dragons is not really something that lends itself to tournaments; there are too many subjective elements for any competition to be completely fair. However, the fact that D&D grew out of war gaming meant that competitive D&D has existed almost as long as the game itself. For me, in all the years I have played I have been involved in just four tournaments, and those four all came in a small window between February of 1990 and May of 1991.

In early 1990 I saw an ad for the “Elementals” tournament that the Phantasy Gamers club at the University of Alberta used to host every year; my friend Warren and I decided to enter. “Tournament in Stone” was the title of that years tournament, and naturally all things stone was its theme.

The whole structure of the Elementals tournaments worked like this. Players could either enter as a team of six, or individuals/smaller groups could enter and be matched up with others to form teams of six. During the first full day of the tournament(Saturday), all the teams who entered played the first third of the adventure at staggered times. At the end of the day the top ten teams would be invited back to play the rest of the adventure on the second day (Sunday).

Warren and I just went ourselves, and were unfortunate in our draw of team mates. Amongst our team mates were a pair of brothers who were huge idiots (years after this took place I would know them again via a live role playing group; and it seems my initial opinion of them was correct, and shared by all).

Our team did so-so the first day; well enough to come back on day two (I think we were eighth after the first day). We were way behind in points, but confident we could come back. THEN…

So here we are, maybe a couple of hours into day two, when suddenly idiot brothers announce they are leaving. I asked where they were going, and idiots kept telling me it was personal and none of my business. Admittedly, where they were going was none of my business, but that they entered the tournament, got put on my team when apparently they had “prior commitments” was my business.

We were two guys down for most of day two. Our party died off way before the end of the adventure. We finished tenth overall (the lowest possible position for a team that made it to day two).

There are two things that I remember clearly from the end of that day (after all groups had finished playing and were waiting for the results). The first is listening to the only player who saw the end of adventure talking about it. Though he was a stranger to me then, years later he would be my good friend and room mate. The second is that I couldn’t get over the anger I felt towards those idiot brothers.

After the tournament Warren and I decided we would come back the next year (Tournament in Fire), but that next year we were going to win.

Have an opinion about this article? I love comments. Please feel welcome to leave your thoughts.

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December 11, 2010 - Posted by | Dungeons and Dragons, My Life in Polyhedrons, RPGs | , ,

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