A Little Background

I'm 45 yrs old, married (since '87) with two children--the beautiful little girl and baby boy you see below. Except for one game back in the early eighties, I didn't get into role-playing games until relatively recently. It was in the late summer of 1995, while a hurricane was threatening the North Florida coast. I decided to run out to the bookstore in the rain to get the AD&D First Quest box set so that my wife, my nephew and I would have something to do during the storm. It's been like that ever since.

Prior to that I had played several CRPGs, including Gateway to the Savage Frontier and Treasures of the Savage Frontier (two of my favorites), and I had played some online games like AOL's Neverwinter Nights and Delphi's Quest. It was playing those games that made me want to try table-top gaming. (I think there was also the hope that it would be cheaper since AOL et al still charged by the hour at the time-- that was a false hope. :) )


Buying the Realms

A few years and untold (at least, I ain't tellin') dollars later, I've amassed a respectable library. It contains first through third edition D&D, lots of Forgotten Realms material and some odds and ends from other game worlds. My preference is for D&D fantasy campaigns and my favorite campaign world is (surprise!) the Forgotten Realms. I've also gamed in Gamma World, though, and I've played in a HeroesŪ Champions game.

Joining the Lists

In 1997, while recuperating from a broken arm, I came across the Forgotten Realms Mailing List. Up to that point I had mainly purchased in-print items, but as I heard from other FR-gamers about this or that product, I started trying to find out-of-print items to flesh out my collection. Those are getting harder to find every year, and some of the rarer ones have become quite expensive. It's a testament to the continued popularity of the Realms, as well as the capcity of some Realms fans to ignore mundane financial matters like food and rent when faced with the opportunity to purchase a NM copy of H3: The Bloodstone Wars for roughly ten times its original price. A few years ago, though, Wizards began a project to scan out-of-print products and make them available via electronic download. These are now offered in Adobe Acrobat format through RPGNow for about $5 each. There are, however, a number of classic Realms products available for free download at the WotC website.

With so much good material cluttering up our rooms, us Realms fans have had to come up with new and innovative ways to put it to use. The FR-List was one such effort, and many people have contributed their own insights and expansions to Realms-lore there. Such contributions typically take the form of a one time post, or a short series of posts. Craig Sefton used to collect the best postings from the list and place them on his web page, The Best of the Forgotten Realms Mailing List. Unfortunately, that site is MIA In May of '98 a new list was created to establish and support ongoing projects for the Forgotten Realms. It was named the Forgotten Realms Projects List. Mark Oliva moderated the list. It has since died, but there is still a list of the old projects that can be found on the Candlekeep website.

Participating in the Projects

In October of '98 I joined the Arylon City Project, the oldest project on the RP-List-- in fact, it was older than the list itself and was part of the inspiration for creating the list. The purpose of the Arylon Project was to design a Forgotten Realms city using submissions sent in by members of the FR- and RP-Lists. Over 120 submissions of NPCs and businesses were accepted into the project. The submissions all used 2nd-edition stats, but they contain a great of very creative writing, and could be mined by the clever DM for NPC backgrounds and adventure plot hooks.

One of the tasks I took on as a member of the project was the creation of a map of the city. The city map, and two other maps that show Arylon's location on the Sword Coast and some of the local features, can also be found on my Map Source page. I resigned as Cartographer for the project before the city map was complete. I don't know if anyone else on the project ever completed the map, or where a copy could be found if they did.

After my resignation from the Arylon Project I was still involved with two other projects. One was the Daggerdale Project which I began a few years ago. It is a Resource Guide for DM's running campaigns in the Daggerdale area. Part of the motivation for creating this web page was to give me a permanent home for this project. The project is currently in a deep sleep waiting for new material, or new enthusiasm on my part, to awaken it. The material that's on the site was written for 2nd-edition AD&D.

The other project with which I became involved was the Trade Project. Its purpose was to create a netbook on Trade in the Forgotten Realms. It was a very ambitious project, and one which would have been very useful to DMs in the Forgotten Realms. I withdrew from it in 2000, and don't know its current status. An outline of the project can still be found on the web. Since the project was originally being done with 2nd-edition resources, they may have decided to wait for 3rd-edition to come out and see what changes were made.

Mapping the Realms

Since purchasing Campaign Cartographer 2.0 several years ago, I've been working on creating my own maps of places in the Forgotten Realms. CC2 has a rather steep learning curve and beyond just learning how to maneuver through the program there are numerous tricks to make mapping easier, or to make your maps look better. You can take a look at some of the maps I've made by going to the Map Source page. I've made it so that you can preview the maps as GIFimages, and then download the FCW maps in a WinZip file.

I hope you enjoy the page. If you would like to look at more AD&D, D&D or Forgotten Realms related web pages check out the Links page to view some of my favorite sites. Enjoy the page and check back periodically for new developments.

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All maps on this web site were drawn using Campaign Cartographer 2.0 (CC2). If you are interested in learning more about this program, or would like to check out their library of symbols and maps, click on the button above.

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