It is time to add new words to your gamer lexicon. Both these terms (Gaymer or Dice Queen) refer to a LGBT, which stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual or Trans-gendered, who is interested in RPGs, LARPs, CCGs, Miniatures and the many different games that make up the gaming community.

From memory, it all started with Quakeworld. Online gamers, previously at best able to pick a colour and nick name to signify their character, suddenly became able to download or create their own skins. Online gaming was revolutionised, you could proudly display your personality clearly for all to see.

I decided to devote this column to showing you all what I do in a typical night of EverQuest. When I sit at the computer to play some EQ, I have 3 roommates periodically peering over my shoulder saying, "What the hell do you do in this game!? You just run around and kill things?!" Well boys and girls, read this column and I'll tell you what I do. Pay attention, take notes.

Throughout the last decade I have owned just about every game system out there. Everything from the Sega genesis to the Dreamcast to the Playstation to the N64 has been attached to my television at one point or another.


I am a gamer. I spend my evenings and weekends holed up in cavernous basement rooms consulting sourcebooks and to-hit charts, or running around parks and community centers in full makeup and costume playing rock-paper-scissors at various intervals. I spend my paycheck or my allowance on the latest games and supplements and mounds of polyhedral dice which have a way of turning up in the oddest places around my house or apartment. I have hundreds of stories about games I have played and characters I have known, some of which are actually interesting and funny to other people. I am a gamer, and this is how I spend my free time.

Since the late 1950�s, changes in social attitudes saw the first uses of the word �adult� to be used euphemistically for being sexually explicit, graphically violent or generally not for the eyes of children. Yet, gaming is a form of play and play is one of the more acceptable forms of education. Whilst cynics may point to the greatest number of gamers being male and adolescent, others may find that there are an increasing number of gamers sticking with the hobby into their 30s, 40s and beyond.

I have played D&D for many years and naturally when I heard about the upcoming Epic Level Handbook I was very excited. I had dreams about cool new monk abilities, fun items with interesting new effects and awe-inspiring new spells. I waited patiently for months, but what arrived in the mail was very disappointing.

Let's talk about cards. Card gaming, in its current incarnation, is fairly new, having only been born in 1993 and exploding since. There are more card games than there are RPG's � and that's some trick. Since designing a card game is much cheaper than a board game or an RPG (way less production costs) and many of them are spin-offs of an existing license anyway, it's faster and cheaper to get them to market; which means lots of companies have dived in with both feet.

We all have characters that we play in our weekly games, from D & D to Vampire. We also have active imaginations, or rather a mental picture of what our characters look like. But how many times have you found the right picture to encompass your character? Sure you have found a few pictures on the web that look "kewl" and are even close to representing your character, but are you willing to STEAL other peoples' artwork?

What has happened to my attention span? When I was 5, I had a Nintendo Entertainment System with a handful of games and those same games could keep me busy for months, maybe even years. I could sit down, pop in Super Mario Bros. and play it over and over again, all day long. At the end of the day my eyes were burning, my head hurt and my thumb felt like it was going to fall off. What a blast... I miss it.

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