• Resources are back! Use the menu in the main navbar. If you own a resource, please check it for formatting, icons, etc.

Which edition of D&D did you grow up with?

Which edition did you start with?


  • Total voters
    144
Mention of Bargle in the iconic villians thread got me thinking about how back in the 80s, there were really two streams of D&D players: those who played BECMI and those who played AD&D; I was the latter, and thus had to look up Bargle. I had heard the name before, but didn't know who it was. It was curious to me that such an iconic figure (for BECMI) folks would barely register on my radar, despite playing since the early 80s.

Anyhow, when did you jump on the train? What did you grow up with? During which edition were you indoctrinated? Which edition is "home"?

I'm making some choices with the poll - like grouping 1st and 2nd edition, 3E and 3.5, as I'm less interested in specifics and more about which "branch" people started with. I was tempted to include Pathfinder with 3.x, but thought it might be interesting to see if anyone started with Pathfinder.

One final note: I am less interested in your very first game, and more in which game you grew up with. Meaning, which was your "imprinting" phase? I'll take myself as an example: my very first session (in which I was ushered into the back of a VW bus by a group of kids at a Buddhist festival and handed a character sheet) was probably either Holmes or Moldvay--I can't remember as I was 8 or 9 years old--but then when I got into D&D (some family friends gave me their AD&D books, as they got into early video games - their loss, my gain), it was AD&D all the way. I bought a few BECMI modules over the years, but I was very much indoctrinated into AD&D.

Feel free to share any specifics or your "origin story" in the comments.
 

Sacrosanct

Slayer of Keraptis
Started in B/X and moved to AD&D 1e. B/X isn't really my "starter' game, because we played it for a decent amount of time, and even continued to play it when we played 1e. But 1e was the biggest one I played from 1981 until 2012, so that's my foundation.
 

Doug McCrae

Adventurer
I started with Moldvay Basic in 1982 and then played a bit of AD&D 1e. My first rpg group's tastes were very eclectic - we tried lots of different rpgs such as Traveller, RuneQuest, Call of Cthulhu, Gamma World, Tunnels & Trolls, Melee & Wizard and many others. Our most successful games were two campaigns of Villains & Vigilantes, a now largely forgotten superhero game. So I didn't really grow up with any edition of D&D but with many different rpgs.

We never played D&D as a campaign starting from 1st level (I didn't do that until 2e AD&D) and I didn't even know about 'mega-dungeons' until much later. Modules and scenarios in White Dwarf and Dragon were our guide, we played D&D as a series of oneoffs with different PCs.
 
Last edited:

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
I voted for 3.5 because it was the first version of D&D I played, but 4e was really the edition that made me fall in love with the game. I didn't think I really liked D&D that much after my experiences with 3.5, and my friend really had to work to convince me to give 4e a try, but I'm very glad she did.
 
Interesting to note that my story--first exposure with BECMI, but grew up with AD&D--is a common one. I wonder if the marketing of "Advanced" had something to do with it. I vaguely remember thinking that "basic" was OK, but "Advanced" was where it was at. Kind of amusing in retrospect.
 
Mention of Bargle in the iconic villians thread got me thinking about how back in the 80s, there were really two streams of D&D players: those who played BECMI and those who played AD&D; I was the latter, and thus had to look up Bargle.
Yep, same here.

Anyhow, when did you jump on the train? What did you grow up with? During which edition were you indoctrinated? Which edition is "home"?
1980. I started with the c1979 Basic Set, very much NOT B/X or BECMI basic, it turns out, something I never suspected at the time.
1e AD&D is the version of the game I really got to know, and feels defining for me. And, as little-different as 2e may have been initially, it lost me in the end, so I don't much care for bundling them.
 

Sacrosanct

Slayer of Keraptis
Interesting to note that my story--first exposure with BECMI, but grew up with AD&D--is a common one. I wonder if the marketing of "Advanced" had something to do with it. I vaguely remember thinking that "basic" was OK, but "Advanced" was where it was at. Kind of amusing in retrospect.
Can't speak for everyone, but I bet some of it is because many of us were kids in the early 80s, and the boxed B/X sets looked more kid friendly than the AD&D books, so that's what we were given as gifts, or were drawn to immediately
 

Zardnaar

Adventurer
Started on BECMI for a couple of years and switched to 2E and played 1E with some older players.

I'll vote 2E I suppose as we played that one a lot more. In 94 we only played 1.5 hours a week after school. In 95 picked up 2E.
 

Azzy

Cyclone Ranger
Started with BXCMI, didn't so much as switch to 1e AD&D as rather played them both until 2e AD&D which is what I grew up with.
 

CleverNickName

Adventurer
My mom got me the Basic D&D Rules Set (Red Box) for my 13th birthday, and I was hooked immediately. I traded my favorite X-Men comic book for the Expert D&D Rules Set and Module X1 (Blue Box) with a kid at school. I played those B/X sets until the covers wore out, and I dreamed of being able to purchase all FIVE boxed sets someday.

Alas, it wasn't meant to be. They were all out of print just a couple of years later, and I had to settle for the Rules Cyclopedia. It is still my favorite D&D book of all time, and I played it all through the rest of the 80s and the entire 1990s...but man, I really wish they had kept the original Larry Elmore artwork throughout.

Well, I'm a grown-up now, with a grown-up job and a grown-up eBay account. So I'm slowly acquiring those boxed sets, one by one, and I will have them all someday. Of course, if WotC would just make them available for Print On Demand for crying out loud, it would save me a lot of time and frustration.

Ah, nostalgia.
 

Arilyn

Explorer
Started with Holmes. My girl friend and I split the book cost, but I ultimately ended up with it. It was 1981 I think. Another friend took interest and got me the red box for Christmas the following year, I think. Anyway, we were a group of nerdy girls playing,which was different. My one friend went on to Advanced, but I never liked that version.
My first true RPG love was Warhammer. Went back to DnD with 3e.
 

schneeland

Explorer
I only really started playing D&D at the table with 3rd edition (played mostly Shadowrun 2e before). If we include CRPGs, though, that changes to AD&D 2nd.
 

Wiseblood

Adventurer
I started with the Red Box as a player. I didn’t really understand what was going on until Dragon Quest (the boxed set thing like Dragonstrike) board game. That got me to DM from there it was 2e as player and then DM’ing.
 

TwoSix

Lover of things you hate
I kind of feel like this poll is a slightly long winded way of asking if you're a (70s, 80s, 90s, 00s) kid, except the 80s has 2 options. :)

Edit: And the 90s kids are bundled with the 80s kids!
 

pukunui

Adventurer
Edit: And the 90s kids are bundled with the 80s kids!
This. I was born in 1981 and started playing D&D at age 13 in 1994. 2e was the edition of choice at that time. I didn't play a game of 1e until recently (when 5e was still in playtesting, one of my groups did a mini tour of the previous editions; that was my first taste of 1e).
 

TwoSix

Lover of things you hate
I only really started playing D&D at the table with 3rd edition (played mostly Shadowrun 2e before). If we include CRPGs, though, that changes to AD&D 2nd.
I feel like getting onboard D&D because of the CRPGs is its own separate formative experience. I only bought my first D&D book because of Pool of Radiance, and I had the books for almost 2 years before I ever actually played a real game.
 

Advertisement

Top