I was attracted to gaming at an early age, inspired by numerous board games I received at Christmas. Like most gamers, Risk was my door in. I taught myself to play Chess at an early age after a chess column caught my eye in the paper. I still play Chess for fun but I'm not that good at it. Growing up in Loughborough, England, I really enjoyed war comics, and I still enjoy Commando Comics today (Wish I could get them digitally in states. (Edit: You can now) I had a friend whose brother had provided him some basic rules for 1/72 scale WWII Airfix soldiers and tanks. We used lichen for terrain and spent many Saturdays battling it out on the floor. They had an extra room in their house so we used the entire floor. We loved it and I remember riding my bike as fast as I could to get over there. His parents were really good to me. I have many fond memories playing Subbuteo, Scalextrix, Bermuda Triangle, Risk and Admirals with my brother and friends.
My mom divorced and then met and married a Yank. At the age of fourteen we sold basically everything, including my games, and moved to America, Southern California. Saying goodbye to my Dad and extended family was very difficult. In the seventies, especially, it seemed like an overwhelming distance. I mention this because it was a defining moment in my gaming life since my interests in gaming helped me through this time, and it was the game Dungeon and Dragons that led me to the lifelong friends I have now here in the States. My friends and I spent most weekends playing 2nd edition AD&D through High School and through the eighties. The Giant series was a particular favorite. My friend and I got to meet Gary Gygax at a convention. We were so excited; how geeky is that! I then went through a Star Fleet Battles phase for a few years. Magic: The Gathering was next and I still play it today online via Xbox.
The next gaming phase came when my son, Curtis, came into the picture. He loved to play AD&D with me and my friends and still does play with them even though I no longer play. We played AD&D, Magic and then during his high school years some Warhammer and then many years of 40K. So many fond memories playing and staying up late putting finishing touches on tournament armies. So many great battles.
40K was a blast but I became frustrated with all the changes. Some armies I had painted twice to get the new and cooler miniatures. I still love the miniatures today, and especially like the background material having read many of the books. I felt it was time for a change and sold all of my 40K and 28mm terrain. I used this money to fund my latest interest that took me back somewhat full circle to my childhood interest in WWII, Flames of War. I'm happy I did!
I'm not sure where the future will take me but I'm hoping for a good retirement one day playing FOW with my grand kids and of course, my son. I have a rule that I only have one hobby that involves paintitng an gluing but I could see myself painting some 28mm 8th Army figs some day. I also see some board gaming in the future, wanting to play Firefly, Spartacus and Battlestar Galatica.
Feel free to contact me, Rob...