I remember the day when I started gaming with the older kids. I was young and obnoxious, and to my everlasting shame I actually asked if I could play a dragon. The GM was cool though, and since it was a high-level campaign he actually allowed it. I had no idea how the rules worked, what good role playing looked like, or whether they’d invite me back for more than a single session. But when the dice clattered across that rec-room table, and when I scored my first critical hit as a power attacking gold dragon, and when my fellow adventurers cheered my efforts… The phrase “childish glee” about sums it up.

I was 24 years old. It was Laurel’s dad’s group, and the cool older kids were well into their 50s.

Although I came to gaming late in life, I never quite forgot that feeling of being accepted into a long-established group. They were patient with my inexperience. They explained how the rules worked, and then they re-explained it when I got confused. They even incorporated a few of my crackpot ideas into the game (My dragon is from an ancient civilization buried beneath your setting! You’ve never heard of it!). I was nobody’s idea of the perfect player, but they allowed me into the group and worked me into the story. I’m still gaming with those guys to this day.

That’s my story then, but what about yours? What was it like when you started gaming? Were you ever anyone’s “annoying little brother” asking for a chance to chuck dice with the big kids? Or were you that patient soul trying to deal with the obnoxious noob? How’d it go?