The Eight-Headed Creeper

Folks who follow this blog might remember the vote I held to determine which PARS FORTUNA monster I would commission an illustration of from Russ Nicholson. In the end, the Eight-Headed Creeper, a monster originally created by my daughter when she was 3 or 4 years old won the day. A few days ago, I received the finished illustration …

My daughter’s version

 

Russ’ version

 

I’m very happy with it, and I have to thank Russ for his work – he was very kind.

Influences

Most folks have seen the 15 games in 15 minutes meme floating around. Up till now, I haven’t participated because, frankly, I don’t think I could list 15 games that were influential on me. I’ve played most of the editions of D&D and AD&D, and they obviously have had some influence on me, for better or worse. I played some Warhammer Fantasy Battle and enjoyed it, likewise with Marvel Superheroes. That about sums up my wargaming and roleplaying gaming history. As a kid, I loved Battleship, Stratego and Risk, which are nominally about wargaming. Chess was enjoyable, but never really caught my attention – it mostly made me feel smart to say I was “playing chess”.

I’ve tended to fall backward into what one might called Geekishness (though I was always social awkward). When I was younger, I watched Star Trek with my dad and enjoy it to this day, though the spin-offs and reboots don’t really interest me. I was there for the beginning of Star Wars – had the action figures, watched the movies, etc. I started playing D&D before I discovered Tolkien and fantasy literature, and I was introduced to comic books after a friend convinced me to run Marvel Superheroes for him – up till then my only contact with superheroes was TV.

So, what are my chief influences?

Batman
Still my favorite Batman, although Brave and the Bold comes close. I like fun superheroes more than dark and serious superheroes. So sue me.

Superfriends
We played lots of Superfriends on the playground in elementary school. Most popular hero – Green Lantern. He could make anything with that ring!

Wonder Woman
Watched this one every week on TV.

Six Million Dollar Man and Bionic Woman
Another one we watched every week. The robot people who could remove their faces scared the crap out of me as a kid.

Incredible Hulk
Another one we watched regularly – and by “we” I mean my family. This was back in the days of one TV per house and watching it together more than apart.

Underdog
My first favorite superhero.

Battleship
Yeah, I had the electronic version. Took forever to set it up – and God forbid you screw up, because then you had to start entering your coordinates all over again.

Dungeons & Dragons
Started with Moldvay red box and in many ways it is still my favorite set of basic rules. The embed code has been disabled, so you’ll have to click to see.

Thundarr the Barbarian
Watched Thundarr before I encountered Gamma World, and in truth my first perception of Gamma World was “Wow, it’s like a Thundarr RPG”.

Jonny Quest
For my money, still the best adventure cartoon ever made. The high tech is make believe but feels real, the attention to detail is great – just love it.

Star Wars
As a kid, it was the alpha and omega.

Star Trek
I watch and enjoy them to this day, probably for the same reason I still love the 60’s Batman.

Oh – and a bonus video here (the embed has been disabled). For years I thought that I must have imagined that this existed because I could find no sign of it.