|Fifteen years ago, I
was a junior in high school working for a local comic book and
gaming store. Though it was probably the easiest and coolest job a
teenager could have, I longed to someday have a similar store of
my own. I eventually moved on to a higher-paying job, but several
years later, I found myself managing a game store that used to be
in the very spot weíre in now. I eventually moved on, and worked
as a sales representative for a hobby-game distributor for a bit
more than a year. The game store I had managed had since changed
owners, and I discovered that they were looking to sell. Since
Beth and I had been planning to open our own store at some point
in the future, we decided that there was no time like the present.
Role-playing games have been my favorite hobby since I started
playing D&D at age 10. Iíve ran and/or played in countless
numbers of RPGs since, and some of my favorites are Call of
Cthulhu (a favorite of mine to GM), Cyberpunk, Paranoia, 7th
Sea, and D&D 3rd Edition (which is the only system
I play and/or run currently).
When CCGs started appearing several years ago, the first one I
played was *gasp* Spellfire. Shortly after that, a friend of mine
picked up a couple of Magic starter decks, made me play the game,
and then it was all over. I quickly gave Spellfire the boot, and
spent many, many hours playing Magic. My current favorite is
Warlord, but I also play Magic and Raw Deal, and I'm retuning to Legend of the Five
Rings in the near future.
Believe it or not, I also have interests that arenít directly
related to our business. Recently, I married Emily, my wonderful
girlfriend of four years. Some wedding pictures are
She's a tattoo artist by trade, and she owns and operates Royal
Pain Tattoos in Shepherdstown, West Virginia. In addition to
my beautiful wife, I enjoy a wide range of pop, rock, electronic,
and jazz music and getting tattooed when I can fit it into my
It's been quite an undertaking opening
up a game store, but it's been worth all of the late hours and
The most exciting thing to
happen to me since opening this business (besides making the
business successful) is my new found opportunities as a Free
Lance artist! Feel free to take a look at my online
portfolio! I'm currently working on developing an online gallery,
so that I'll be able to exhibit more work, but for now the
online portfolio is pretty representative of my work thus far.
I've become quite a miniatures hobbyist.
While I enjoy playing miniatures games I much prefer painting
the figures. Confrontation miniatures are my new found passion
alongside Clan War and Chainmail figs.
I've discovered that, despite all of my
other interests, my true gamer calling is in the RPG world,
where I play almost exclusively 7th Sea. It has one of the
smoothest playing systems I've ever experienced. The world
revolves around intrigue, diplomacy and adventure. Based on 17th
century Europe they add a high fantasy element to recognizable
historic events. What's even better is they took into account
that all RPGs need a "Hack and Slash" atmosphere. So
they gave us Eisen (Germany) where there is no shortage of
monsters to throw in front of a party of antsy, diplomatic
characters who just need to kill something very, very dead.
While 7th Sea is my favorite system
that doesn't mean it's the only system I'll play. I think the
D20 system that has been introduced with D&D 3rd edition is
a decent system and a great thing for the industry. It has
allowed countless small publishers to get their foot in the door
and the recognition they deserve. Legend of the Five Rings RPG,
while deadly, shares a lot of the same qualities of 7th Sea. To
continue with my D10 trend... I play Werewolf: The Apocalypse on
occasion as well.
My favorite new found (but sadly not
new to the market) comic book artist/ writer is, without doubt,
Mike Mignola. Hellboy rocks!