Jason and I go way back, well, way back like 26 years, so I suppose that makes us pretty good friends. It all started a long time ago, in a time and place far away…
I was 18 back then. Having just moved back to New Plymouth having spent 4 years in Whangarei. I arrived back in New Plymouth with no contacts and little to do. Thankfully a old friend bumped into me as I prowled the streets looking for something to do. We got to chatting and he invited me to join the local role-play club and another wargames club, which I discovered had some cross-over membership.
I went to the role-play group and there was lots of new people. The thing with most gamers is that they are usually open to newbies, so I was able to jump right in. I discovered another person I knew and struck a friendship with them as well. It took a few months before I met Jason and the friends he was playing with. Somewhere in all the gaming friendships grew and we were playing games outside the club meetings. Jason became part of a group of up to ten of us who met and played all manner of games as much as we could. Ahhh… the heady days of youth. Board games, role-playing games, miniature wargames, computer games. We played it all.
Through the years, as our lives changed, we managed to keep up some gaming. Eventually I moved away, and our gaming came to an end for a few years with the odd computer game on-line. We have been in different cities now for 7 years, and we manage to catchup in person about twice a year, and every time we play a game and talk gaming. Its part of our blood and bond. On our previous get together we had introduced Jason to ‘The Lords of Waterdeep’. We had to play two games that night of LoWd, and great games they were.
So when Jason announced a few months ago that he was moving to Australia to get a better job I was quietly shocked and saddened. He was selling up everything, and one was his Inversion Table. Being one of the few people who might be interested in such a thing, Jason offered me a trade, the Inversion Table for a copy of Lords of Waterdeep. I jumped at the offer, promptly ordered a copy from Peter at Board Game Rentals and had it shipped off.
This last weekend I took the family on holiday back to New Plymouth, I needed to see Jason and my Grandmother. We were there for 3-days, and I arranged to spend all of Saturday evening with Jason. He was playing World of Tanks when I arrived and we discussed where he was in the game. I cooked dinner and we watched two movies. Finally it was time to crack open and christen his game. Jason had punched all the pieces and so we had it quickly set-up. We played on the floor, Jason had sold most of his furniture by now, so cushions became our seats.
Now we played. Our girls know this game well, and Jason being an old-time gamer quickly found his stride. The game had a slow scoring start until mid-way where I pulled into the lead. There were rivalries and a race for resources, and we all were playing with determination. The end was sewn up by me stealing some of Ann’s resources and completing a 20pt quest to run out to 121pts.
I am assembling the Inversion Table today at home, and as I do I think back on our long friendship, all the games we have played, all the fun we have had. Jason may be gone for good, or he may come back, probably for the odd holiday. We are going to have to keep gaming on-line until then.