Role-playing games

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A collection of role-playing rule books.

Role-playing games, or RPGs for short, combine a rule system with imagination and acting to create a game. A role-playing game is usually played with several people, one person as a referee and the rest of the players assuming the roles of a characters in a fictional setting. The referee's job is to setup an adventure for the players to enjoy while enforcing the game's rules. Traditional RPGs are often referred to as "pen and paper" or "table-top" to distinguish them from video game RPGs. While the most popular role-playing game is Dungeons and Dragons, hundreds of others exist for all sorts of different settings including science fiction, westerns, historic, and many others. Pretty much every major media franchise has an official role-playing game rule set.

I got into role-playing games when I was around 5-years-old because my neighborhood friends had various Dungeons and Dragons manuals. As kids, we were still too young to really appreciate the rules, so, instead we made up rules and adventures using pictures from the game books and our toys. When my family moved to a different city, I stopped playing pen-and-paper RPGs, but they kindled a love for fantasy themed movies and video game RPGs which remained my favorite genre for many years. In middle school, a fellow classmate and I shared our love for video game RPGs, but he also showed me his collection of Dungeons and Dragons manuals, and we played a few sessions. This rekindled my interest in pen-and-paper RPGs, but I was very conflicted at the time because I was attending an Evangelical church, and considered myself a born-again Christian, a group that viewed D&D as Satanic. Keeping my hobby a secret from my church family, I bought my friend's manuals and several other books from a local hobby shop. In high school, I began playing Dungeons and Dragons with a new set of friends and my older brother's friends, and I poured a lot of time into the game. However, I had a job, so I missed a lot of game sessions. In my late teens and early 20s, I tried getting involved with other game systems like Vampire: The Masquerade and later editions of D&D, but I never had enough time for them. I still play a lot of video game RPGs, but I no longer player pen-and-paper RPGs.

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