What’s a Drake, and Why?
I’m Drake. Hiya.
I’m, at the time of writing, a 32-year-old Variant Human multiclassed College of Swords Bard/Battlemaster Fighter. And obviously, I’m a tremendous nerd. But that’s just one of my many hats. I was a fencing prevot in college, bartender to afford fencing lessons, military linguist, military aviator, and I’m a husband and dad trying to beat the old sword into a ploughshare on a sustainable family farm. I’ve got a couple of college degrees in things that have nothing to do with any of that, a couple more that do, and more hobbies than any sane and rational person in any income bracket has any right to. I like to read, love to write, and have a strange compulsion to collect polyhedral dice and die-cast or injection-molded heroes.
I’ve been playing tabletop roleplaying games since I was twelve, and from the moment I stepped into the rec center on Lajes Air Force Base, Terceira that fateful Friday night, I’ve been irretrievably hooked on collaborative storytelling. Also kicking in doors, punching evil right in its big dumb face, and stealing its stuff. Since then, I’ve played–by which I mean, usually run–every extant edition of Dungeons and Dragons, and branched out into a fair few other systems. About thirty of them, if my big list can be believed. I’ve rolled a lot of dice, guys.
So, there’s Drake and there’s Dice. That just about catches you up on the background.
“Why” is a more interesting question, though, isn’t it? Without “why,” all we’ve got are nouns and verbs and adjectives. They don’t necessarily hang together for any real reason, they just float there, amorphous and without context. That’s not story-shaped. I like things that are story-shaped. That’s why I’m writing this blog.
See, I’ve played a lot of games and told a lot of stories. I’ve been on some grand adventures, and I’ve seen some explode into really spectacular fireballs where feelings got hurt and dice were thrown. I’ve also seen more than a few peter out without anything approaching a satisfying conclusion. That hurts even worse, really. I mean, unless you catch a d4 to the face. That is pretty uniquely awful.
I’ve played a lot of games, and I think–probably out of pure, boldfaced hubris–that my vague grognard ramblings might be helpful, or at least entertaining, to newer players and GMs. Mostly GMs. Sorry players, most of this isn’t going to be overly helpful to you. I don’t have the breadth of experience playing this game. Still, stick around. It’ll be like peeking around the curtain, seeing how the tricks are done. That’s how every great magician starts: learning their first astonishing illusion. Then, you’re just a hop skip and shiny silk tophat from running your first session.
Then there’s more adventure for all of us.