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Eastern bloc role-playing

Started by Ron Edwards, April 09, 2005, 02:50:17 PM

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Ron Edwards

Hi everyone,

Due to the very exciting My life with RPG's thread, I am starting up a general discussion of role-playing as it arose and persisted in eastern bloc countries, mainly prior to 1991 or so. And perhaps what happened with it afterwards too.

Jake Norwood! You are a prime resource for this thread, regarding Polish and Czech gaming, so speak up!

I'm not sure what specific questions to focus on yet, so at the moment, nearly anything relevant to the general topic is fair game.


James Holloway

My pal Timothy moved from Russia to the UK in the early 1990s. Prior to that, his father was an academic in Moscow, and had some contact with the US and Britain through that. Through this and other sources, Timothy and friends got hold of a mish-mash of various AD&D texts, which he describes as being prized articles, with important sections laboriously handcopied. I recall a mention of d20s being maded from folded paper and white glue. I got the impression that, much like Ron describes early D&D in the USA, either the relationship between the texts was not perfectly understood or the collection was just incomplete, and gaps had to be filled through a lot of improvising.

Unfortunately, I lost touch with Timothy about five years ago, or I'd ask him to come on here and tell his story -- probably better than I can.

Dirk Ackermann

To Ron (as an answer to the first replay of the original thread): so we know of two circumstances in which rpg's emerged out of. And they were nearly identical in sense of preexisting genre and setting, defying political environment. I am sure rpg's as we know or tend to accept as need a typical backround or a critical mass of such backrounds. It would be interesting to identify these! But we would need to compare it to other situations to testify my vague thesis.
So: why and in which environments rise rpg's out of nowhere?
But that is out of topic.

I really do not know of any other group in former GDR... or even East-Block!

But I am very curious!

In which way are you lucky?


I went hunting for a roleplaying shop in Prague last time I was there (last autumn) and found Czech language roleplaying games in one of the toy stores. I can't remember thier names now, but they were not anything I recognised.

There does seem to be a very big CCG market over there as well, although I think the cards were in german from what I remember. I also stumbled accross a Czech LARP site a while back but I never managed to make much senxe of it from what I remember.

I'll be over again in May, so I may come back with more info then.