Bill's Profile


About Me (billolmesdahl2)

I've been a gamer for almost 40 years. D&D found me in 4th grade when I read an article in the Sunday Paper about this odd game sweeping college campuses. Immediately I demanded my parents track this amazing game down. Before you knew it, I had the old Blue Box Basic set and a copy of the Monster Manual. Next I got the Player's Handbook and started dragging my friends into this weird game.

We had no dice. Dice seemingly did not yet exist. We drew chits from a cup to generate our 1-20 results. It didn't matter. It barely slowed us down. I still remember the names of all my old characters and those of my friends. There was Lord Cronal the fighter, Pyre the mage, Greenleaf the druid, Harpo the thief (yes, they were thieves back then), and many, many others.

In 9th grade I found a regular campaign at the local University and would forge friendships that last to this day. Stomper the ranger and Sharla the witch were born in a fabulous campaign that I played for nearly to ten years. This was a golden time for gaming and D&D was everywhere. I devoured new games and material as quickly as I could afford to purchase it. This lasted until I was ready to join the workforce.

Through a combination of grit and dumb luck, I managed to land a sales manager position at a local(ish) game company, West End Games. The next thing I knew I was in PA and living the dream. The pay wasn't great, so we all supplemented our income by constantly doing freelance work for WEG. I ended up writing for Star Wars, Torg, Paranoia, Shatterzone, Bloodshadows, and Tank Girl. It was a crazy time. We'd work all day, write all night, then either game all weekend or hit a convention within driving distance and peddle our West End wares.

After three years with West End Games, I made the move to Wisconsin and a little company called TSR! I was brought on as an editor, and was fortunate enough to work on several Forgotten Realms and Dark Sun projects. You'd also see my name on many Spellfire and Dragon Dice expansions. TSR was the big time and also a wonderful place to work. I met a female gamer geek at TSR, got married, got the house, and did the whole normal thing. I think I'd still be there had TSR not imploded and been bought by Wizards of the Coast.

My wife and I decided NOT to go to Seattle, so we entered the Muggle workforce and what better place to become a Muggle than Des Moines, IA? That's where I live to this very day. I'm a Systems Administrator now, with a different wife, some kids and a house. I still play and run D&D (or Pathfinder) with many of the people I gamed with in College. We live Hundreds of miles apart, but thanks to d20 Pro, Mumble, and Epic Words, it's as good as it used to be.


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