I got the last of the Zocchi dice I ordered so that I'd be set to play in my first game of Dungeon Crawl Classics tomorrow night (you can be sure I'll post about the experience later). I couldn't find a complete set that included everything I needed, so I had to get a few of them separately. Likewise, I'd been told that the "standard" D7 doesn't roll very well, so I got a D14 numbered 1-7 twice instead. And, to be honest, I didn't like the looks of the D7s I saw anyway, though the modified D14 I got is no prize, being large than I expected.
Having said that, I want to be honest: it was a lot of fun assembling this new collection of dice. In fact, hunting down all these weird dice reminded me a lot of what it was like in early 1980 finding my first set of polyhedrals. As you may recall, I started with the Holmes set. My copy included chits, not dice. I knew what the dice were supposed to look like, since I'd seen pictures of them and my friend's older brother had some, but I wanted my own. Finding them in suburban Baltimore at that time was no easy task, at least not for a kid who was as yet unaware of the existence of hobby stores that stocked RPGs.
The process of finding that first set of dice is something I'll never forget. It's not only one of my early RPG-related memories, but it reminds me of an aspect of the hobby that's very important to me -- initiation. Finding those dice was like a quest for the Holy Grail. Bringing them back to my friends and showing them off was proof that I'd ascended Mt. Olympus and returned. It was a rite of passage that showed I was now a full member of the fraternity of gamers. I suspect that this was a big part of the initial attraction of the hobby to me -- I felt like I was joining something "mysterious" and "elite."
I'm sure that sounds silly to a lot of people reading this, especially those who either didn't have a mentor who brought them into the hobby or who entered it by way of miniatures wargaming long before annoying kids like me appeared on the scene. For me, though, it's a fond memory and one that Goodman Games has not only conjured up but helped me to relive, if only a little. To my mind, that's what more contemporary RPG publishers ought to be trying to do.