Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Do You Dream of Adventure and Glory?

Does anyone remember this advertisement, which first started appearing in 1985 in the pages of Dragon? As I have no doubt mentioned innumerable times over the years, I never participated in a single play by mail game, but the concept intrigued me. For years, I'd seen lots of ads for various PBM games, like The Tribes of Crane. However, I never pulled the trigger and actually joined in, partly because of the costs involved. Most of these games had an initial start-up fee. which might include the first move, as well as additional fees for subsequent moves. Back then, that was a significant investment, all the more so when one considers my unfamiliarity with the exactly what a play by mail game entailed.

Given my unrepentant TSR fanboyism at the time, this particular PBM intrigued me even more than the others. There was a couple of articles in Dragon – issues #97 and #98, I believe – that talked a bit more about the game and its setting. The articles were written by Jim Dutton, the president of Entertainment Concepts, the company ran the AD&D PBM (and also, not coincidentally, the company behind another PBM, The World of Silver Dawn). Though they certainly whetted my appetite, the costs involved kept me at bay. They were, if anything, more expensive than those of other PBMs I'd seen, perhaps due to the costs involved in acquiring a license from TSR.

Did anyone reading this take the plunge? 


  1. Play by Mail RPGs always just seemed untenable. Play by E-Mail RPGs can work really well, especially if the players and DM can all write well.

  2. Likewise, these ads intrigued me, but I never took the bait either. I say "bait" because based on what I've heard ECI either never delivered a single turn to a paying player or only one or two turns to a player before ceasing processing turns altogether--and the latter was rare. Money down the tubes for would-be players.

  3. My mind is blown by the fact that the address provided in the ad is in my hometown, which isn't something I would've expected.

    Possibly relevant to the comment about ECI disappointing users, plugging 6923 Pleasant Dr. into Google Maps doesn't bring up an industrial park or anything like: it's a residential address. If the proprietor wasn't running a scam, they may have simply been overambitious and not much older than I would've been in 1985 (I had just entered my teens).