My First Character

A grizzled, horribly disfigured warrior skilled with sword, bow and bardiche Morgan Ironwolf has adventured and fought across the Flanaess for most of his adult life.

William McAusland (Outland Arts)
William McAusland (Outland Arts)


Ages ago, I posted about my first gaming experience and what gaming has done for me. Since then—fascinatingly for you—I’ve been reorganising Raging Swan Press’s Global HQ. During that process, I found a box file full of my old character sheets! Talk about being hurled down memory lane! I found tons of old characters—some form the very dawn of my gaming career while another as recent as only ten years ago!

I started playing 31 years ago, and amazingly I still have a copy of my first ever character! Admittedly, it’s the last played version of the character, so it’s not the original character sheet; sadly that’s lost to the mists of time, but nevertheless I’ve got my first character! Just looking at the character sheet propelled me back in time to the halcyon days of my youth!

I thought you’d be interested in taking a look. Behold, Morgan Ironwolf!



A close look reveals:

  • I started Morgan on 22/06/1983–my 10th birthday!
  • By this time in his career, we seemed to be using proficiencies so it looks like we had the Dungeoneer’s Survival Guide (at the least).
  • (Shockingly) there are mistakes on this character sheet.
  • (Annoyingly, but unsurprisingly) he didn’t have psionics.

Morgan_back_ web

A close look reveals:

  • At the time he reached 14th level he was 42-years-old. My cousin, who introduced me to D&D, told me at the time that one game day equaled one real day (when nothing was happening). Thus, I must (at some point) have increased his age to compensate for the passing of time.
  • He had a +4 defender baby! Epic.
  • he was so confident he wasn’t going to die, I didn’t bother writing a will.

So, have you still got your first character?


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Creighton is the publisher at Raging Swan Press and the designer of the award winning adventure Madness at Gardmore Abbey. He has designed many critically acclaimed modules such as Retribution and Shadowed Keep on the Borderlands and worked with Wizards of the Coast, Paizo, Expeditious Retreat Press, Rite Publishing and Kobold Press.

17 thoughts on “My First Character”

  1. That yellow character sheet brings back some great memories! I think you might mean 1983, rather than 1973 though? Sadly I don’t have my first character, a human fighter named Llanabba after a castle in the Evelyn Waugh novel we were studying. He was followed by Gandalf the wizard, Arathorn the ranger and another human fighter called Atuán. I’ve got better at character names since

    1. I don’t have the sheet for the 1st character, but I remember him well. A Paladin by the name of Mestiniff. Also his faithful companion, a dwarven fighter named Thoromir Trueblade. Last I played them, they were descending into hell to rout the devils there.
      Oh the things we did when AD&D first came out.

  2. I don’t have the sheet, but my first character was a werewolf, so we were house ruling even at the basic set level. He was a fighter, and had to drink a potion to actually become a werewolf. We played the game where the hermit and hit puma attack. Later we befriended a group of sprites named Mr. Pibb and Dr. Pepper (because Sprite=Soda and 4th grade humor!) Still, I remember him with great fondness, even though I can’t recall the name. It was probably something like Darkwolf.

  3. That’s really nice to see! Great character.

    My first character in AD&D was a fighter called Crantor. And his first value, the first I ever rolled for, was 18 (in Strength)! He also managed to win his first battle with four 0-level men-at-arms and their 1st level sergeant. At the end of that I asked, “What happens when these ‘H.P.’ reaches zero?” The DM said “Your character dies” – I had no idea! So after that I played a lot safer. But, that didn’t hinder him drinking from a strange pool in a dungeon. After that the other players started talking, and after a little while the DM says: “Ok, so what are you gonna do with the statue?”. The statue was Crantor stransformed into stone from the magical pool! I was sad.

  4. Yes, I do have my first character. I’ll dig it up and post it to FB in a week or so when I get home.

  5. I love seeing your old characters! My first 1e AD&D character was a monk who was killed by the giant frogs in his very first encounter. I’m sure you can figure out the mod.

  6. My first character dates to 5 October 1977 (my ‘gaming birthday’), and I still remember her. On going to university I’d joined the Wargames Club mostly because when walking past their stand at the Freshers’ Fair I’d identified the figures on the table down to regiment (French Napoleonic, 21e Regiment du Ligne as it happens), not because I wargamed but because I study uniforms. So I went to the first meeting and once the jawbones had been retrieved after the shock of a woman coming in, a large fellow came over and said “Do you want to play D&D?” Seeing as I was there to try something new and hadn’t heard of it, I said yes, and he talked me through creating a character – a female fighter played barbarian-style (the official Barbarian class hadn’t been invented then) called Trewavas and armed with a large axe.

  7. My first character was wrong on sooooo many levels. First off, it was 1987 and I was almost 14 so I should have been familiar with many of the terms but I had only a casual interest until my first actual game. I didn’t know what anything meant, I don’t remember his stats. All I remember was his name, Merg the Halfling, the Hobbit that thought he was a Centaur. My DM was overwhelmed by 5 other teens shouting names and numbers so I told him I wanted to play a half-man/half-horse. The DM was distracted so he only shook his head and said “ok, fine”. I saw the racial name Halfling and assumed ( no picture included ) that was the name of a centaur ( because the word half was in the name, it was my first day, ok? ) I packed the rest of the adventurers gear, and was shocked when he told me that the sheriff threw me in jail. I asked ” How can he pick up a guy who is half horse?” Everyone laughed and told me I wrote down Halfling…I was a Hobbit ( of which I was very familiar from the books and cartoon from the late 70’s ) We all laughed and I only played one other game with him until he was thrown in the dungeon again by a blue dragon. A short, but colorful career 🙂

  8. This will sound like a lie. However my first character was a tall human fighter named Elron Ironwolf… His first adventure began in a dank dungeon near a keep. A borderland village. I created him in I’d imagine January 1979. Boxed set for Christmas. Elron didn’t know he has a younger brother.

  9. I still have mine. I have a case for most of them. Don’t have fond memories though. DM didn’t trust a newb like me to build a character quickly before a session so I was given an NPC turned PC. Not great stats. He died while I couldn’t make a session thanks to another player tricking my character into killing himself by jumping off the roof because the building was on fire. The DM took pity and just had the character end up in a brief coma but his gear was wrecked.

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