First Fantasy Campaign
From time to time, the Tekumel Foundation blog will feature various items in the Tekumel archives. In this case, Prof. Barker’s copy of The First Fantasy Campaign, written by Dave Arneson and published in 1977 by Judges Guild. Dave was a close friend of Prof. Barker; they initially knew one another through the different game clubs in the Twin Cities in the mid-70’s, as board wargamers and miniatures players. They became closer friends due to a variety of circumstances, including ongoing legal disputes with TSR which provided a common cause bringing them together. Dave’s (in)famous character, Captain Harchar, was a larger-than-life character in the world of Tekumel. One of the things that Dave liked to do was to make sure that Prof. Barker and players in the various Tekumel gaming groups had copies of different game products Dave had written. The First Fantasy Campaign was not a polished campaign setting, as some commentators have noted, but it did provide an overview of Dave’s Blackmoor campaign – the setting for what became Original Dungeons & Dragons. What makes this interesting for Tekumel fans is that both Blackmoor and Greyhawk were essentially backdrops for adventuring, leading Prof. Barker to wonder what a game would be like if it had a more complete and believable culture and society – what lead eventually to Empire of the Petal Throne.