Review – Dorsai! by Gordon R. Dickson

Flashback to high school – Nineteen-eighty… something. War games were catching on. There were role-playing games in the wake of Dungeons & Dragons, then only about five years old; there were those bookcase-packaged strategy games from Avalon Hill, and those trays of maps and cardboard chits from… was it TSR?  I bought a lot of them.  Rarely played them. Then came to my high school the first L.A.R.P. (Live Action Role-Play) I ever encountered.  I think, though I can’t swear, that it was called Chaos. Or Kaos? It involved stalking opponents through the hallways of the school and attacking them (theoretically, of course for these were math and science geeks doing the attacking.)

I don’t remember what form the attacks took.  I do remember writing an editorial in the school paper about “Chaos.” We’d done a news article about it in the same issue. (I was the news editor for the paper.) I was somewhat disturbed by quotes from one enthusiastic player to the effect that the simulated killing was more of a rush than sex. This quote coming, I’m fairly certain, from someone who, at sixteen or so, had firsthand knowledge of exactly neither.  (Nor, I quickly point out, did I have… much… firsthand knowledge of such things at the time either.)

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