Certain things, if viewed at the exact right time, can stay lodged in a child’s brain forever. That’s exactly what happened to Don Jolly, who recounts his nearly 20-year obsession with the DragonStrike board game—or, more specifically, the VHS tape that came with the DragonStrike board game—over at Boing Boing. DragonStrike was a board game released in 1993 by TSR, the company behind Dungeons & Dragons, that Jolly describes as “ D&D with training wheels;” the VHS tape that accompanied the game explains its basic characters and rules, interwoven with a fantasy storyline featuring coyote wizards and a CGI dragon.
Jolly came into possession of the tape when he was 10 years old and claims to have watched it at least once a month since, building up a mythos surrounding its disembodied-head narrator and primitive green screen aesthetic in the absence of any online information about the game. Ironically, it was the Internet that eventually led Jolly to DragonStrike writer/director Flint Dille, who Jolly cold-called at a number he found online back in 2006. Eventually, Jolly and Dille sat down to “talk DragonStrike,” providing insight into the production of the video and its unreleased sequel, Wild Space. Jolly even includes a complete upload of the tape for his fellow nerdy ‘90s kids to re-live their basement-bound childhoods because, as he says in the piece, “there are no rivals here.”