I was a big fan of GEnie when it was available. It was the first time that I could recall in which I could interact with several publishers, and the concept of receiving errata online and getting game questions answered in near real-time was a real treat. Gone were the days of mailing in rules questions and not really knowing what anyone else thought of a particular game until a review journal would arrive in the mail.

I was sad to see GEnie go, mainly because I didn't know where gamers and publishers would network. AOL didn't seem to be happening, and the only thing that seemed half-way decent at the time was the consim-l mailing list, which remains active to this day. Of course, now we have some great community sites, such as boardgamegeek, and of course, our very own ConsimWorld.

I guess what fond memories I most have about GEnie is that it was a true discovery back into gaming, as I had taken a hiatus for several years since going away to college, so GEnie was my initial lifeline back into the hobby to see what was happening. It was also my first opportunity to forge online relationships and network with other gamers that continues to this day.

So, thanks GEnie for the memories!

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I remember GEnie's Wargame Roundtable as an intimate precurser to CSW. It was not unusual to exchange messages daily with "big" names in the business.

Well, "big" in that day, before instant Internet gratification. Play By Mail back then meant stock markets and stamps. Q and A were answered by submitting questions phrased to be answered as Yes or No and accompanied by SASE.

For someone like me, it was my first exposure to the likes of Rex Martin, Richard Berg and Don Greenwood. Prior to GEnie, I had no idea there were actually so many wargamers out there.
Eric, your post reminded me of the live game auctions that were held on GEnie. I remember picking up a bunch of games one time during a nightly session. Lots of memories there to be sure (and, yes, I have more of them I'll have to share later!)
Wow. This is where it all started.
Yes, I'd have to say that GEnie reminds me of my first online/wargaming nirvana in terms of how it shaped my enthusiasm to get engaged in the hobby again. And of course my wallet would suffer as a consequence as well, in being able to learn about new game titles and having access to online game trading.
Yes, before the Internet! I started playtesting from some companies there. Hey I even chatted with RHB! I still have old perforated Epsom printer matrix sheets with some of the GEnie discussions that I printed for safekeeping. LOL!!! Boy I feel old now. :^)
What I remember about GEnie was that I had no way to dial in with a local number, so I would get double hit with the long distance phone call and the GEnie fees.

But GEnie had this neat feature that let all text on the screen get captured by a text file. So I would call in and log on, then have all the new messages in the topics I was interested in scroll by so fast I couldn't even read it. Then I would logoff and hang up the phone (so to speak) and bring up the text file to slowly read all the messages.

I would type up all my replies in a text file before logging back on, then would cut and paste my replies into the correct forums. It was still expensive as heck, but at the time it was so hard to find other gamers that it was worthwhile.
PCAladdin was the name of the program. Neat bit of programming.
I remember discovering guys selling and buying games in there... Didn't it existed... My first buy were Up Front/Banzai/Desert War for 45$... Shipping included... Mouhahah... That aid I bought a second set and organized tournament at Cangames. Still one of my favourite game over all... Learned the game thru Greg Courter's ladder, One two cards a day... That was fun.
Yes, the rate increase and business model at GEnie definitely killed our presence there. And I now recall the ability to capture a text session automatically to review it later. I wish there was a way I could go through the GEnie experience again just so I could remember exactly what it was like (just for kicks).

And someone has a good memory...manzana was the domain name of the server I started loading all those game images on for publishers. How times have changed (for the better!)....


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