Fraid I don't have anything to trade, but it's good to see that someone out there is still playing the game, or at least collecting it. This is what, the first new post to this forum in nearly a year?
My son & I recently dusted off the set to play a couple of games, reminding me that it really is a well-designed & executed wargame. Who knows, maybe if The Hobbit movie(s) ever get made (doubtful, but who knows), it will return, or some other form of Combat Hex game will someday emerge.
Did you ever participate in the Snaggletooth forums? I met bombadil and aacanales, locals here in Austin, through that forum. We made an attempt to get back together earlier this year, but conflicting family schedules prevented it.
The Snaggletooth guy occasionally puts a jeweled Fellowship die on ebay, one of the few pieces I still need, along with a Rohirrim Spearman. Plus there are still tales from time to time of finding the rarer later pieces (Fellbeast, Mordor Troll) in retail stores - like a good treasure hunt, they are always in remote locales such as Australia or Norway.
Yeah, I still remember the game; it was in fact the origin of the username sauromatian, which obviously I still use. The whole topic of dead games, and dead gaming communities, is something I find incredibly poignant. A few years ago I wrote this piece on the (also gone-to-Valhalla) WizKids forum.
It's about people who go berserk when their favorite game goes out of print, or their favorite TV show is cancelled. In particular, it's about a game called "Creepy Freaks" that was a commercial flop, & few fans mourned when it went out of production. I imagined that somewhere, there must be someone who cared about it:
What is it like to be the world's last and greatest Creepy Freaks devotee? It would be a sad and lonely path to tread, like being the last worshipper of a dead god.
You would recall the days of glories past, when Creepy Freaks hit every toy and hobby shop in the world. It seemed like nothing could stop it then. 90% of that stock is still there, except it's in the $1 bin and taunts you like a rebuke whenever you see it.
At one time, your collection's shining completeness held a handsome value on paper. Now it's so much dot.com stock. Sometimes you still buy another duplicate $1 booster and feel bad about it an hour later.
You go to the local games store with your Creepy Freaks collection, in it's impressive storage cases you had custom built and teams sorted for every strategic use they will never have. The kids playing Yu-Gi-Oh! think you're weird.
You check the official manufacturer's forum for Creepy Freaks on a regular basis, but even Woelf stopped answering your queries during the first W. Bush Administration. The words No New Posts In The Last 30 Days greet you every time.
You think about your last games the way some people think about the last time they got laid.
Ten years from now, you meet someone who got the game for Christmas as a kid. Sure, he says, he and his friends played it for years, we had a great time. No, he wasn't even aware that it went out of production and was considered a commercial failure. You decide he has no true understanding for the inner beauty of the game and leave in a huff.
Twenty years from now, your Creepy Freaks collection is borrowed by a filmmaker doing a retro-hip period-piece set in the early '00s, marketed to teenagers who weren't even born when this game was made. The parts are lost or destroyed; the producer offers you a line of cocaine when you protest.
Twenty-two years from now, you are involved in a suicide-bombing attempt at GenCon LVI, then being held in Buenos Aires. The headlines read: Nerd Among Nerds. A pop group makes a hit song with a that title so you try to sue them from prison, but you are unsuccessful and the litigation receives little outside attention.