It was very sad news to learn today that a long-standing and much loved member of the Dreamlyrics online roleplaying community, Tim Flynn, known to the community by the forum identity Nicki Jett, has passed away after a lengthy illness.
Online identities can be complex things, and it’s not for me to say whether the Nicki Jett persona was Tim Flynn’s greatest roleplaying achievement or whether she was something a bit more than that. But I’m going to use the name Nicki and female pronouns for the rest of this piece, because that was the person I knew.
I’ve known Nicki online since the days of the RPGAMES forum on CompuServe in the mid 1990s. She was a tremendous writer who always inspired and brought the best out of the others in every game she played. She was always very pro-active as a player. That could occasionally throw a spanner in the works when she dragged the story in a way the rest of the group didn’t really want it to go, but most of the time grabbing the game by the scruff of the neck and making things happen was just what was needed. And she certainly made things happen in-game.
Her characters were always larger-than-life, strongly self-confident but never over-sexualised women, the sort of characters you really didn’t want to mess with. I remember her character in a near-future cyberpunk game who took on a tank in single combat, and subsequently slaughtered an entire troop of Israeli commandos who were supposed to have been our allies. It was things like that which earned her the occasional nickname of “collateral damage woman”. She could occasionally be a bit of a munchkin; who remembers original GURPS 3rd edition Psionics rules? Nicky could be a challenge to GM sometimes, but her contributions to the site always made it worthwhile.
Certainly her psychokinetic revolutionary Hollis was one of the central characters of my own long-running game KLR, and it’s not really a coincidence that the game finally folded when her ill-health made her unable to post.
Whether you were known as Nicky or as Tim, Rest in Peace.