I cycled through several ideas for this post, but asking what got folks into the hobby kept coming back up. So what got you into role playing?
For me, it was effectively my cousin John. John ran the first RPGs I'd ever play starting with a system - of sorts - he made using the power rankings on the back of the 3rd series Marvel collectible cards.
From there we progressed to a Star Wars type system, and then - eventually - into the Dungeons and Dragons box set, before moving onward with Palladium's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Heroes Unlimited lines of games. It came that everytime I'd spend time with my cousin - usually a weekend every other month or so - we'd play these games and I grew to love them. The exposure also brought me into Fantasy and Sci Fi culminating in my first "for fun" book I read, the Dragonlance Chronicles.
At this point I was hooked. The Dragon Lance Chronicles made me a reader, and while I mostly stuck to Fantasy and Sci Fi books I've since branched out. It also gave me a better idea for how these games I played with my cousin could be, and I began seeking out other games on my own. I began GMing, starting with the Palladium systems and running a long one on one Robotech campaign with my friend.
Some of these games, especially my ones, were horrible....but they were fun. To this day I have fond memories of sitting in my Uncle's studio listening to music and playing those one on one games, be they D&D, Heroes Unlimited, Robotech, Toon, or otherwise with my cousin.
I haven't looked back since, and frankly I see no reason to. How about you? What got you into the hobby?
As a fun aside, the book below was the first pre-canned adventure (not in the back of the Heroes Unlimited book) I ever tried to run. I mucked it up so bad that to this day I don't trust myself to run pre-canned adventures and mostly just use them for ideas/directions.