Gary Gygax Passes Into Other Realms
I just heard the news that Gary Gygax, co-creator of Dungeons and Dragons, is now dead.
His co-creator, Dave Arneson is still alive but I expect this first generation of D&D aficionados and creators will soon pass away more and more in the next decade.
Gary Gygax, who co-created the fantasy game Dungeons & Dragons and helped start the role-playing phenomenon, died Tuesday morning at his home in Lake Geneva. He was 69. He had been suffering from health problems for several years, including an abdominal aneurysm, said his wife, Gail Gygax. Gygax and Dave Arneson developed Dungeons & Dragons in 1974 using medieval characters and mythical creatures. The game known for its oddly shaped dice became a hit, particularly among teenage boys, and eventually was turned into video games, books and movies.
Given how much of my childhood was spent playing Dungeons and Dragons, I must request a moment of silence for Mr. Gygax and a fervent wish that his afterlife bears no relation to that of D&D (especially his version of the Hells). I spent just about every weekend from age 14 through 19 or 20 (less and less later on as I actually (gasp) dated) playing Dungeons and Dragons or other role-playing games. I’m not sure what the end result of all of that was for me but I do not regret the time spent imagining and creating with my friends up through college. (Though I do regret letting my best friend play Lawful Evil wizards who would then backstab me and take my stuf…)
The last game I played in was one run for a while by my college friend, Catherine, just a few years ago. Unfortunately, it is hard to get people together to play role playing games in their 30s when there is so much else going on and to do with that huge block of time.
Slashdot (of course!) has a thread on this now as well in which people can talk about how role-playing has affected their lives.