Gary Gygax, RIP

By Shamus
on Mar 5, 2008
Filed under:
Tabletop Games

I don’t have anything original to say on the death of Gary Gygax. I know everyone else has heard the story already. There were many comments and several emails (thanks!) about the story yesterday, and my mention is late in coming. Still, it seems odd to run a site called Twenty Sided and not at least comment in some way, even if I have nothing deep or meaningful to add.

Gary Gygax
Photo: Alan De Smet.
He was a giant in roleplaying, and his work affected everyone connected with the hobby. To be fair, without Gygax there never would have been DM of the Rings. Credit where it’s due, and all that.

I did enjoy these tributes:

Dueling Analogs
Order of the Stick.
Penny Arcade
XKCD

Also: My wife decribes playing a diceless storytelling game with our three children, and also drew a picture of G. Gygax.

Enjoyed this post? Please share!



20525 comments. Hurry up and add yours before it becomes passé.

From the Archives:

  1. Strangeite says:

    I couldn’t help it but this joke popped into my head when I heard the news.

    Gygax shows up at the Pearly Gates and St. Peter stands there smiling.

    “Gary, up here in Heaven, you can be anyone you want. So what do you want to look like?

    Gary thinks about it and responds, “Sorry Peter. I am old school. Just give me 3d6 and I will take them right down the line.”

    A moment of silence as the d20 rolls across the table.

  2. HeadHunter says:

    A memorial service will be held in 1d4+2 days. :)

  3. Beowulf Doomhammer says:

    May his twenty-sided die thunder across the gaming tables of heaven, for all eternity!

    You will be missed, Gary.

  4. Al Shiney says:

    Rest in peace, Dungeon Master. You no longer need dice to make your saves, so please bless the rolls of those you have left behind with a few modifiers now and then, ok?

    BTW, HeadHunter’s “memorial service” line made me laugh out loud, something I couldn’t really do yesterday. Thanks for that.

  5. […] Fitting memorial tributes from all […]

  6. balrog62 says:

    I like the tribute at Kenzer’s website (http://www.kenzerco.com/). Very fitting.

  7. Nazgul says:

    I’ve been enjoying all of the tributes and comments, thanks for the links to some I hadn’t seen. RIP and thanks, GG!

  8. Sharpie says:

    Thanks for the many great evenings, Gary.

  9. Aufero says:

    Time to get out my pamphlets from the 70’s and reflect on how much I owe to Gary Gygax for the last few decades of fun.

  10. Samrobb says:

    It’s amazing how far reaching the tributes to EGG have been. As just one example, I give you a constitutional law blogger’s memories.

  11. Sivi says:

    Guess he failed his save vs. getting old….me and some friends ran Tomb of Horrors in his honor. Pour some Mountain Dew out for one’s creator….

  12. Cadamar says:

    I was very saddened by the news. Gaming has played a huge role in my life. I can thank gaming for the great majority of my friends and intellectual interrests. I am very greatful to Gary and his legacy.

    Fairwell Gary, you had many more friends then you know.
    Jesus saves, roll for initiative.

  13. Rollie says:

    I say we all take a full-round action of silence.

  14. […] about it (and playing it) today after talking to the kids about the passing of D&D game designer Gary Gargax while wandering around Borders Books today. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons […]

  15. Rhykker says:

    Heh in the Dueling Analogs tribute, I immediately recognized the map on the table as being the Moathouse from the Temple of Elemental Evil adventure.

  16. Davesnot says:

    This is from the Foreward of book 1 of the original 3 book rules (white boxed set).. written by E. Gary Gygax…

    These rules are strictly fantasy. Those wargamers who lack imagination, those who don’t care for Burroughs’ Martian adventures where John Carter is groping through black pits, who feel no thrill upon reading Howard’s Conan saga, who do not enjoy the de Camp & Pratt fantasies or Fritz Leiber’s Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser pitting their swords against evil sorceries will not be likely to find DUNGEONS and DRAGONS to their taste. But those whose imaginations know no bounds will find that these rules are the answer to their prayers. With this last bit of advice we invite you to read on and enjoy a “world” where the fantastic is fact and magic really works!

    1 November 1973

    Hard to imagine life without D&D…

    .. and it looks like I have some reading to catch up on.

  17. Pete!! says:

    where’s a cleric with a res spell when you need one?

  18. FakeFrenchie says:

    I’m glad I found this post. As I said in another thread before I found this one, I expected Twenty-sided to be flying at half mast.

    *raises a glass in honor of GG* Here’s to many wonderful hours spent playing D&D.

  19. SWCrusader says:

    While most of the mainstream media seems to not really understand why Gary was famous, I was touched to see Steven Colbert finish last nights episode of the colbert report with a very apt tribute to him. Short but apt.

  20. Solka says:

    Shamus, I’d suggest you add xkcd’s tribute too. Really good one

  21. Deoxy says:

    Doh! Solka, you added the 21st comment!

    That means this post no longer has “A natural twenty” comments. :-(

  22. Supah_Ewok says:

    Simply notifying you that the Author’s picture from the recent site reworking doesn’t line up here, probably due to the picture of Gygax.

5 Trackbacks

  1. […] Shamus Young’s tribute […]

  2. By MMOG Nation » Roll a d20 In Tribute on Wed Mar 5, 2008 at 9:48 am

    […] Fitting memorial tributes from all […]

  3. By An Untraditional Home » The Car Game on Wed Mar 5, 2008 at 7:33 pm

    […] about it (and playing it) today after talking to the kids about the passing of D&D game designer Gary Gargax while wandering around Borders Books today. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons […]

  4. By fritz freiheit.com » Gary Gygax dead at 69 on Fri Mar 7, 2008 at 2:16 pm

    […] Gary Gygax, RIP – Twenty Sided […]

  5. By Thanks Gary… Peace be unto you. : Critical Hits on Sun Jan 24, 2010 at 6:25 pm

    […] Shamus Young’s tribute […]

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