Q&A with Gary Gygax - Page 97
  1. #961
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    Originally posted by Joseph Elric Smith

    Well I have found that if you buy him a good smoke and a good meal and a nice drink he can talk for hours on the most fascinating stuff.
    Ken
    Why thanks, Ken. I do tend to wax eloquent after a good meal, with a cigar in hand and a drink before me. It is enjoyable to become a raconteur in such circumstances. Recalling things that were amusing or exciting to me and sharing the accounts with others who find the tales interesting is enjoyable. Of course that risks being a bore...so I don't mind sharing the floor, as it were :rolleyes:

    Ciao,
    Gary
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    Originally posted by Sir Edgar
    I know you have a list of books that inspired your work at the back of the 1st edition DMG, but if you were to recommend five books that MOST influenced you in the design of D&D, what would they be? Basically, I'm looking for a few good books to read that will help me get an understanding of your design philosophy. Thank you.
    I can't narrow it down to five books, but five authors, maybe:

    Jack Vance
    Robert E. Howard
    Fritz Lieber
    de Camp & Pratt
    A. Merritt

    Honorable Mentions
    Roger Zelazny
    Michael Moorcock
    Fred Saberhagen
    L. Sprague de Camp
    Stanley Weinbaum
    Margaret St. Claire

    Sorry, even being that "narrow" makes me feel uneasy. I read a LOT of fantasy and SF before I got to the penning of the D&D game

    Cheers,
    Gary
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    Originally posted by Janos Antero
    I was always a fan of your villians in the early Gord the rogue novels, especially for how they seemed to break the mold (although at the time I suppose there really wasn't a mold in the same sense) of villians we see today.
    Thanks. Not a few critics claim my villains lack redeeming qualities, are thus not complete and "dimensional," but that's the way I see really evil individuals. No touchy-feely, blame society sort of hogwash for me. they have nothing whatsoever to recommend them, no depth of character, and their motives are simply to do what is malign. Hey, that sounds a lot like game reviewers! Heh-heh.

    [
    You mentioned the script of the 2nd series of cartoons you had in the works.... any chance a bottle of fine whiskey sent to you might loosen your tongue on where you saw it going, or what it was going to be like?

    As always thanks for the replies.
    Marvel has the two completed scripts. My copy of the one approved is likely not in the WotC archives somewhere--unless Williams trashed it.

    the series was to focus more on action and the realization of the heroic band that they were maturing, actually gaining the capacity to do heroic deeds on theior own, without relying on some magical item. Of course with this growing maturity there would be some dramatic xcenes of soul searching, emotional longing for a return to their mundane existences, development or personal relatuonships--all the srtuff that get's in the way of the real fun, the adventure and combat

    Okay, I was jesting.

    Cheers,
    Gary
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    Originally posted by Col_Pladoh
    Sorry, even being that "narrow" makes me feel uneasy. I read a LOT of fantasy and SF before I got to the penning of the D&D game
    Yes, you managed to forget Edgar Rice Burroughs.

    Let's remind everyone - from Gary's foreword to the original edition of Dungeons & Dragons:
    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!

    I grew up with tales of the Norse Gods, and reading the ERB Barsoom and Venus books, so I've got something of a soft spot for ERB.

    Slowly, I'm tracking down some of the other inspirations on Gary and reading them - I was delighted to find a 2nd hand copy of the 5 Harold Shea stories by de Camp and Pratt a couple of years ago, and I've just purchased an omnibus edition of the early Fahfrd and the Grey Mouser stories.

    Young Grace very much enjoyed her 2nd experience of D&D - alas that I had to leave when I did, but my choir rehearsal called (with her father being the conductor of that choir, my being absent might be a bit noticable...)

    Cheers!
    Merric Blackman
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  5. #965
    Irredeemable, aye that was what I meant. I've gotten very tired of the fallen good guy stereotype, or the bad guy gone good. It seems most times these days to be truly evil in the fantasy genre, you must be inhuman, because if you are human, the potential for redemption is inherent. Probably a christian redemption value worked into our culture.

    But really, I much prefer villians who feel like villians, not decent fellows gone bad. Obmi was a good example of a truely wicked individual, as was Iuz's mother the witchhag (not even gonna TRY and spell that name without it in front of me).

    In my experience pyhrric victories are often some of the best in a story, and most memorable endings if handled well. Most early adventures, and just the feel and style of DnD reflected that well, but a tendency toward happier endings has gradually seeped into the genre. Not suprising considering how much investment good characters recieve, and how distraught some can get over the loss, but none the less it seems a sacrafice of story-telling to cater to feelings, which is a questionable trade in my book.

    So since we've got you going on about the old days here, how about telling us about one of your favorite characters on the side of "good", or at least not one of the villians?

  6. #966

    cartoon

    I never thought about asking Gary about the animated show. Sweet memories! I remember being 11 years old, eating Lucky Charms and watching D&D.

    Thats really interesting. Dennis Marks a producer for the Spider-man cartoon show mentioned he worked with you on the Dungeons & Dragons cartoon. Seems like a nice guy and he had very nice words about you. The interview is at http://www.spider-friends.com

    Always wanted to ask if some of the monsters in the cartoon were picked by you? (Specially some of the lesser known Fiend Folio creatures. Bullywuugs, Grimlocks etc.... even Lolth!) And lastly....what was Venger? A Lich? Simply an ex-good guy turned evil with fangs and one horn? (The voice actor for him was really good).

    Thanks for everything Gary! And lets get that memoir book written!!

  7. #967

    Re: cartoon

    Originally posted by cimerians
    Always wanted to ask if some of the monsters in the cartoon were picked by you? (Specially some of the lesser known Fiend Folio creatures. Bullywuugs, Grimlocks etc.... even Lolth!)[/B]
    Yeah! I remember that! Doesn't Venger cause a pit to open up beneath the heroes and they drop into Lolth's web.

    And Venger says, "Behold! Lolth! The Demon Queen of Spiders!"

    And there she is! In spider form with a human head!

    And Tiamat would show up occasionally to beat up Venger! I loved it!

    My gosh, I just wish you could buy those episodes somewhere. Sure, they're a little corny sometimes, but I know every gamer who's see that cartoon wants Hank's bow of energy!

  8. #968
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    Originally posted by Geoffrey


    Ah yes, the D&D boxed set (edited by Mr. Holmes) with the chit sheet in it. I still remember wondering how to glue those chits together to form dice.

    Fortunately I bought some real dice soon afterwards.
    i had dice before i bought that boxed set. actually i had the Original Collector's Ed box set first. and still do. and then bought the Advanced stuff.

    but i liked the Holmes version because the cost of plate mail and chain mail went way down. compared to the ADnD PHB. and i thought the chit idea was cool.

    i was the only one with dice of a group of 15 (14 players and me, the DM). those dice didn't last long. the d20 was completely round by the time i had chits in hand.


    edit: that might be why i have over 14000 dice now.
    Last edited by diaglo; Thursday, 13th March, 2003 at 12:07 PM.

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    Can I get one of these?

    Hiya Gary,

    Be careful what you throw away.

    TSR Plate?

    Next time your at a convention can we just bring a stack of paper plates?

    Thanks in advance.

    B

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    ERB

    Merric,

    Thanks for posting the forward to the D&D work. I had totally forgotten it.

    I recalled Edgar Rice Burroughs only after submitting my reply...,but I actually did remember his books. As for the Barsoom and Venus yarns, don't neglect the stories based in Pellucidar! Those hollow earth adventures, one with Tarzan included, were just great! BTW, I read my first ERB novel at age 10, Cave Girl, and loved it.

    Young Grace very much enjoyed her 2nd experience of D&D - alas that I had to leave when I did, but my choir rehearsal called (with her father being the conductor of that choir, my being absent might be a bit noticable...)

    Cheers!
    Heh, and it is good to being in youngsters. RPG play should encourage her interest in all manner of other thing too, open a whle world of imagination and creativity

    Cheerio,
    Gary
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