D&D General Appendix EN - What one book/series inspires your D&D?


Elder Thing
I think Black Company might be only my third favorite of his fantasy series-- the short stories that go with it push Dread Empire into second place for me (and putting in the sci-fi things, I'm not sure the short stories for the Star Fishers universe don't eek that ahead too).
I've read all the Garrett books, and the first several Black Company, and that's it for Glen Cook for me. I was honestly much less impressed with the Back Company than I expected to be, especially given how great the Garrett books are.

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Elder Thing
I really love Jack Vance's fantasy works. EGG mentioned the Dying Earth stories in the original Appendix N (and they're included in the OP).

But I find Vance's Lyonesse trilogy to be just as (if not more) inspiring. Those novels were written in the 1980s, and hence not included in the 1e DMG. But they are wonderful inspiration.

(In fact, there's a FRPG based on it, using the Mythras rules: The Design Mechanism )
The funniest thing about Vance's works IMO is how easily you can see the Dying Earth influence in the D&D spell system, yet how little that system actually resembles the way spells work in the books.


Follower of the Way
I looked it up fearful of what I would find.

A post-literate society is a hypothetical society in which multimedia technology has advanced to the point where literacy, the ability to read or write, is no longer necessary or common.

Fears, confirmed.
While I certainly grant that that particular idea would be bad (and is....extremely unlikely in our current society, given the ongoing importance of literature today, Harry Potter's final book released in 2007 guys, GRRM is still being hounded for when he'll finish/continue the series, and D&D itself requires reading), Yaarel's overall original point seems to stand: there is no need to fork apart entirely different threads just for individual subtypes of media. A modern-day "Appendix N" would almost certainly feature a mix of books, movies, comics, and (most likely) video games.


I'll add The Riders of the Sidhe series by Kenneth C. Flint.

Yes, it's based on Irish myth, but history, myths, and legends are really my biggest influences.


For reference, this page has the 5e books that were added to the 1e list in the 5e PHB (which I'd skimmed before), and also the ones from the 5e DMG (which I'd missed).



The third of Jack Vance's dying earth books didn't come out until 1983, so well after Appendix N. But "Cugel's Saga" fits right in with "Eyes of the Overworld". The following year brought "Rhialto the Marvellous" and I don't think it's nearly as good as the others. It is, however, needed for a chunk of the stories in the tribute collection "Songs of the Dying Earth", which is great.



I was about to post Abercrombie's First Law novels as well. Great stuff.
Same reason I came here - Abercrombie has created a gritty fantasy world that I absolutely love.
So, I will add John Marco's Tryants and Kings trilogy with The Jackal of Nar, The Grand Design, & The Saints of the Sword. Rich in detail, visceral writing, "checked all the boxes" for me.

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