Gary Gygax has passed. RIP beloved father of RPG's. (merged)


Indeed. His creation was a vital part of my life.

A fall-back, a social crux, and a geek hobby I think not. No matter what I have done socially in this world, I still come back to D&D. Its the hobby I credit with encouraging my love of writing, drawing, and history. In a way I truly believe it helped prepare me for life and was a lot of fun in the process.

Gary's prose gave a lot of people a communal experience that is all the more relevant in the age of the video game. I found D&D in its incarnate form (regardless of edition) to be a great way to hang out with friends and evoke creativity. It so beat a day on the couch watching football.

I learned Greyhawk a generation late (in its AoL/Erik Mona insurgency of the mind-90s). It is still the quintessential D&D setting.

God rest Mr. Gygax. God rest. And thank you.


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The EN World kitten
I posted "The Empty Chair," a eulogy for a gamer, back in the second page of this thread. However, although it was very apropos, I found that posting someone else's words wasn't enough. I wanted to write my own tribute for the man who gave us all so much. As such, this was the best way I was able to express it.

Mr. D&D Guy (sung to the tune of "American Pie")

A long, long time ago…
I can still remember
How that boxed set used to make me smile
And I knew that when it was my chance
I could make those weird dice dance
And maybe I could DM for a while

But that GM’s Day made me shiver
When that email was delivered
And those threads on the forum
I just couldn’t ignore ‘em

I can’t remember if I cried
As my PCs hp declined
But somehow it hurt deep inside
The day that Gary died

So bye-bye Mr. D&D guy
Rolled aplenty for nat twenty
But I didn’t roll high
And even now a new edition is nigh
Provin’ gaming itself will never die
Gaming itself will never die

Did you write the PHB
And did you help bring about 1E
All those many years ago?
Do you believe in lucky rolls
Can minis make my PC whole
And can you teach me to play like a pro?

Well, I know that your game was so neat
When I saw that blank character sheet
So many things to choose
Man, I dig those alternate rules

I was a lonely teenage egghead nerd
Who was captivated by those written words
But I couldn’t believe what I heard
The day that Gary died

I started playin’
Bye-bye Mr. D&D guy
Rolled aplenty for nat twenty
But I didn’t roll high
And even now a new edition is nigh
Provin’ gaming itself will never die
Gaming itself will never die

Now in 4E we’ll have all-new rules
And use virtual books and tools
But that’s not how it used to be
When we all adventured back in Greyhawk
All the things we did were all the talk
Of the world he wrote for you and me

Oh, and while Zagyg was looking down
He was kicked out of his hometown
The judge it seemed was blind
So he left them behind
The Journeys then seemed Dangerous
The fans all kicked up quite a fuss
Wondering “What’s this mean for us?”
The day that Gary died

I started playin’
Bye-bye Mr. D&D guy
Rolled aplenty for nat twenty
But I didn’t roll high
And even now a new edition is nigh
Provin’ gaming itself will never die
Gaming itself will never die

Dissin’ tradition with a new edition
Not seein’ what we’d lost in transition
Campaign worlds all appearing fast
With desert worlds and demi-planes
The gamers thought there would be great gains
Never knowing that it simply couldn’t last

Now the late nineties were filled with gloom
And the game itself seemed to face its doom
We all looked up one day
Oh, TSR had gone away!
And then WotC came to take the wheel
And we felt like we’d never heal
Kinda like how we all would feel
The day that Gary died

I started playin’
Bye-bye Mr. D&D guy
Rolled aplenty for nat twenty
But I didn’t roll high
And even now a new edition is nigh
Provin’ gaming itself will never die
Gaming itself will never die

Oh, 2E’d been all over the place
Throughout the planes and wildspace
With no main point of reference
So come on Third Edition, OGL
And please bring Zagyg back as well
‘Cause, he has always been a gamer’s friend

Oh, and as I watched him take the stage
It seemed like it was a new age
We all then cheered his name
He was back in the game!
But when the fervor died down later on
I just blinked once and he was gone
Leaving me wondering what went wrong
The day that Gary died

I was playin’
Bye-bye Mr. D&D guy
Rolled aplenty for nat twenty
But I didn’t roll high
And even now a new edition is nigh
Provin’ gaming itself will never die
Gaming itself will never die

I met a guy who played LA
‘Cause he liked gaming Gary’s way
But his group had since all moved on
I went down to my gaming store
Where I’d bought Greyhawk years before
But the man there said that old books didn’t pay

And online, gamers felt bereaved
The newbies cried, the grognards grieved
But not a game was halted
Just like he would have wanted
Now the man that I admired most
Has gone and given up the ghost
But somehow he still felt so close
The day that Gary died

And I was playin’
Bye-bye Mr. D&D guy
Rolled aplenty for nat twenty
But I didn’t roll high
And even now a new edition is nigh
Provin’ gaming itself will never die
Gaming itself will never die

I was playin’
Bye-bye Mr. D&D guy
Rolled aplenty for nat twenty
But I didn’t roll high
And even now a new edition is nigh
Provin’ gaming itself will never die

The Green Adam

First Post
Well anyone who knows me knows that very little brightens my outlook like a good game. More so then any other hobby or industry, RPGs combines all my likes together; Art, writing, acting and storytelling, science and history all combine in one way or another to create an exciting gaming experience. I owe that feeling to Mr. Gygax.

Over the last year or two I've had the pleasure of speaking with Gary on occasion through posts on the D&D/D20 gaming website EN World. Creative, friendly and with a good sense of humor about himself, Gary Gygax was and will always be an inspiriation to both my work and my recreation.

Natural 20 Gary! Game on.


First Post
Thanks Gary for the times of joy. It's amazing what impact one person can have on your life without ever having met them. Be at peace Gary.


First Post
If ever there was an immortal, enduring and eternal, among
the gamer community, that man would be E. Gary Gygax.

As long as we continue to play our games and perpetuate our
hobby, Gary will remain with us, alive and present at every
dinning room table and local game store.

Thank you for creating the hobby that has both enriched and
enhanced the past 19 years of my life.



First Post
This was posted at the WotC forums. themocaw gave permission to spread it around.
Though, I've not out-right cried. I had a moment of overwhelming emotion when I read this.

themocaw said:
Suddenly, things didn't hurt so much. The pain was gone, and the darkness as well. The touch of his loved ones' hands faded away, as did the pain.

He was free.

He wasn't sure when it happened, just that it did. There was a burst of light, and a feeling of utter calmness, and then a moment of understanding.

He looked back only once, but already, what had been was fading away. A part of him longed to return, but a voice whispered to him that his time there was over. Something new lay ahead.

But first, there was something he wanted to do.

They were already waiting for him, smiling, just like he remembered. Sheets of paper with arcane symbols and numbers lay in front of them next to glasses of drink and small, polyhedral shapes that glowed in brilliant colors that no human eye could have seen. Faces long since missed. Friends and loved ones that he'd wished he could have seen one more time, and now he could.

There was one empty seat waiting for him at the head of the table.

He took his seat and cleared his throat. Reaching out a hand, he adjusted the shimmering cardboard screen and glanced over his notes.

"All right, guys. Roll for initiative," he said.
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First Post
I never met Gary, but I want to thank him all the same. I can't possibly count all the fun I've had and all the friends I've made thanks to the hobby he helped to create. Before our game started tonight, we held a toast to his honor. Best wishes to his family. Good bye Gary and thank you.

Cor Azer

First Post
Like so many others, I honestly can't imagine my life had it not been for this man I will never meet. Everything I have and am, I fully believe is due to this hobby of his that he kindly shared with the rest of us.

Godspeed, sir, and well played.


First Post
RIP Gary - you were truly one of my personal heroes. :(

I cannot put into words how much gratitude I have for your massive contribution to my favorite hobby. You have opened worlds of imaginations of thousands of us for over 30 years.

It has been my great honor and privilege to converse with you via this forum a handful of times.

- Craig (Thurbane) Anthony
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First Post
Gary, your contribution to this world has defined much of my life: the people I associate with, how I spend my free time, etc. Rest in peace, well-deserved peace.


It's been a pretty rough day for all of us. Something struck me as I read through hundreds of posts. I am done with the word Grognard, I will try to strike it from my vocabulary. We are all D&D players regardless of the edition we game in.

Earlier thoughts on today's sad news

Yesterday was my first day back at work since D&D Experience and I was largely floating around the office on the high that was D&D Experience. I had gotten good sleep, hung out with the family, and chilled out most of Sunday so I was feeling great.

Still feeling good, I rolled into work Tuesday ready to tackle the day.

At 8:45am I had to put out a small fire regarding a conference call with the European office.

At 8:50, I settle into my desk and login.

At 8:55, Shelly Mazzanoble punches me in the gut, "Gary Gygax died last night"

What? Where? Holy . My body sank. (denial) no send me the link! This is a hoax right?

I sprung into action, I needed to confirm. "cancel the call with Europe". I feel a little dirty admitting this part, but "The Rouse" sprung into PR Mode.

* To our PR Manager, "call the agency I want a statement ready by noon"
* To web "we need a tribute on the main page in a couple hours"
* To the the community team "we need a thread pinned on the boards so people can post. Merge any existing threads"
* To my product manager "what can we put for a dedication in the front of the core books"

By 9:15am it was done, PR mode was over and it was back to "Scott".

An then wave two hit me around 10am. I went on the boards and saw the reality of what this meant. One of the most influential people in gaming, no entertainment, a pop culture icon had passed.

A few meetings took my mind of the situation but after lunch I came back and read the whole memorial thread on our boards and now I realize this:

A person who I met once briefly at GenCon, who made a game I love to play, who has allowed me to work at a company I love, have a nice house, drive a nice car, feed my family, and who for the better part of two years as allowed me to have the most rewarding professional experience of my life is gone.

How profound it is to realize that someone I never really knew has so positively changed my life, altering it's course, possibly forever.

Thanks Gary, I am playing D&D for you today!

Rest in Peace.


First Post
Farewell to an Icon

So many feelings, so few words. I'm writing this after reading a full 13 pages of posts - nearly all of which I read while nodding and thinking, yes, sounds like me too.


8th Grade, late 70's and a friend of mine playing with the white boxed set and the D&D basic blue book - a friend I am still in touch with today, in fact, he brought this sad news to my attention


D&D introduced me to gaming, gaming helped me develop better critical thinking and creative thinking skills. Skills which later served me well in my professional life (Nuclear Engineering, Navy Submarines).

Also, I developed adaptive and roleplaying skills which allowed me to be a better communicator, a better leader and a better instructor.

To this day, I use the skills every day where I teach field-grade officers at an Army school. I encourage them to adopt different points of view, I put them in situations and use the term role-play to ensure the exercise and training is immersive.

As many have pointed out, the 2nd and 3rd order spin-offs from D&D can not be measured. Would we have MMORPG? or the blockbuster fantasy PC games of the early 1990's?

My 18 year old son just two weeks go ran a Star Wars RPG session with several friends from high school. Would that game even exist today if not for Gary's influence?


To Gary's family and friends, my deepest condolences on the loss of someone close to you. Please accept the outpouring of sincere remembrance as we all grieve with you.

Note - Cross posted from another touching Gary Gygax at the Troll Lords forums, where I first read about the news.

Another Gary Gygax Memorial Thread


First Post
(Goes silent upon reading this, goes offline, and contemplates all the wonder and joy that came into his life (the IRs on this board included) because of that one man: Gary Gygax.)


Thanks Gary for giving me the tools to unchain my imagination, for giving me countless worlds to roam. Now I have shared it with my kids.

RIP Gary Gygax, your legacy lives on.


Much to my regret, I never met him. But all I could have said to him was, "Thank you." My life wouldn't be the life I have without his work.


After hearing the news I had to shut down my computer and take some time to think. Its funny how a man you have never met can have such an impact on you.

Thanks for everything you have given us.

Rest in Peace.

aka thotd


First Post
Everytime I think I've posted all I can bear to on this sad day I read another thread and another post just wells it up again.

I wish I were playing tonight, somewhere with friends this game has brought into my life. I guess since I'm not the best place I can be is here on these boards and on others talking about the passing of a man worthy of praise and saddness in his passing. When I do get sleepy and head off to bed I think I'm going to grab up Gord the Rogue and read it till I can't see words anymore.

To make people happy, to bring joy.. That's the best any of us can do in life.

Gary thanks for it all.

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