TSR Q&A with Gary Gygax

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This is the multi-year Q&A sessions held by D&D co-creator Gary Gygax here at EN World, beginning in 2002 and running up until his sad pasing in 2008. Gary's username in the thread below is Col_Pladoh, and his first post in this long thread is Post #39.

Gary_Gygax_Gen_Con_2007.jpg
 
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SubMensa

First Post
Ok, I'll step up. please excuse me if this has been asked before.

Where did the idea for the tarrasque come from?

Thanks in advance for any insights you may have.

By the way, thank you for the years of entertainment, and indirectly for my love of reading. If it weren't for discovering roleplaying I would definitely be a different person today.
 

SubMensa said:
Ok, I'll step up. please excuse me if this has been asked before.

Where did the idea for the tarrasque come from?

Ok I'll ask, do you mean the legend of the tarrasque, from the France, or the terrasque from the various monster manuals?
Ken
 

Barak

First Post
Mr Gygax

[tacked on appropriate praise for inventing the hobby, as they pretty much all have been used already, rightfully]

I've seen you refer in passing, favorably so, to Arcana Unhearted, by Malhavoc Press, and have also read your comment on it on montecook.com. Since the product itself introduces quite a few "new" views on D&D, I'd be curious as to your take on the one that impressed or intrigued you the most. And while we're on it, how do you view other products by Mr Cook?

Barak, who'll be sure to look you up next time he's in Lake Geneva.
 

Col_Pladoh

Gary Gygax
andargor said:


Welcome back, Gary!

I've posted a little story about how the D&D adventure began in our group (link in my sig), and I was wondering, how did it start for you?

Andargor

Hi Andargor:)

Heh, and my experience is from the other end, so to speak. I do relate fully to your mentiuon of chess and board wargames, and I do still love such games.Operation Overlord is my board favorite wargame. I love to play chess, shogi, and many variant chess games. Sadly for me, I get little opportunity to do any of that. I've managed to remain active in RPGs, though, and my current LA game campaign is about seven years old now, with regular weekly meetings here at my house on Thursday evenings.

Now to my first D&D sessionion:

It was in the late fall of 1972 when I completed a map of some castle ruins, noted ways down to the dungeon level (singular), and invited my 11-year-old son Ernie and nine-year-old daughter Elise to create characters and adventure. This they did, and around 9 PM (sound familiar?) they had to come back from such imaginary derring-do, put their index card character sheets aside, and get ready for bed. They had had a marvelous time and wanted to keep playing.

After they went upstairs I stayed in my study and went to work on a second dungeon level. The next day they played, and with their PCs were two new ones, that of Rob Kuntz and Don Kaye's Murlynd. After that it was a race for me to get more levels done as the player group grew and got more able in their delving.

Cheers,
Gary
 

Col_Pladoh

Gary Gygax
SubMensa said:
Ok, I'll step up. please excuse me if this has been asked before.

Where did the idea for the tarrasque come from?

Thanks in advance for any insights you may have.

By the way, thank you for the years of entertainment, and indirectly for my love of reading. If it weren't for discovering roleplaying I would definitely be a different person today.

Howdy!

The question has been asked before, although I am not certain if it was on this multi-part thread. anyway...

The tarrasque is a fablous monster from French legend, and it was French author Francois Marcela Froideval who called the beast to my attention, did up the stats for it. I thought the game needed at least one near-undestructable creature from myth, so it made the book;)

Cheers,
Gary
 

Col_Pladoh

Gary Gygax
Joseph Elric Smith said:

Ok I'll ask, do you mean the legend of the tarrasque, from the France, or the terrasque from the various monster manuals?
Ken

Heh, Ken :eek:

I covered both of those bases.

Cheers,
Gary
 

Col_Pladoh

Gary Gygax
Barak said:
Mr Gygax

[tacked on appropriate praise for inventing the hobby, as they pretty much all have been used already, rightfully]

I've seen you refer in passing, favorably so, to Arcana Unhearted, by Malhavoc Press, and have also read your comment on it on montecook.com. Since the product itself introduces quite a few "new" views on D&D, I'd be curious as to your take on the one that impressed or intrigued you the most. And while we're on it, how do you view other products by Mr Cook?

Barak, who'll be sure to look you up next time he's in Lake Geneva.

Howdy Barak!

Well, as one who read the draft mss. for the PGB and DMG before they went to print, bot have only played the new system for a few score hours, I was most impressed with Monte's bold departure from the 3E system wherever he thought such variance would produce a more compellig and exciting campaign. From a designer's standpoint the Arcana Unearthed material strick me as innovative in what difference in feel and stule of play it would engender--virtually a whole new game using the same general framework as 3E.

As for the Good Mr. Cook's other work, as I don't play 3E regularly I don't feel qualified to critique it. That so many avid gamers hold his material in esteem speaks sufficiently, no?

Cheers,
Gary

P.S. Added by Edit:

Sorry I forgot to extend an invitation regarding stopping by. Please do:) Email me, and I can give you directions to my place. We play every Thursday evening from around 6:30 until 10:30. Auditors are fine, and the crew doesn't mind having a casual addition to the party either.
 
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PowerWordDumb

First Post
Col_Pladoh said:
Sorry I forgot to extend an invitation regarding stopping by. Please do:) Email me, and I can give you directions to my place. We play every Thursday evening from around 6:30 until 10:30. Auditors are fine, and the crew doesn't mind having a casual addition to the party either.

Wow! Extending an open invitation for a fan to drop by and play with the legendary master himself?!?

Yet another reason for me to continue to believe - going on 23 years now - that our beloved Gary is the absolute hands-down coolest of the cool.

Some day I too will have to venture over to Lake Geneva. My own personal pilgrimmage to Mecca, if you will. :)
 

Col_Pladoh

Gary Gygax
PowerWordDumb said:


Wow! Extending an open invitation for a fan to drop by and play with the legendary master himself?!?

Yet another reason for me to continue to believe - going on 23 years now - that our beloved Gary is the absolute hands-down coolest of the cool.

Some day I too will have to venture over to Lake Geneva. My own personal pilgrimmage to Mecca, if you will. :)

Heh,

Well thanks, but I am just passing things along.

If you can, get ahold of one of Leo Edward's adventure books for boys. the "Jerry Todd" series is the easiest to find copies of. Leo was born in Illinois but lived and wrote in Wisconsin. In his books he extends an invitation to readers to stop by his house, meet him and his wife, and have lemonade and cookies :) I never made it there, but I surely enjoyed the novels and really liked the spirit of the invitation the author displayed. So I am just passing things along now.

Cheers,
Gary
 

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