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TSR Q&A with Gary Gygax

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.

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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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Col_Pladoh

Gary Gygax
Ulrick said:


[snip]

I'll try to figure out his name though. I'll keep you posted.

And thanks again!

Ulrick

Sorry, I missed getting email notification of a number of posts here, yours being the first. I look forward to solving the mystery;)

Cheers,
Gary
 

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Col_Pladoh

Gary Gygax
Mercule said:
And, from left field....

What RPGs have you played/do you play that are not some breed of D&D and not of your design? Which ones struck you favorably, and why?

Vampire, Shadowrun, Hero, GURPS, Paranoia, Castle Falkenstein, Amber, Aria, etc.?


Also, what genres, besides fantasy, do you enjoy gaming (incl. wargaming) in?

Sorry, another email notice not gotten:(

I have played and enjoyed EPT, Boot Hill, Metamorphosis Alpha, Gangbusters, Top Secret, Gamma World, Paranoia, CoC, and Dark Conspiricy... Likely I've forgotten a few over the 30 years or so of RPGing :rolleyes:

In military miniatures periods I most enjoy medieval, WWII, Napoleonics, Napoleonic naval, ancients, ECW, and Victorian military campaigns.

In board wargames I have much the same taste, although WWII is likely my favorite period there.

Cheers,
Gary
 

Col_Pladoh

Gary Gygax
Bendris Noulg said:
Well, in addition to giving this a bump for Mercule's question, I'll ask one myself...

Recently, the SRD was updated and made entirely official. However, some creatures/races were removed and retained, presumably as Product Identity (i.e., no 3rd Party can use them short of special permissions, and word is that some have already obtained the "green light").

Might I ask, for the sake of curiosity, where the ideas for the following originated?

-Beholder
-Carrion Crawler
-Displacer Beast
-Kuo-toa
-Mind Flayer
-Slaad
-Umber Hulk
-Yuan-ti

I'm not trying to snub WotC, mind you. I'm just trying to figure out what makes these more PI than, say, owlbears and ropers.

Yet another post that I missed...

Okay, here's your list, and my answers;)

Beholder--Terry Kuntz dreamed up this sweet little critter.

Carrion Crawler--I just needed something nasty for the "clean-up crew, so thought this one up.

Displacer Beast--Vaguely inspired by a PJ Farmer critter in his "Created Universes" series, but not drawn from any specific thing therein.

Kuo-toa--Another "I need something new" race dreamed up out of whole cloth so populate the subterranean world.

Mind Flayer--the depiction inspired by the cover of the paperback noved by Brian Lumley, the Burrowers Beneath, but all the detals made up by me.

Slaad--This isn't my creation, so I can't say more.

Umber Hulk--Just a tough monster I made up from my imagination so the players would have something new and difficult to deal with.

Yuan-ti--this isn't my beastie...

As for the owlbear, I used the Oriental plastic figure sold in a package of various other "monsters" as the basis for it's appearance, then made up its specs.

The Roper I dreamed up out of whole cloth, like the unber hulk, so WotC could well claim it is unique. They missed quite a few others that I made up from whole cloth, of course.

Cheers,
Gary
 

Col_Pladoh

Gary Gygax
S'mon said:


Hm - so if I want Slaad in stuff I write I now theoretically (ie assuming WoTC has enforcable IP rights in the use of the current version of Slaad) have to base them off their original appearance in White Dwarf magazine, which was copyright to the original author... assuming he didn't object. :)

-S'mon, copyright law guy

Hi S'mon:)

As I recall, when Steve Jackson and Ian Livingston brought the Fiend Folio material to TSR for a book proposal, they had releases from all the contributors. Likely those are in the WotC files nowadays. So I expect that WotC does have all rights to the various creatures that appeared in that work.

Cheers,
Gary
 

Col_Pladoh

Gary Gygax
Mark CMG said:
:) Happy GM's Day, Poppa G! :)

Thankee Kindly, Mark!

Not only does son Alex sometimes call me "Pappa G," but I was totally unaware that 5 March was Game Masters Day.

Shouldn't we make a point of bringing awarness of this important day to the rest of the nation? I am sure that all school students would be pleased if it were made a national holiday--devoted to playing the RPG of your choice, of course :D

Heh,
Gary
 

Col_Pladoh

Gary Gygax
Tallarn said:
Not a question as such, but a continuation of thoughts on Gaxmoor...some spoilers ahead...
.
.

That maze spell was nasty! But the final revelation that Trakhassa has been masquerading as the High Priest all along was fun...please feel free to congratulate the authors on a fun module on behalf of our group!

We're now moving on to other things in the campaign, but we got a lot out of that one city - excellent stuff. I'll let you know what happens with the statues in the future :D

Appreciate the post. Ernie was rather dismayed by the ill-tempered posts about the module he found on RPGnet. I told him that in truth any mention of the work is a plus, and never to expect much in the way of a good word on that website;)

Do keep me posted on the interaction with the statues in Gaxmoor. Some are a lot of fun...heh-heh-heh.

Cheers,
Gary
 
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S'mon

Legend
Col_Pladoh said:


Hi S'mon:)

As I recall, when Steve Jackson and Ian Livingston brought the Fiend Folio material to TSR for a book proposal, they had releases from all the contributors. Likely those are in the WotC files nowadays. So I expect that WotC does have all rights to the various creatures that appeared in that work.

Cheers,
Gary

Yep, the Slaad's details published in Fiend Folio were doubtless (c) TSR and thence (c) WoTC. However White Dwarf's copyright policy on publication was that works in White Dwarf remained (c) to original authors, with a single-reprint license, so as I understand it the details as published in White Dwarf were then, and always will be, (c) original author, as are any pre-publication versions in the possession of the author.
I have a link to a great article about how authors can use this interesting fact, that copyrights (and other rights) only flow forward in time to derivative works, not back to prior works, to get around restrictive transfer-of-copyright contracts, but unfortunately it's on my other PC...
 


S'mon

Legend
Col_Pladoh said:


Appreciate the post. Ernie was rather dismayed by the ill-tempered posts about the module he found on RPGnet. I told him that in truth any mention of the work is a plus, and never to expect much in the way of a good word on that website;)

Do keep me posted on the interaction with the statues in Gaxmoor. Some are a lot of fun...heh-heh-heh.

Cheers,
Gary

*SPOILERS FOR GAXMOOR*
-
-
-
-
-
-
The module has some editing problems, it takes more work on the DM's part than perhaps 3e players are used to, and the ending with Tracassa cackling evilly as she vanished with the sacred artifact is truly Gygaxian in its evilness and brutality towards those poor hapless player characters who'd sought the Staff so long, but I did have a great time running it - it gave me about 9 months' play since I got it last June, that can't be bad! Especially as there are plenty of bits-and-pieces remaining I can still use for future scenarios, perhaps for a lower level group than the current one (we had 9 characters in the party yesterday, average level 9.5).
Now I can't wait for Leopold to start 'colecting' the statues - pity Tallarn told his player all about this thread... :)
 

Col_Pladoh

Gary Gygax
S'mon,

Darned if I can remember if the GW chaps had obtained additional releases from the authors of those creatures appearing in the Fiend folio or not. I think Kevin and/or Brian Blume cut the deal for publication. All I remember clearly is that I went through their list of monsters and deleted quite a number that I didn't want in an "official" bestiary, and created some new entries to replace them, and had others add theirs; then that Lawrence Schick left most of them in the work--he was leaving TSR thereafter, so I suppose he was showing me something...

Bah! :rolleyes:

Anyway, I can understand some editing problems being in 'Gaxmoor, because Ernie and Luke missed their deadline, and the Trolls were really under the gun to get it into shape for publication as they had planned. I must say that I had a good bit of fun playing in that adventure, and I am disappointed that the two are not working on the "Lost Undercity" now as had been the original plan, because I'd happily do play-testing there :D Ernie is working all the time and Luke has a new job that demands all of his time too. worse, he is currently called up and on active duty in the Army--Luke was with the 1st Armored Division in Desert Storm

Cheers,
Gary
 

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