D&D General When We Were Wizards: Trailer for the Podcast

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Supporter
Came across this -


This is from the Youtube description:

Four years ago, screenwriter, Adam Turner and Dungeons & Dragons® historian, Paul Stormberg, embarked on a project about Gary Gygax, D&D®, and TSR Hobbies, the company he founded to publish the game. During the course of this project they recorded their ongoing conversations, not only about the cultural impact of the game, but the profound personal impact it had on Gary, his family, friends, and colleagues. The result is an unprecedented 14-episode limited series podcast that tells the story with the voices of the people who were there, through never before released interviews, personal letters, and internal company documents.

D&D® was the world's first published role-playing game and, as such, is one of the few types of table-top games ever created by humanity.

Can we say who created chess? Or dice? No, of course not. But we can name the people who created Dungeons & Dragons®, and we can tell their story. This is that story. One of dreamers and gamers who changed the world.

Dungeons & Dragons® is a truly global phenomenon. An estimated 50 million people have played the game since it was created and it has been translated into dozens of languages. Nearly 14 million people play it currently and 9 million people watch livestreams of other people playing it. The game pervades popular culture and has become part of the very fabric of our civilization.

Gary Gygax believed in the power of games to transcend the human condition. Even as a child, that power drew him to games like chess, cribbage, mahjong, and others. But all those games were based on competition. In a millennia of game design, a thousand years of human history, no one had broken this paradigm of us vs. them, victory or defeat. The purpose of games were to win, and losing meant failure.

But for the first time in thousands of years, D&D® gives us something different. It’s a game whose only boundary is the imagination of everyone sitting around the table playing it. Where the shared experience is the reward.

Join Adam and Paul as they explore the origins of a cultural phenomena and how it changed the lives of those who created it and, ultimately, the whole world.




I haven't had a chance to listen to it, and not sure when I will, but I am adding it to my media diet. If you have listened to this, or have any comments, please feel to add them!
 

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Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Supporter
So I finally got around to downloading them, and it appears that there are 6 of the planned 14 posted. Three of them are from 2022, and three were posted on May 26, June 2, and June 9 of this year. So it looks like they are back to posting them weekly, and hopefully there won't be another two-year hiatus!

When I get the chance to listen to the complete 14-part series, I will post my full thoughts. But in the meantime, please continue posting any and all thoughts here.
 

Riley

Legend
Supporter
This series is excellent!

Rose Estes has been a fabulous addition to the storytelling this year - especially in this week’s episode, telling tales of TSR following James Dallas Egbert’s disappearance, and the rise of the Satanic Panic.

I’d long-ago heard Gygax’s and several others’ recollections of those times, but her insights and tales are fresh and new (to me, at least).

“Don’t answer the phone!” is a bold communications strategy.
 
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Iosue

Legend
It is fantastic! Definitely worth a listen if you are interested in D&D history. A lot of it will seem familiar if you’ve read Jon Peterson’s works, but hearing the story from those who were there is definitely a plus.
It’s practically a companion piece to The Game Wizards, in that it follows the events described there very closely, but adds the perspective of people who were there at the time, in their own words.

If you read The Game Wizards and thought, “This is great, but I wish Peterson didn’t rely only on documented sources,” then this podcast is for you!
 

Parmandur

Book-Friend
It’s practically a companion piece to The Game Wizards, in that it follows the events described there very closely, but adds the perspective of people who were there at the time, in their own words.

If you read The Game Wizards and thought, “This is great, but I wish Peterson didn’t rely only on documented sources,” then this podcast is for you!
I think that Peterson's approach is historically responsible, but the witness testimony adds a different dimension, even if memories might be unreliable after this amount of time.
 

Iosue

Legend
I think that Peterson's approach is historically responsible, but the witness testimony adds a different dimension, even if memories might be unreliable after this amount of time.
I was just thinking this about a Rob Kuntz story about Gygax at the end of the latest episode. I can easily imagine that there are various particulars that he’s misremembering or conflating with some other interaction. And yet that doesn’t mean the story isn’t true. If nothing else, it provides insight to how Kuntz perceived Gygax at the time.

I’ll also admit, I half-expected uncritical hagiography, but the tone of the project is quite even-handed.
 

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