Gary Gygax

I saw in the news today that Gary Gygax has passed away. I haven’t played D&D in years, but I have very fond memories of some great D&D games with my friends back when I was a kid. I remember bugging my mom to buy the Basic D&D box when I saw it in a store, back around 1979. Bless her, she did buy it for me, though she was a little leery about it. I had no idea what the game was about, mind you, I just thought the box art was cool. When I opened the box, and figured out that it wasn’t just a board game, I got sucked in. I remember being really excited about it. At some point, I transitioned to AD&D, and of course bought the Player’s Handbook, Dungeon Master’s Guide, and Monster Manual. Those books sure saw a lot of use.

Though I haven’t really thought much lately about D&D, it did have a big effect on my youth. At one time, role-playing games were pretty much the center of my (geeky) social life. I was usually the DM, so I’d say that RPGs had a lot to do with my development of a lot of key skills, including leadership, organizational skills, creativity, consensus-building, and all that good stuff.

Thanks, Gary, for making the teenage years of many a geek just a bit more bearable, and maybe even a bit exciting now and again!

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