Check for traps!

E. Gary Gygax! It’s the 30th anniversary of the creation of Dungeons & Dragons!

D&D has reached the age where it’s o.k. to talk about in public. Heck, there’s nothing about the anniversary on the WotC site. I found out about it via the semi-respectable BBC NEWS (via Slashdot and others).

But what self-respecting geek can ignore the birthday of the Mother of All Role-Playing Games? I certainly can’t. Without D&ampD, I might not have met my wife!

Our language revolves around an assortment of catchphrases from D&ampD sessions. One of our favorite expletives is simply saying “E. Gary Gygax!” in shock and dismay. One of the first things we taught our son to say was “Fireball!” I don’t know what we’d substitute for “Got any artifacts and/or relics laying around?” or “Throw food!” or “Doorknob!” or “Hey, hot knees…”

Our characters were so distinct and fun that we can still see them. Like characters from a movie, we remember Charmian, Domino, Elessar, Gambit, Krespin, Sulamon, Sarek, Ooshka, Nikon… and their adventures in Greyhawk and our own fantasy worlds. Without D&D, Ric the Schmuck wouldn’t be who he is. And, of course, instead of Solonor, I’d be stuck using my real name. Ick.

There’s a site called the Dungeons & Dragons Archive that has pictures of the original books and modules. I think Grump has a copy of the original 3-volume set that I’m going to steal and sell on eBay for millions. Just glancing through these pages brings back memories of The Keep on the Borderlands (one of our first adventures), Ravenloft, The Temple of Elemental Evil and Expedition to the Barrier Peaks.

And if I die before I’m 50, it will be from the leftover effects of combining Mountain Dew and Skittles. (I’m convinced that this is where Mike Judge got Cornholio, too.)

Thank you to the creative minds in the D&D Timeline: Mr. Gygax and Dave Arneson and Jeff Perren (who wrote the rules for the tabletop miniatures game Chainmail) and Don Kaye (who helped launch TSR and publish D&D in 1974).

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12 Responses to Check for traps!

  1. Scott says:

    The official anniversary is later this year, I believe, hence WotC’s lack of PR at the moment. I do know there’s a 30th Anniversary edition of the game coming out.

    Personally, I think they should republish the original three books, which I cut my eye-teeth on.

  2. Sherri says:

    I met Dave Arneson at Necronomicon a few years back. Does he still GM for some of the guys?

  3. Solonor says:

    Yes, he does. In fact, he came to one of the pool parties a year or so ago and Whiny played Uno with him. Ain’t that a mental picture?

  4. brandelion says:

    i still haven’t played D&D (for lack of, well, playmates…) but i’m going to pitch in my gratitude, too–the ‘mother’ of all rpg’s must’ve had SOMETHING to do with the spawning of The Elder Scrolls! (bran is a huge Morrowind fan)

  5. domino says:

    Wow, 30 years, huh? Wasn’t it that long ago when we played it? I guess it just feels that way.

    I remember playing all Sunday afternoon, the amazing part is imagining having entire Sunday afternoons to play a game!

    Oh yes, sloppy Pizza Oven Pizza nad Mountain Dew.

    Those were the days, or at least they were days, maybe not THE days.

  6. Brian says:


  7. Solonor says:

    Takes one to know one. :p

  8. gunner says:

    I got into D&D in school but my wife did not play until we were married. She was raised with the “evil” view of D&D, untill she played it and loved it.
    Now I have to find a DM and start again

  9. Ric The Schmuck says:

    I still have the books from when we played…. not the “first” first edition, but very early versions, nonetheless.

    I still have the character sheets, too.

    Yes, I know I’m pathetic.

    Pizza Oven and Mountain Dew is a good memory, but beer and donuts, and gray coffee trumps it, I’m afraid.

    But the times we had, surrounding a weekly game, that was the best. And I miss it, dammit. There has to be an online alternative that we can all do together, somehow. And hell, include all our bloggy friends, too…

    (Bad musical random thought there…. transposing “All My Rowdy Friends” into “All My Bloggy Friends”…. maybe someone with a fancy recording gizmo might tackle that!)

  10. Sunidesus says:

    I must confess to never having played an RPG. I’ve never really “gotten” it. Of course not having any geeky friends in 3D land probably didn’t help the matter.

  11. Almost as old as I am.

    I didn’t realize it, but Dungeons and Dragons turns 30 this year. Has it really been that long? Wow….

  12. Ah, 30 years…

    Solonor’s Ink Well: Check for traps! 30 years of D&D… Gads, I need to get a group together again…

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