Did you feel it? The world just changed. Not as your reading it, but when this was written. Maybe you can still hear the echo, feel the aftershock. At 2:52 pm I received this message via twitter. “@cc_chapman: Sad. Gary Gygax the creator of Dungeons and Dragons has died at age 69 – http://tinyurl.com/32gltg – Now rolling natural 20’s in the sky” Than thats when I felt it. First off CC Chapman made a classic reference to the game Gygax helped spawn, well played CC. But the missive went on past that. It went past my twitter stream, and finally took root here, hours after the news had been delivered.
The world we live in just lost a visionary, a man who saw dragons in everyday life. I have played D & D, both in real life and in video games. But I wasn’t a regular. But I was fond of the world, and the joys it brought to the table. I even wrote my own version of the game, complete with back story and maps with no dice so my friends and i could play it on the school bus.
Dungeons and dragons has touched so many of the people out there. Your almost not a geek unless you have played, or understand the terminology. Vin Diesel know what we’re talking about, and he explains what D & D means far better than I could.
As I was looking for information to piece this article together i happened across the home page for D&D only to find that they had a notice posted across the site. Its a fitting tribute, and a touching gesture. Just in case they pull the page down I did a screen cap of it.
I think this notice didn’t hit at a core gaming experiance for me. Instead it spoke to a new world in which the resource that was the progenitor of the system could no longer be approached with questions about it. We now only have his writings and the interpretations of the people around him when he created the game to understand the fine details of the creation.
I’m working on an academic paper which deals with something similar so I just wanted to leave you with this thought. We currently live during the only time on this planet at which the creators of the network exist at the same time as the network itself is growing beyond them. We live at a time when you could ask Tim Berners-Lee about intimate details on what he thinks of the path his creation has taken. Its a humbling thought for when these people leave we are just left with the system, the network, the rules they put in place.
Thanks for the Games Gary, and may you always make your saving throw.