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Happy Birthday Gary Gygax

July 27, 2011

If the world were fortunate enough to still have Gary Gygax in it, today would have been his 73rd birthday. Gygax is known as one of the creators of Dungeons and Dragons and is considered the father of role playing games.

A lifelong lover of tabletop games and sci-fi and fantasy books, a young Gygax and his best friend Don Kaye created war games with toy soldiers and firecrackers. Later in life, he designed more games with friends in his spare time while working at an insurance company and later as a shoe repairman. In 1967, Gygax ran a 20-person gaming event in his basement, the very first Gen-Con. In 1968, Gygax and hobby-shop owner Jeff Perren wrote Chainmail, a very early version of Dungeons and Dragons. Chainmail was published in 1971. After some more tinkering and fine tuning, Dungeons & Dragons was released in January of 1974, with the more complex Advanced Dungeons & Dragons being published in 1977. Gygax went on to create more games, continue to update D&D and be an enthusiastic supporter of role-playing games.

Gary Gygax passed away at his home in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin on March 4, 2008, at age 69.

“I would like the world to remember me as the guy who really enjoyed playing games and sharing his knowledge and his fun pastimes with everybody else.” -Gary Gygax

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