On the Ouster of Gary Gygax

A few months back, Jon Peterson of Playing at the World wrote a rather detailed account of the events leading up to Gary’s resignation from the board of TSR.  It is definitely worth taking the time to read.  Really, something like this was more of what I was hoping from David Ewalt’s Of Dice and Men.

The story of TSR is one of those great tragedies where good intentions cannot make up for mediocre business practices.  When large amounts of money and livelihoods are at stake, sometimes survival trumps the art of the artist.  I don’t think that Gary was a crummy dude for being bad at managing a large business.  But I also don’t think that Lorraine Williams was some kind of evil witch villain for protecting her investment and staving off dissolution of TSR at the expense of removing Gary from the helm.

At least thanks to modern digital crowdfunding, you don’t have to become financially and corporately beholden to some guy down the street to put out your game.

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