Gary Gygax: 0 HP

by Joey deVilla on March 4, 2008

Gary Gygax, the first edition of the “Dungeon Master’s Guide”, D&D dice, D&D figureI’ll have you young whippersnappers know that I only played the first edition of AD&D, the One True Version of the game.

E. Gary Gygax, who as co-creator of the Dungeons and Dragons role-playing game, died this morning at the age of 69 at his home in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. As a former dungeon master, I feel the urge to get some mead and pour 2d20 ounces on the ground outside the former Yonge Street location of Mr. Gameway’s Ark for my dead homie.

Requiescat in pace, Gary. You were a natural 20.

{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Marmy March 4, 2008 at 3:27 pm

Actually, he’d be at -10.

Joey deVilla March 4, 2008 at 3:39 pm

@Marmy: You crazy kids and your newfangled rules!

tbit March 4, 2008 at 6:27 pm

So… Resurrection or Reincarnation? There’s never a high level cleric when you need one…

MV March 4, 2008 at 7:07 pm

What was the name of that gaming store on Yonge St south of Bloor back around 1980? Was always envious of the older guys who could afford those little figurines.

James March 4, 2008 at 9:24 pm

Not sure a better use for graph paper was ever really found…

Joey deVilla March 4, 2008 at 9:50 pm

@MV: That was the flagship store of Mr. Gameway’s Ark (there was at least one other store — I recall there being one on Mt. Pleasant).

Ethan March 5, 2008 at 9:35 am

Ah, Mr Gameways Ark… holy cow. That was a loooong time ago.

Ian March 5, 2008 at 12:40 pm

Mr. Gameway’s Ark. [air rushing out of lungs] It’s been decades since I’ve thought of that place.

I just gave all of my old D&D gear to‘s Christie St. Martin.

Now I’m feeling a little bummed about that.

Tomb of Horrors. Now that was a great dungeon.

R.I.P, Gary. Go cast magic missle….at the darkness!

darcy May 4, 2008 at 4:17 am

mr. gameways was my childhood best friends’ parents store… we spent hours just running around..

they had an exact replica of the enterprise bridge overlooking the stores 2 stories….

that shit was inspirational!

Adam May 12, 2008 at 6:54 am

Mr gameways was my dads store.

i grew up there.

good times.

William Woolrich August 15, 2008 at 7:37 pm

I used to work there. Good times.

Chris August 12, 2010 at 8:45 pm

I played my first game of D&D at Mr Gameways Ark when I was on holiday from England. I remember the Star Trek bridge and I remember how friendly the staff and gamers who frequented it were. One of the staff gave me my first set of polyhedral dice just to get me started, and another guy there sold me a number of pages, stapled together, that were a dice rolling system to bulk up your character with some background, additional stats and skills etc. I still have those pages somewhere. This was in the mid 70’s. I went back there in the 80s but couldn’t find the store. I remember it being on the corner of Bloor and Yonge, but I got to thinking my memory was wrong.

michael green January 14, 2015 at 9:34 pm

@Chris … Mr. Gameways’ Ark was on the Northeast corner of Bloor and Charles streets. I was one of the managers that helped lay it to rest when it finally went under for the last time.

There was a cluster of game stores back around that time – 70’s and early 80’s … the Battered Dwarf, The WorldHouse, The Four Horsemen. When Gameway’s went down it caused some pretty serious ripples for the survivors. You’d think that the remaining stores would have benefited, but I remember the long, LONG line ups during the bankruptcy sale days. People stocked up and bought *tons* of stuff.

On the game floor alone, I’m thinking that the the hard core gamers probably didn’t feel the need to buy very much for a good six months, maybe even a full year.

Good memories of the Ark though – the Hobby Floor in the basement, Toys and Plush on the ground floor, Games and Puzzles on the second floor and the Admin Offices, Games Club and Star Trek Bridge on the third floor. Great times.

Constantine Kritsonis March 29, 2018 at 10:34 pm

Played my first D and D, backgammon, chess and Acquire there with characters like Ron Pappin, Puk, Monster, Vlad Dobrich, Stephen Boyd. A real mix of gamers around 1978.

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