The difference between tragedy and comedy: Tragedy is something awful happening to somebody else, while comedy is something awful happening to somebody else.
-- Aaron Allston
Champions (5th Ed.)
GURPS Fantasy (2nd Ed.)
Mythic Greece: The Age of Heroes
Cugel's Compendium of Indispensable Advantages
This above list is a brief sample of role-playing game material that Aaron Allston authored either solely or in conjunction with others. On Thursday, he passed away.
For this blog, I post material that is interesting to me; I am gratified that anyone else finds it interesting. Tedankhamen has an 'Obscure Game Blogging Challenge' of 31 questions to be answered during the month of March. I am not participating because my responses to these questions would fail to meet even the rather low standards of what I consider interesting. However, question #4 is appropriate for this post:
“What other roleplaying author besides Gygax impressed you with their writing?”
The question presupposes that it is impossible not to be “impressed” by Gygax' writing. Certainly, Gygax was fundamental to the proliferation of role-playing games but I can't say that I was ever “impressed” by his writing. Allston, on the other hand, helped shape my experiences in RPGs to a significant degree. He is associated with many of the RPG products I used when growing up. Allston's writing certainly impressed me; his death saddens me.
I could drone on about his contributions to various gaming works (Car Wars, Known World, and Paranoia among them) or discuss his writing credits outside of gaming, but – given the news of Allston's demise – I don't feel up to writing today. I feel old. However, I will provide an observation to conclude this post. You know the Dungeon Crawl Classics gimmick of starting at level 0 and getting a class only after the first adventure? Allston did that a quarter of a century earlier with Treasure Hunt.
Good-bye, Mr. Allston...and thanks.