ABC News: D&D Co-Creator Dies: "Gary Gygax, who co-created the fantasy game Dungeons & Dragons and helped start the role-playing phenomenon, died Tuesday morning at his home in Lake Geneva. He was 69."
I never got big with it as a game as others have but I did play it on occasion and it was great fun. I had a more consistent group playing Star Fleet Battles.
You know for all the scorn and attacks on D&D, it was the only cooperative game to hit anything close to the mainstream. It isn't an "I win, you lose" type of game. And lots and lots of kids and adults have and are playing it.
It was a great way to explore options. It often was a good insight into your own soul, what characters you liked to play told you something about yourself, and often far more clearly then some personality "instrument".
Role-playing is something people end up doing a lot in life, but as a game it can be great fun as the pressure is off. As a teaching aid it can be great as we can together explore the possible effects of choices. It is far better to make bad choices in an inconsequential game then in real life.
Now, where did that big bag of dice ever end up...