09 03 2008
#1787

RIP XAGYG


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Gary Gygax, Game Pioneer, Dies at 69
By SETH SCHIESEL
Published: March 5, 2008

Gary Gygax, a pioneer of the imagination who transported a fantasy realm of wizards, goblins and elves onto millions of kitchen tables around the world through the game he helped create, Dungeons & Dragons, died Tuesday at his home in Lake Geneva, Wis. He was 69.

His death was confirmed by his wife, Gail Gygax, who said he had been ailing and had recently suffered an abdominal aneurysm, The Associated Press reported.

As co-creator of Dungeons & Dragons, the seminal role-playing game introduced in 1974, Mr. Gygax wielded a cultural influence far broader than his relatively narrow fame among hard-core game enthusiasts.

Before Dungeons & Dragons, a fantasy world was something to be merely read about in the works of authors like J. R. R. Tolkien and Robert Howard. But with Dungeons & Dragons, Mr. Gygax and his collaborator, Dave Arneson, created the first fantasy universe that could actually be inhabited. In that sense, Dungeons & Dragons formed a bridge between the noninteractive world of books and films and the exploding interactive video game industry. It also became a commercial phenomenon, selling an estimated $1 billion in books and equipment. More than 20 million people are estimated to have played the game.

While Dungeons & Dragons became famous for its voluminous rules, Mr. Gygax was always adamant that the game’s most important rule was to have fun and to enjoy the social experience of creating collaborative entertainment. In Dungeons & Dragons, players create an alternate persona, like a dwarven thief or a noble paladin, and go off on imagined adventures under the adjudication of another player called the Dungeon Master.

“The essence of a role-playing game is that it is a group, cooperative experience,” Mr. Gygax said in a telephone interview in 2006. “There is no winning or losing, but rather the value is in the experience of imagining yourself as a character in whatever genre you’re involved in, whether it’s a fantasy game, the Wild West, secret agents or whatever else. You get to sort of vicariously experience those things.”

When Mr. Gygax (pronounced GUY-gax) first published Dungeons & Dragons under the banner of his company, Tactical Studies Rules, the game appealed mostly to college-age players. But many of those early adopters continued to play into middle age, even as the game also trickled down to a younger audience.

“It initially went to the college-age group, and then it worked its way backward into the high schools and junior high schools as the college-age siblings brought the game home and the younger ones picked it up,” Mr. Gygax said.

Mr. Gygax’s company, renamed TSR, was acquired in 1997 by Wizards of the Coast, which was later acquired by Hasbro, which now publishes the game.

In addition to his wife, Mr. Gygax is survived by six children: three sons, Ernest G. Jr., Lucion Paul and Alexander; and three daughters, Mary Elise, Heidi Jo and Cindy Lee.

These days, pen-and-paper role-playing games have largely been supplanted by online computer games. Dungeons & Dragons itself has been translated into electronic games, including Dungeons & Dragons Online. Mr. Gygax recognized the shift, but he never fully approved. To him, all of the graphics of a computer dulled what he considered one of the major human faculties: the imagination.

“There is no intimacy; it’s not live,” he said of online games. “It’s being translated through a computer, and your imagination is not there the same way it is when you’re actually together with a group of people. It reminds me of one time where I saw some children talking about whether they liked radio or television, and I asked one little boy why he preferred radio, and he said, ‘Because the pictures are so much better.’ ”

09 03 2008
#1786


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06 03 2008
#1785

FADE (featuring GINNUNGAGAP) in NYC!


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3.1.2008 ––FADE BEGINS THEATRICAL RUN MARCH 19th
FADE opens theatrically on MARCH 19th, 2008 at the Two Boots Pioneer Theater in NYC. Fade will play at the Pioneer for a week and then begin to tour the country. Future dates will be released as they are finalized.
The Pioneer is located on East 3rd Street (between Avenues A and B, but closer to A) New York, New York 10009
You can buy tickets online from their website:
www.twoboots.com/pioneer

2.5.2008 ––FADE PICKED UP FOR DISTRIBUTION BY CINEMA EPOCH
FADE was picked up for distribution in North America by CINEMA EPOCH. They will be releasing us in a limited theatrical run in the spring, and on DVD in the summer.
Cinema Epoch is a Los Angeles-based international sales, production and distribution company formed by distribution veteran Gregory Hatanaka.
With a distribution slate that includes internationally acclaimed arthouse films, contemporary American films and edgy cult & midnight works, Cinema Epoch has been inspired by the great 1970s film distributors World Northal and New World Pictures, who distributed such classic arthouse works as Nicholas Roeg's 'Bad Timing,' 'Fitzcarraldo,' 'Cries and Whispers,' 'Quadrophenia,' and 'The Tin Drum' alongside such great grindhouse flicks such as 'Shogun Assassin,' 'Death Race 2000,' and the kung fu films of the legendary Shaw Brothers Film Studio.
www.cinemaepoch.com

06 03 2008
#1784

ToE Guitar series 3 & 4


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01 03 2008
#1783

Thelema abbey


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"I went in Cefalù last year in October and it was a beautiful experience; I met some elderly people that told me many things about Crowley's life in Cefalù but the only disconcertind thing is the bad condition of the abbey. Thelema abbey would be a museum; instead it is a destroyed home." —Pietro Riparbelli

01 03 2008
#1782

supro


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01 03 2008
#1781

Omid makes it


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01 03 2008
#1780

Travis Bean Factory shots


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