Edward Willett


TSR, Gygax, D&D & me

TSR. Gygax. The names may mean nothing to you, but to me, they were once words of power, for TSR (Tactical Studies Rules Inc.) published Dungeon & Dragons...and Gary Gygax, who cofounded the company in 1973 with childhood friend Don Kaye, created that seminal fantasy role-playing game, along with Dave Arneson. Now comes news that Luke Gygax and E. Gary Gygax Jr, sons of Gary Gygax, are relaunching TSR Games: a new company with the old trademark, which they purchased after it was abandoned by D&D owner Wizards of the Coast (itself owned by Hasbro) about nine years ago. They’re also launching a new gaming publication, Gygax Magazine. Why do TSR ...

Posted by Edward Willett at 8:58, December 6th, 2012 under Blog, Writing and Editing | 1 Comment »

Saturday Special from the Vaults: Dragons over Europe

This article appeared in InQuest, a now-defunct magazine that focused on games and game reviews--originally, when I wrote for it ca. 1996, only on collectible card games. This story was based on the premise that creatures from Dominia, one of the multiple parallel worlds in the card game Magic: The Gathering, invaded Earth in the past, so I guess you could call it alternate history! It was fun to write, anyway: it's kind of like a science column written around a complete made-up "discovery." One other fun note: the scientists quoted are real scientists, and the quotes are real, too. They all graciously agreed to provide expert commentary for this obviously fictional "science" article. ...

Posted by Edward Willett at 11:44, December 17th, 2011 under Blog | Comment now »

Contract bridge is the best medicine

Most of us assume that, when it comes to resisting infectious diseases, are pretty fatalistic. In the absence of a vaccine, we may try whatever currently popular substance is supposed to "boost our immune system," but we figure that's about all we can do. Yet, there has always been tantalizing evidence that some people seem to remain healthier than others just through the power of positive thought. That's always puzzled scientists, because they didn't know of any mechanism to account for it. That may have just changed, however. Last week, biologist Marian Cleeves Diamond, 73, presented new research at a meeting of the Society for Neuroscience at the University of California in Berkeley that indicates that ...

Posted by Edward Willett at 18:44, November 21st, 2000 under Blog, Columns, Science Columns | Comment now »