Editorials by Gygax

I just finished reading S4: The Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth.  Before I dig into this module though, I wanted to share a couple quick passages that really made me smile.  Every now and then Gygax gets a little editorial in his writing, and I always enjoy it immensely.  The first bit appears at the beginning:

Players seeking the early death of their characters should be quite satisfied with The Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth, for there are many opportunities for the foolish or rash to end it all. … Those without real knowledge of the AD&D™ game play, without the ability to handle characters of the appropriate level for this adventure, will see their characters perish swiftly if the module is handled correctly.

The second section comes towards the end.  For a little context, Gygax is generously giving the GM permission here, due to the nature of the adventure and its remote location, to allow players to gain levels without requiring them to go back to town for training.  Even then though, only “provided that the quality of play has been very high.”  He continues:

Poor play does not merit special consideration.  Players will not improve if the DM pampers rather than challenges them.  If our players perform badly, do not allow their characters to increase in experience level.  Be most judicious in how you handle awards to player characters.  Allowing foolish and ignorant players to advance their characters to high levels reflects badly upon the game and even more so upon the Dungeon Master who allowed such a travesty to occur.  In effect, it is the excellence of the DM which is judged when the caliber of play by an group is discussed.  Keep yours high!


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