Obituary: David A. Trampier, Early Dungeons & Dragons Artist

David A. Trampier, who passed away on March 24 at age 59, is familiar to old-school tabletop roleplaying gamers for his Dungeons & Dragons-related art. His work was stark and atmospheric, effectively portraying the amoral tone of the game’s sword and sorcery roots. Many noteworthy images from the game’s inception were his work—most notably the menacing gem-eyed idol gracing the cover of the original AD&D Player’s Handbook, but also including various well-known and well-loved adventure covers and iconic monster and character illustrations. Perhaps his best-loved project, though, was the comic strip Wormy.

Wormy ran in the back of TSR’s Dragon magazine (then called The Dragon) from September 1977 to April 1988. I loved it at the time, and I still consider it one of the best gaming-related comics I’ve ever encountered. Stylistically, it combined the rich colors, clean lines, and lush backgrounds reminiscent of Miyazaki with the sort of comically exaggerated characters found in Bakshi’s cartoons. His characterization and dialogue were equally vivid. (For a more adept technical explanation of Trampier’s strengths as a cartoonist, click here.)

Read original David A. Trampier comics on the Comixology app
Those dwarves have some nerve!

The story’s meandering plot threads centered around the eponymous Wormy—a billiards-playing, cigar-puffing dragon wearing a cap down over his eyes—and the numerous monsters living in and around his wilderness lair. These included dimwitted ogres, mischievous trolls, a wisecracking imp, cantankerous (and short-lived) dwarves, and the puissant human sorcerer Gremorly and his winged feline ally Solomoriah.

Click here to read the full post at Fanboys Anonymous.


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