Jeffro's Space Gaming Blog

Microgames, Monster Games, and Role Playing Games

Blog Watch: Remembering David A. Trampier

 photo IMG_6733_TrampGW_zpsd6a173e2.jpg

A David A. Trampier illustration from first edition Gamma World.

Done (The Retroist) The Mysterious Disappearance of David A. Trampier, TSR Illustrator and Creator of “Wormy”! — “So for nearly 15 years nothing, then a picture of a taxi driver appears in a Carbondale, Illinois newspaper and guess who it is? David Trampier. A lot of people were excited to see him and many tracked him down with letters and phone calls. Mr. Trampier wanted nothing to do with any of them and politely told them to stop trying to contact him. It seems Trampier was just fed up with the industry and moved along with his life.”

The Real World (DE Archives) Coffee, cigarettes and speed bumps: A night with a Carbondale cabby — “This job isn’t easy. Driving a cab is a special skill and in order to do it well, Trampier must have multiple attention spans. He has to keep his mind on at least four things at the same time – all the time. First, Trampier has to think about the act of driving itself, something some people don’t do so well.”

Played Avidly to this Day (The Cryptic Archivist) Rare Dave Trampier Art Introduction  — “With co-designer Jason B. McAllister, Trampier self-published the fantasy ‘Monster Slugathon’ board game Titan under the name Gorgonstar Publications in 1980. Tramp created all the artwork for the game box, board, components, rulebook and advertising. 1981’s expansion Battlelands of Titan added new features to be incorporated into all future printings of the base game. The game eventually became a hit, one of the seminal fantasy board games of the 1980s.”

Secrets of the Ancients (The Cryptic Archivist) Rare Dave Trampier Art Part 2  — “I could see what appeared to be a scene from the game with a titan, a minotaur and what appeared to be an angel hugging a dragon all on a volcanic landscape. Trampier’s signature was clearly legible in the lower left, but not much else was. It might be a rough sketch for the cover image painting for this issue.”

Halcyon Days (Bill Coffin) A Quiet Day in Toad Town — “Call me a grognard, but when I feel like I am missing something in contemporary role-playing games – even the ones I wrote myself when I worked for Palladium, I think that what I’m missing is that. That sense that there were no rules. Just flights of fancy and dreams of adventure.”

Iconic Images (TOR) Saladin’s Sundrarium: Five Iconic 1st Edition AD&D Illustrations Proving David A. Trampier Is One of the Best Fantasy Artists of All Time — “Whether he was drawing the veins on an intellect devourer or the barbed tail of a pseudo-dragon, Trampier’s illustrations were always tactile in a way that most old-school RPG art wasn’t. Here the lizardman’s slithering black tongue and the gleaming plates of his shield look real enough to touch, but not so slick that the illustration loses its vitality.”


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