Gary Gygax, the “Gawdfather of Roleplaying” has been a monumental inspiration to my own gaming circles over the years. Keeping to the core of gaming enjoyment, realizing my own creativity, and watching the game grow with him have helped mold my younger gaming days. And now, as then, I hold him with respect. Here then are 14 maxims from Mr. Gygax himself, when asked what makes a good role-player or Dungeon Master a GREAT one:




1) A commitment to having fun!

2) Immersion in the environment of the campaign.

3) A developed character that is played thus ("in character").

4) Attentiveness to what is happening in the game.

5) Clear thinking and expression of that to fellow players and the DM.

6) Both innovative suggestions and cooperative game actions.

7) Understanding that it is a game being played for the enjoyment of all concerned.




1) An understanding of all of the elements that make up a RPG.

2) A desire to have fun *with* the group, not at its expense.

3) The capacity to create on the spot so that one does not become "routine".

4) The ability to use or discard rules so as to make things seem actual/real.

5) Role-playing of NPCs and some theatrics to highlight exciting moments.

6) Maintaining the sense of threat and danger without certain doom for PCs.

7) Satisfying conclusions to adventures that have a continuance, the prospect of yet greater things to come in the campaign.



Gygax on Gaming