Wednesday, February 24, 2010

"Ideal" Dungeon Explorers

Mike Monaco, over at Swords & Dorkery, sent along a link to his post where he examines a set of Grenadier AD&D miniatures whose contents were designed by Gary Gygax "to be the ideal small party to explore any Dungeon." Oddly enough, I owned this set and didn't remember until Mike's posted that Gary had had a hand in selecting the minis included in it. While it's probably a mistake to read too much into his selections, I don't think his selections were arbitrary. They certainly do shed some light on his conception of D&D, particularly with regard to its humanocentric focus.

Thanks for bringing this to light, Mike.


  1. I still have most of the minis from that set. They still make me think of D&D, very specifically. I particularly liked that so many of them were modelled with torches, lanterns, etc. -- they looked like dungeon explorers, not like mercenaries.

  2. Great nostalgia (as noted also by one of Mr Monaco's readers). Sigh. I wonder what all the young people are doing?

  3. Thanks for the shout out, James. I've had over 700 hits today so far (on a blog that normally gets about a couple dozen) a pingback in French(!?). Your kung fu is indeed powerful.

    Anyway I agree I probably shouldn't be reading too much into Gygax's credit for the set...could just as well be a marketing ploy as anything else. I do love me some Grenadier minis though.

    Has anyone seen hirelings and torchbearers in current production by manufacturers? Maybe Otherworld will get to that some time.

    Anyway thanks for the traffic.

  4. I asked Gary some Qs about the Grenadier figures he "designed" or "selected" for this set, as well as the Action Art Monsters set after it, and he said something to the effect that he farmed all of that out to TSR designers, rather than having a direct hand in the selection of the figures. I'll see if I can dig the exact quotation up....