Dave Trampier, 1954-2014
I just found out, through a friend, that Dave Trampier passed away, a few days ago.
An absolute pioneer of RPG comics, and one of the iconic first-wave fantasy roleplaying artists, Dave also left us with one of the greatest mysteries in gaming: his utter disappearance in 1988.
Even if you’re unfamiliar with his classic, beloved comic strip Wormy, you’ll recognize his work in an instant.
Indeed, his influence on many a lesser artist was deep.
I has always hoped to meet Dave, and to shake his hand. Of course, I never expected it. Though it blows my mind that he was only eight years older than me. It seemed like he came from a generation of giants, creators of mythic, groundbreaking brilliance.
I’m older, now. But the merest glance at some of Dave’s illustrations will transport me back to my school days, when roleplaying was all new, bold and – let’s be honest – carried a whiff of danger. Or was that the gamer funk?
One of the greats is gone. I’d try and add something pithy here, “standing on the shoulders of giants,” “tip of the pen,” “brother in ink,” etc., etc., but I never knew Dave save through his work, and anyway my gut feeling is he’d have probably have hated that.
I hope he found some kind of peace, either in this life, or whatever comes next.