A History of Dungeons & Dragons
Part 9: 1982
The controversy surrounding D&D heightened in 1982 thanks, in part, to the release of the film Mazes & Monsters. The movie was based on a book of the same name, which was, in turn based on erroneous accounts of the infamous steam tunnel incident at Michigan State University. The controversy took a turn for the worse when Irving Pulling committed suicide, prompting his mother, Patricia Pulling to form an organization known as B.A.D.D. (Bothered About Dungeons & Dragons). Pulling would go on to be a vocal opponent of D&D throughout the 1980s, with claims that the game led to Satanism and suicide. Another movie would provide a positive depiction of D&D, E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial.
External troubles seemed to mirror internal troubles in 1982. Gary Gygax was forced out of the position of CEO of TSR that year by the Blumes. Gary was then sent out to Hollywood to explore television and movie opportunities for the D&D brand. This expedition would prove fruitful the following year.
1982 was also the year the Endless Quest line of “choose your own adventure” style books debuted. Most of the books tied in to D&D game worlds and served as a gateway to the later immense success of the Dragonlance line of novels.
1982 D&D Products
January – R1: To the Aid of Falx. This was a limited edition adventure sold only to members of the RPGA, though it and the other “R” series adventures were later collected in I12: Egg of the Phoenix.
May – Monster Cards (Sets 1 – 4). The first instance of card game elements being introduced to D&D, these card sets featured monster art on one side and AD&D game statistics for the pictured monster on the other. Some monsters saw their debut in these sets, including the Grippli and the Thri-Kreen.
June – R2: The Investigation of Hydell. Another RPGA exclusive, later collected in I12: Egg of the Phoenix.
June – S4: The Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth. This was an expanded and revised version of a tournament module from 1976 where the player characters must face the vampire daughter of Iggwilv while investigating rumors of a lost treasure.
August – R3: Egg of the Phoenix. A RPGA exclusive that would lend its name to I12: Egg of the Phoenix, in which the “R” series was compiled.
November – N1: Against the Cult of the Reptile God. First in a series of Novice adventures (hence the “N&rdquo, Against the Cult of the Reptile God pits player characters against an insidious cult that has infiltrated the town or Orlane.
November – U2: Danger at Dunwater. The second in a trilogy of adventures set in Saltmarsh, as well as the second module to emerge from TSR UK.
Unknown Month – B4: The Lost City. The fourth adventure for the D&D Basic Set, The Lost City features a massive step pyramid that the player characters must explore as well as the city itself, Cynidicea and its cruel master, the one eyed monster, Zargon.
Unknown Month – WG4: The Forgotten Temple of Tharizdun. Written as a sequel to the Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth, this adventure features more horrific elements as player characters explore the temple and learn about the imprisoned god, Tharizdun. The product code, WG4, is slightly odd as there were no WG1, WG2, or WG3 products.
Unknown Month – X3: Curse of Xanathon. An expert level adventure for the D&D Basic game, Curse of Xanathon is a mystery adventure in which the player characters must find the source of a curse afflicting the Duke.