A Millennial’s Appendix N

Yes, you read that correctly. Being born in 1985 makes a millennial, my friends. As a proud member of this generation of smartphone-staring, selfie-taking, PSL-swigging movers and shakers, I thought it was time for me to disrupt a classic part of Dungeons & Dragons: Appendix N of the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Dungeon Master’s Guide.

For those not familiar with Appendix N, it was a less-than-half-page section of the book that listed inspirational and educational reading material for dungeon masters from Gary Gygax, one of the game’s creators. This material included books by H.P. Lovecraft, Jack Vance, R.E. Howard, A. Merritt, and many others. Famous works of horror, science fiction, and fantasy. If you’re interested in the original, the full text of Appendix N is reproduced on the Digital Eel blog and The Tome Show has an amazing podcast called Appendix N that’s basically a book club that goes through the list.

Of course, Appendix N is getting a little long in the tooth. There’s plenty of new material out there to get GMs of all games inspired. I’ve decided to create my own list of inspirations and share it with you. This list not only includes books, but also features television shows, books, and movies that have inspired me over my more than 20 years gaming. Check these out and as Gygax says, “Good reading [and watching and listening]!”

Introcaso Appendix N

  • A Song of Ice and Fire books by George R. R. Martin
  • The Gate to Women’s Country by Sheri S. Tepper
  • Child of Fortune by Norman Spinrad
  • The Hunger Games books by Suzanne Collins
  • It by Stephen King
  • The Stand by Stephen King
  • The Handmaid’s Tale (TV show and books by Margaret Atwood)
  • The Expanse (TV show and books by James S. A. Corey)
  • Harry Potter (films and books by J. K. Rowling)
  • Jaws film and book by Peter Benchley
  • Stranger Things (TV show)
  • Agent Carter (TV show)
  • Agents of SHIELD (TV show)
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer (TV show)
  • Supernatural (TV show)
  • Sherlock (TV show)
  • Attack on Titan (both TV show and manga)
  • Batman comics (particularly the recent Scott Synder run)
  • Sex Criminals comics by Matt Fraction
  • Saga comics by Brian K. Vaughn
  • Dark Crystal (film)
  • NeverEnding Story films
  • Alien and Aliens films
  • Get Out (film)
  • Evil Dead (film and TV franchise… and the musical!)
  • Marvel films (particularly the Guardians of the Galaxy films and the Avengers films)
  • Star Wars films
  • Metal Gear video games
  • Elder Scrolls video games
  • Fallout video games
  • Assassin’s Creed video games
  • Fable video games
  • Castlevania video games
  • Lore podcast
  • Limetown podcast
  • Archive 81 podcast
  • Urinetown the musical by Greg Kotis and Mark Hollman
  • Sweeney Todd the musical by Stephen Sondheim
  • Into the Woods the musical by Stephen Sondheim

What About You?

I want to know what inspires your games. There’s lots that should be on my list that I haven’t consumed. Share your inspirations in the comments below and on social media with #MyAppendixN.

If you like what you’re reading please follow me on Twitter, like World Builder Blog on Facebook, check out my podcasts, find my products on the DMs Guild, tell your friends about the blog, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

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