Saturday, April 30, 2011

Greyhawk Reading: Gygaxian Insults

Much to my dismay I still only own Gygax's first three Gord novels. Having read Sea of Death recently and posted on it extensively, I was reminded of how humorous alot of Gygax's characters are when they curse and cast insults at each other. This is especially true of Iuz, Obmi the dwarf and Gord himself. It made me reflect on how I roleplay villains and henchmen. I'm not sure I am liberal enough with insulting my player's characters. Given that I'm running a piratical campaign, this is important you see.

Anyhow, I went back and skimmed through Saga of Old City and Artifact of Evil to see how consistent Gygax's insults were, and yes indeed he loved to hurl them out in all three. Without reading the books, you can tell these insults are written by him too, because they have that certain "pulpy wordplay" feel that was so common in everything Gygax did. I can only imagine he got more proficient at linguistic lambasting in his latter novels. Just to share, here are several of what I would call his "PG-13" insults. I hope you enjoy you flithy, rotten maggots!"

Saga of Old City
"stinking yellow mongrel"
"Excuse me? Would you mind repeating
what you just said about me?"
"vagabonds, liars and chicken stealers"
"gutless piss-pants"
"buggermaster fattybald"
"drunken stewpot"
"bloated windbag"

Artifact of Evil
"inferior mongrel"
"half-breed reprobate"
"louse-ridden cranium"
"fonkin, frightface, foul fool!"
"long-eared turd eater"
"rot your skinny pizzle"

Sea of Death
"bandy-legged bastard"
"nighted bag of offal!"
"crooked dungheap"
"insolent whelp"
"pack of curs"
"lickspittle dogs"


scottsz said...

I foresee a 'Random Gygaxian Insult' table in your future...

Anonymous said...

Interesting, but they really do lack zing.

mortellan said...

scottsz: yikes!

seaofstarsrpg: Certainly, but considering the source and his influences this seems about right to me. Plus, i only picked the insults that you don't hear in real life. His books definitely had those too but I felt them too risky to post.

scottsz said...

@mortellan: Thought just hit me... this might make a nice little article for Oerth Journal...

Anonymous said...

Damn, now I want to re-read Saga of Old City. :D

Mystic Scholar

eLarson said...

My favorite--not from any book--was "microcephalgic coprophage". I can't remember if he was directing it at an individual or a group, but it had me chuckling for days. (Hell, years now.)

mortellan said...

eLarson: Whoa, that one would have bad guys scratching their heads instead of being mad. Too funny.