Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Rest in Peace Brian Blume (1950- 2020)

One of the Co-founder of TSR, passed away last Friday. Brian John Blume (January 12, 1950 ~ March 27, 2020 helped found the company together with Gary Gygax and Don Kaye in 1973, just one year before the company launched Dungeons & Dragons and changed the world. 

Brian Blume co-authored Warriors of Mars and Boot Hill with Gary Gygax and created Panzer Warfare. In connection to Blackmoor, the Mon Class which appeared in Supplement II: Blackmoor is sometimes credited to Blume. The Dungeons & Dragons Companion Set was dedicated to him with the following text:


As the saying goes, 'for want of a nail, the war was lost'; and for want of a company, the D&D game might have been lost amidst the lean and turbulent years of the last decade. This set is therefore dedicated to an oft-neglected leader of TSR Inc., who with Gary Gygax founded this company and made it grow. The D&D Companion set is dedicated to BRIAN BLUME. -- foreword, D&D Companion Set 1984

His obituary reads:


Brian John Blume January 12, 1950 ~ March 27, 2020 (age 70) 

 Brian J. Blume, 70 of Lake Geneva, passed away Friday March 27, 2020 at the Lakeland Nursing Home in Elkhorn WI from Lewy Body Dementia and Parkinson's disease. 

 Brian was born January 12, 1950 in Oak Park, IL to Melvin and Kathleen Blume. He grew up in Wauconda IL, about an hour from Chicago, with 4 brothers and 3 half-brothers, and graduated as the valedictorian of his high school class. He attended Wabash College, but followed in the footsteps of his father by leaving and becoming a journeyman tool and die maker. While he excelled academically, he loved the precision and sense of exacting creation in tool making. He met and married Victoria Miller of Elkhorn WI, and they have been married for 40 years at the time of his death. They were devoted to each other throughout their marriage. Brian was also well known as the co-founder, with the late Gary Gygax, also of Lake Geneva, of TSR, the company involved in the creation and world-wide popularization of Dungeons and Dragons, the first “role playing” game to achieve national and international acclaim. 

 Brian was instrumental in the development of the company and in helping to expand the details of the Dungeons and Dragons world. He was the author of several other TSR games. His creative work at TSR built on a lifetime of interest in, and enjoyment from, games that challenge the intellect, expand the players’ horizons, interests, and understanding, and are just plain fun. He could always be found with friends and family pursuing a new, challenging, and enjoyable game. His general knowledge was encyclopedic. He is remembered in the gaming world as being one of the sharpest players of any game, who always found the best and most innovative games, and who was one of the friendliest and fairest players who ever rolled a die, moved a token, or played a card. Despite being hard to beat, he always played for simple enjoyment. 

 He is remembered by family and friends as generous, soft spoken, and always concerned about the well being of others. Even in the later stages of his disease he still had the quick wit and insight that was one of his many gifts throughout life. He is survived by his wife, Victoria Miller Blume, his brothers; Daniel, Keith, Douglas, Kevin, Gary, and Erick Blume, his brother-in-law, George Miller, and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his brother, Bruce Blume. In keeping with his lifelong wish to help others, his body is being donated for research. Also, in keeping with Brian's wishes, there will be no memorial service. Please consider donations to the Parkinson's Foundation or Lake Geneva Public Library.

Our hobby has lost yet another figure of historic importance to the development of Dungeons & Dragons. My thoughts go to his friends and family.

-Havard