dhenry@plains.NoDak.edu (David R. Henry) writes:
>>Will someone please tell me what the Egg of Coot is, already?
>The Egg of Coot?
>Why, it's E. Gary Gygax, oldest Coot of rpgs!!
>I don't remember where I heard this, but I think it's true, actually.
For all the readers of rec.games.frp.misc that weren't around in the
early 80's (or at least, weren't interested in RPGs then), and to allow all
concerned to make up their minds from the only data we have available, I
present to the net an unauthorised reproduction of Dave Arneson's original
description of the Egg of Coot, straight from the "First Fantasy Campaign"
supplement from Judges Guild (alas, sadly out of business and gone).
[note: the following is quite long. Also, the poster's comments within are
enclosed in these nifty square brackets. What will they think of next?]
Egg of Coot
This all consuming personality lives off the egos of others to support his
own ego. At one time (millennea ago) of humanoid characteristics, today,
his exact physical description is unknown. In fact it is not even known for
sure if he (it) has a physical appearance. Theories say that he is now a
huge mass of jointly operating cells, a huge mass of Jelly, a giant thickly
hided egg, pure energy, a man, a mass of living rock, etc. It is generally
acknowledged that the physique of this creature is too horrible for any
mortal to behold and that it carries out its activities through the use of
surrogates which it controls or has programmed. All communications with this
beast are through direct mental contact or via his throne-room which is
dominated by a huge old world artifact said to be an ancient war machine,
through which it communicates directly via voice transmission from some
other area of its City-Palace.
1) Enjoys little jokes like scrawling obscene words and phrases on the walls
of latrines and garbage cans (to show it's "power"), sky writing, pulling
the wings off of flies, etc. General level of jokes indicates a Level II
Intelligence with a mature age of 3 or 6, never having been denied
[no, the text never said what a Level II intelligence was]
2) Has a huge Laboratory that turns out spells, for selling, which are
(of course) perfection itself (30% chance of failure per level of spell,
i.e. III = 50%, II = 40%, etc.). Of historical interest is when the Ran of
Ah Foo served in the factory as a Spell Maker but was kicked out when he
"surpassed" the Egg's standard of excellence, which, since the perfect
standard is impossible to surpass, meant that he (the Ran) had committed
the ultimate wrong and was forced to flee rather than become the newest
human victim to be experimented on.
3) All close servants of the Egg, undergo mental conditioning that is aimed
at crushing all their mental initiative. This is then replaced by the over-
whelming desire to serve the Egg and do _exactly_ as it wished. Part of the
standard conditioning has them believing that all the Egg does and
communicates is good and right with all unbelievers being those jealous of
the Egg's perfection and should be treated accordingly.
4) The Egg is known to hold an unshakable grudge against anything that has
ever in any way caused it difficulty that was not immediately overcome. It
will direct it's efforts exclusively towards the demise of this force even
to the extent of ignoring past offenders in order to go after the newest
threat. This is the result of the Egg's tremendous self-esteem which admits
5) The best insight into the Egg's ambitions are in it's creed which is
daily intoned by hundreds of conditioned followers, around his capital city:
Might is Right. Might is Right. Don't Give a Sucker an even break.
Winning _is_ everything. Get what you want by Hook or by Crook, but
get it. The Ends always justify the means used to achieve it. The
meek may inherit the Earth but that means the strongest will rule
I fear the rest of the Creed is a bit too strong for our gentile readers
and deal with certain "Breeding priviledges and customs". Let it suffice
that when an area is captured by the Egg, it shortly undergoes a dramatic
population decline and acquires a new and very unhuman population
[yes, the original text had unmatched brackets, spelling and grammar errors.
That was one of its charms, like everything from JG. Not polished and error-
free like all the life had been beaten out of it by marketroids. But I
Hmm. Forgot the bit at the end about "gentile readers". It does look more
and more like a poke at Gygax (who always talks about his "gentle readers").
I was going to comment on the points, but they pretty much speak for
Dave Arneson had an interesting sense of humour and it is all through the
First Fantasy Campaign. This was, of course, back when we knew we were playing
a game and not delving into epic fantasy. Hmph. If there is any demand I'll
type in the truly classic "Marfeldt the Barbarian". That one still makes me
* email@example.com (Michael McAleese) : I speak only for me... *
"Man can believe the impossible, but never the improbable." - Oscar Wilde
(For snooping governments: heroin, cocaine, FBI, CSIS, CIA, albatross...)