Chaosium has confirmed the passing of their company founder, Greg Stafford. He was 70 years old.
The company was founded by Stafford in 1975 to publish his first entry into the tabletop RPG genre, White Bear and Red Moon.
Since then, Greg Stafford and Chaosium have built a legendary reputation among the RPG community for publishing a diverse and interesting mix of niche RPG systems and titles.
The next major effort from the company following White Bear and Red Moon came in 1978 Steve Perrin used Glorantha, the fictional universe built by Greg Stafford for White Bear and Red Moon, as a backdrop in the creation of RuneQuest. This title was then expanded on by Stafford in 1980 with the publication of Basic Role-Playing in a collaborative effort with Lynn Willis. This supplemental material laid out a basic skill and check system for RuneQuest games, making the system feel somewhat similar to the modern roleplaying systems we see today.
Over the next several decades the catalogue of games build on this groundwork exploded in frequency of publication, as well as popularity. Chaosium would go on to build an entire library of d100-based RPG systems and modules, including Stormbringer (1981), Elfquest (1984), and, perhaps most famously, Call of Cthulhu (1981).
“He died as he lived,” Chaosium’s blog post states, “on a spiritual quest of enlightenment.”
And even though another legendary name has passed into the annuls of history, Stafford and his contributions to the industry will never be forgotten by fans.
There’s a formal Condolence Thread at BRP Central for anyone who wishes to express their well wishes to the family and friends of Stafford, or if you want to celebrate his life and contributions, you can do that too.