Appendix ‘W’

“Appendix N” is a reference to list of books that were influential on the development of D&D, and included in a section in the 1st edition Dungeon Master’s Guide for Advanced Dungeons and Dragons. A literal section in the book.

Since then, it’s become shorthand for the “influential works” in gaming, and other works, like Goodman Games’ Dungeon Crawl Classics, has also included there list.

But not all games have this. One notable game – Warhammer 40,000 – lacks an explicit ‘Appendix N’, but there is an implicit one, one that exists in the cultural sand that of the time. Warhammer 40K wears it’s influences on it’s ceramite shoulderpads, and it only takes a little work to dig them out of the cultural strata of the time.

So this work, this “Appendix W”, is the documentation of the influences on the development of Warhammer 40K. A work of cultural anthropology that traces backs the prehistory of 40K through the cultural artifacts and media sources that influenced it’s backstory.

I’ll start with some posts made on TikTok about this back in January & February of 2021, and then finish off the list. If possible, we’ll see about a podcast and/or youtube channel about this too. But to start off with, given the impending film release, there’s one title that absolutely needs to be included: Dune.

Bookshelf (so far)

Had some requests for a top 25 favorite books. Started making it, but it was hard to keep on track; things naturally went off the rails. Here’s the list so far:

  • Surface Detail, Iain M. Banks, 2010
  • Virtual Realities, SR Sourcebook, 1991
  • How to Become a Really Good Pain in the Ass, Chris DiCarlo
  • Daemon, Daniel Suarez
  • Excession, Iain M. Banks
  • Code, Charles Petzold
  • Street Samurai Catalog, SR Sourcebook, 1989
  • Technology Matters, David E Nye, 1996
  • At Home in the Universe, Stuart Kaufmann
  • How We Became Posthuman, N. Katherine Hayles
  • The Landscape of History, JL Gaddis
  • Dependency Road, Dallas W. Smythe, 1981

There’s others I’ve referenced, but not in the context of the “bookshelf”. I”ll post them under the line, for reference purposes, and will make updates as necessary.

  • House of Chains, Erickson
  • Deadhouse Gates, Erickson
  • …and many more