Grimtooth’s Ultimate Traps Collection

With all the excitement around here this week about my most recent publication — 4 Seconds (still free to read over at Thrillbent!) — I experienced a pleasant kind of kismet when a special package showed up in the mail:

a not-so-mysterious box

That elaborate box design signals what is inside, but this arrival is no less a surprise, as I didn’t expect to see this book for several weeks yet.

And on the reverse:

box back

Yep, there’s no doubt about it … this box must contain my contributor’s copy of the Grimtooth’s Traps Ultimate Collection! Seems like only yesterday I was promoting the Kickstarter for this anniversary edition, and now it’s here!


Oooh. Slipcase. Very fancy.

slipcase reverse

Dead dinosaur leather? Hmm.

Inside the slipcase was a massive hardback, bearing largely the same front cover as the first printing of this role-playing supplement, over three decades ago!

Grimtooth's Traps!

And inside, the same cartoon that series artist Steve Crompton drew of a teenaged me, when I edited (and partially wrote) Grimtooth’s Traps back in the 1980s:

the original troll

And that’s the kismet part! What are the odds that my very first significant professional writing sale would be memorialized in a lavish anniversary edition within days of my latest creation, 4 Seconds, being unleashed on the world?

A bountiful week, to be sure.

But there was one more surprise to come.

original art

My copy thoughtfully included a piece of Steve’s original art from Grimtooth’s Traps. And how do I know it is original? Because that is my printing on the art, labeling this illustration for the “Going Down?” trap. It was so strange to see, and it immediately took me back to that first game design gig, with Flying Buffalo out in Arizona, where I helped launch Grimtooth’s Traps and wrote all sorts of wonderful role-playing things.

Thanks to Goodman Games for publishing this lavish and authoritative edition of Grimtooth’s Traps! I shall cherish it always … provided I can find a shelf strong enough to hold it!

Drop by the Goodman Games site and check out the details on the Ultimate Grimtooth Traps Collection (as well as their line of Dungeon Crawler Classics, and other old school role playing goodies. Tell them Longbox Graveyard (and Grimtooth the Troll) sent you!


About Paul O'Connor

Revelations and retro-reviews from a world where it is always 1978, published every now and then at!

Posted on February 19, 2016, in IT COMES IN THE MAIL and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. Wow, that is pretty cool. The feels am I right? Looks like a very cool and interesting collection, especially that “dead dinosaur” cover. So it’s basically a book about elaborate traps then?


    • Yes, this was a role-playing game supplement, one of the first generic or “universal” books intended to work with any game system. It was the first major assignment for teenaged me when I dropped out of school and became a game designer, three decades and a lifetime ago. It is very cool that people remember this book, and that it is memorialized with such a lavish edition (which reprints the whole series that resulted from that first volume).

      You never know what’s going to stick.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Glad you liked it Paul, and yes its a thing of beauty. I never guessed that these books would ever bee collected like this – Its a massive book like 600 pages. By the way, the writing on your art in pencil (100% & Things) is probably Pat Mueller’s hand writing. She was the typesetter and in charge of graphics when we did the first book.
    Ahhh memories of days gone by…


  3. wow! that is very cool and exciting. I had several traps in Grimtooth’s Traps Too and, I think, three. I’ve still got the original copies on my bookshelf with all my gaming supplies. I was most honored when the kind and humble and handsome Grimtooth choose to accept some of my unasked for submissions. 🙂


  4. Jonathan Farmer

    Wow! That is gorgeous! I’ve literally only just found out about this edition – how I missed the Kickstarter I don’t know but I’m kicking myself! And that original art – oh my! Amazing. I still remember the joy I had from the first, original Grimtooth Traps book which I bought as a 12 year old back in 1981! Absolutely loved it – I still have it and all the subsequent books in my attic! This leather hardcover version is amazing – incredible to see it in such a gorgeous book – going to have to see if there’s any way I can get hold of a copy – though seems unlikely at this stage 🙂 And you edited and co-wrote the original!! My hat is off to you 🙂 All the best, J.


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