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Apr 5, 2010

Accommodator/Ross Nickle

It is our sad duty to inform the members of Warpshadow that Ross Nickle, better known to us all as Accommodator, passed away suddenly on the evening of Monday March 22. Ross is survived by his wife and daughter.

If you’re shocked, know that we are even more so. Anyone who has been fortunate enough to meet Ross, as myself, Moloch, and Hydra have, would quickly realize that the man was as dependable in real life as he ever was in this magical cyber world of ours. Just as Accommodator may have seemed like a pillar of this community—someone who would always be around to solve our problems and slay our spambots—so, too, did Ross Nickle seem like someone who was dependable to the point of immortality.


I think we all had so much faith in Ross Nickle that we were almost counting on him to always be around to steer Warpshadow true. And it was more than a simple matter of taking him for granted. If you ever met Ross, you could attest to the fact that there was something about him...something that was so good at never being beaten and always being prepared, as if it were impossible for him to not be prepared.

But, to quote a cliché, Death makes fools of us all.

In addition to being the Hive Mind of the Warpshadow board for the last few years, Ross also never hesitated to put his money and his time behind cockamamie schemes like the 2008 and 2009 Games Day tables. He was at once project manager and lead cheerleader for the tables. Whenever the build team would get distracted elsewhere or get bogged down in the details of one particular part of the project, Ross would set us straight. He was also the one to come up with the idea and the solution for installing lights in the table, a little something extra that likely went a long way to winning Warpshadow the title of Best Table at Games Day Toronto 2008. Though we failed to give as strong a showing at Games Day 2009 (and I'll take the fall for that -Pinky), we are glad that Ross got to share in the 2008 victory.

Having to make such an announcement, we are reminded of the news of Warseer/Rumour guru Brimstone’s passing a few months back. Though Accommodator was by no means as widely known as Brimstone, there is a similarly odd feeling about the whole thing: a feeling of a duality of lives lived. Ross had a very real life, out in the real world, but he also had another life here and in similar online communities. Just as the process of mourning has been going on for some time in the outside world, we hope that we can start the process here, on the board that is a second home to many of us, a board that was both Ross Nickle's second home and his second job right up until the end.

If anyone has any stories of interactions with Ross that they'd like to share, or any condolences for Ross' family, please take this thread as an open forum for expressing them.

Additionally, the members of the Gestalt are trying to come up with some suitable way for the community to memorialize Ross, but we'll post more on that once we've sorted it out.

Until then, Love and Tentacles

-The Gestalt